Italian Language Game: Using "tu" or "Lei"

Italian Language Game: Using "tu" or "Lei".  A quick online game as a mini-story. Marco is introduced to Claudia, the sister of a friend. How should he address her? Use the familiar form of address right away?
(Photo thanks to Adrian Krajcar on Unsplash)
Play this quick Italian online game to practice 15 Italian words and phrases.
Note that in Italian the pronoun is often dropped, except for emphasis or clarity. But in any case, with or without a pronoun, you always have to use the correct verb form.

Using "Tu" or "Lei":

The pronoun "tu" is the singular familiar word for "you". It goes with the second person singular verb form.
Use the familiar form of address with family and relatives, children, good friends, classmates, and some people at work.
Using the familiar form is appropriate to use when know each other well, are of similar age, have equal status, etc.

"Lei" is the singular formal word for "you", and it goes with the third person singular verb form. The formal "Lei" is used with both men and women.
Use the formal form of address with older people, strangers, and in professional situations.
Using the third person singular form shows respect and/or distance, and should be used when in doubt.

Note that "lei" also means "she" in Italian. The context of a conversation tells you which meaning is being used: "she" or the formal "you".

We very much like Silvia Perrone's explanations for "tu" and "Lei" in her post here.

When playing the game, say the Italian OUT LOUD.
Click again on the Italian to practice saying the word or sentence again.
Try to "shadow" each of the sentences, by saying them at the same time as the speaker.
Even if you're familiar with all the words, it takes practice to say a sentence in natural speed.

Words in Italian Mini-Story Language Game

  • Piacere. - Nice to meet you.
  • Piacere di conoscerla. - Pleased to meet you. (formal)
  • essere - to be
  • Non essere così formale. - Don't be so formal. (fam.)
  • potete - you(pl) can
  • dare - to give
  • vi - (you pl.) each other [reciprocal]
  • Potete darvi del “tu”! - You(pl) can use "tu" with each other.
  • per te - for you (familiar)
  • va bene - it's okay
  • Se per te va bene. - If it's okay with you. (fam.)
  • certamente - of course
  • noi studenti- we students
  • ci - (we) each other [reciprocal]
  • ci diamo tutti del “tu” - we all use "tu" with each other

This brief story is also part of our Italian 1 course.
(You can play the complete course for FREE by registering HERE.)
After playing the game, try to recall some of the words and phrases.
It's a good way to become familiar with new vocabulary.
For more easy games see also our post: 5 Easy Italian Language Games.
Or you can find ALL of them - over 60 by now - on the Italian Quick Language Games page.
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More Than an Italian Language Game

Remember: You can practice Italian online for FREE with our 36-Scene Italian 1 Travel-Story: "Marco in Italia".
In it you learn and practice all the words, phrases and sentences you also hear in the Italian 1 podcasts. Just login HERE.
And, if you have any language questions  - don't hesitate to contact us!