Monday, December 16, 2019
The skye times mobile

Gwen Culbertson and Mairi Macdonald pictured with journalist Torquil Crichton, Donald 'Ryno' Morrison of Storlann, and Cathy Macdonald

A website of resources for Gaelic Medium Education, run by two primary school teachers from Skye, has won for the Scottish Gaelic Award for Innovation in Education, after being shortlisted last year.

The website, Lasadh, is managed by Gaelic educational resources organisation Stòrlann Nàiseanta na Gàidhlig and led by teachers Gwen Culbertson and Mairi Macdonald, who both teach in Bun-sgoil Shleite.

The awards, sponsored by Bòrd na Gàidhlig, were presented in the Grand Central Hotel in Glasgow on Wednesday November 15 with more than 200 people present. The awards aim to “reward all aspects of our Gaelic culture, education and language” and “highlight the excellent work undertaken to maintain growth and heritage”.

Among the other award-winners was Arthur Cormack who was awarded the Best Contribution award which recognises his efforts in standing up to ill-informed and often incorrect media criticism of Gaelic.

The Scottish Gaelic Awards were first staged in 2013 by the Daily Record newspaper with support from Bòrd na Gàidhlig and support also comes from HIE, Creative Scotland, MG ALBA and the private sector company Thorntons Investments..

Lasadh is an online, digital and interactive resource for primary school pupils and teachers, created several years ago by Gwen and Mairi who had realised there was a shortage of language-related resources for Gaelic Medium Education (GME).  Found online at, the website focuses on literacy activities and provides a range of resources for use in the classroom or at home and for individual use or group work.  There are many downloads which can be edited as required and the number of available downloads, digital games and other resources is growing all the time.  Recent additions to the website include spelling games, modelled on the ‘look, say, cover, write and check’ system used in schools, as well as jigsaws for the early years.

The main award of Lifetime Achievement was bestowed on Dr Finlay MacLeod from the Isle of Lewis – the widely-respected author, broadcaster, teacher and historian.

The award was presented to Dr MacLeod on behalf of Bòrd na Gàidhlig by Donald MacLeod, Board member of Bòrd na Gàidhlig who said: “Dr Finlay has been involved from early on in key developments in Gaelic education, broadcasting, the arts, writing, publishing and much more.

“Dr Finlay has spent a lifetime studying many of the aspects of life in the Western Isles and he has worked tirelessly on a range of initiatives that have contributed to life in Lewis and further afield.

“He is an expert on a wide range of topics including chapels, healing wells, place-names, the Lewis Chessmen, island photography, archaeology, the land struggles and the place of religion and education in communities.”

  • Learner Award: Organising Committee - Buidheann Disathairne
  • Arts & Culture Award (Sponsored by Creative Scotland): Alex MacDonald
  • Event Award: Comunn Eachdraidh Nis
  • Community, Heritage & Tourism Award (Sponsored by Highlands and Islands Enterprise): Fife Gaelic Development Group
  • Best Contribution Award (Sponsored by Bòrd na Gàidhlig) Arthur Cormack
  • International Award (Sponsored by MG ALBA)  Robert Currie
  • Innovation in Education Award: Lasadh
  • Young Gaelic Ambassador of the Year Award: Pàdruig Morrison
  • Gaelic as an Economic Asset Award (Sponsored by Thorntons Investments): Fèisean nan Gàidheal
  • Lifetime Achievement Award: Dr Finlay MacLeod

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