Should I get Irish software, learn Irish online, or something else?

Old Irish language roadsign
Old Irish “Automobile Association” road sign with Irish Gaelic, shown in a Connemara pub.

Mark was kind enough to take the time to send us an email from Oklahoma with the following question:

Dia dhaoibh a Saša and Eoin,

I have no problem memorizing vocabulary words and short phrases but I cannot write sentences or understand the grammar rules well at all. I’m currently using the popular “Buntus Cainte” program (Vol. 1) but it does not explain grammar rules and the changing uses of words like Ta, Is, Orm, Agat etc is very confusing.

I purchased your “cheat sheets” which are great but nothing can replace the spoken word. I do attend a weekly informal class here in Oklahoma City but I need instruction daily. I want to be able to speak, read, understand and write the Irish language with the hope of one day visiting the Connemara Gaeltacht.

With the above information stated, what program should I purchase in your opinion? Would you suggest your Bitesize online program or the TeachMe! Irish Gaelic (CD-ROM + Audio CD + Booklet) or perhaps something else?

Any help is greatly appreciated.

Go raibh maith agat !!

Slán agat,
Mark

(Editing for brevity, and emphasis is ours.) And here was my reply to “software or online, or something else?”.

Great to hear that you can attend a local Irish language class — that’s a resource that most people can’t access. Do make the most of it. And visiting Connemara is a great goal – it is a beautiful area.

Of course I am biased, but I would suggest trying Bitesize Irish Gaelic for one month. I you don’t like it during the first month, you can simply cancel it and email us asking for a full refund. Not the same as investing in a software package.

At Bitesize Irish Gaelic we have a lot of grammar lessons. People do not get scared at that (I would), but it’s an essential way of learning the fundamentals of the language. For example, a lesson covers the difference between “tá” and “is”.

You’ll also learn that “orm” literally means “on me” and “agat” literally means “at you”. Irish expresses itself quite differently to English, but it’s a nice insight into Ireland!

By the way, it sounds like learning to use a couple of verbs would help you a lot. Later on, you could combine them with prepositions and such to make full sentences.

And as always, we recommend mixing multiple approaches. Join Bitesize Irish Gaelic. Watch Irish Gaelic television online. Learning is difficult – it’s all about dedicating yourself to practicing to learn to speak Irish.

Eoin

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