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The Michel Thomas Method published its latest language-learning course, Foundation Irish—and it will have you speaking this notoriously difficult language quicker than you think.

Learning Irish is a gateway to world of Irish literature, culture, music, tradition and the Irish people. Today, Irish is classified as an endangered language by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and is one of the last remaining Celtic languages spoken in the world. Known for being a difficult language to learn, the science-backed Michel Thomas Method is effective in its approach to teaching as it breaks the language down into its component parts, enabling learners to reconstruct the language for themselves. Based on instructional psychology, the Method has listeners starting to speak Irish in a matter of days.

The Foundation Irish course features 8-hours of digital audio-only Irish lessons. It is a powerful foundation on which to build a strong understanding of Irish, producing results in a remarkably short period of time. Within the first hour listeners are able to construct simple sentences. By the end of the course, they have the confidence to understand and speak basic Irish. It’s a self-paced course—students can pause and repeat where necessary—and can be completed in about 20-30 hours.

Authors Patricia Mac Eoin and Eilís Ní Dhúill are two talented Irish teachers who fell in love with the Michel Thomas Method and approached the Michel Thomas team about creating a course that makes speaking Irish less intimidating. Thanks to the method, which focuses on speaking and figuring out the language, Irish is achievable and easier to master—making connecting to this rich ancient culture and identity all the more attainable.  

This groundbreaking, innovative method was developed by World War II hero Michel Thomas. Thomas’s harrowing story includes imprisonment at Nazi concentration camps and counter-intelligence work with the US Army. His journey spurred a deep interest in the vast capabilities of the human mind—and eventually his development of the Michel Thomas Method.

Thomas founded a language school in Los Angeles where he taught stars the likes of Grace Kelly and spent 50 years developing a method that he hoped would change the way we teach and learn languages. His structure-based and stress-free method works with how the brain naturally learns and retains information, making it effective for language learners of any level and background. Now, this method is presented in audio-form so students can take their courses on the go with them—making learning a language more accessible and doable than ever. There’s no homework or vocabulary lists, just a step-by-step process that provides the buildings blocks for understanding the language. As Michel Thomas said, “What you understand, you know; What you know, you don’t forget.”

Foundation Irish—and all Michel Thomas language courses—is available to stream online or download to the Michel Thomas Method Library app.

More info on Michel Thomas can be found here and more details about the authors and Irish courses can be found here.


About the Authors:
Patricia Mac Eoin
Patricia Mac Eoin is a lawyer and accredited translator who has spent a number of years working in the EU Commission in Brussels as an Irish language translator. She now lives in Galway, on the west coast of Ireland, where she continues to do both legal and translation work. She also runs the online business All About Irish. She has written her own series of children’s books in Irish, and translated many children’s books from English and French to Irish. She loves learning and teaching languages, and also speaks French, and basic Spanish and German. She particularly loves to explain the distinctive features of Irish to those who have no previous experience of learning a Celtic language, and seeing students discover the richness of this ancient language.
Eilís Ní Dhúill
Eilís Ní Dhúill worked for TG4, the Irish language television broadcaster, as editor and director of Cúla4, an Irish language programming block for children. She then returned to the world of academia to undertake a Master’s Degree in Irish Studies before completing a PhD in Modern Irish. Eilís’s doctoral research involved working closely with the Irish speaking community of Corca Dhuibhne on the Dingle peninsula in West Kerry. During her Masters and PhD studies Eilís continued to teach Irish and to lecture in the Irish and Education departments at the National University of Ireland, Galway, where she continues to work today. She is currently involved in an Irish language media audience research project. She has also lectured in Gaelic literature at the Welsh and Celtic Studies Department, Aberystwyth University, Wales. She has been involved in the development, modernisation and delivery of a number of undergraduate and postgraduate Irish language modules and is dedicated to promoting the Irish language and culture.



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