This batch of songs for me is about memory. Bringing back memories of the time I spent in Uist and of learning these songs. Mhurchaidh bhig is one of the first Gaelic songs I remembered using the meanings of the words rather than just the sounds, I've always been proud of that and that I could remember it as the words make very little sense. Moladh Uibhist is another one that took some remembering with long verses. I loved this song from the first time I heard it but it took me a long time to be able to remember the whole thing. Nuar a Bha Mi Og is all about memory and also has long verses, I hope to learn a few more of them soon. The other two songs fall into the category of songs that I don't remember not knowing.
'S e na tha leanas mo bheachdan, mo thuras, mar a chaidh mise bho strì gu sìth.
Nuair a thoisich mi ri Gàidhlig dh'ionnsachadh bha mi air bhioran. Bha mi ag ionnsachadh a' chanain agus bha mi ag ionnsachadh mu dheidhinn an cultar agus an eachdraidh. Mu Blàr Chùl Lodar, mu Fuadach nan Gaidheal, mar nach robh cead aig clann Gaidhealach Gàidhlig a bhruidhinn san sgoil agus gach ana-ceartas eile a bha aig na Gaidheal. Bha mi a' faicinn nam inntinn na taighean a' dol na theine, na daoine bochda briste air bòrd na bàtaichean a' siubhal gu àite ùr gun dòchas. Agus bha mi làn fearg. Bha airson strì. Strì an aghaidh nan uachdaranan, strì an aghaidh nan Sasannach, strì an aghaidh gach rud cearr a thachair dhan na Gaidheal a-riamh.
Beag air bheag thiondaidh an aire agam gu ealan, gu bàrdachd, gu an "dualchas beartach brèagha beo" gu gach rud prìseil a tha na phàirt den cultar na Gàidhlige. Tha mi a' lorg deagh naidheachd mu dheidhinn Gàidhlig a-nis. Tha mi a' cumail suil a-mach airson buaidhean agus adhartas na Gàidhlige.
Chan urrainn dhomh eachdraidh atharrachadh. Chan urrainn dhomh Beurla a stad. Ach 's urrainn dhomh Gàidhlig a theagasg, 's urrainn dhomh sealtainn do dhuine eile cho brèagha 's cho luachmhor 's tha Gàidhlig agus cultar na Gaidheal. Mar sin tha mise a dol sìos an rathad sìth a-nis. Tha cuimhne agam fhathast air na ana-ceartasan, cha dicuimhnich mi iad agus tha mi a' cumail m' aire air na rudan brèagha, prìseil, luachmhor a bhios sinn a' toirt leinn dhan àm ri teachd.
Here is a group of songs that just popped into my head. I wasn't thinking of a theme, however there does seem to be a thread on longing in most of them, for people or places.
Many people have said, and I happen to agree, that listening to Gaelic as much as possible is really important to learning it. So here are some suggestions on ways to listen. I've broken it down into three levels but, of course anyone of any level can listen to any of these and get benefit from them.
Beginners: if you are just starting out Speaking Our Language is a great tool. S.O.L is a Gaelic learning program. Some of them can be found on You Tube and all of them can be found on learngaelic.net. Another learning program is Can Seo which can be found on You Tube as well. Gaelic4parents.com also has a lot of simple phrases that you can listen to.
Intermediate learners: One great resourse is Island voices/Guthan nan Eilean who make great videos about life in the Western Isles. Their videos are on You tube but it is well worth it to check out their Clilstore units which have transcripts that you can click on if you don't know a word. Here is one of them
There are also some great videos on Learngaelic.net on lots of topics and you can choose to have Gaelic or English subtitles.
Also check out the Read aloud section of gaelic4parents.com. These are basically kids audio books.
Advanced learners: Listening to any program on Radio Nan Gaidheal is a good way to listen to Gaelic. News programs are good and it can be easier to pick up on what is being talked about if you know what is in the new. This can also help in picking up new words. The chat shows are great for hearing people speak at normal (fast) speed) as well as hearing speakers from all over.
Tobair an Dualchais and Am Baile also have great recordings
Bha Anndra air chall 'sa choille. Dh'fhàs a t-eagal a bha air nas motha is nas motha. Chaidh e beagan ceumanan dhan aon taobh ach cha robh e cinnteach agus chaidh e beagan cemanan dhan taobh eile. As deidh ga dol air ais 's air adhart fad greis shuidh e fon chraobh agus thoisich e air gal.
Thainig Calum coineanach. "Cò tha seo?" dh'fhaighnich e "Cò tha gal?"
"Mise. Anndra" thuirt an laogh beag tùrsach.
"Carson a tha thu a' gal?
"Tha mi air chall" thuirt Anndra "Chaidh mi as deidh dealan-dè agus a nis chan eil fios agam càit a bheil mi."
"Och a laochain" thuirt Calum "Na gabh dragh. Sealaidh mi dhuit an rathad dhachaidh."
"Tapadh leibh" thuirt Anndra
Nuair a chunnaic Anndra an sabhal dearg ruith e a-steach. "A mhamaidh!" dh'èigh e.
"Anndra" thuirt Daisy "Càit an robh thu?" agus i a' toirt cudail mòr dha.
Here are some words that we use in English that have Gaelic origins
1. galore -------> gu leòr plenty/enough
2. smashing------> is math sin that is good
3. glen -----------> gleann valley
4. clan -----------> clann children
5. cairn ----------> cairn mound of stones
6. plaid ----------> plaide blanket
7. banshee -----> bean shithe femai fairy
"Am faod mise dol a-mach a chluich?" thuirt Anndra aon fheasgar grianach samhradh.
"Faodaidh" Thuirt Daisy "Ach na rach ro fhada, fuirich anns a' ghàrradh"
ruith Anndra a-mach.
Cunnaic e dealan-dè. Bha e cho breagha.
Chaidh an dealan-dè mach às a' ghàrradh.
"Till" dh'èigh Anndra, ach cha do thill an dealan-dè.
This batch of songs go back to my time on Uist. I learned most of them while I was there. It has been great fun going back to these songs. When I learned them I had very little Gaelic and I was learning the sounds only, not the exact meanings, going back to them now the meanings of the words are clear and I am having a greater appreciation for the songs as well as revisiting many pleasant memories. I want to say a huge Tapadh leibh to everyone on that course tutors and fellow students and all the lovely people I met on Uist.
Here are some creative ways to help you learn Gaelic:
1. Talking photo frames and other talking things
Talking photo frames are easy to come by and not too expensive ( around $10-$20 USD. Use them to help you learn vocabulary. You can print or draw a picture of the thing or activity you are learning and then record the word or phrase to the frame. Put the frame some place you will see it often and listen to the sound whenever you go by.
Also look for other 'talking' things that you can use in the same way. Educational companies that make products for children with additional needs are also a good place to find recordable products
2. Having trouble remembering colors?
All you need is a box of crayons, a pen, sticky notes and a coloring book.
Write the Gaelic color names on the sticky end of the sticky note. Cut the sticky note to the right width and wrap it around your crayons. Use your Gaelic crayons to draw or color or leave the by the phone for taking messages.
You may want to stick to the smaller packs of crayons as it could be difficult to translate and remember 120 different colors.
Seo Daisy. 'S e bò dubh agus geal a th' innte.
Tha Daisy a' fuireach anns an t-sabhal dhearg.
Seo Tormad an tarbh. Tha e dubh agus geal cuideachd.
Tha Tormad pòsda aig Daisy.
Tha mac aca, Anndra.
Caroline has been involved with Gaelic for more than 18 years. She has degrees in Celtic Studies and Gaelic Medium Teaching.