Tuesday, March 8, 2011

34 Years Old + 184 Days

Monday.. I was at Karate and it was brilliant... it was the first time I was able to keep up with the amount of press-ups that the instructor wanted. If you are in Carraroe in Ireland, why are you not doing karate! It is simply the best thing ever... I am aware of course that other people play football, basketball, etc. but I never did those, and I know that they are probably as good for you as karate. Another excellent thing in Carraroe is the excercise classes that are held in the hall on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Again, as with the karate, I have no vested interest in those classes, it is just that I have attended the Tuesday and Thursday exercise classes and they were brilliant for me and the karate is also good for me.

However, after the karate class I was at a meeting in the Primary school that my daughter attends and they were discussing methods of keeping Irish alive via the kids speaking it. Or to re-phrase, how can we make sure that the kids keep speaking Irish in the school. Well there were a few things discussed and they were things like a support group would be put in place for parents whose Irish is not as strong as native Irish speakers. Can't argue with that. Also, it was suggested that inside the school gates ONLY Irish would be spoken to show to the kids that in school.. you speak Irish! This too cannot really be argued with.

There was one point though that did not sit comfortably with me. It was suggested that the first two classes, Junior Infants and Senior Infants (Naionáin Bheaga and Naionáin Mhóra) be put into one group and now you would have one big class. Now, that big class would be broken into two again, but this time the division would be based on how good the kids Irish would be. Interesting experiment, isn't it.

However, I did not send my daughter to school to be a spore on a petri dish. I do not want any experiments tried out on my daughter. I have her in this school because it is my right. We still have rights, right? What I want for my daughter is that she gets a good education and I personally do not care all that much what language her education is in. There are millions more things I can say about this but there is not much point here. But I will say this much. She has a right to education - and I believe in that right. I believe in that right for all children. Education... education is not a language... education is what you recieve IN some language. I see language as a tool. Much like any other tool. If a hammer is needed to nail some wood together, does it matter what the hammer looks like, or what color it is. No, it is a tool to get a job done. Irish is a language that is used to get a job done, in this case the job is for our children to learn about nature, counting, as well as speaking Irish and English... and in this regard that is why I thing that the language should be spoken exclusively in the school. We are in a Gaeltacht part of the country....

But do not let the tail wag the dog. Do not put our kids in the front line of fire in the war for the survival of the Irish culture. My daughter is not a bullet to be loaded into a cannon aimed at the tide of foreign culture sweeping over us. The irish language is beautiful, I love irish and I think that it should be kept alive and I do think that lots and lots of money should be spent on it by educating people on why irish is so important. All I am saying here, all I am saying is not to use our kids in the process by dividing classes. I believe that it will create a social class difference. The bad kind. We have enough of that in the world already...

1 comment:

  1. Donal you know my opinion on the Irish language so i wont go into it here, but i have a great way of preserving the language and making loads of people pro-actively adopt it and start speaking it ... ban it immediately. Even better if you could somehow make the ban come from England.


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