Southern Challenges Course 1

This morning after reading some of the threads written in Welsh on the forum, which mostly I don’t understand, I felt depressed thinking will I ever be as good to get that far. Well it needs a grandson who is attending a Welsh school to lift my spirits!! I had completed challenge 08 of the new course this morning and spoke quite a bit of what I had learnt to him this afternoon when he came to visit with my daughter. As I was talking the eyes of my eight year old grandson got bigger and bigger. Grandma he exclaimed you are amazing and he then started speaking in Welsh to me. My daughter who has just secured a job at a Welsh School is now wanting to learn Welsh via SSIW too.

I cannot thank Iestyn, Cat and the SSIW team in making me achieve my dream of learning and actually speaking some Welsh and hopefully one day fluently. Without your encouragement I would not have gone this far. The new course is so much better than the ‘old course’ so thank you once again for all your hard work.

Annette this is such a lovely story. Thank you for sharing it.


I agree. Lovely story, Anette. And in answer to your question: yes, you will get that far! Dal ati! :slight_smile:

Wow, Anette, I’m so proud of you! You’ve done a whole lot of work to get to the end of challenge 8 (never mind all the work you’ve done previously on the other course), and it is already paying off! I can;t help thinking how much difference you’ve made to your grandson’s appreciation of the importance of Welsh at this early age - even Grandma’s learning it! - and how much difference that will ake to his future academic career through Welsh.

And that’s on top of the heart-stopping experience of being “wow” in your grandson’s eyes. i hope your daughter gets the same enjoyment and achievement out of it.

On the subject of fluency - you are where you are, and there is no point looking at people who have achieved more than you and getting depressed about it. That’s the equivalent of setting out on a car trip to France, Googling “cars in France” on your first motorway stop, and getting depressed at the pictures because they are already there, and you still have the journey ahead of you!

Tomorrow you will be further ahead than you are today, but there will still a point in the distance that seems unreachable. But guess what? In a year’s time or five year’s time, when you are chatting with your Grandson (and daughter) and others in Welsh, or reading books, or writing strict metre cynghanedd poetry, there will still be a distant point that seems unreachable if you want there to be! Often, for the second language learner “fluency” is it, defined as "being able to do this a bit better than I can / being able to write / better / professionaly etc. It’s the danger of trying to achieve anything.

Where you are is where you are, and that will always be the case. But think where you were…

Thank you all for your words of encouragement, and Iestyn you made me laugh re the car trip, you are so right in what you said.

I have just completed Challenge 09 this afternoon and am really enjoying the whole learning experience. I will keep positive and remember your words Iestyn, and how much I have learnt and can say already in Welsh.

Just remember this; no matter how long it’s taken you to get as far as you’ve come, it’s taking thousands of people far, far longer.