Once more unto the breach

Hello all,

After completing Course 1 and the beginning of Course 2 a couple of years ago, I more or less stopped studying Welsh for probably no good reason :smiley: My schedule is not exactly forgiving now and probably won’t be in the next few months but at the same time, I feel this could be the moment to push forward with Welsh if only as a welcome time off from more stringent occupations.

During the last couple of weeks, I revisited most of Course 1 and was amazed to find how much of it was still available in my memory. After finishing this course, I’ll probably shift to Level 1 since this seems to be the recommended material now.

Anyway, it’s good to be back and to see that the forum is still a friendly and supportive place. I probably won’t end up as a frequent poster but it is a nice feeling to know that the community is there.


PS. I also renewed my suscription, but oddly enough the “old” one was still running even if the credit card it was linked to expired some months (well, a year and a half) ago. I updated my credit card number on the website but I am not sure everything is ok. Could someone let me know if everything is fine.


Croeso’n ol! I think you need @aran to see the bit about your subscription, as I think he deals with these or at least will know who does! By putting the @ in front of his name he’ll get a flag up on this thread and find you! I switched to the Challenges half way through the first course and do think it was a good thing to have done. Lwc dda! And, yes, the Forum is very, very friendly!

1 Like

Welcome back, Guillaume - and thank you for updating your subscription! I’ll ask @kinetic to have a look at that and see if it’s working properly…:slight_smile:

Good to hear the memories came back as quickly as we would usually expect - and good luck with Level 1 - you’ll fly through the early stages - but it would be very interesting to hear at what point it gets properly challenging for you :slight_smile:


Thank you henddraig and aran for your kind words!


Yes, indeed - welcome back, guillaume!

It’s great to hear that you’ve still retained a lot of the material - I hope that gives you real confidence that your efforts are worth it!

Enjoy the new course (and don;t worry about the occasional thing that has changed that might confuse you briefly - that’s all part of becoming more flexible!), and let us know if we can help with anything else.

All the best,



Thanks Iestyn!

I plan on starting with Level 1 during the week-end, will let you know how it goes :slight_smile:


Croeso nol @guillaume especially as I see you weren’t on this forum yet before. It might be you were on old one so warm welcome here now.

All the rest was already said so nothing to add except Pob lwc ac dal ati.

And, of course, if anything occurs you need help with, we’re all here.

Hwyl fawr!
Tatjana :slight_smile:

1 Like

Thanks for your warm welcome Tatjana!

As an update, I pushed to Lesson 7 (of Level 1) this weekend. Having completed Course 1, the lessons were not too challenging but there was still plenty enough of new material to keep me very much on my toes :wink:

Some things I was a bit surprised with (the lenghth of the lessons, the slower repetition by Aran,…) but it is just a matter of adjusting.

One thing bothers me (a bit) more. The course seems to have moved towards a more scattered introduction of forms and less explanations. By that I mean that we are given the isolated ‘liciwn i’ but not explained if this also applies to other verbs (is ‘triwn i’ possible for instance?). The same kind of thing happens with the past tense, ‘ddudesti’ (sp.?) is given alongside ‘nesti ddechra’ without explanations. From Course 1, I know that ‘nesti ddeud’ is possible but if I had done only Level 1 I probably would be looking everywhere for answers to questions like, “is ‘ddeud’ an exception? Is it only ‘dechra’ which has a past formed with ‘nesti’?”, etc.

It reminds me a bit of the Teach Yourself type of textbooks, where lesson 1 is ‘Greeting people’ and lesson 2 is ‘Ordering food and drinks’. Because of this framework, some verbal constructions are introduced very early but you cannot apply them to all verbs/words you know. This approach has always left me unsatisfied because I like to get the bigger picture rather than bits of information here and there. Course 1 did that rather well, and I think it is part of why it ‘clicked’ with me. We were taught ‘you can form the past by saying nes i + vb’ and that meant that I could instantly produce a whole lot of new sentences, without having to wait and see if this worked with other verbs or just with the one that was introduced at that time.

On a related note, the sentences in these lessons are all concerned with speaking, practicing, improving and learning Welsh. This also reminds me of the situation-based approach. I guess this is useful because this is likely to be the first kind of conversation learners have. And, of course, I don’t mind it because all of the vocabulary introduced is very common and will be useful regardless of the topic at hand. But after seven lessons spent discussing my Cymraeg habilities I have too admit I hope more diversity will soon be introduced :grin:

On the bright side, I feel that Level 1 successfully adressed the issue of Course 1 being a bit mechanical, i. e. the sentences were short and mostly grouped by constructions. This meant that at some point during the lesson I could kind of drift off and still produce the expected sentece. Level 1 mixes different constructions early on and this helps getting used to shifting from one to another. This I feel is immensely helpful!

Also very helpful is the fact that longer sentences are used from the start. In Course 1 most of the sentences were short and it has always felt a bit harder to produce the longer ones because they were not that numerous. With Level 1 this issue does not exist and I think that this helps a lot.

I hope these few comments don’t sound too negative :worried: Listening to a few Radio Cymru podcasts this morning, I’ve found that the material in these seven lessons has sticked rather well and proved too be useful :relaxed:

Now, onwards to the next lessons!

1 Like

Yes triwn i is fine and wnes i plus verb works although there are other forms too.

Eg. Wnes i ddeud, dwedais i, ddudais i - i said

But i believe you can happily use wnes i plus verb for most things. Eg wnes i fwyta.

Dal ati. You’re clearly doing very well.

1 Like

Good heavens, no, not at all - intelligent and thoughtful input is always hugely valuable to us… :slight_smile:

What’s happening here is that the underlying structures are less obvious than in Course 1 - because we’ve moved away from the clunkier ‘run through each structure in order’ approach.

That doesn’t mean it’s been replaced by a situational approach a la ‘Teach Yourself’, though - far from it - it just means we’re aiming for a wider range of more immediately useful language, based on modelling and observation work we’ve done over the last 8 years.

The specific aim was that Level 1 should prepare people for bootcamp (and/or conversational situations!) far more effectively than Course 1 did - and that’s turned out to be very much the case. :slight_smile:

You’re right that we’ve dialled back hugely on explanations - I’m more and more convinced that, in general, we see much better/faster results when people test by extrapolating from spoken material they can already produce confidently than when we try to provide an obvious, traditional explanation of grammar. :slight_smile:


Thanks you both for your answers!

Interesting! I hope this will be the case for me too :slight_smile:

1 Like

If you’re used to a grammatical approach, I would expect it to feel very uncomfortable for you - but if you just go ahead and extrapolate, you’ll find that a lot of them will work straight out of the box - and the ones that don’t work, you’ll get the conversational feedback that will alert you to that… :slight_smile: