Brazilian Portuguese BeginnersPortuguese image

Students are advised NOT to buy the course book before the start of the course.

This Brazilian Portuguese course aims to take complete beginners in the language to a level where they are able to understand basic written and oral communication as well as feel confident to express themselves in written and oral forms using familiar everyday expressions and basic phrases (level A1 of the Common European Framework). Students will be able to introduce themselves and others, ask and answer questions about personal details such as where they live, people they know and things they do and have. The course will provide students with the skills needed for basic everyday situations in a Portuguese-speaking environment. It covers all four basic skills – listening, speaking, writing and reading.

The method is essentially communicative with pair and group work, role plays, interactive language games, information sharing and task based activities, social interaction and functional communication practice always encouraging students’ participation. Classes include a large variety of real-life situations. Grammar acquisition is done by contextualised oral and written exercises.

The use of authentic texts showing the culture and life-style of Brazil and other Portuguese-speaking countries, plus songs, videos and even food will give a taste of the cultural aspects of the lessons. The course will give students basic knowledge of the language as well as insight in the real and fascinating life of the Portuguese-speaking world.

General topics covered:

Introductions, meeting people, eating & drinking, hotel & directions, housing, daily life activities, gender and number endings, regular and irregular verbs in the present, immediate future, imperative form, introduction to the past tense and other important structures. Phonetics will play an important role in the lessons as aspects of the different accents found in Brazil and other Portuguese-speaking countries will be discussed.

A detailed, weekly course programme can be found below.

The course book used will be Novo Avenida Brasil 1 Curso Básico de Português para Estrangeiros, Livro texto + Livro de Exercícios (by Emma Lima, Lutz Rohrmann, Tokiko Ishihara, Samira Iunes, Cristián Bergweiler, Editora Pedagógica e Universitária Ltda, ISBN 978-85-12-54520-2). The book is accompanied by an audio CD which students are encouraged to listen to outside of lesson time. Work sheets will also be provided by the teacher.

Weekly revision is essential to take full advantage of the course. To complement the topics introduced in class, we recommend the use of other resources such as:

Week 1

The phonetics of Brazilian Portuguese and some of the main accents. Basic rules of spelling. Graphic accents. Greetings. Introductions.

Tema 0 / Tema 1

Week 2

Meeting people. Giving and asking personal information. Spelling. Nationalities. Jobs. Irregular verb SER. Regular verbs in –AR.

Tema 1

Week 3

Question word: Onde? Prepositions of place: em, no, na, nos, nas. Revision of verbs in –AR. Countries and cities. Numbers from 0 to 199.

Tema 1

Week 4

Introducing people. Making suggestions. Inviting people. Asking the time. Days of the week. Periods of the day. Activities (going to the theatre, football, concert, etc).

Tema 2

Week 5

Possessive and demonstrative pronouns. Irregular verbs IR, PODER, TER and the immediate future. Inviting for lunch and weekend activities.

Tema 2

Week 6

Vocabulary review: weekend activities. Adverts. Leaving a voice message. Eating and Drinking.

Tema 2 / Tema 3

Week 7

Asking for a table. Ordering food and drinks. Understanding the menu. Inviting friends for dinner. Possessives: seu, sua, seus, suas. Verb GOSTAR DE.

Tema 3

Week 8

Irregular verb ESTAR. Regular verbs in –ER. Irregular verb QUERER. Difference between verbs SER and ESTAR. Traditional dish: feijoada.

Tema 3

Week 9

Revision exercises to be taken home and handed in after Christmas break.


Week 10

Setting the table. Dining utensils. Expressing wishes and preferences. Making a hotel reservation. Types of rooms.

Tema 3 / Tema 4

Week 11

Walking around the city. Means of transportation. To be far or near. Giving directions. Verb FICAR. Possessives: dele, dela, deles, delas. Comparative with more.

Tema 4

Week 12

Regular verbs in –IR. Irregular verbs: FAZER and PREFERIR. Continuous form. Imperative. Making a complaint.

Tema 4

Week 13

Taking holidays. Traffic signs. Numbers from 200 to 1 billion. Housing. Types of houses.

Tema 4 / Tema 5

Week 14

Looking for a house to rent. Describing what you want. Problems in the flat. Prepositions of place. Past tense: verbs in –AR.

Tema 5

Week 15

Review of the past tense. Past of regular verbs in –ER and –IR. Comparative of superiority, equality and inferiority. Describing your dream house.

Tema 5

Week 16

Putting an advert in a newspaper. Building a house. Word association. How was your day?

Tema 5 / Tema 6

Week 17

Daily activities. Frequency adverbs. Past of irregular verbs: SER and IR.

Tema 6

Week 18

Past of irregular verbs: TER, ESTAR, FAZER, QUERER and PODER. Object Pronouns. 

Tema 6

Week 19

Brazilian Festivals and Holidays. Famous Brazilian poets, painters, singers and song writers.

Tema 6

Week 20

General review.


Questions regarding the content and teaching of the above course should be addressed to the tutor, Ms Gisele Breder,

Enrolment infos

Imperial College undergraduates and postgraduates may, if they wish, acquire 2 ECTS credits after successfully completing their Evening Class. To qualify, a student must attend the classes regularly and pass a test at the end of the second term. Students will be invited to apply in the second term to take the test.