Sunday 15 September 2019

Leaving Cert Irish 'threw up some surprises... but manageable'

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Katherine Donnelly

Katherine Donnelly

The Leaving Certificate Irish higher level Paper 2 threw up some surprises, but the questions that were asked were straightforward, according to teacher Clare Grealy.

Students shouldn’t have any axe to grind, outside the prose question said Ms Grealy, who teaches at Dublin’ s Institute of Education.

The first comprehension dealt with stories that came from the Census and, while it is a topical topic, it was very historical in content, even referring back to the time of Mary and Joseph in Bethlehem.

"Despite this it was a very doable comprehension," she said.

The second compression was on celebrating cultural heritage and the Irish language a topic with which students are familiar, said Ms Grealy.

"It was nice and straightforward; the vocabulary was easy to understand and should have posed no major difficulties."

Ms Grealy said the prose section would have thrown up the greatest surprise of all because "she widely anticipated short story An Gnáthrud would not feature".

Instead, there was a question on the film Cáca Milis - on one of the characters, Paul - which she described as straightforward.

In poetry, An Spailpín Fánach appeared and Ms Grealy said that "although this is probably the least popular of the five prescribed poems, the questions were very manageable."

In the additional literature section, she said there was a nice, broad choice, ranging from a play to an autobiography, to a novel to poetry.

According to Ms Grealy, the two most popular sections are Question A,  An Triail, which focused mainly on characters ; Question F, Dánta Breise, which, she said, was very similar to the question that appeared on the same poem in 2012.

Meanwhile, Ms Grealy said the ordinary level paper had a "very student friendly layout" and students she spoke to after the exam seemed happy.

The comprehensions were very topical, one on Ireland today and other about RTE newscaster, Catriona Perry and her time in America.

In Q2, Ms Grealy said the second prose on Dís "was quite tricky and asked students to describe the conversation between Sean and his wife."

And, in poetry, Ms Grealy added that students would have been happy with poems that appeared and the "nice,  straightforward question".

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