“Literacy is, finally, the road to human progress and the means through which every man, woman and child can realize his or her full potential.” - Kofi Annan

Aims of the Department:

Language is the chief means by which we make sense of our experience.  Language gives us a sense of personal and cultural identity, enables us to relate to each other and empowers us in many ways, from engaging in chat to rejoicing in poetry. If we lack expertise in language we become vulnerable to the power of those who are proficient in language. Language can liberate us.

     - To develop an informed appreciation of literature through personal encounters with a variety of literary texts
    - To be creative through language and to gain enjoyment and continuing personal growth from English in all its forms
    - To develop control over English, using it and responding to it with purpose and effect
    - To use their literacy skills to manage information, and to evaluate and communicate information using a variety of media

     - To gain an understanding of the grammar and conventions of English

Facilities offered by the school for the Department:
     - Library
     - Each teacher has their own classroom with a variety of visual aids.
    - Each classroom has a data projector, laptop and whiteboard.
    - JCSP Initiatives contributes towards English trips for the Junior Cycle students.

     - Two fully equipped Computer Rooms for research and presentation work.

Information on Junior Cycle/Junior Cert Course/ Syllabus:
     - 90% of the exam is based on the Written Paper.
     - The final 10% is based on Classroom Based Assessment in third year.
     - http://www.curriculumonline.ie

Information on Leaving Certificate  Course/Syllabus:
     - This is a two year course. It is taught over five class periods per week.
     - 100% of the exam is based on the Written Paper.
     - http://www.curriculumonline.ie

Name of Text Books used for each year:
1st Year
    - The prescribed textbook
    - A homework/ exercise copy (Hard or soft back)               
2nd Year
    - Exam papers at the appropriate level
3rd Year
    - Retain all the material from previous years
4th Year
    - Prescribed textbook
     - An A4 softback notes copy
     - A homework/ exercise copy
5th Year
    - Prescribed textbooks
     - Exam papers
6th Year
    - Retain all the material from previous years

Activities that could support a student in the subject:
     - Reading e.g. attending the local library
     - Joining a team e.g. debating
     - Useful websites e.g. www.studyclix.ie  www.examinations.ie etc.
     - Family trips e.g. to the theatre, to a particular local museum, up-coming exhibition etc.
     - www.ted.com/talks
     - www.jct.ie
     - www.curriculumonline.ie


“If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his language, that goes to his heart” - Nelson Mandela

Aims of the Department
    - To develop and enhance the four language skills, Reading, Writing, Listening and Oral
    - To build a strong knowledge of French grammar and vocabulary
    - To increase cultural awareness of France and other French speaking countries.
    - To run language based events in the school: European Language Day, drama workshops etc.
    - Introduce/Build on multimedia and ICT in Language Learning

     - To expose and immerse students in authentic French situations, by use of French films & French theatre groups visiting the school to work with students

Facilities offered by the school for the Department:
    - All classrooms are equipped with speakers, laptops & projectors to aid students in listening practice
    - Students have access to 2 computer suites in the school where students have access to websites and resources which aid their learning of French
    - Each classroom has a set of class dictionaries

     - Language exchange students attend the school every year and are a great asset to our classes in Senior Cycle

Information on Junior Cycle/Junior Cert Course/ Syllabus:
Currently, all Junior Cycle students have 3 class periods of French per week.*** These classes cover all aspects of the course (Reading, Listening, Speaking and Writing). The new Junior Cycle French course will be implemented to all 1st Years from 2018 onwards this includes Classroom-Based Assessment in both 2nd & 3rd Year.

Further information can be found at www.curriculumonline.ie

Information on Leaving Certificate  Course/Syllabus:
Currently, all 5th and 6th Year students have 5 class periods of French per week. These classes cover all elements of the course including oral and aural classes.
The exam at Leaving Cert Higher level is worth 75% (20% of which is an aural exam)
Students will undertake their French Oral Exam (worth 25%) prior to written paper in June.
*In Ordinary Level French, the Oral Exam is worth 20% and written paper is worth 80%.

Further information can be found at  https://curriculumonline.ie/Senior-cycle/Senior-Cycle-Subjects/French

Materials and Equipment Needed for the subject:
     - Class textbook, dictionary
    - Hardback copy.

Activities that could support a student in the subject:
     - Reading e.g. for languages
     - French News websites
     - Talking part in conversation classes with French exchange students
     - Listening to French Podcasts
     - Useful websites e.g. www.studyclix.ie  www.examinations.ie etc.


"Beatha teanga í a labhairt"

The Irish Department are, in their teaching of the subject, always mindful of the following :
    - A huge emphasis is placed on using the language every day in the classroom, with all classes.
    - The knowledge skills and abilities acquired in primary school are consolidated and nurtured.
    - Students are provided the opportunity to expand their skills knowledge and abilities
     - To prepare the student for employment and life beyond post primary education.
    - Preservation of the Irish culture and the development of the individual.
    - To encourage the students to use the language to the best of their ability.

     - To create an environment conducive to learning.

Aims of the Department:
We aim to teach our students in a safe, secure and friendly environment. We, the teachers, are dedicated and hardworking. Learning takes place in a mannerly fashion that incorporates the ethos of the school.
By Senior Cycle, students learn to take responsibility and ownership of their own learning through oral work, which is worth 40% of their overall mark.
We understand English is the main language for the most part for our students at home, as a result that it is a challenge to develop the 5 key skills of literacy which include writing, reading, speaking listening and comprehension.
During the annual festivities of Seachtain na Gaeilge, we offer students a wide range of fun activities. Over the years, we have organised bingo, art competitions, Céilithe, circle talk time, table quizzes, sport events, dress up for ‘Lá Glas’ to mention a few. Prizes are awarded and fun is had by all.
It is our duty as facilitators of education to set a good example of speaking the target native language to a high standard, inspiring students to speak as Gaeilge.
In our classrooms, Irish posters, flashcards, pictures are frequently used for the enhancement of visual learning to aid our students’ full engagement in lessons.

Curriculum:  Junior Cycle:
In the Junior Cycle for Irish, students strengthen and deepen their understanding of Irish. There is an emphasis on students to communicate in an effective and interactive manner during the three-year programme. The new curriculum seeks to develop the skills students bring to the post primary setting. Students are encouraged to take responsibility for their own learning, and to use the language effectively and confidently when communicating with their peers, teachers and members of the Irish community.
During first year, students will be given the opportunity to sample different genres of literature to support their learning, including; short stories, poems, songs, and short films. However, in second- and third-year students will be required to study a minimum of two short stories, one play, five poems/songs, and one novel* (higher only).
The assessment of Irish for the Junior Cycle will consist of two Classroom-Based Assessments; Language portfolio and Communication Task; an Assessment Task and a Final Examination. The Classroom-Based Assessments is a new concept. It will allow students to demonstrate their language, communicative, and interactive abilities in ways not possible in the old course. The two Classroom-Based Assessments will take place in third-year.

Curriculum: Senior Cycle:
At Senior Cycle the emphasis is on the spoken target language which accounts for 40% of the overall mark, while the Aural makes up approximately 15%.
Paper 1 differs for both levels. Ordinary Level students study short essays, letters and stories. While Leaving Certificate Higher Level choose one essay to write about from a variety of challenging essays. Although the course is broad and skills are tested, the Oral contributes very positively to the overall mark of our students at 40%.
Students at both levels study 5 stories and 5 poems at present, which is tested on Paper 2 of the Leaving Certificate examination along with testing comprehension skills through questioning on 2 comprehensions. Higher level students also study a drama, usually ‘An Triail’ by Mairéad Ní Ghráda, as well as receiving Gael-Linn’s monthly publication of Dréimire magazine, which proves invaluable to their essay writing skills.
Every Irish class at Senior Cycle level involves the student as the centre in a community of learners. Pair and group work are very often used as our framework in allowing the students to practice speaking the language.

Contact Us

Ursuline College Blackrock, Cork, T12HR04

Phone: 021 - 4358012

Email: administration@urscorkb.com

Useful Information

Opening Hours:
8.30am to 4.30pm

Mr Patrick McBeth

Deputy Principal:
Ms Paula Goggin

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