What about some Welsh/Welsh practice?

I would be interested in some practice sessions where a question is asked in Welsh, and then we need to respond in Welsh. I was thinking that it could be Aran or Iestyn would say that one group would be answered affirmatively, and the next group could be answered in the negative. I think that would be good preparation for speaking Welsh in the wild!

Thank you very much for the suggestion :star:

It’s an idea I’ve toyed with a few times in the past - but each time I start thinking in detail about it, I end up convincing myself that you’d get the same + more benefit from starting to have short (even just 3 or 5 minute) practice sessions with another learner… but it’s still on the ‘think about it again at some point’ list… :sunny:

Unfortunately, this is next to impossible for some of us.

I’m glad to hear that not only have you thought of it, but that it’s still on the “think about it again at some point” list!

One advantage over speaking with other learners is that we would hear proper Welsh spoken, and that would be good for our listening practice, but also having to process it and respond. The advantage over speaking with fluent Welsh speakers is that you already know what vocabulary we know! I do very well with the SSiW lessons, but as soon as I have to come up with something to say, my mind goes blank, so speaking with other learners doesn’t get me very far yet. Good thing that Bootcamp should give me a big boost there! But for those of us not fortunate enough to be able to participate in Bootcamp (and for the rest of us when we’re not in that wonderful setting), being able to stay in Welsh and not translate would be a benefit. Thanks for keeping it in mind.

1 Like

What sort of situation makes this next to impossible? I’m asking from genuine interest, because I have a regular Welsh conversation with someone in Australia, so it’s clearly not about distance…

The thing is, I strongly suspect that question/response in Welsh won’t actually help with this particular problem at all - because you’re still being prompted what to say. The step to thinking of your own content is a real gear change - and I think talking to other people may well be the only effective way to trigger the change. You’ll experience that in Bootcamp - but it’s also only a Skype call away the rest of the time.

And on this particular issue, it doesn’t matter at all whether you’re talking to a fluent speaker or someone who is still learning - because this isn’t about understanding, it’s about production. :sunny:

It is a big jump from doing lessons to thinking up sentences (or even phrases) on your own. The answer (I think) is to think about it a lot. Whatever you are doing during your day, try to talk to yourself (inside your head) in Welsh about it. You can give yourself time to come up with the right words, and once you realize that you have them somewhere in the back of your brain you gain a little more confidence. If you do that at least a little bit every day, those words become second nature. Then you find other things to talk to yourself about - make up conversations in your head and see how long you can talk (to yourself) about anything in Welsh. Gradually, it becomes easier and easier.


One of our Bridgend group had an alien who followed him around, and the alien needed to have everything about what was happening explained to them in very basic terms because they didn’t understand how things worked on Earth (they were fluent in Welsh, though - I never questioned that bit). “I’m making a cup of tea. I’m getting a cup, I’m putting milk in …”


I have a disabled person at home which scheduling such things next to impossible.

Although you’re right that it won’t help me come up with my own sentences, it would make having a live conversation in Welsh a bit less daunting, if I already felt confident about hearing a question and having to compose the response, preferably with no English entering my mind at all!

The other thing I would love to hear some of is a conversation with the vocabulary we have learned. The random sentences in the listening practice are helpful, but I’d like to know whether I could follow and remember a full conversation.

I am still a devoted SSiW fan! I just wanted to let you know what I’d like to see in addition to the resources you have already given to us.

1 Like

Eh, @craigf if we both are a bit honest … this is in our heads … we need to settle our minds to the “Let’s do it” point and start conversing somehow.

I say “we both” because I probably know what you mean and despite I tried somewhat of conversation I’m not convinced anymore I will succeed this stage to really talk in Cymraeg for at least 3 minutes. And I know, speaking for myself of course, that it’s just about my mindset and the fact that my vocabulary is fading from minute I finish the lesson …

Yah, that’s life … :slight_smile:


Ups, I’m sorry, I’ve read this once before but forgot about what you’ve written once already. Yah, that’s another story. But (just asking) woldn’t it go even for 3 or 5 mins once a while?

I love this idea.

What a fab idea, I am going to make friends with an alien.
I’m sure that I will get less funny looks than just talking to myself in Welsh :slight_smile:

The problem with talking to oneself or a little alien person who is partly psychic and can therefore understand everything, is that, if I say something which I am convinced is perfectly good Cymraeg, but which is not, I’ll never find out!! Only talking to a Cymro Cymraeg will help with that!! Now it doesn’t matter to me, because I’m not really likely to have any chats in Cymraeg to learners, but if you really want to improve your language, you have to have feed back which tells you your mistakes!!
I know : Wn i. I hear that often enough on S4C to know I am right, and I don’t know : Wn i ddim, seems OK. But “fe wn i” comes into my head, is it “I know it”?

Fixed in Level 1… :sunny:

Don’t get me wrong - I’m extremely grateful for you making suggestions and talking them through - I’m not trying to tell you you’re wrong at all, just talking it through back from my point of view to see if I end up being convinced or not… :sunny:

That’s a tough gig and no mistake - I feel for you. How do you manage to fit the lessons in? Is it on a ‘grab a few minutes at random’ kind of basis? If so, maybe you could have a shot at doing something similar with Skype - build up a group of people who understand your situation and are happy for you to call them for a chat if you see them online, and then develop the habit of checking Skype to see if anyone’s around when you’re about to do a lesson? [And going for the chat instead of the lesson if anyone is there]…

1 Like

That’s pretty much it. Things have been extra crazy lately so I’m kind of stalled right now. I remain optimistic though. :smile:

I have sort of set this up with @AnnaC. If I have some time, I can send her a PM. She’ll then get an email and if she’s available we can give it a go.

1 Like

Aran’s suggestion is great - I haven’t really used Skype much so I wasn’t being very smart. I will do my best to remember to turn my Skype on when I’m available so if all you have is a few minutes, we won’t waste any time.


It’s hugely impressive that you’re managing to take action in such a challenging situation - I take my hat off to you.

It’s probably particularly important for you to bear in mind that we have seen, over and over again, that people who take breaks, however long (14 months is the record so far!) can come back into the process without needing to repeat earlier lessons (even though it hurts a bit on the first new lesson!).

And, of course, the larger a collection of Skype contacts you can build, the more likely it will be for you to find someone online when you happen to get the chance. This is something I really want us to do more with - eventually some kind of Skype/other tool integration with the forum - but it’s still a little way down the line just yet…

Diolch, I appreciate your helpfulness. I hope this can happen soon. Been 2 years and I haven’t yet had a basic conversation. But was watching Lan a Lawr last night and actually understood a whole sentence at one point. OK, it was a very short sentence more like a fragment but still… :laughing:

1 Like

Course 2 has been slow going and I’m only doing one pass at each lesson. I may have to repeat parts of some lessons as I’m forgetting quite a bit of new stuff. But I’m at lesson 18, so will push on and try to get back and finish Level 1 which I did to Lesson 11 which was all that was available at the time.

I don’t want you to have any stress on your end, Craig, it happens when it can happen. I, too, feel for you being in a difficult situation.

Doesn’t it feel great when you understand something? I really enjoyed “Lan a Lawr”. Short sentences or fragments were pretty much all I could get, too, and only from certain characters. Delia and Caitlin were easier, but I found Cefin and Mair pretty much impossible to understand :slight_smile: Maybe it’s a north/south thing? And I watched an (old) episode of “Y Gwyll” Sunday night, and I found that much harder to understand than “Lan a Lawr”. But it feels like exposure to “real” Welsh speakers, which are pretty thin on the ground where we live :slight_smile:

Ok, I’ll stop being off-topic now!