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Now I can focus on the rest of my exams

Ellie Connolly (18), from St Mary's College, Dundalk, was exhausted after English Paper Two and can't wait to get today's Maths Paper out of the way.

"It was a huge relief to get English Paper Two out of the way yesterday. We had so much to cover for the exam and I was happy enough afterwards.

I was quite stressed in the morning before the exam.

The fact that I had no paper early in the day was a bit of a mixed blessing as it gave time for extra revision but the long wait to start was quite nerve-wracking.


There was a nice, straightforward character-based question on the single text. I had studied Dancing At Lughnasa by Brian Friel, and based my answer around the character of Father Jack.

We were also asked to write a letter in which we pretended to be a character from one of our texts. I enjoyed that because it gave a lot of scope to use your imagination which doesn't often happen in exams.

For the comparative section we had to compare two characters under the theme of relationships. I compared characters from the novel we have been studying, How Many Miles To Babylon by Jennifer Johnston, with another character from the film Inside I'm Dancing.

It was difficult enough but we've been practising questions like that all year and I think I gave a good account of myself.

In the poetry section I was delighted to see Seamus Heaney on the paper. I had prepared all year for a question on Heaney and I wasn't too well up on any of the other poets that came up.

I find Heaney to be one of the more accessible poets on the curriculum, as he tends to use simple, straightforward language.

I knew from the mocks that English Paper Two was a particularly tiring exam and this time was no different. I was writing furiously up until the last minute and felt exhausted coming out of the exam."