The Gaelscoil Aonach Urmhumhan pupils who have been taking part in the new Primary Language Sampler.

Gaelscoil Aonach pupils say ‘yes’ to languages!

Over 100 Third to Sixth Class pupils from Gaelscoil Aonach Urmhumhan have taken part in the new Primary Language Sampler which started in February of this year.

The sampler module is a means for raising awareness among pupils of the range of languages used by their peers, in their schools and community. Over 500 schools nationwide are taking part and offering modules in a range of modern foreign languages and Irish Sign Language. The module introduced the pupils to German and was taught over a six-week period during the normal school timetable. Birgit Strohwald was delighted to be involved in sharing her language and experience with the pupils, having gained the skills while living in Germany for many years.

Bríd Uí Shlatara, Principal of Gaelscoil Aonach Urmhumhan stated: “I appreciate the importance of languages as a life skill, an opportunity for the pupils to think in a different way and build opportunities for the future. With German, Irish and English being used by the pupils and staff at our school, this module really helps to build awareness and celebrate the diversity within the school and community.”

German was chosen as the language of choice for this initiative Languages Connect as it is taught in most of the secondary schools in the hinterland and it was seen as an opportunity to prepare the children of Gaelscoil Aonach Urmhumhan for a smoother transition to second level.

The module is being rolled out over three terms, with the support of Languages Connect and PPLI (Post-Primary Languages Ireland), a unit of the Department of Education. A suite of resources has been produced including lesson plans for teachers and tutors and ‘Language Passports’ for all participating pupils to show their family and friends. Packs have been sent to participating schools to help support both the teaching and learning, but also awareness raising objectives of the module. More information regarding the modules, tutor expression of interest and supports are available at Connect promotes the personal, social, professional and economic benefits of foreign language skills to principals, teachers, guidance counsellors, parents and students. Funded by the Department of Education and facilitated by Post Primary Languages Ireland, as a key objective of the Languages Connect – Ireland’s for Foreign Languages in Education 2017 – 2026. For all the latest updates check out or follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram


The German Tutor, Birgit Strohwald who enjoyed working in Gaelscoil Aonach Urmhumhan on this initiative, is available for language tuition in German, Spanish and French. Birgit and her TipTop Language Club are based in Ballina and can be contacted at