All posts by Danh Nguyen

Vietnamese-Italian EOTO | 10th meeting

Finally, we managed to arrange this meeting as both were all busy with our own studies. However, everytime met is a really valuable chance for me to learn about the another culture.

Since the last meeting, we found that the available quizzes from the internet is a good source for us to deep into the country’s culture and language. While answering the quiz one by one, one of us could explain more about the contents of that question. For example, there was a quiz about the “patron saint of the day” in Italy, Sara could show me some names of different dates in Italy; for me, it is interesting to know about that! Based on the names of Italian destinations or people, I can revise the pronunciation with the help of Sara. It’s about Easter so we had a short discussion about how our countries celebrate the holiday (actually in Vietnam they don’t have Easter holiday but only the Vietnamese Catholics do)

I could teach Sara some new Vietnamese words based on the quizzes that we met. I explained Sara why there are so many Vietnamese people have the surname “Nguyen” and she might be surprise about this. Eventually, we agreed that our cultures and lifestyles are so different. That’s why this course is so useful.

Last but not least, this course is a nice place to make new friends from different nations all over the world. We couldn’t have any chance to meet face to face as I’m still stuck in Vietnam but let’s hope for the better situation. The course ends here but my “journey” to explore this exciting country won’t end. Thanks Sara for helping me depart!

Italian-Vietnamese 9th meeting

On this occasion, we have a discussion throughout various topics.

Via Vietnamese culture, we gave Sara a multiple-choice quiz about Vietnam’s culture, tourist attractions, history… Based on that we could have more topics to make our meeting more exalting. For example, there was a question about choosing the right city name, only one answer was correct; however, this gave us a chance to introduce Sara about the other three beautiful cities. I think this way is an effective way to give Sara a broad view of our country in general.

Sara also provided me and Duy some exciting facts about Italy: family life, religion, art and architecture… with good portraiting images and description which helped to express the topics clearly. The close family connection of the Italian people is similar to the Vietnamese, plus Italy has special meaningful holidays which I would really love to experience someday in the future. The architecture and art of Italy are absolutely heritage of the human kinds. All of them made me eager to visit the country in the nearest future.

We also had some basic exchange about our daily routine at the end of the meeting which made my eyes widened and promoted my understanding of the diversity of lifestyles all over the world.

Italian-Vietnamese 8th meeting

This meeting is also about the culture. Our focus today was about marriage and relationship. There was difference about the perceptions between two countries.

Basic vocabulary about this topic was given both in Vietnamese and Italian. While in Italian most of the people were open with the idea of early dating relationships, a part of Vietnamese adults are still quite not convenient about this. Furthermore, the way people talking and doing “sensitive things” in the public got the different approval rate between the two countries. Also our discussion had deeply gone through some common arguments between the ideas of cohabitation.

That’s a nice meeting with lots of interesting info from both sides. I was like understand why culture exchange is so favoured right now. It’s so valuable to know more about different things around the world and it’s good to learn good things and eliminate the bad ones.

Italian-Vietnamese Class | 7th Meeting

In this meeting our focus was about sports in our countries. As sport got a common interest all over the world. Our perceptions about sports are not too different.

As we have three people, the discussion was rather exalting. First of all, we talked about footbal culture in Vietnam. It’s the king sport of the country despite the achievements are too prominent worldwide but we still support our national team in each of their tournament. We also showed Sara the images about the Vietnamese football team along Vietnamese vocabulary about football (it’s important). Also, we talked about our concerns about other sports (tennis, swimming…).

That’s lucky that sports culture in Italian and Finland is not too different from our country (so we won’t be shock when come there at least for this aspect ^^). The history of Italian football team is admirable. The important words in Italian were also given by Sara (I must say that Italian accents sound so charming to me!). The vocabulary was not to hard to remember as part of it was similar to English (e.g Ball: Pallone , Stadium: Stadio, Player: Giocatore, National Team: Nazionale A…). Sports are a huge topic to discuss about and a long coffee meeting will satisfy this (not this virtual meeting :<)

That’s good to have an exchange class like this! 



Italian-Vietnamese 6th meeting

Ciao! It’s hard that we are still that in different time zones to arrange suitable time for our meetings. Fortunately, the sixth meeting has gone through really well.

It was us and our computer screen but it was still a nice exchange discussion. At this time, we discussed significantly about religions in our countries. I was surprised that in Italia even at school the students are taught about religion according to their preference (it was only taught in the pagodas or churches places in Vietnam) about the religion prominent practices and hierachies and so on. Sara knew quite considerably about Catholicism while she was not a follower, it was a big difference compared to schools in Vietnam which followed the Communist ideology.

About Raymond’s and my part, we also showed Sara about our different religious groups in Vietnam and how much they accounted over the population number. Besides that, we also showed how crowded Vietnam’s big cities are to demonstrate the big difference on the streets of Vietnam compared to most of other European countries. Maybe Sara should have some other feelings and thought about this topic today.

We still have more topics to talk about but overcoming this time difference and distance are pivotal things we need to consider then.

Italian-Vietnamese 5th meeting

Woops! This is our first meeting after nearly one month. The time flew so fast. All of us were too busy with our own schedule and Thank God Sara and I successfully arranged a meeting this week while Duy couldn’t participate due to some personal reasons.

Today, we discussed about our history and maybe a little bit politics. Sara shown me a brief history of Italia which explains why the country is divided into different regions like nowadays and important events in the Italian history. Also, I have got some suggestions from Sara about interesting places to travel accross Italia as well as good things I can expect throughout the trip to the country.

Towards my part, I gave Sara some kind of “base” of the Vietnamese history, “legend” as well as some famous historical people such as the key persons in Vietnam war.

However, history is something complicated and requires much more self-study, both of us will ourselves try to elaborate more on the information we have got from each other.

Throughout the meeting, we exchanged on various fields which come out of our mind. Therefore, I consider this meeting has given us considerable basic knowledge about the two countries.

Italian-Vietnamese Fourth meeting: Food, food and food!!!

Hello-Ciao-Xin chào!!! It was our fourth meeting and the session was full of food, that makes me hungry all the way. Right in the beginning of the meeting, Duy did very well at introducing the most typical and best specilities in Vietname such as: pho, banh trung thu (mid-autumn cake), nem… I was impressed by the way he delivered all the most basic but mostly adequate information about the dishes to Sara; furthermore, he also helped her to distinguish the fake and the real version of distict dishes, he did it very clear, and I admired him at this point. Then we also showed Sara two special food which rarely foreigners can “deal with” are “trung vit lon” and “sau rieng” (durian) and we hope that she can try the two in the near future.

About the Italian food, Sara showed us a huge varieties of her country’s specilities: from the most general like pasta, pizza, lasagna, risotto (including many different types) to the more region-specific ones such as rosotto allo zafferano, pasta al pesto, polenta (in the North) and parmigiana di melanzane, cannoli (in the South). The common thing in Italian dishes is that they are mostly fat in nutrition and provide a large amount of protein and energy (I think it is not suitable to try these before going to bed!!)

We have planned for one cultural exchange day to cook our food and discuss more about our cultures and languages when Duy and me can arrive in Finland. We all hope that day will come soon!

Italiano-Vietnamese third meeting: Welcome our new member, Duy Ha!!!

It’s so surprised when we welcomed a new member to our group, he is my fellow from Vietnam and he is from the North (I’m from the South). It’s good for all of us, Vietnamese people from different regions still have typical differences, and not only Sara I can learn from Duy many other things I has not experienced yet.

Via our meeting, it was an open greetings, as it is definitely “the more the merrier”, we got to know more about each other. Firstly, Sara taught me about the verb tenses (with the “TO BE=essere” and “TO HAVE=avere”) and also a little revision the personal pronouns from the last session; the lesson becomes harder and harder when I learnt how to combine the words in order to express the sentence in the correctly in certain contexts. Italian grammar is getting more complicated at this point and much more efforts must be put into practice if I want to comprehend all of this. On the contrary, verb tenses and plural form in Vietnamese is really simple, it only took us about 15 minutes and there was no challenges for Sara to get through with this part.

Also, after that Duy and me introduced Sara traditional holidays and typical occasions in Vietnam. While Duy were “making his presentation” by speech to Sara, I tried to share the relative images and information from internet on Zoom’s sharing screen space. We thought we all did well at this session (lol).

There is still many interesting things to disscuss in the next meetings (both academic and cultural) and we’re all looking forward to the coming weeks!

Italian-Vietnamese 2nd meeting

At the 2nd meeting, I was taught about the gender of nouns in Italian. It’s so interesting that even the nouns have their genders. For me, it is quite challenging to catch the sign of each word to identify the word’s gender. However, Sara said it would become more familiar when I have more chance to catch more Italians in the future. I also hope so!

For Vietnamese, I showed Sara some basic personal pronouns in Vietnamese. Compared to English, the pronouns in Vietnamese are much more complicated but Sara managed well with those stuff.

We planned to extend more about the culture at the next meeting.

Italian – Vietnamese first meeting

Sara and I has our first meeting on Zoom on 12/9 for 1.5 hour. This is quite an inconvenience as we cannot directly contact with each other which makes the process of learning ( esp. pronunciation which depends on looking at how our mouth looks like when saying the words) more difficult to achieve ( plus the connection was bad and we could not turn on the camera while interacting). However, we were still able to overcome this with all of our efforts.

We both learnt and taught the alphabet. For Italian, I had chance to look over some basic expressions like “Hello”, ” How are you?”, ” Good morning/ afternoon/evenning…”, and some more. I could comperehend a little bit about how to pronounce the words when letters are combined. I love listening and learning the beauty of Italian ( at least until now!!!). Vietnamese as I heard from my foreigners is quite hard to learn, but Sara managed the first process pretty well, she listened to my pronunciation through Zoom and repeated relatively exactly, she is kind of a hard and smart learner, I suppose she will succeed more in the future.

Our meeting was successful, we basically achived what we planned and hope that we will keep this streak going up and be able to do some basic communication soon.