| 16.3°C Dublin

Junior Cert German: 'One question had all my students talking’


Stock image. Photo: Mojzes Igor

Stock image. Photo: Mojzes Igor

Stock image. Photo: Mojzes Igor

There was one question on the Junior Cycle German paper had all the students talking, according to Association of Secondary Teachers’ Ireland (ASTI) subject representative Clodagh Mackle.

It was Q19, which had not featured in the sample paper issued for this new style exam, where students were required to answer a series of questions posed by an exchange student coming to Ireland.

Ms Mackle of Holy Faith secondary school, Clontarf, Dublin said students “felt the instructions about the format were not clear. Was it an email, was it a text message? It certainly had my students talking,” she said.

Like most junior cycle exams, there is only one common level paper and overall, Ms Mackle said it was “very accessible and fair to the majority of students”.

But she added that it “may have stretched the traditional ordinary level students, especially in the latter part of the reading comprehension section”.

Ms Mackle said the listening comprehension was “do-able for all”.

She noted that the reading comprehensions became increasingly more challenging, as would be expected , presenting challenges for the traditional higher level students, which she was glad to see. She complimented the “great use of matching the language to pictures , which makes it accessible to all”.

Ms Mackle thought it “very interesting” to see a grammar question on prepositions in the final reading comprehension, which she welcomed. It was similar to what students will face in the literary reading comprehension in the Leaving Cert, she said.

It was the written section that provoked comment from her students. Ms Mackle said it differed from the sample paper, in that while Q18 was as expected, there was a “new” Q19, in which students had to answer five questions from an exchange student. “It was the only bit of the paper they were all talking about,” she said.

In the final question, Q20 the blog , candidates had to write about themselves for a student language portfolio and were guided with nine questions. Ms Mackle said it had “ a great range and was accessible to all students”, covering all the units of learning such as food, birthdays and favourite singer.

Most Watched