Help! Your feedback and thoughts about SSi

It’s no good, I’m sorry for my ignorance, but who is Michel Thomas? Curiosity is killing me!!!

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Meanwhile, this thread is continuing to be enormously moving - I appreciate you all so much.



Well, before I found SSIWelsh I never thought I would really be able to speak Welsh so quickly! The lessons are such fun to do , and the course really delivers the goods so soon! After just the first 20 lessons I was able to spend the week in Tresaith with not ONE word of English the whole week - and it worked! It was, and is, such a thrill! Someone said it is like being handed the keys of a Porsche, and I know just what he meant. I would certainly endorse that. I live in England, and there are no Welsh lessons nearby, so this method is a real blessing. I would say if you want to learn to really SPEAK a language, then this is the ideal method!


Well, I’ve been told off today because of this apparently lack-lustre response, so just to clarify … SSiW has given me the jump start needed to get me well on the way to the elusive “fluent” stage that we all crave. I’ve made a whole bunch of new, super-supportive friends and now belong to an increasingly thriving Welsh speaking community in Wrecsam. My life has changed a lot since first talking to Iestyn in a tent in the 2011 Wrecsam Eisteddfod, and all for the better. I’m proud to call myself a welsh speaker. Yes, I am a learner, and always will be, but I can easily hold a conversation in Welsh which must count for something, right? :blush:

Thank you SSiW.


Well, what do you expect if you drive the whole way across Wales to bring us Christmas presents, like a bearded Santa Claus (oh, hang on…)? Some kind of a welcome?

[Just to be clear to other readers - Geraint is the kind of close family friend to whom we can be affectionately rude…;-)]


Yah, but to be honest … old names are missed … at least what concerns me … :slight_smile:


Diolch @aran! You see I still have a hell of a lot to learn at 74!!!

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I’ve moved to my second home on the Spanish board.

I try and get back to the Welsh board when I can, but it depends on cheap flights. :wink:


You can’t hide. - hehe I’ve set Spanish board to “Watching” so nothing is missed out and I know when you’re on. :smiley:


I have to agree 100% here and reiterate what Geraint has said. What amazing posts! You don’t need anything more than this course and you WILL become a Welsh speaker…guaranteed!

Sorry I’ve been so quiet Aran, still trying to get back into the swing of things after the recent difficulties. However, if there is anything that I can do to help you and SSi with this current very exciting venture, then please don’t hesitate to ask!

Briefly, I started learning Welsh with SSiW about 4 years ago. I hardly knew a single word before I started, but after 3 months I had finished the 1st course and posted this video:

Then…after some arm twisting from Cat Dafydd, some 9 months later, after 1 year of learning, I competed in the Learner of the Year Competition in the Eisteddfod, where I was interviewed in Welsh for about 10 minutes on my experiences with using the Welsh language.

A year later I agreed to be interviewed for the Welsh S4C news…here’s a clip…

…you wouldn’t believe that that interview took over an hour to film and they only used a tiny bit.

After 3 years of learning, I finished the 3 SSiW courses, attended a SSiW Bootcamp where I spent a week in North Wales only speaking Welsh!

I’ve spent the last year watching Welsh TV and I have started reading in Welsh. Although I don’t consider myself to be fluent, I am happy to speak to anyone in Welsh and I would feel happy to spend any amount of time in a Welsh only environment. I am now comfortable having conversations in Welsh and I frequently spent a few hours with a fellow Welsh learner as we discuss various topics including rugby, culture and our favourite subject, the brilliant writings of Manon Steffan Ros… :smiley:

My goal was to be able to have a relaxed chat in Welsh (and understand the S4C rugby commentary) but I have achieved so much more with the help of this course and the ongoing help and support from amazing people like Aran and Catrin, Iestyn and Cat and everyone on this wonderful forum! I have now experienced a whole new world I previously never knew existed. To experience the culture of the Welsh language…what a bonus! :star:


I can inagine this perfectly. I was in radio interview once (not Cymraeg and not in Cymru though) and from all being said (also about almost half an hour in total), they used roughly 3 or 4 minutes of it …TV and radio, eh …

But I’m “jelously” excited about your story. Da iawn ti! And I love videos you’ve included. (I’m extreamly happy when I ponder thoughts at myself what would be awesome to do and then one just makes my thoughts come true!)

You’re one more of those who cheered my day today! :slight_smile:


Over the past few years I’ve made several attempts to learn basic Welsh, purely for interest’s sake and because I find Wales and Welsh history and culture really fascinating. But I found it an extremely difficult language to learn by “traditional” methods, i.e via the written word. I made very little headway over the years and at the end of it all could only come up with a few words, simple sentences and phrases in Welsh - nowhere near being able to speak it!

But then I discovered SSiW and it was as though a light had gone on inside my head. It’s a wonderful system in that it concentrates entirely on the SOUND of the language and in fact, actively discourages any reading or writing at the early stages. This, after all, is what language is all about - sounds first, and writing/reading afterwards! The SSi system must surely be the future of language learning.

I made more progress with learning Welsh through SSi in three months, than I’d done in three years by traditional methods!

In addition, SSi is a very friendly and informal way to learn, especially through the amazingly helpful and supportive forum. And the person presenting the course has a really warm, friendly, humourous and encouraging approach, and makes you feel that you are in the same room as him, not sitting at home alone in front of your laptop!

SSi deserves every success in the future, and I hope it can expand massively into other languages (especially endangered minority ones).


Vaughan, Gavin, thank you so, so much - really fantastic - hugely inspiring, encouraging, motivating and directly valuable… :sunny: :star: :star2:

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SSIW is a fantastic way to learn Welsh in your own time and at your own speed I have been to my partners home town in north wales and have even had the courage to try my little bit of Welsh with great success and a lot of appreciation from Welsh speakers


It occurs to me that this is particularly true of Cymraeg, since, as far as we know, it was never written until after an alphabet was brought by the Romans!!! :sunny:


I have to say that there is nothing new and original about SSIW and that Aran’s timetables for progress are rather unambitious. A week is all you need with expanded vocabulary such as: -

“Mae’r cerbyd hwn yn ysgwyd llawer iawn” - This carriage shakes a great deal,

“Mae fy magiau yn yr orsaf; anfonwch amdanynt, os gwelch yn dda” - My luggage is at the station; please send for it.,

“Pa adeiladau cyhoeddus sydd i’w gweld yn y gymdogaeth yma” - What public buildings are to be seen in this neighbourhood?

and critically

“A gaf fi dorri rhosyn?” - May I pluck a rose?

Well that’s Nos Galan at the Fic sorted then.


Were you also too polite to suggest that a good deal for a comprehensive Welsh course leading to guaranteed fluency would be four pence a month - and should last two months at most?



I haven’t read all the comendations on here, but I think it likely that I will echo what has been written - that is, I am finding SSiW a tremendously effective way of learning Cymraeg. Thoroughly enjoying the course.

I would like to make mention aswell of the spirit of the lessons, and the encouragement they give me to perservere. I feel it has instilled in me more of an ethos of ‘getting on with it’ (no mean feat for someone as lazy as meyself), which helps me outside of learning Cymraeg as well. :smiley:


Got to be worth nine pence of anybody’s money! Da iawn!


33 posts were split to a new topic: Wide-ranging discussion following on from point about GCSEs (from the feedback thread)