Rachel MacKenzie

An toiseach, inns dhuinn cò thu. / First of all, tell us who you are.
Is mise Raonaid NicCoinnich agus tha mi 23 bliadhna a dh’aois. Chaidh mo thogail ann an Geàrrloch.
My name is Rachel Mackenzie and I’m 23 years old. I was brought up in Gairloch.

Ciamar a thog thu a’ Ghàidhlig? How did you attain fluency in Gaelic?
Thòisich mi ag ionnsachadh na Gàidhlig nuair a chaidh mi gu Àrd-Sgoil Gheàrrloch. Rinn mi Gàidhlig airson luchd-ionnsachaidh mar chuspair bhon a’ chiad bhliadhna suas gu Sàr-Àrd-Ìre. Nuair a bha mi a’ dèanamh Sàr-Àrd-Ìre, bha mi ann an clas còmhla ri fileantaich. Bha an àrainneachd Ghàidhlig seo a’ leasachadh na Gàidhlig agam agus a’ toirt misneachd a bharrachd dhomh. Dh’fhàg mi Àrd-sgoil Gheàrrloch anns a’ bhliadhna 2013. Tha mi uabhasach taingeil gun robh mi anns an sgoil seo agus airson an teagasg a fhuair mi, gu h-àraidh ann an Gàidhlig.
Chuir mi iarrtas a-steach airson an ceum MA (le Urram) Gàidhlig le Foghlam eadar Sabhal Mòr Ostaig agus Oilthigh Obar Dheathain agus an dèidh dhomh an sgoil fhàgail, chaidh mi a-steach gu clas airson fileantaich aig Sabhal Mòr Ostaig.
I started to learn Gaelic when I went to Gairloch High School. I did Gaelic Learners from S1 up until Advanced Higher in S6 when I was immersed in a class with fluent speakers. Being in an all Gaelic speaking environment helped to develop my Gaelic skills and increased my confidence. I left Gairloch High School in 2013. I am grateful that I had the opportunity to go to Gairloch High and for the teaching I received, particularly in Gaelic.
I then applied for the degree MA (Hons) Gaelic with Education and was accepted into a fluent speakers’ class at Sabhal Mòr Ostaig.

Dè na diofar rudan a tha thu air a dhèanamh on a dh’fhàg thu an sgoil? / What have you done since you left school?

On a dh’fhàg mi an sgoil, tha mi air a’ chùrsa MA Gàidhlig le Foghlam a dhèanamh, eadar Sabhal Mòr Ostaig agus Oilthigh Obar Dheathainn. Chuir mi seachad bliadhna aig Sabhal Mòr Ostaig agus rinn mi 3 bliadhna ag ionnsachadh air astar, a’ ciallachadh gun robh mi ag obair bhon taigh ann an Geàrrloch. Bha seo a’ toirt cothrom dhomh ùine a chur seachad ann am Bun-sgoil Gheàrrloch aig an aon àm.
A-nis, tha mi a’ teagasg Clas 1 agus 2 tro mheadhan na Gàidhlig ann am Bun-sgoil Inbhir Pheofharain.
Tha a’ chiad bhliadhna agam a’ teagasg gus a bhith deiseil.
Since leaving school, I have studied the course MA Gaelic with Education, between Sabhal Mòr Ostaig and Aberdeen University. I spent a year at Sabhal Mòr Ostaig and studied the remaining 3 years by distance learning, which meant I was working from home in Gairloch. This gave me the opportunity to spend time in Gairloch Primary alongside my studies.
I am now teaching Primary 1 and 2 in Gaelic Medium in Dingwall Primary School. My first year of teaching is almost finished.

Carson a tha Gàidhlig cudromach dhut? / Why is Gaelic important to you?
Tha Gàidhlig cudromach dhomh air sgàth ’s gun d’fhuair mi mòran chothroman nach biodh agam mura robh a’ Ghàidhlig agam. Nuair a chaidh mi gu Àrd-sgoil Gheàrrloch bha mi ag iarraidh a bhith nam thidsear ach cha do smaoinich mi riamh gum bithinn ag obair tro Mheadhan na Gàidhlig! Tha an obair agam a’ còrdadh rium gu mòr agus tha mi toilichte gun urrainn dhomh buannachdan dà-chànanas a thoirt do sgoilearan beaga aig aois bun-sgoil.
Gaelic is important to me as I have had many opportunities which I wouldn’t have had if I didn’t have Gaelic. When I went to Gairloch High School I wanted to be a teacher but never thought I would be working in Gaelic Medium! I really enjoy my job and I am glad to be able to help children of primary school age receive the benefits of bilingualism.