“Gaelic Medium Education is open to everyone, those who speak Gaelic and those who do not”
Pupils who are not Gaelic speakers to start with, indeed who come from non-Gaelic speaking homes and communities, can be brought to fluency in the language through what is referred to as immersion. Immersion means that pupils are taught only in Gaelic, while they are doing the usual things that children do in the early years of their education – in playgroup, nursery and primary school. Their teachers utilise all available opportunities to develop pupils’ Gaelic skills – through songs, stories, games and especially through structured play.
Gaelic medium education reinforces the language of fluent speakers and also enables them to become fully literate in the language.
Gaelic medium education in the primary school involves the use of the Gaelic language for all learning and teaching, across all subjects in the curriculum, using immersion methods in P1 and P2. English reading and writing are generally introduced from P3 but the principal language of the classroom is Gaelic throughout the primary. The aim of Gaelic medium education, through the government’s national guidelines, is to take children to the same level of fluency in Gaelic and English by the time they leave primary school. In most instances Gaelic medium education is delivered in Gaelic medium departments within English medium schools but some areas now have Gaelic medium schools.
The GME class at Breadalbane Academy started in 2011, currently has 10 pupils in P1 – P4 and is taught by Mrs MacDonald. The class follows normal school timetable, with pupils attending lunch, playtimes and assemblies together with the rest of the school.
Perth & Kinross Gaelic page – http://www.pkc.gov.uk/gaelic
Bilingualism matters video clip [click here]
Comman nam Parant Obar Pheallaidh was setup in August 2012 to help promote Gaelic Medium Education in and around Aberfeldy. We have set our aims out below:
- Promote in all appropriate ways the concept of Gaelic Medium Education
- Establish links between parents of children attending the various levels of GME in and around Aberfeldy
- Represent the views of said parents
- Provide information and other support for parents relative to GME
- Provide Gaelic Medium extra-curricular recreational opportunities for children attending GME
- Offer material and support to the school
- Raise funds for the benefit of GME in and around Aberfeldy
- Liaise with the school, the National CnP, Commun na Gaidhlig and Bord na Gaidhlig
- Assist the GME class with school trips
- Help publicise the successes of the GME class at Breadalbane
- Facilitating the establishment and running of the Gaelic homework club ‘ Sradagan’, in partnership with PKC
- Establishing and assisting the Gaelic playgroup – “Croileagan”