Teaching & Adminstrative Staff For 2016-2017

 

 

School Administration

 

  Luigi Gherardi, Principal & Advanced Instructor

Luigi was born and raised in Corfino, Italy. He immigrated to the United States in 1965. He graduated from the University of the Pacific with a degree in Modern Languages in 1976.

In 1974, with a number of local Italians, Luigi co-founded the Central California School of Italian Language and Culture where he is now Principal. He began working at St. Mary’s High School in 1978, where he still teaches Italian and served as the Student Activities Director. Luigi lives in Stockton with his wife, Karen, and they have two sons, David and Daniel.

 

 

Instructors

 

              Annie Poletti Mar

I love Italy and all things Italian.  I had the opportunity to study in Florence (Firenze) for my senior year in College.  I was asked to teach Italian while teaching at Tokay H.S., so I did.  When I moved to Bear Creek H.S., I started the Italian program there.  I have been teaching here at the Italian Language School since 1995.  Taking travelers (adults and teens) traveling in Europe, especially Italy has been my passion since 1990.  (Ask about my Italian Foodie Tour for March 2016.)  I make sure to include cultural activities and themes along with the language lessons. 

I’m looking forward to teaching and sharing my experiences with you, and most of all, having fun! 

Ciao-ciao! ....Annie Poletti Mar

 

   

Ambretta Galigani Vitale

My name is Ambretta Galigani Vitale, but my adopted American name is “Beth.” I was born and raised in Italy in Marina di Carrara (Toscany), a lovely town by the sea a few miles south of Cinque Terre and north of Viareggio.  On July 1963, I came to Lodi, California where I married the man I met in my hometown 4 years before and to whom I am still married.  I had come to visit him and to meet his family and never returned to Italy then, but now I often return to visit my family and friends.

At first, I missed my life in Italy…family, relatives, friends, etc.  With time I learned to call Lodi my new home.  I have 3 children, one grandchild and one step-grand-daughter all of whom I adore.

I worked at San Joaquin Delta College in the library as the Acquisition Clerk for 21 years.  I am now retired, but am still part of that Staff as a substitute.

In 1981, I started teaching at the Central California School of Language and Culture located in Stockton, and through the years I have seen the growth of this school as well as experienced some changes during my tenure.  For example, I started as the teacher for the Beginning classes.  After several years, I was “promoted” to teach the Advanced level; a few years later, I was asked to teach the Intermediate classes then back to the Advanced classes.  In other words, I have had the pleasure to experience all levels of teaching, and to meet the needs of all students.  This year I am once again teaching the Intermediate classes as I have been doing for the last few years.

Regardless of the different levels, I love to teach my native language. Through the Italian School I had the opportunity to meet many people, e.g., members of the Board, teachers and students… and I still remain in touch with some of them!  I feel so happy to know that people of Italian descendants are still interested in their grandparent’s or parent’s language, and that they desire to learn it, or correct it if needed; this is especially true, if through their own Italian families or relatives they had learned a dialect version of Italian.

I am also happy to see that the Italian population of Stockton and the surrounding areas are still interested in their forefathers’ culture. I hope God will keep me healthy and give me the opportunity to continue sharing, for many years to come, the knowledge of my native language and to continue meeting new students and staff as well making new friends. 

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 Mi chiamo Ambretta Vitale, ma il nome che ho adottato in America e’ “Beth”. Sono nata e cresciuta in Italia a Marina di Carrara (Toscana) una bella e piccola citta’ sul mare a pochi Km. a sud delle Cinque Terre e a nord di Viareggio.  Nel luglio del 1963 sono arrivata qui in California a Lodi dove sposai l’uomo che avevo conosciuto 4 anni prima nella mia citta’ natale e al quale sono ancora sposata.  Ero venuta a visitare lui e a conoscere la sua famiglia e non sono piu’ ritornata alla mia bella citta’ in Italia ma dove ci vado molto spesso per visitare la mia famiglia e gli amici.

I primi anni sentivo molto la mancanza della mia vita in Italia, la mia famiglia, I parenti, gli amici, ecc. Con il tempo imparai a considerare Lodi come la mia nuova dimora.  Ho tre figli e un nipotino e una step-nipote che adoro entrambi.

Per 21 anni ho lavorato nella biblioteca a Delta College come impiegata nel reparto acquisti. Ora sono in pensione ma faccio ancora parte di quella biblioteca e lavoro come supplente.

Nel 1981 cominciai ad insegnare alla nostra Scuola di lingua e cultura Italiana a Stockton e durante tutti questi anni ho potuto vedere la crescita e i cambiamenti di questa scuola.  Cominciai come insegnante per la classe dei Principianti. Alcuni anni dopo fui “promossa” per insegnare le classi al livello “Avanzato”, piu’ tardi mi chiesero di insegnare agli studenti “Intermediari” e poi nuovamente con gli studenti del livello “Avanzato”.  Finalmente, alcuni anni fa la scuola mi mise nuovamente con gli studenti del livello “Intermediario” e qui e’ dove sono ancora oggi.  In altre parole ho avuto il piacere e l’esperienza di insegnare ad ogni livello d’insegnamento e percio’ di conoscere ogni tipo di student di ogni eta’ e provenienza.

Mi piace insegnare la mia lingua. Attraverso questa scuola ho avuto l’opportunita’ di conoscere molte persone: membri del comitato, insegnanti e studenti e con alcuni sono ancora in contatto. Sono felice di vedere che la gente di discendenza italiana e’ ancora interessata nella cultura e nella lingua dei loro nonni o genitori e vogliono impararla o correggerla se,  tramite le loro famiglie, hanno imparato un dialetto.

Spero che Dio mi mantenga in salute e mi dia l’opportunita’ di continuare per molti anni ancora a offrire la mia conoscenza della mia lingua nativa e continuare a conoscere nuovi studenti, insegnanti e fare nuove amicizie.

 

 

Justin Ehrenberg

Justin, a resident of Lodi and native of Ohio, fell in love with Italian at the age of sixteen while spending his junior year abroad on the Italian island of Sardinia. He also spent six months of college studying in Trieste, Italy and holds a B.A. in Italian with a minor in French, an M.A. in Italian and an M.Ed. in Foreign and Second Language Education, all from The Ohio State University. Since 2001 he has taught Italian and French at the high school and college level in Ohio, Connecticut and California. He currently teaches Italian at Bear Creek High School in Stockton where he is also Department Chair of the World Languages Department. Before relocating to the Central Valley, Justin also served as a high school and middle school assistant principal in Los Angeles. He frequently travels to Italy and still keeps in touch with his host family and friends from his high school and college days. Teaching foreign languages, especially Italian, is Justin's passion, and he is excited to be part of the teaching staff this year!