Goraidh - A Gaelic Language Tutor

Learn the language of the Garden of Eden

Beginning Gaelic | Goraidh - A Gaelic Language Tutor

Beginning Gaelic



For my private lessons, I usually use the Ceumannan series of materials. They are wonderful with extensive exercises and an audio program with many different accents. All the materials are online, but there are printed books available as well.

For my classes at Bellevue College or for Slighe Nan Gaidheal's Zero to Gaelic program, I usually use what follows below. Sometimes I use the text Scottish Gaelic in Twelve Weeks, by Roibeard Ó Maolalaigh, to supplement this course because I prefer the audio CDs that come with that book, as there are no explanations on the CDs. This allows for drilling and repetition without having to listen to long explanations each go around. The text is not essential, but you may see some references to it and it does provide further explanations.

Note: When having private lessons, the topics can be covered as fast or slow as needed.

Before we get started, here are a few handouts to review (all on Google Docs, unless otherwise stated):
  • Basic Grammatical Terms (PDF) - This is just a review of basic grammatical terms for people who haven't looked at grammar for a while. Grammar is language about language. I think I learned more about English grammar learning Gaelic than I mastered in school!
  • Adult Language Learning Success (PDF) - As I'm fond of saying, "Gaelic is not the enemy, impatience is." This handout lists some tips and tricks for language learning. For those of us who do not live in the Gàidhealtachd of the Highlands and Islands of Scotland (or Cape Breton Island!), learning Gaelic has the added challenge of in-immerse-ability. However, the challenge is not insurmountable and well worth the effort, I say.
  • Scottish Gaelic Resources (PDF) - A wee set of links to websites and organizations that support learning the Gaelic.
  • Indo-European Languages (PDF) - A wee diagram that shows the relationship between Gaelic, English, and other Indo-European languages.

And with that out of the way, let's begin!

Aonad a h-Aon


Class 1 in Detail (Check out the vocabulary list)

Focus point: The verb 'Bi' in the present tense.

Proto-Indo-European Languages (PDF)
The Gaelic Alphabet (PDF)
Gaelic Pronunciation Cheat Sheet (2009) (PDF)
Polite Phrases for Class (PDF)
Bi with Pronouns (PDF)
The Simple Sentence (PDF)
Obair [Exercises] (PDF)


Aonad a Dhà


Class 2 in Detail (Vocabulary list, links to YouTube videos)

Focus point: To have something using the preposition 'aig'.

First Names (PDF)
Working with names (PDF)
Grammatical Gender in Gaelic (PDF)
To 'Have' Something in Gaelic (PDF)
Conversation One (PDF)


Aonad a Trì


Class 3 in Detail (Vocabulary list)

Focus point: Introducing the verb 'Is' (the other verb 'to be')

Lenition with Adjectives (PDF)
Conversation Two (PDF)
Family and Possession (PDF)
Build a Sentence (PDF)
Exercises, Units 1-3 (PDF)

The verb 'Is', an introduction (PDF)


Aonad a Ceithir


Class 4 in Detail (Vocabulary list)

Focus points: All about nouns, the nominative case, and the definite article

Describing People or Things
'Bi' with Nouns
Conversation Three
The Definite Article 1
Build a Sentence 1

Nominative & Dative
Nominative & Dative Definite Article Exercises

Aonad a Còig


Class 5 in Detail (Vocabulary list)

Focus point: Using what we've learnt so far

Self Check
Colors
Build a Sentence 2

Aonad a Sia


Class 6 in Detail (Vocabulary list)

Focus point: Present tense of regular verbs ('Bi' + verbal noun)

'Bi' and Verbal Nouns
Build a Sentence 3

Aonad a Seachd


Class 7 in Detail (Vocabulary list)

Focus points: Past and Future tenses of 'Bi' and related vocabulary for discussing events in the past and future.

Bi - Past and Future (PDF)
Numbers of the Days of the Week (PDF)
Time References
Build a Sentence 4 (PDF)

Exploring Question Words (PDF)
Question Words Examples (PDF)
Getting to Know You with Question Words (PDF)

Aonad a h-Ochd


Class 8 in Detail (Vocabulary list)

Focus points: Food and Drink

Food and Drink
Family and Possession
Months and Seasons
Circle of the Year
Mìosachan 2017 (2017 Calendar)

Aonad a Naoi


Class 9 in Detail (Vocabulary list)

Focus points: Travel

Going and Seeing (PDF)
Place-Names (PDF)
Map of Scotland (PDF)

End of Scottish Gaelic 1