Meet Eirian, our new ‘Learn Welsh at 3pm’ tutor
Eirian Conlon works for the National Centre for Learning Welsh as a member of the team responsible for writing new national courses for Welsh learners. Eirian is also a Welsh tutor, and has been using video conferencing platform, Zoom, to teach her students over the past month or so. For the next few weeks, Eirian will be teaching the daily Welsh lesson, ‘Learn Welsh at 3pm’, live streamed on the Centre’s Facebook page. Let’s get to know Eirian a little better!
Tell us a bit about yourself
My name is Eirian Wyn Conlon. I was born in Bangor and lived in Anglesey until I was 4 years old, then moved to Holywell in Flintshire and then to Mold when I was 15. I’m still there!
How long have you been teaching Welsh to adults?
For a long time!
How did you become a Welsh tutor?
I taught a night class when I was at home with my baby, and was ‘hooked’ from the first lesson on.
What’s the best thing about being a tutor?
Meeting friendly and interesting people and seeing them become Welsh speakers.
What’s it like teaching your students remotely?
Different! We’re all learning quickly! I hadn’t even heard of Zoom back in February, but can now see the many teaching possibilities by using this platform.
What’s your advice to people who want to learn or practise their Welsh at home?
If you’re already on a course, then those courses are continuing with distance learning – so make sure you ‘turn up’ each week, as you usually would. Keep in touch with your friends who are learning or who speak Welsh. My class have lots of fun on their Whatsapp group! Make use of the online resources that complement your course, available at learnwelsh.cymru Visit the Golwg 360 and BBC Cymru Fyw websites and watch Welsh programmes on S4C Clic – play Radio Cymru for an hour each day as well.
If you’re not yet in a class, why not use this time to start learning Welsh? There are new online tutor-led courses starting soon and you can follow our online taster courses – or tune in to the daily Facebook lessons, of course!
What’s your favourite Welsh word?
Cymraeg! (Welsh) I smile and feel a warm glow whenever I say or hear that word.
What’s the funniest thing to happen to you while teaching?
Years ago, I used to arrange an annual trip to Cardiff – learners and tutors from North Wales would come to the capital to speak Welsh on a two-day course. We used to have a lot of fun, staying in the Urdd residential centre in Cardiff Bay. Laughter is important when you’re learning Welsh!
How are you finding being at home at this time?
I’m lucky as I live in a semi-rural area and can walk each day and see the wild flowers. Work is also keeping me busy, as we’re introducing new digital resources and new courses for Spring.