You can learn to speak Italian efficiently by learning the phrases and sentences used in day to day conversations. These Italian sentences are designed for beginner and early intermediate Italian language learners.
Many of them will be very useful for your first Skype conversations.
These five hundred Italian sentences (with audio, flashcards, and learning games) use the grammar and vocabulary needed in basic conversations.
There are ten sentences in each unit. The first fifty units cover the present and past (mainly).
The free Italian sentences on Surface Languages will always be a useful starting point, but if you prefer more structure in your learning ItalianPod101.com is extremely effective at both a beginner and intermediate level.
Learn how to speak Italian: A practical guide.
Reading in Italian. Learn vocabulary through reading.