One of Bitesize’s success secrets is that we have an active & enthusiastic community of people learning Irish Gaelic and interested in Ireland’s culture, and history. That’s why we’re featuring their interviews on our blog – it’s a great resource for people who are undecided or have fears of starting to learn the Irish language
Learning a new language can be scary, but if you make yourself comfortable with learning Irish Gaelic, you’ll achieve the worthy goal of having conversations using the Irish language in no time.
Not seeing learning Irish Gaelic as a chore but rather as a comfortable thing you do on a regular basis (daily even) will allow you to make bigger steps towards having a conversation using the Irish language.
What does “being comfortable with learning Irish Gaelic” really mean?
People are generally fearful when starting to learn new things. Of course it’s a fear more towards the “being skeptical” or “feeling unsure” feelings, but it’s still obstacle you’ll need to overcome.
From our experience, most fears and doubts people have on learning Irish Gaelic aren’t really obstacles.
Yes. You’re not too old to learn Irish Gaelic.
Yes. You can learn the Irish language when you have time.
Yes. There are plenty tools to help you achieve the goal of having conversations in Irish Gaelic.
The secret of having a great experience when learning Irish Gaelic is to make yourself comfortable with learning. Don’t do too much. Sign-up for Bitesize Irish Gaelic, study one lesson or section each week. Stay with it until you’re comfortable with what you learned.
If you want to learn more about how to be comfortable with learning Irish Gaelic, you should keep on reading the following Bitesize community interview where Dennis Gressock shares his story and tactics of learning Irish Gaelic.
Bitesize: Where about in the world do you live?
Dennis: I live in the part of the United States called the Midwest. I live in the northern part of the state of Ohio. In a city called Cuyahoga Falls.
Bitesize: What got you wanting to speak Irish Gaelic?
Dennis: I was a history and political science major in college. One of the areas that I did a lot of study in was the early history of Ireland and Scotland. I thought that my family was of Scottish ancestry.
I studied Scottish Gaelic, my daughter and one son were Scottish competitive dancers. My granddaughters are beginning Scottish dance lessons. Then I took two of those DNA test and found out that I am 45% Irish no Scottish DNA.
Bitesize: Do you have Irish ancestry? Tell us about it.
Dennis: I do have Irish ancestry but I am just starting to learn about it. The DNA says that my relatives came from the Province of Connaught and the counties of Mayo and Galway. They have located several first cousins in the counties. I am just starting my research and haven’t tried to contact anyone yet. My wife is over 50% Irish and they have a pretty good family tree started. I just never had the time to anything with it.
Bitesize: How do you use Bitesize Irish Gaelic?
Dennis: I try to get in about an hour a day if I can. I try to practice my conversations on the family but unfortunately, it seems that I am the only one that has a love for Irish. It is fun though to sing my few Irish songs and try to ask them questions or answer there’s in Irish. (before talking English).
The ray of hope is the grandchildren. We watch Irish kids shows on YouTube and listen to Irish songs. When they go down for a nap or at bedtime I put on Irish lullabies. I try to talk to them in simple sentences. First Irish, then English. The youngest one shows the most promise. He has his favorite Irish show and songs.
Bitesize: What advice would you have for a total beginner of Irish Gaelic?
Dennis: I don’t know if I have any advice. I am a total beginner. I have only been studying for three months. I would say don’t try to do too much at once. Just study one section either one lesson or one week.
Stay with it till you feel comfortable. Then move on. It’s better to know a section then go through it just to get it done. Eventually, as you get more comfortable the pace will slowly pick up.
The Enthusiast Plan
Hey everyone, we wanted to thank you for reading this interview. If you find this story inspiring, we recommend you to sign up for the Enthusiast plan on Bitesize.
The Enthusiast plan features more quizzes, video lessons and more advanced live lessons with our native Irish speaking language assistants.
Are you learning Irish Gaelic? What’s your motivation? Please let us know in the comments section.