Tips and advice for those who wish to learn Gaeilge

Luigi Vampa

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A Chairde

Can this be a thread as bearla for all those, like myself, who may have learned a little Irish at school but did not appreciate its value, and now wish to re-learn it in a practical and useful way.

I'm sure many of you have seen people successfully become fluent in Irish after starting out with very little.

All tips and advice greatly appreciated, along with any common mistakes and pitfalls that should be avoided.

Go raibh maith agaibh.
 


DuineEile

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A Chairde

Can this be a thread as bearla for all those, like myself, who may have learned a little Irish at school but did not appreciate its value, and now wish to re-learn it in a practical and useful way.

I'm sure many of you have seen people successfully become fluent in Irish after starting out with very little.

All tips and advice greatly appreciated, along with any common mistakes and pitfalls that should be avoided.

Go raibh maith agaibh.

No problem at all. But beware the Gaeilge bashers who insist that you cannot post as Gaelige anywhere else on this site, and who insist that this an English site. Unfortunately that includes the owner.



You should also go on to the Daltaí boards forum, which should be very helpful to you. Just google Daltaí boards ( with or without the fada)


My tip would be to ignore the exceptions to anything, including irregular verbs, until you get the hang of the main rules. I would also say to learn verbs before nouns, as they are easier, and to learn the autonomous form with the rest of the tense, not as some sort of add on.

Where are you at exactly?


D
 

dónal na geallaí

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I would add my own thanks to daltaí.com.Very helpful people and a very fast and user friendly site to navigate ,freisin.Also :childrens songs,silly but they stick in your mind!
 

Cato

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A Chairde

Can this be a thread as bearla for all those, like myself, who may have learned a little Irish at school but did not appreciate its value, and now wish to re-learn it in a practical and useful way.

I'm sure many of you have seen people successfully become fluent in Irish after starting out with very little.

All tips and advice greatly appreciated, along with any common mistakes and pitfalls that should be avoided.

Go raibh maith agaibh.
Good luck with that. I know two immigrants here that made an effort to learn the language and they seem to know a fair amount after just a few years. Conradh na Gaeilga run lessons all over the country.
 

Luigi Vampa

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All Good advice so far folks thanks very much. Any pitfalls/common mistakes to avoid ?

I actually disliked Irish at school, but I believe it was the way it was taught and the syllabus that was the problem. (combined with the usual youthful laziness/heedlessness of course). Not the languages fault.

I presently live in Co. Meath, but I would like to learn Ulster Irish as that's my roots and I fancy a few hols in the Donegal Gaeltacht when I become a bit better.

Slán go foill mo Chairde.
 

Cato

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Good advice so far folks thanks.

I actually disliked Irish at school, but I see now it was the way it was taught and the syllabus that was the problem. No practical enough by far. Not the languages fault.

I presently live in Co. Meath, but I would like to learn Ulster Irish as that's my roots and I fancy a few hols in the Donegal Gaeltacht when I become a bit better.
There is an Irish speaking area in Meath somewhere. I'm not sure which dialect they speak though.
 

YoungLiberal

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Good advice so far folks thanks.

I actually disliked Irish at school, but I see now it was the way it was taught and the syllabus that was the problem. No practical enough by far. Not the languages fault.

I presently live in Co. Meath, but I would like to learn Ulster Irish as that's my roots and I fancy a few hols in the Donegal Gaeltacht when I become a bit better.
Don't be afraid to make mistakes. Don't mind the odd idiot who corrects your grammar/Irish. These people are almost always people who have learned Irish as adults themselves and use the language as a tool. Ignore them. If you're in Meath (not sure what part) make a trip to the local bar in Rathcairn, once you've learned enough Irish to have a basic conversation. Explain to them that you want to learn Irish as they may speak English to you out of politeness, if you're struggling.
 

YoungLiberal

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There is an Irish speaking area in Meath somewhere. I'm not sure which dialect they speak though.
There's two. However, for a number of reasons (different dialects mangled together in the 30s, no secondary school) it's very weak in Baile Ghib. The second one is Rathcairn were the language is still relatively strong. All the Rathcairn families are from Connamara, so that's the dialect spoken.
 

bkeith

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Learn German it will be handy for when you have to emigrate:D
Sie haben recht, Irisch wird Ihnen nichts nützen, aber es ist oft sehr schwer und nimmt viel Zeit in Anspruch, eine neue Sprache zu lernen.
 

Luigi Vampa

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If you're in Meath (not sure what part) make a trip to the local bar in Rathcairn, once you've learned enough Irish to have a basic conversation. Explain to them that you want to learn Irish as they may speak English to you out of politeness, if you're struggling.
Thanks for that, I'm at the very early stages yet, so after I get the hang of most of the basics I'll check that out.
 

MDaniel

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There is an Irish speaking area in Meath somewhere. I'm not sure which dialect they speak though.
Rath Cairn near Navan was set up in the 1930's with "immigrant" families from Conemara.

The language is still very strong because they came and continued to speak Irish to each other. They were only declared a Gaeltacht in 1967 (!) by our elitist government of the time.
The other one in Meath, Bhaile Átha Buí, did not succeed as a Gaeltacht because they brought volunteer families from the three Gaeltachtaí without any previous preparation. The families claimed they could not understand each other and spoke English to each other. The school still teaches through Irish though.

This is the best way to know whether someone really is an Irish speaker: he or she won't make excuses about not understanding your Irish because of your dialect or dialect flavour.

To learn Irish first find who you know who speaks Irish among your friends and start speaking only Irish to that friend. It will give confidence that, no matter what, "yes, I can." And give you more courage to actually speak Irish to others who can or want.
Classes are fine but you have to plan the post-classes social life. I know so many friends who learned in an immersion course but then lost everything because they had no one to talk to once they had reached a sort of fluency level.

Beir bua!
 
S

SeamusNapoleon

Someone said to ignore people correcting your grammar. He's got a good point.

If you listen to native speakers, they throw in all sorts, English words and everything - probably because they don't feel the need to have 'pure' Irish.
From my own experience speaking to native speakers and the truly fluent, it's almost like Hector-Irish, y'know.
 

picador

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All Good advice so far folks thanks very much. Any pitfalls/common mistakes to avoid ?

I actually disliked Irish at school, but I believe it was the way it was taught and the syllabus that was the problem. (combined with the usual youthful laziness/heedlessness of course). Not the languages fault.

I presently live in Co. Meath, but I would like to learn Ulster Irish as that's my roots and I fancy a few hols in the Donegal Gaeltacht when I become a bit better.

Slán go foill mo Chairde.
Ulster Irish diverges significantly from the standard (as I have gradually discovered). I have heard good reports about Oideas Gael courses in Gleann Cholm Cille though I haven't been myself yet.

If I were you, for practical reasons I would focus on the Irish that is spoken in your area. Get in touch with C na G and see what is on offer locally.
 
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DuineEile

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One thing I would say is start speaking what Irish you have, immediately.
There is an Irish chap who is getting a bit of a reputation for learning lots of languages fast. See his blog at Fluent in 3 months

I myself hadn't a word of Irish a couple of years ago, but the best way to pick it up is to speak what you have. I talk to a number of people who have better Irish than I have, in Irish, even when other people are around. The key is to use what you have.

There is no occaision when you can't use what Irish you have, with someone who is happy to use theirs. (ie don't put people on the spot, but once you have broken the ice with a few people, you can always have a conversation with them as Gaeilge, anywhere.)

Don't wait until you are "ready".

D
 

Riadach

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Someone said to ignore people correcting your grammar. He's got a good point.

If you listen to native speakers, they throw in all sorts, English words and everything - probably because they don't feel the need to have 'pure' Irish.
From my own experience speaking to native speakers and the truly fluent, it's almost like Hector-Irish, y'know.
Oh please, don't insult them.
 

Nordie Northsider

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Don't be afraid to make mistakes. Don't mind the odd idiot who corrects your grammar/Irish. These people are almost always people who have learned Irish as adults themselves and use the language as a tool. Ignore them.
I half agree with this but I think that there's a danger in it. If we say "Speak Irish to whatever standard you like," we get unintelligible speakers like Hector and many of the presenters on TG4. I'm not an elitist, but I simply can't understand the Gaelscoilis spoken on many TG4 programmes or the Irish in many publications ('Béarla le sínte fada' as someone once called it.)

French people are never slow to correct learners - so much so that I was offended at first. I see it differently now; they care about their language and believe that learners are better off speaking the real thing rather than Franglais. Being tolerant of the first efforts of learners is one thing, but why do we set the bar so low in the case of Irish?
 

deise go deo

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I would advise joining a Ciorcal Comhrá(Conversation Group)
It is a great oppertunity for practising your Irish with others who have an Interest in the language.

Conradh Na Gaeilge should be able to point you in the Right Direction,

Gaeilscoil Ráth Tó might be able to help you out aswell.
Naisc

I would advise you to learn the local dialect first and then to branch out into ulster Irish.
 


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