The Short Story

I earned a BA in Celtic Studies (First Class Honors) as well as a Bachelors of Education at St. FX University in Nova Scotia, Canada. I taught for 5 years in the Scottish public school system and have been teaching for the University of Dundee since 2018.

The Longer Story

'S e Bond an t-ainm a th' orm... Jason Bond.

I'm from Kennebunkport, Maine on the east coast of the USA. The town where the Bushes have a summer residence. George Bush Senior once gave my parents a photo he took of our sailboat. He pulled alongside our boat and cast the picture over to us with a fishing pole. His armed Secret Service escort waited nearby, ready to spring into action if needed.

Growing up, I read most books I could get my hands on. My imagination was filled with the mythologies of Ancient Greece, Rome, and Egypt.

In high school, I discovered a deep appreciation for the culture of Ireland and Scotland. Traditional music filled my music collection (as well as heavy metal) and I learned to play the harp. Stories of the Fairy Folk and great heroes like Cù Chulainn and the Fianna burned in my imagination. I had to learn more.

Enter Scottish Gaelic

I followed these stories to Nova Scotia, Canada, where I completed a BA with First Class Honors in Celtic Studies. During my first year, I fell in love with Scottish Gaelic. The sound of it, the feel of it, was so different from other languages that I had learned. There was just one problem: it took years to actually be able to say something without killing a conversation.

Off to Scotland

Gaelic had become an important part of my life and I felt very motivated to share it with others. I completed a Bachelors in Secondary Education with a focus on Gaelic and shipped off to Scotland to work in a rural high school. I moved to a whisky island with more sheep than people. I had $200 to my name, my harp in one hand, and my duffel bag in the other.

The Breakthrough

I spent five years teaching Gaelic on the Isle of Islay. During my first year there, I saw students as young as 11 years old struggling with textbooks as I had years ago. Language learning wasn't a positive experience for the majority of students. Even after years of study, they couldn't communicate spontaneously or naturally.

Maybe that sounds familiar? 

Wanting to offer them a better experience, I researched many other teaching approaches. I found a new way that works for everyone, not just those who are 'good at languages'.  

It's quite simple: understand what you hear and read, and have it repeated enough to stick in your mind. Grammar study can be useful later on when you are conversational - and able to just focus on sharpening your accuracy.

When I switched my focus to immersion and communication, the results were staggering:

  • Every single one of my students passed national exams (unheard of).
  • My students could communicate their own thoughts and opinions
  • Every student acquired some Gaelic, regardless of their motivation. A few students who had little desire to learn Gaelic could still darn well tell me they wanted to play a game - in Gaelic!

These are just the tip of the iceberg - the rest is a conversation for another day. 

It is an honor to share Gaelic with you and I look forward to it very much. I will support you however I can.

Le gach deagh dhùrachd,


My Six Commitments to You

  • The Gaelic I speak to you will be 100% comprehensible

  • In person lessons will be personalized to you and your life

  • You will practice Gaelic conversation, not linguistics

  • You will build confidence and motivation

  • Your Gaelic may get rusty but will not be forgotten

  • I will read and respond to every message and email from you

Banker | USA

Shawn P

Banker | USA

"Each lesson builds upon what I've learned in the previous lesson and naturally adds in new vocab and concepts. This lesson was both challenging because of the new content but also easy because he presents the information in a very natural way. He tailors the lessons to me talking about things that I like in life, Star Wars, Lord of the Rings, my church life, work, etc. I look forward to my next lesson."