##My progress report - yr Hydref 2014##
Since my last report, I have :
• Completed Course 3!
• Improved my access to Welsh media at home
• Planned another few days away to Wales in November - including (hopefully) a visit to a well-established weekly meet in De Cymru!
So… I have reached the end of the course (well, the old course at least!) and after a gruelling last 2 lessons, I’ve decided that I will run through the Course 2 vocabs once again, to refresh my memory of some of the words and patterns that I struggled with on my first run through lesson 24 of course 3. Afterwards, I intend to do a quick run through course 3 again as well, concentrating on some of the short forms that I struggled to remember (he did/she did, he/she got, he/she has…). The ‘wneith e’ and ‘wneith hi’ structures I’m still finding myself saying the long form until I’m reminded of the short form. It’s getting better, but it is still a source of frustration for me! The Cael forms, the goings and the comings, getting the tenses mixed up when talking about ‘he’, ‘she’ and sometimes ‘you’ singular. I seem to be ok with the plural forms though.
Through this, I am also following the new course challenges as they are being published. In the new year, I am hoping to do my first Agored Assessment. For the rest of this year, I am going to try and get as much speaking practice as I can do. The monthly meets in Rochester will of course be my main means of practice, but I am hoping to visit a couple of other meets before the end of the year too. Despite the lack of privacy at home, and a busy work schedule, I have allocated at least one Sunday a month to chat on Skype with Amy in Australia. We had our first Skype chat a few weeks ago and will be having another this Sunday. I haven’t used Google Hangouts as much as I hoped I would, but if an opportunity arises I will try to take it! I have also come into contact with another learner from Cardiff and regularly chat to her on messenger in Welsh (showcasing my reading and “texting” abilities. She says she can understand and communicate in written Welsh, but not as confident with speaking. She is looking to change this though, and I’ve promised to help her with it. I have also recommended a very good online course for her to try… .
With the completion of Course 3 under my belt, and still not had the opportunity to find a ffrinDiaith as a learner (dinas being the closest to having a ffrinDiaith through the course - with much gratitude to the time he puts in to the Kent meets, which is often worked around my own free Saturdays! Diolch yn fawr iawn Kim!), I have been thinking about the possibility of changing my “learner” status to “speaker” someday over the next year. I will, of course, want to be MUCH more confident in my speaking ability before I do this. Maybe after I’ve completed one or 2 Agored Assessments perhaps. It would be nice if I could be able to help another learner without thinking of myself as a learner too. It’s just a thought at this stage…
To further help with my understanding of spoken Welsh, I have made a few improvements at home to be able to gain access to S4C and Radio Cymru without having to use the internet. At home, we use Virgin Media for the living room, but if my non-Welsh speaking housemates are watching TV, I had to resort to my iPad to watch S4C or listen to radio. We were Sky customers a year ago, and we still have a dish outside the house. So I ran a new cable to my room, dug out the old Sky box and connected everything up. So now I have Welsh TV and Radio on my own TV, leaving my iPad free for checking in on the forum while I’m watching!! Inspired by this, I posted a thread on the forum detailing all the possible ways you can get Welsh media if you live outside Wales, which many of you have contributed to with other services that are available to us - thank you!
I have a couple of weeks off in November - and a very tight budget! Despite this, I am planning another trip to Wales for a few days. I will be staying in Cardiff from Monday until Thursday. During this time, I’m hoping to pay a visit to the group who meet at Y Mochyn Du on Monday night. Tuesday I’m planning on seeing as much of Cardiff as I can in one day! Wednesday will be a visit to Swansea to see my nain, and possibly to meet with the Bay View group in the evening. Then on Thursday I will head to Haverfordwest to see a good friend of mine before a 5 hour drive back to Kent in the early evening. I will be hoping to use as much of my Welsh as I can in this time - just hoping there will be more opportunities in Cardiff than there are currently in Swansea (that I’ve found so far!).
Looking ahead to the New Year, apart from preparing to do the Agored Assessment, I will be looking into doing another bootcamp. I would also like to attend the SSiW birthday party and perhaps my very first Eisteddfod, but these will really be a matter of available funds and being able to get the time off work, but I would definitely love to do bootcamp once again!
Last but not least, I have recently started to follow the SaySomethinginSpanish course, in an attempt to refresh the vocabulary I learned when I was at school, and to become more conversational in Spanish. I have already made my introduction on the Spanish forum, and completed the first 2 challenges in the new Spanish course. I am hoping to see more people appearing on the forum very soon. If you are also learning Spanish, have learned Spanish and consider yourself a speaker, or thinking of learning, why not stop by and say ¡hola!
So, my last progress report as a learner is complete! But it’s not ending there! I will still be around on the forum and I’m sure I will share any new developments with my Welsh conquest to become a much more fluent speaker as they happen.
In the mean time, hoffwn i weud diolch yn waelod calon i chi Iestyn, Cat, Aran a Catrin am hyn gwrs ardderchog!