More easy ways to remember Italian verbs

12th April 2018

What's the point in learning Italian verbs the hard way? In today's episode, you'll learn more sneaky shortcuts to help you remember Italian verbs.


Listen to the episode

Did you know that Bill Gates can help you learn Italian? He's often quoted as saying: I will always hire a lazy person to do a difficult job because he will find an easy way to do it.

This describes exactly how we feel about Italian verbs - what's the point in wasting time doing it the hard way, when there's an easier way? In today's episode, you'll learn more sneaky shortcuts to help you remember Italian verbs.

To help you remember what you learnt in today's lesson, below you'll find bonus materials like word lists, quizzes and flashcards. But first...

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Bonus Materials

Remember and practice using what you learnt with the bonus materials for today's episode.

Today's Italian words

Aspettare = to wait
Aspetto = I wait
Aspetti = you wait
Aspettiamo = we wait
Vedere = to see
Vedo = I see
Vedi = you see
Vediamo = we see
Partire = to leave
Parto = I leave
Parti = you leave
Partiamo = we leave
Aspetta = he/she waits
Parla = he/she speaks
Scrive = he/she writes
Vede = he/she sees
Parte = he/she leaves
Dorme = he/she sleeps
Fumare = to smoke
Fuma = He/she smokes
Fuma? = does he/she smoke?
Prendere = take
Prende = he/she takes
Il treno = the train
Prende il treno = he/she takes the train
Quando = when
Quando prende il treno?
Offrire = offer
Offre da bere =he/she is buying the drinks.

Take the Quiz!

How much did you learn? Find out in the 5-minute Italian quiz!

Click here to take the quiz for this episode: More Easy Ways to Remember Italian Verbs

Italian flashcards

Remember the vocabulary from your 5 Minute Italian lessons by downloading the digital flashcard pack.


Please note, this is not a word for word transcript.

Katie: Bill Gates is sometimes quoted as saying that he would always hire a lazy person to do a difficult job, because he will find an easy way to do it. This is how we like to learn languages - Matteo and I are very lazy so we’re always looking for the easiest ways to help you guys learn Italian verbs. Learn some more sneaky shortcuts to learning Italian verbs in episode 40 of 5 minute Italian.

K: Ciao a tutti e benvenuti a 5 minute Italian, hi everyone and welcome to 5 minute Italian. I’m Katie…

M: And I’m Matteo. Ciao.

Last week we looked at how to conjugate verbs in Italian to say I, as in "I speak", you as in "you speak" and we as in "we speak". We’ll be building on what we learnt, so if you didn’t catch that, you can go back and listen to episode 39 now.

Let’s practice these forms quickly with a few new verbs. Aspettare means to wait. So how would you say “I wait”?

M: Aspetto.

K: How would you say “you wait?”

M: Aspetti

K: How would you say “we wait?”

M: Aspettiamo

K: Vedere means to see. So how would you say “I see”

M: Vedo

K: How would you say “you see?”

M: Vedi

K: We see?

M: Vediamo.

K: Partire means to leave. So how would you say I leave?

M: Parto

K: You leave?

M: Parti

K: We leave?

M: Partiamo

K: In the rest of today’s lesson, we’ll be learning the easy way to remember the "he/she" form of regular verbs, as in "he waits" or "she waits".

M: The good news is, the "he/she" form is the same for both men and women, so you only have to learn one form. And for -are and -ere verbs, as in aspettare and vedere, we’ve got a sneaky shortcut for you.

K: All you have to do is remove the -re from the end of the verb. So let’s start with the verb aspettare and remove the -re from the end of the verb. So how would you say “he waits”

M: Aspetta.

K: And how would you say she waits?

M: Aspetta

K: Yep, so here you can see it’s exactly the same. Let’s try with another -are verb, parlare, to speak. How would you say he speaks?

M: Parla.

K: She speaks?

M: Parla.

K: Perfect. Then we do exactly the same for -ere verbs, like vedere. So how would you say “he sees?”, remove the -re from the end of vedere and you get…

M: Vede

K: And how would you say she sees?

M: Vede.

K: Now let’s try with another -ere verb, like scrivere, which means to write. How would you say he writes?

M: Scrive

K: And she writes?

M: Scrive.

K: Now let’s move onto -ire verbs, like partire, to leave, and dormire, to sleep. Now -ire verbs don’t follow the same rule as we just described and there’s a good reason for this.

M: If we remove the -re from partire, we would get parti, which we know means "you leave".

K: But don’t worry, the "he/she" form of the -ire verbs is still very simple. In fact, it’s exactly the same as -ere verbs, like vedere and scrivere. Just remove the -re, but this time change the "i" to "e". So let’s start with partire. How would you say he leaves?

M: Parte

K: She leaves?

M: Parte

K: What about dormire, to sleep. How would you say “she sleeps?”

M: Dorme.

K: He sleeps?

M: Dorme.

K: Alright, so let’s practice using these. The word fumare means to smoke. It’s an -are verb, so how would you say “he or she smokes?”

M: Fuma.

K: We know that Italian has a very simple way of asking questions. All you have to do is say the word with a question intonation. So how would you say “does he or she smoke?”

M: Fuma?

K: Prendere means to take. So how would you say "he/she takes"?

M: Prende

K: And the train is il treno. So how would you say "he/she takes the train"?

M: Prende il treno

K: To say “when” is quando. So how would you say “when does she take the train?” Literally "when she take the train"?

M: Quando prende il treno?

K: Offrire, an -ire verb means to offer. To drink is: da bere. To say he’s buying everyone a drink, we literally say "he offers to drink". So how would you say “he’s buying everyone a drink?”

M: Offre da bere!

K: Who? Let’s find him quick.

That’s all we have time for today, thanks for listening. And if you’d like to get more mini Italian lessons delivered to your inbox, don’t forget to subscribe by following the link below. Grazie, and ciao for now, see you next time, or as we say in Italian, alla prossima!

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