One of the things that visitors to Italy like to do is learn to speak some Italian. I think the best way to do this is to join a class. It helps with gaining the confidence to actually speak.
There is a new school in Lucca doing a great job. The teachers are all enthusiastic and have had lots of experience. I sat in on a class the other day and it was a lot of fun. I was nowhere near as advanced as the other students but I understood enough to keep up. The classes seem to be quite small, which I think is great. That way you get a bit of individual attention.
The cheerful teachers I met that day are Eva, Daniela, Marina, Antonella and Angelo.
I liked the way the lesson was made fun. Obviously grammar has to be learned, but there was also lots of conversation where the students participate and corrections are gently made. The young French girl I met in class had been going for 2 weeks and said she was delighted with her progress. Antonella was the teacher we had and she has a genuine delight in the beautiful Italian language and the ability to pass this on.
The school seems to be very flexible with the courses it offers and will begin a class with a minimum of just 2 students. Individual lessons are also available. As well as lessons in the classroom they organise fun excursions and cooking lessons, making learning even more fun.