Courses with NIAF

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Starting the week of March 29th


This course is for students who have already completed the A1 and A2 levels, which include Beginners 1 and 2 (A1) and Elementary 1, 2 and 3 (A2).

Online via Zoom – 10 lessons
Wednesdays, 6:30-8:30 pm ET 
Instructor: Laura Loddo

We will talk about Italians abroad, living in a foreign country, tell a travel misadventure, tell news and stories, and words of the news. We will describe the features and the personality of a person, express feelings and emotions, understand humorous cartoons, and explore the Italian giallo genre of film. The grammar will cover past perfect with modal verbs, stare and gerund vs stare per, past perfect tense, passive form, and conjunctions. You will be reading and listening to stories, watching videos, and making presentations.

Students will need to purchase the textbook: Nuovo Contatto B1 (Loescher editore) online or at the ICS headquarters.


Carlo Ellena

Carlo Ellena was born in the picturesque town of Savona, Liguria also known as the “Palm tree Riviera”. Interested in technological issues, he attended university in Pisa where he studied Artificial Intelligence and received his Masters in computer linguistics and expert systems. Mr. Ellena has been teaching for the Italian Cultural Society (ICS) since 2008 and became a standing board member in 2012. In 2013 Mr. Ellena joined the Subcomittee that regulates and runs the Italian Language School (ILP) at ICS. He is married to Varinia Daza and lives in Bethesda, Maryland. He is fluent in Italian, English and Spanish, and proficient in both French and Portuguese.

Laura Loddo Moticka

Born in Venice so many years ago, I graduated from the University Ca’ Foscari of Venice with an M.A. in Modern Foreign Languages and Literatures with a focus on teaching a foreign language. I have been teaching Italian since 2002 to students in high schools and adults. I also studied singing at the Conservatory.

I have an adolescent kid, whom I call “Il mio porcospino”. Together with him and my husband, I like to travel the world and especially explore Italy.

In my free time, I like to read historical novels and detective stories; I enjoy listening to music of all kinds and singing in choirs. I also love to bake and make jewelry using Murano glass and all sorts of stones. I must admit that I am also a workaholic who is always in the “I am a teacher and need to find materials and realia for my students” mode.

Nicoletta Nencioli Aiken

Born in the medieval town of Treviso in the Northeast of Italy, Nicoletta Nencioli Aiken is a journalist,author and teacher.  She comes from a long line of educators, professors and writers, her parents and grandparents have been linguistics and literature teachers.  Ms Nencioli Aiken remembers her earliest Italian-teaching experience – helping her mother review the students’ compositions.  A passion for the humanities brought her to study at the ‘Liceo Classico’ of Treviso, followed by the study of Law at the University of Rome, and Italian literature through ICON.

While in Rome, the call to write led her to pursue a career in journalism where she worked as a writer for the Italian public radio/television RAI and a reporter for several news and literary outlet.  Upon receiving her professional journalist credentials,  she moved to the US in 1992 where she worked for the Venice newspaper ‘Il Gazzettino’ until 2009.  She continues her journalistic work for the main Italian News Service (ANSA), reporting daily on wide range of topics.  Ms Nencioli Aiken in 2008  authored ‘Making out in Italian’  for Tuttle Publishing, a fun guide to the language of Italy as it is actually spoken. After tutoring in italian language and culture american friends and family, she now teaches italian at ICS. In her free time, she can be seen flying back and forth between Washington DC and Venice,bicycling  and speaking Italian to her American husband..