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started26th Sep 1995
ended5th Dec 1997
last rpt4th Dec 1998
4 school years
duration15 mins
age rangeAge 5-7

Caraidean is a Channel 4 Schools series from the 1990s, covering Scottish Gaelic language for primary school pupils.

A language-immersion series in Scottish Gaelic for the first years of school, using various techniques to mix basic vocabulary such as greetings, colours and numbers, into a comic storyline about young people making a children's TV programme.

In the Caraidean studio

The programme-within-the-programme is also called Caraidean, Gaelic for "Friends". It is presented by Alasdair, who has trouble selecting which colour bow tie to wear each week, with Anna the reporter who delivers an "out and about" segment asking questions of children in the street.

They are assisted by Ruairidh the camera person, who operates the talking (cardboard cut-out) camera, Ciorstaidh Camara. The producer Eilidh prepares the programmes and is seen writing out the title to each episode, word by word, as part of the 'script'. Eilidh is played by the series real-life associate producer Sandra MacIver, and Eilidh's discarded bed socks also come to life as literal sock puppets for a conversation in each episode.

Alongside the Gaelic-speaking humans is Rover, a stray dog (and man-in-a-suit puppet) who meets them and who speaks to the camera in English to explain the set up. Rover frequently watches (fake) continuity announcements for the Caraidean programme on Channel 4 Schools in a shop window.

Watching the series on TV

Rover tries to gain access to the Scottish Television studios in Cowcaddens, Glasgow Violet-marker.png and the whole team is seen both outside and inside the studios.

Each episode also features a song using the key vocabulary of the week, and the songs were available to schools on audio cassette.

Before the series proper began the very first episode, Siuthad!, is a teachers' programme, presented in English by Sandra MacIver to explain the set-up and demonstrate how three different teachers had made use of pilot programmes.

The whole team, with Rover, outside the Scottish Television studios

Episode List

# # Title English title Broadcast
Series 1
- - Siuthad! Go ahead! #1995-09-19-00-00-0019 Sep 1995
1. (1) Dè an t-ainm a th' ort? What is your name? #1995-09-26-00-00-0026 Sep 1995
2. (2) Dè an aois a tha thu? How old are you? #1995-10-03-00-00-003 Oct 1995
3. (3) Ciamar a tha thu an-diugh? How are you today? #1995-10-10-00-00-0010 Oct 1995
4. (4) Dè tha thu a' dèanamh? What are you doing? #1995-10-17-00-00-0017 Oct 1995
5. (5) Dè tha thu ag irraidh? What do you want? #1995-10-31-00-00-0031 Oct 1995
6. (6) Càit a bheil thu a'fuireach? Where do you live? #1995-11-07-00-00-007 Nov 1995
7. (7) Mi fhìn agus mo theaghlach Myself and my family #1995-11-14-00-00-0014 Nov 1995
8. (8) Is toigh leam seo I like this #1995-11-21-00-00-0021 Nov 1995
9. (9) Tha i fuar an-diugh It's cold today #1995-11-28-00-00-0028 Nov 1995
Series 2
10. (1) Tha an t-uisge ann It's raining #1997-09-26-00-00-0026 Sep 1997
11. (2) Tha sùilean gorm agam I have blue eyes #1997-10-03-00-00-003 Oct 1997
12. (3) Dùin an doras Shut the door #1997-10-10-00-00-0010 Oct 1997
13. (4) Càit a bheil thu a' dol? Where are you going? #1997-10-17-00-00-0017 Oct 1997
14. (5) Dè an uair a tha e? What's the time? #1997-10-24-00-00-0024 Oct 1997
15. (6) A bheil peata agad? Do you have a pet? #1997-11-07-00-00-007 Nov 1997
16. (7) Dè bhios tu a' dèanamh Disathairne? What do you do on Saturday? #1997-11-14-00-00-0014 Nov 1997
17. (8) Dè bha thu a' dèanamh? What were you doing? #1997-11-21-00-00-0021 Nov 1997
18. (9) Mo dhachaigh My home #1997-11-28-00-00-0028 Nov 1997
19. (10) Nollaig Chridheil Merry Christmas #1997-12-05-00-00-005 Dec 1997


Year Term Day Time Channel Dates Details
1995-96 Autumn 1995 Tue 10:45 Channel 4 26 Sep to 28 Nov Series 1

1996-97 Autumn 1996 Tue 10:45 Channel 4 17 Sep to 26 Nov Series 1

1997-98 Autumn 1997 Fri 10:25 Channel 4 26 Sep to 5 Dec Series 2

1998-99 Autumn 1998 Fri 10:25 Channel 4 25 Sep to 4 Dec Series 2


Starring Sandra MacIver as Eilidh

Duncan MacNeil as Alasdair
Tony Kearney as Ruairidh
Maureen MacPhee as Anna
John Martin as Rover

Scriptwriter Anne Lorne Gillis
Designer Judith Clyde
Education Officer Mollie Balfour
Music Blair Douglas
Puppet Maker Ultimate Animates
Titles Tellygraphics
Production assistants Moira Nicol, May Smart
Associate producer Sandra MacIver
Executive producer Rhoda MacDonald
Director Norman Morrison
Fhuair am program seo taic airgid bho Comataidh Telebhisein Gaidhlig

A Scottish Television Enterprises production for Channel Four


There were teacher's guides and song cassettes and videos available.


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