Ceistean Cudromach | FAQs
Frequently Asked Questions:
Is the Edinburgh Local Mòd an event that is organised by the Gaelic school (Taobh na Pàirce or JGHS?)
No. The Mòd is organised by the Edinburgh branch of An Comunn Gàidhealach. It is run by a voluntary committee made up of members of the Gaelic community, including some GME parents and teachers. The Mòd is a community event, not a school event.
The Mòd often takes place at a school building, but this is leased by the committee as a venue.
The ACG committee is very much supported by GME school staff, particularly in terms of helping to publicise the Mòd, and helping children to prepare pieces, where time in class allows.
How do I know if my chosen piece for the competition is of Gaelic origin?
There are a number of ways you can find information on this subject. If you have an instrumental teacher who is helping you to prepare for the Mòd, then they should be able to advise on pieces.
All of the musical and vocal pieces that have been prescribed by the Royal National Mòd in the current or in previous years are appropriate pieces of Gaelic origin.
Pieces of Gaelic origin will be likely to have a Gaelic name (rather than an Irish or Scots name.)
If you are not able to confirm whether your piece is suitable, please send it to us via email to check (ideally well in advance of the entry deadline.)
Can I watch the competitions?
Yes. You may watch any competition (space allowing.) The competitions are performances, rather than exams, and quiet audience members are welcome. You must not enter or leave a competition room during a performance, but movement is permitted between performances. Please follow the instructions of stewards.
Am I allowed to help my child with their entry?
If your child is performing a song, story, poem, or musical piece, then they can have help with their advance preparation from anyone, including parents and teachers. During the performance itself, no help is permitted, and parents should not remind children of words or assist in any way.
If your child is submitting a literary, art, or media piece, then this must be entirely their own, uncorrected work. Adjudicators are aware of the age of competitors and will take this into account during their adjudication.
There is no expectation that children will be able to produce literary entries with perfect spelling and grammar at any age. Parents can assist with spelling by providing access to dictionaries, Gaelic websites, word sheets from school, and other resources.
Will my child’s school teacher prepare them for their Mòd competition? Will teachers submit the entries?
The decision to enter the Mòd is taken by individual families, and the Mòd is not a school event. When time allows, teachers will do their best to teach a song and a poem that children can use as their piece for the Mòd competitions. If teachers send home words and provide sound files, please use these to help your child practice at home. Reaching performance standard needs support from parents / carers with home practice.
Teachers are not responsible for submitting entries – entering the Mòd is personal choice and entry forms must be submitted by parents / carers.
Why are the clàrsach competitions not organised by age group? Some of the other participants in the same competition seem much older than my child.
Clàrsach competitions follow the organisational structure put in place by the Royal National Mòd. They are organised by grade level rather than age group.
Some clàrsach players do not start lessons until P5 or P6, so they may be entering the Introductory competition alongside a much younger learner, who might be receiving lessons outside of school. It is often the case that a clàrsach learner will enter the Introductory competition for at least two years, before they are able to move to Elementary (Grade 1.) Competitors should move up a competition class if they are playing at a higher standard, even if they have not taken a formal exam. Instrumental teachers will be able to advise on the correct competition.
What should I do if I don’t agree with the adjudicator’s decision?
The adjudicator’s decision about placings is final. The adjudicator will make a decision based only on the performance on the day, using their own expertise to form an opinion.
It is important to remind competitors that participation is the most important aspect of the Mòd, and all competitors who learn a competition piece and perform it for an audience should feel very proud of themselves.
My child has changed their mind about competing, what should I do?
It is very important that you tell us if you will not be attending a competition. The adjudicators and chairperson will have a list of competitors and will be expecting everyone on the list to attend. Competitions may end up delayed if competitors do not turn up without informing us.
Please contact us via email if you have to withdraw.
Withdrawals are of course understandable if the competitor is unwell, has a last minute family emergency, or if despite best efforts does not feel confident that they have reached competition standard.
We would however like to remind everyone that a very significant amount of volunteer time and financial outlay is required to organise each competition based on the number of competitors who have registered. If you feel that your child may on the day decide instead to attend their usual Saturday activities such as football training or dance classes, please do not register them as Mòd competitors.
Why are there trophies for some competitions but not for others?
Trophies are gifted to the Local Mòd by donors who wish to recognise and support specific competitions. Therefore, some competition winners will be awarded trophies and some will not. We are always happy to hear from supporters who might wish to sponsor a new trophy for a competition.
At the Local Mòd, there are no trophies for adult (senior) competitions, although unlike the National Mòd, we do award badges to our senior competitors.
If your child wins a trophy, you are responsible for ensuring its safekeeping for the year. You are responsible for having the trophy engraved in a style in keeping with previous engravings. You must return it in a clean condition when requested by the Local Mòd committee (you will be contacted before Easter of the following year.)
Will I be able to watch all of my children compete in all their competitions? Some of their competitions are scheduled at the same times.
The Local Mòd usually has almost 200 individual entries to competitions. These entries are all processed and organised by volunteers. A significant amount of time goes into ensuring that individual competitors are able to compete in all their competitions without clashes. It is simply not possible to ensure that siblings are not competing at clashing times, as we have a limited amount of time to complete all the competitions.
We suggest that if you would like a family member to be present with each competing child, then you ensure that enough family members are present to allow a supporter to be with each child.