Ffrindiaith is a great idea but in my experience of learning languages I get to a certain point where I make the most progress by finding a native speaker and paying them to give regular classes. They don’t have to be trained teachers or experts in grammar just be willing to make me try and communicate in Welsh for a set period of time every week. I’ve found that with a little correction/explanation, some new vocabulary and having to try and use the language I can kick on and make great strides. I realize that this isn’t for everyone but I’ve studied a lot of the Grammar and been listening to Radio Cymru/watching S4C for what seems like ages. But I don’t get to do the most important thing of all - speak. So I’m wondering if there is or could be a list of Welsh Teachers in Wales and England and elsewhere? I’m in Yorkshire and I’d love to find someone who could be my Welsh Teacher.
You might find verbal planet useful - it’s an online service for finding language tutors to provide lessons over Skype. I’ve not used it, but it seems pretty good.
Something else you could try is to contact Welsh language centres and ask them to put you in touch with any tutors that would be willing to teach via Skype e.g. the Gwent centre is http://learnwelsh.coleggwent.ac.uk/
In fact, the Gwent centre advertise Skype on their website
I know a chap who has been studying with Skype and a tutor from Gwent for a while now. From what he’s said the course they used (course mynediad) didn’t transfer well to Skype, but if all you want to do is chat for an hour I’d be surprised if they didn’t want to take your money!
I tried to find a tutor over the summer, shortly after I finished with Course 3. It took a lot of effort to find one.
I started out contacting my local universities with Welsh for Adults courses hoping that they could put me in touch with a student who wanted to earn some extra money helping me with conversational Welsh. Most universities failed to come back to me; the one that did, told me that they couldn’t recommend any of their students as they weren’t qualified to teach and they thought it possible that I might not learn to speak “correctly”. On the other hand, they were willing to send one of their own tutors to help me - I think the rate was around £70 an hour. After I picked myself back up off the floor, I went back to googling and came across this site:
Three of the tutors on the list got back to me, all offered to help me for £20 an hour and I’ve been working very happily with one of them ever since. It isn’t the cheapest way of doing things, but it’s helped me enormously. I’d say have a look at the list and see if anyone would be willing to work with you on Skype.
or you could volunteer for this, for the best possible reasons of course
note the last paragraph “In Wales we are supporting around 150 people with weekly calls and we
have 16 volunteers. It would be great to have more, especially Welsh
I note their site has a link to SSiW, which is nice.
Edit: Just noticed the name “Jo Knell” on the site. I guess that’s the same lady who is on Stu’s "Dan yr Wyneb recording (or the one he’s using, rather, as a transcription exercise).
Jo was the learners’ officer for the Gkyn Ebwy Eisteddfod, and first got us into Maes-D. She’s very supportive (of SSiW and of new speakers in general), and has just opened a vintage clothing and coffee shop in Witchurch road in Cardiff.
I don’t think there’s more than one…!
From her site I see she has written this revision guide.
Jo … has just opened a vintage clothing and coffee shop in Witchurch road in Cardiff.
Thanks for the tip, Iestyn! It seems to be a short bike ride or brisk walk away from me … one to add to the list of ‘places to go to practise my Welsh’ (or ‘pretend I’m doing something constructive while ogling vintage clothes and eating cake’). Perfect!
I see Jo Knell’s shop was featured on todays Bore Da…
I don’t usually watch Bore da, but I saw that. The young woman who ended up buying a coat had an absolutely juicy accent on her, didn’t she?
To be totally honest, Robert, my attention was on Heledd Gwyndaf…
One can see why …
But Jo Knell’s shop looked interesting. I particularly liked that very solid looking desk.
Hi I’m a head of welsh in a secondary school and don’t mind giving you a hand to learn?
Diolch yn fawr am y cynnig, Zoe. ‘Sgwn i sut fydden ni’n ei wneud - be’ dach chi’n meddwl? Dw i’n byw yn Swydd Efrog - prinder o gymry a chymraesau cymraeg!
Great idea… and any resources to find Welsh language native outside of Wales willing to be paid tutors would be really helpful.
If I was a bit more tech-savvy I’d knock up a website/app myself but I’m just not up to it I’m afraid. And I live in Yorkshire so I’d want teachers outside Wales to be a part of it