Communicate in Greek 1

Courses, resources and discussion on Greek language.
If you know of a good link or course please post it.
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Learning greek

Postby altohb » Fri Aug 31, 2007 2:34 pm

We're using Greek Now (EΛΛΗΝΙΚΑ ΤΩΡΑ), on the recommendation of our teacher. We're having private lessons once a week, and making reasonable progress, though some of the grammatical stuff is a bit tricky. It is more than 30 years since either of us learned a new language and have to dredge the memory somewhat with regard to grammatical terminology. Other than that, though, the course book is well structured (all in Greek, but the grammar rules are explained in English at the back of the book, which is helpful) and there is a book of complementary exercises as well, which helps it all to sink in.

Have any of you had the following problem? Go to lesson - ok-ish progress. Do homework, fine. Learn conjugation of verbs - ok. Learn vocabulary - ok. Start a simple conversation with someone - reasonable. Other person answers with the "expected" reply, and then proceeds to say a lot more besides. Mind goes completely blank and don't know how to respond..........

However, we've had nothing but encouragement from local people. We're in a less tourist orientated area, so while many people do speak English the slightest effort on our part is very welcome, so we'll keep flogging on at it. Managed to get some land registration papers sorted out this morning without any help, so I must be getting better at it!


Diesel Doris
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Location: Commuting

Postby Diesel Doris » Sun Sep 02, 2007 8:26 pm

lshall05 wrote:Thanks guys!

At least I'll have a teacher for the first book and possibly part of the second book, depending how quickly we get through book 1 (there are a couple of people in the class who have done Greek before and moaned at the speed we went at while doing the BBC Talk Greek book)!

I got the workbooks and CD that go with the book so hopefully I'll be able to have a go at it before the classes start in September (given that I'll probably miss the first 2 classes because I'm in Crete it might be worthwhile being a bit ahead of the class for once!!).

Our teacher is from the 2nd biggest island in Greece. Can't remember the name of it but she says no one ever knows it unless they know someone that lives/lived there...


I have just spent most of this afternoon searching the internet for greek courses in beds, bucks or herts with very little success and have reconciled myself to having to travel to London. (again) Where is your course held? I have started from the beginning SEVERAL times at both the University of Westminster and locally at evening classes - but think I will have to go back to level 1 again!!


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Location: Malia

Postby lshall05 » Sun Sep 02, 2007 8:42 pm

Hi Doris

I go to Bethnal Green Centre (you can either get the tube to Whitechapel and either walk or get the bus round or get the tube to Bethnal Green and walk or get the bus down. There's also buses that go past as well). It's through the Idea Stores in Tower Hamlets. The first year was £33 per term (£99 in total). That was for the beginners - we used the BBC Talk Greek book.

This year it's going to be £180 for the year and using Communicate in Greek. I think the first class starts on 19 September when we are in Crete for our holiday so I'm going to miss the 1st 2 weeks.

I think it was so cheap last year because it was the first year they did it and they wanted 'bums on seats'. I just hope that the rise in price doesn't put people off.

When I'm in work tomorrow, I'll find the phone number that you can call to register or find out more info. There's also a website.
Living in Crete!!

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Location: Near Chania

Postby Kilkis » Sun Sep 02, 2007 10:51 pm

I don't know if it is still running, Doris, but there used to be a course in Hemel Hempstead. Very nice lady. Might be worth ringing the college.


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Location: Kerasia

Postby Ros21 » Sun Sep 02, 2007 11:34 pm


The Hellenic Centre in London is running Greek language courses starting on 17th September.
They're at The Hellenic Centre, 16-18 Paddington Street, Marylebone, London W1 5AS.
Tel 020 7487 5060 Website


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Location: Malia

Postby lshall05 » Mon Sep 03, 2007 10:42 am

Hi Doris

As promised here's the phone number and website. 020 7364 5665.

I looked at the Hellenic Centre but compared to the course I'm doing, it was a lot more expensive than the first year that I did, now it's only slightly more expensive but as I've made friends at Bethnal Green Centre I think I'll stick there for the time being...
Living in Crete!!

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Location: Gibraltar & Cyprus

COmmnicte in Greek

Postby raph » Thu Apr 09, 2009 1:26 am

I believe there are only 3 volumes of this publication rather than 4.

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Postby Kyrstyn » Sat Aug 22, 2009 1:14 pm

I began taking lessons from a local woman and I bought what I assume is the same book, along with the workbook. I had already completed Pimsleur's I & II audio courses, which gave me a pretty good start on at least being conversational. However, I'm having a tough time now with the grammar rules, and am concerned that 1 hour a week isn't nearly adequate for me to learn anything that will stick. I, too, have the "age" issue, being 41 and having burnt more than my fair share of brain cells over the course of the years;-) I find that the book is difficult without the instructor there to guide me through it. And unfortunately, those people with whom I hang out who do speak Greek, insist on speaking English with me. I guess my Greek is just too painful for them!!

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Learning Greek

Postby raph » Sat Aug 22, 2009 1:31 pm

Communicate in Greek does indeed come in three volumes. I have completed most of vol. 3 with a variety of teachers in different locations, the latest course being at the University of Cyprus in Nicosia where the teaching was brilliant. I think it is a useful book although in many ways prefer Greek Now (2 vols - !+! and 2+2) because of the presentation of the grammar. I find it MUCH easier to learn the accusative before the genitive in declensions.
I also just competed the 1-month summer intensive course in Modern Greek for Foreigners at the University of Crete in Rethymnon, advanced level. It was not really l that advanced. University's own book. Information was thrown at us and there was far too much to take in.
Of all the Greek courses I have attended, the best for speaking and getting a good overall grasp of the language were thsoe offered by Athens Centre in Athens Pangrati. That is where i started.

I also sat in on a class at the Hellenic Centre in London (reading and writing) and found it excellent.

I have Greek and Cpriot TV channels wherever I am living for any length of time and find they help keep up the language. A teacher is essential really.

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Location: Ierapetra

hellenic centre london

Postby alicedumas » Tue Aug 25, 2009 7:24 pm

I've also had a very good experience from the Hellenic centre in London, although they're not cheap. I've had two excellent teachers from there and I still use one of them privately when I'm in London. I've also heard that CityLit do a very good nightclass at a fraction of the cost.
I had a bad experience in Chania at the Lexis Centre in Feb 2009. I was studying on my own with weekly lessons from my teacher in Ierapetra (who is excellent), but I wanted a 2-week intensive course to push me on a bit. The Lexis Centre supplied me with one-to-one lessons for 2 hours per day, their communication was bad and the teacher supplied made it clear she'd rather be anywhere else rather than teaching. I didn't return for the second week (fortunately I hadn't paid for it).
I'm now starting Communicate in Greek 3 and am thinking about a week in Athens or Thessaloniki to push me on a bit, so if anyone has any information on a good school for an intensive 1-2 week burst I'd be grateful.
Alice, Ierapetra

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Getting ahead in Greek

Postby raph » Tue Aug 25, 2009 8:30 pm

I sat in on one lesson at City Lit in London and found it very good.
I was in touch with Lexis Chania in the past and found them most unhelpful and rather arrogant and cold.
The author of Communicate in Greek series - Frosso Arvanitaki - used to teach at Athens Centre in Athens Pangrati. Maybe she still does. She is excellent as are all the teachers there. You could do an immersion course there but it would take you 3 weeks not two. Otherwise, shortest course would be 4 weeks in Thess/iki.
Take a look at Hellenic American Unon's website. They offer various levels in Modern Greek (MG) at varying rates of intensity.
I found the Univ of Crete tip-top. Heard good things about the Univ of Ioannina. ..

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Postby dp » Wed Sep 16, 2009 11:03 pm

I've been living here in Crete for two years now and I took the beginner's course in Greek with Lexis in Chania. Not bad but a bit too intensive and hard to keep up with the more nimble brains in the class I was in. But it did give me some basis. I've gone over the book time and again since then and recently bought book two. But I found that it only really helped if I combined it with watching lots of Greek tv (the American movies with Greek subtitles are especially helpful, sometimes I turn down the sound and try to follow the dialogue through the subtitles) and adopting the kamikaze approach, just dive in and speak and hope that the neighbours and friends understand.

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Location: Sitia

Postby altohb » Thu Sep 17, 2009 12:24 pm

I agree that American & English films/series with Greek subtitles are helpful - not always an exact translation of what is being said, of course, but a good general guide. I'm still finding it hard to talk much to people without getting into a terrible muddle, but reading is definitely getting much better now, and I understand more of what is said to me, too, as long as it is reasonably slow! I try to keep going over & over the lessons, to the point of tedium as well, and I'm also reading a couple of childrens' books and making sure I understand them properly - these are books designed for adults to read to children, so have quite complex vocabulary, but there are helpful pictures as well........

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