‘Fàilte’ to Gaelic Bookbug Sessions

Bookbug Session
Category: Bookbug

A recent development in the Bookbug world is the introduction in some areas of Gaelic Bookbug sessions. Argyll and Bute Council has been involved with the Bookbug programme since 2007 and in June 2011 started delivering Gaelic Bookbugs sessions in Oban. This has now been extended to Appin and Dunoon with a view to making them available to other areas of Argyll and Bute also. In the Highlands, Gaelic Bookbug sessions have been held in Ullapool, Gairloch and Tain, with Nairn starting on 31st May.

Bookbug sessions in Gaelic give parents the opportunity to learn the language alongside their children in a fun, informal way. Songs, rhymes and games incorporating movement, actions, puppets, props and lycra are used and are carefully chosen so that they are easily learnt by families who do not speak Gaelic. The sessions are open to everyone and give a flavour of just how easily children (and parents!) can learn a new language.

In addition to the songs and rhymes, phrases such as: ‘Fàilte’ (Welcome), ‘Gle mhath’ (Very good), ‘Tapadh leat’ (Thank you), ‘Òran eile’ (Another song), ‘Math a rinn sibh’ (Well done), ‘a-rithist’ (again) are used during the session and are picked up quickly by parents and children. Songs are used to introduce numeracy, name body parts and learn animal names, while calming songs and traditional lullabies are also introduced. Some songs, such as ‘Cuibhlichean a’ Bhus’ (The Wheels on the Bus), are a direct translation from English so participants already know the tune and meaning of the words.

Each session includes a story time. Where possible, books are given to parents to keep and the same book will be read over 4-5 weeks with parents bringing their copy each week until they are confident pronouncing the words and reading the book to their children at home. In other sessions stories are acted out using props to make them as easily accessible to everyone as possible. Booklets have been produced comprising pictures, the Gaelic words, English translations and phonetics to assist parents when they sing the songs again with their children at home.

If you’d like to see Gaelic Bookbug sessions in your library, please ask your library assistant and e-mail or phone the numbers below to help arrange. It’ll be lots of fun!

For more information on when and where these sessions are available, please contact: gwen@gaidhlig.org.uk, Bòrd na Gàidhlig (01463 245954) or linda.burgar@argyll-bute.gov.uk, Argyll and Bute Council (01631 569192)

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