Leaving Cert Irish, paper 2: Fair, but a little bit sneaky

Students happy with higher paper, while ordinary paper was ‘well conceived’

The comprehension pieces, on golfer Rory McIlroy and US presidential candidate Hillary Clinton, were both suited to this level. Photograph: AFP Photo/Paul J. Richards

The comprehension pieces, on golfer Rory McIlroy and US presidential candidate Hillary Clinton, were both suited to this level. Photograph: AFP Photo/Paul J. Richards

 

Teachers and students have reacted positively to the higher and ordinary level Irish paper two, following general approval of paper one.

Robbie Cronin, ASTI subject representative and a teacher at Marian College Ballsbridge, said the higher level paper, which was taken by 20,740 (43 per cent) students, was “very well received. The two comprehension pieces, one on “One Young World” and the other on homeless people, were both topical and interesting. Other issues, such as the environment, pollution, poverty, economies, and the Father Peter McVerry Trust (a charity which tackles homelessness, drug addiction and social disadvantage) all showed up. The questions were challenging but doable. Most importantly, the students felt good about themselves on leaving the exam centres.”

Cronin said the prose, poetry and extra literature questions were what might be expected from this level. “All in all, an excellent paper.”

On the ordinary level paper, which 24,784 students (52 per cent) sat, Cronin said the paper was “also very well conceived. The comprehension pieces, on golfer Rory McIlroy and US presidential candidate Hillary Clinton, were both suited to this level. The prose was interesting in that the two stories that came up were the same as last year; some of the students said this was a bit sneaky; the questions themselves, however, were fair. The same can be said for the two poems (‘An tEarrach Thiar’ and ‘Mo Ghrá-sa’).”

Clare Grealy, an Irish teacher at the Institute of Education, said students would be “generally pleased with the higher level paper. Areas which were widely anticipated in the literature, poetry and language sections all featured. The question on An Triail was a dull, boring question, which was too narrow and lacked imagination. It’s a shame the question only focused on three characters.”

She said the ordinary level paper was manageable, with “a couple of tricky parts”, although she criticised a question on the appearance of the character Niamh in the story of Oisín i dTír no nÓg, saying it may have been too specific for ordinary level students.

Around 1,816 (five per cent) of students sat the foundation level paper.

Student reaction on Twitter to the two papers was also largely positive. One Leaving Cert candidate, James Leonard, tweeted: “Irish paper two went amazingly. Couldn’t be happier. Four down, three to go. Added bonus [IS THAT]it’s lovely weather out.”

Try this at home

Freagair an cheist thíos ar an scannán Cáca Milis: “Ní duine deas í Catherine sa scannán Cáca Milis, rud atá soiléir ón gcaoi a gcaitheann sí le Paul agus iad ar an traein.” Déan plé ar an ráiteas sin. (From Higher Level Irish, Paper Two, Q2)

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