O’Connor’s GAC in Glack is hoping to score top marks with their new challenge on Monday nights - Irish classes!
The move was kicked off by members who expressed an interest in speaking their native language.
Club chairman and PRO Noel McKenna said the idea is to promote the club and the language, given the ethos of the GAA.
“We want to get as many people as possible speaking Irish,” he explained on Monday evening, taking a break from class at Páirc Ó Bhrolaigh.
Unsure of where to find a teacher who could help the club, Noel had to look no further than Glack woman, SDLP councillor, and deputy Limavady mayor, SDLP councillor Orla Beattie.
An Irish speaker from her days at school, the Glack woman teaches in Carntogher National School in Donegal.
“Orla did one of the readings at Mass at St. Finlough’s on St. Patrick’s Day in Irish and we thought, ‘she’s perfect. She’s local and she’s our deputy mayor’, so we asked her and she said yes. We are very appreciative of her time because she is doing it for free.”
The classes started last week and have so far attracted at least a dozen people, aging from nine upwards which, for a small place like Glack, says Noel is impressive.
The free classes, from 7-8pm each Monday, are relaxed and informal. The goal is to give people a degree of conversational Irish.
“I teach and speak Irish each day at school, but it’s different because everything is aimed at children. The classes are nice because I get to deal with things like grammar differently,” said Orla. “So far it it’s going well and it doesn’t take long for me to do up a lesson plan. More and more people are talking about Irish and, like any language, practice helps.”
Noel says Orla is “a great teacher” and encouraged anyone who wanted to give it a go to come along to the Club on Monday evenings.
“It’s very informal and the classes are open to anyone,” he added.
For more information about the classes contact O’Connor’s GAC, Glack, on 07592129368. The club is also on online at Glack GFC on Facebook. Alternatively contact any O’Connor’s club member.