Feeling discouraged...

Càil sam bith eile / Anything else
Màiri na Coille
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Feeling discouraged...

Unread postby Màiri na Coille » Thu May 02, 2013 9:15 pm

After several months of trying to learn Gaelic on my own, I'm feeling somewhat defeated. I started out with the Teach Yourself Gaelic book and a few online resourches like Beag air Bheag. It seemed easy and really fun at first learning the basics of pronunciation, vocabulary, and grammar. I got through about twelve chapters of TYG before I started losing it--none of the new grammar rules I was learning would stick. I tried going back and re-doing lessons for better comprehension, but pretty soon I was discovering a whole bunch of online resources that seemed a lot more fun than trudging through old lessons of TYG. For a while I didn't really have a system at all; I was just muddling around. Finally the past several weeks I've been listening to and studying the weekly episodes of An Litir Bheag, hoping to improve my vocab and general comprehension.

Now I'm just feeling sort of confused and discouraged. Part of it comes from the fact that my Gaelic practice is a lot less consistent than I'd like it to be. I'm in school; I have a lot of obligations and activites; and I have a lot of other interests besides Gaelic that I like to spend time on. The result has been that I've found Gaelic a lot more challenging lately. Another thing is that next year I'll definately have to drop it, as I have to take a "real" foreign language for the rest of my high school career. I would love to take Gaelic classes or travel somewhere where I could practice the language, but as a teenager living near Chicago in the US...it doesn't look like those things are happening any time soon.

Basically, I'm just wondering how I can keep fitting Gaelic in my life--since I still love it and I have worked hard at it--even though it looks like that will become very difficult in the near future. At this point I'm even asking myself, "Is it worth it?" Obviously it's a decision that only I can make, but it would be nice to know if there were some people out there with advice or encouragement.

Tapadh leibh!
Màiri



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AlasdairBochd
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Re: Feeling discouraged...

Unread postby AlasdairBochd » Thu May 02, 2013 10:31 pm

a Mhàiri,
You've done very well so far and should be very pleased with your progress, but I know myself that it's easy to get discouraged when you're learning on your own. There's not many Gaelic speakers or learners over here either. Learning a mainstream language at school will probably help by making you more familiar with different grammatical structures and sound systems.
I found that when I had other priorities reading a short text every day, without worrying too much about formal learning, was helpful in keeping my interest up without being a burden. An Litir Bheag is good for this by also having a parallel English text and a sound file as well. It takes about ten minutes.
Deagh fhortan dhut agus dèan cèilidh oirnn gu tric ma bhios an urrainn dhut. Good luck and visit us often if you're able.

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Re: Feeling discouraged...

Unread postby faoileag » Fri May 03, 2013 1:21 am

I agree with Alasdair, a Mhàiri.
:flur:

A little fairly regularly is much better than a lot at sporadic intervals for keeping a language up.

The TYG book gets very heavy-duty as it moves on and is not really suited to self-study long term, so it's no surprise to me that you struggled with it latterly. Leave it to one side for now and look at other things, either easier ones or more fun ones. :mhoire:

- Come on here and at least 'lurk' - read the things you can manage, and the bilingual threads, even if you don't always feel like posting or don't have time.
- If you're on Facebook, get into the habt of having a quick look at the various Gaelic pages there whenever you're on Facebook anyway.
- Check out the links on here (Goireasan, Ceanglaichean) and on LearnGaelic http://www.learngaelic.net/ and bookmark the ones that look realistic/attractive.
- Look at material for children - often more fun and in shorter chunks, like Ceumannan:
http://www.storlann.co.uk/ceumannan/lea ... index.html

And look at the Skype list on here - maybe you can find someone who'll occasionally talk to you and help with pronunciation and practising the basics.

Gur math a thèid leat! Good luck! :D

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GunChleoc
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Re: Feeling discouraged...

Unread postby GunChleoc » Fri May 03, 2013 9:24 am

Learning a language always takes years and it has its ups and downs. Just keep at it as you can, and don't put yourself under pressure to achieve. As you have less time, the important thing is that you keep in contact with the language as you can. Just switching on Radio nan Gàidheal in the background while you do something else also counts!

And you are under no obligation to follow a textbook from cover to cover. Use whatever resources are useful and fun at the time.
Oileanach chànan chuthachail
Na dealbhan agam

Màiri na Coille
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Re: Feeling discouraged...

Unread postby Màiri na Coille » Fri May 03, 2013 7:08 pm

Mòran taing, a h-uile duine! :D I naturally push myself to acheive all the time and I can get a little depressed when I'm not living up to my own (sometimes unrealistic) standards. So thanks for bearing with me. I was trying to decide whether or not to keep practicing over the summer, but now I know I will. I would love to Skype, though I'm admittedly a little nervous about it! In the meantime, though, I'll keep on practicing in whatever ways I can.

Thank you all so much! I really needed this.

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GunChleoc
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Re: Feeling discouraged...

Unread postby GunChleoc » Fri May 03, 2013 8:55 pm

'S e do bheatha :)
Oileanach chànan chuthachail
Na dealbhan agam

dughlas
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Re: Feeling discouraged...

Unread postby dughlas » Sun May 05, 2013 10:49 pm

Hai a Mhàiri - cum ort leis a Ghaìdhlig! - keep on with Gaelic. Cuir Skype thugam ma thogras tu - give me a Skype, if you want to. (dougfraser on Skype)

Màiri na Coille
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Re: Feeling discouraged...

Unread postby Màiri na Coille » Tue May 07, 2013 9:22 pm

Hai a dhughlais,

I'm thinking since you've offered Skyping I should try to take you up on it. My Skype name is "maryofwoods". However I can only Skype on one computer in my house, which is often being used. A weekend afternoon would be best for me. I don't know how that would be for you, with the time difference and all. Want me to send you a private message once I get more details?

Tapadh leibh airson an tairgse!
Màiri

dughlas
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Re: Feeling discouraged...

Unread postby dughlas » Sun May 26, 2013 10:42 pm

Haven't heard from you. Offer still open - but it's up to you!

sr3nitygirl

Re: Feeling discouraged...

Unread postby sr3nitygirl » Tue Jun 04, 2013 1:20 pm

A Mhàiri,

As someone who is just returning to the learning process and becoming active in Gaelic again, if I may offer just one note of advice...

Whatever you do, try not to give up, even for a short while.

I'm coming back after about 6 months of not keeping up with my studies and I'm realising just how much I've forgotten, although it is all coming back; but I have decided to start again from the beginning using Muriel Fishers course - I am glad to report that I'm storming through the early lessons though :)