EXAM PREPARATION: St Brigid’s Junior Cert student Ilona Sheehan details what it is like studying from home during COVID-19 as she prepares for her first State exams.
By St Brigid’s student Ilona Sheehan
Since Thursday March 12 we’ve been off due to the Coronavirus. When we all heard we were delighted, but now that the cabin fever and boredom are setting in, no one is quite so sure anymore.
In addition to this all practical exams for the Junior and Leaving Cert are cancelled, with everyone receiving full marks in each.
At first, I didn’t know whether to be delighted or annoyed. After all our hard work and practice, we don’t even get to show off our skills, but on the other hand I’ve passed Home Ec., so it’s kind of a relief.
All of the uncertainty surrounding the exams is slightly annoying. It also feels like we’re doing 10 times the amount of work we’d do if we were actually in school, but on the other hand it’s nice to have a break from the dooming reality of the JC and the packed school halls.
What’s a typical school day like now you may ask? Well I wake up around 8am and have some breakfast before settling down to work around 9.30am.
The teachers send us on our work through platforms such as Teams, Outlook and One Note. My favourite is Teams as you can chat with your teachers, keep track of all your assignments in one place and get notifications when new work is posted.
Different teachers send work at different times – some before, during or after our allotted class, but I still try to do the work when I’m given it and stick with my current school timetable. Some evenings I could be doing assignments until 6pm, but I try not to go past that so I’ve a chance to relax too.
For subjects that we’ve completed the course in like religion it’s mostly exam papers for work, but in subjects like geography we must continue on taking down notes and learning new topics.
Typically, at 1pm I go outside for a while before having lunch.
I’ve also started reading every night before going to bed again, something I stopped at the start of Third Year.
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Chance to win a house in Killarney and support Kerry GAA
The Kerry GAA County Board has launched a ‘Win A House draw’ for a new house in Killarney . Funds raised by the draw will go towards the running expenses of the various Kerry football and hurling teams. The three-bed house is located in the Ceide Spris development just off the Park Road is built […]
The Kerry GAA County Board has launched a ‘Win A House draw’ for a new house in Killarney
Funds raised by the draw will go towards the running expenses of the various Kerry football and hurling teams.
The three-bed house is located in the Ceide Spris development just off the Park Road is built to modern energy standards, it represents a fantastic opportunity for people to get involved at a cost of €100 which will go a long way to supporting Kerry GAA.
“As a volunteer-based organisation, we have always had to fundraise to support our teams and clubs. We are delighted to be in a position to have a dream house available for a lucky winner,” Kerry GAA PRO Leona Twiss.
“While only one person can win the house, there will be plenty of cash prizes and match tickets to be won along the way. The sooner you purchase your ticket, the better chance you will have at winning those additional prizes.”
To enter the draw visit: https://www.kerrygaa.ie/winahouseinkerry/
More great choices for large shrubbery
Following last week’s article on large shrubs, I received many comments, suggestions and questions, leading me to believe that there were quite a few people unsure of what to plant in a large space. I felt at the end of the article there were definitely more plants for that list so here are some […]
Following last week’s article on large shrubs, I received many comments, suggestions and questions, leading me to believe that there were quite a few people unsure of what to plant in a large space.
I felt at the end of the article there were definitely more plants for that list so here are some more great choices for the large shrubbery.
The bottlebrush, or Callistemon, is named appropriately for the shape of its flowers which are bottle-brush like spikes of many small flowers with long stamens, giving it that brush like appearance. Usually red, they are also available in yellow and pink. They flower in summer and into autumn adding a lovely splash of colour. Their leaves are hard and spiky with arching branches. Cut them back immediately after flowering or they will not flower the following year. If they do grow out of hand, they will tolerate a hard cut back.
Ceanothus, or the Californian lilac, is an often evergreen shrub bearing dark blue flowers. There are several sizes from the low creeping C. repens, to the tree like proportions of C. thyrsiflorus. An ideal candidate for the large border is C. ‘Gloire de Versailles’, which has large blue flowers from July to the end of autumn, (deciduous), or C. ‘Southmead’ which has dark blue flowers in early spring (semi-evergreen), or C. ‘Blue Mound’ which has deep blue flowers (evergreen). I find with all ceanothus that their flowering times seem to be very weather dependant!
Forsythia is a large common shrub which flowers early in spring before the leaves appear. I mention it as it seems to have gone out of fashion completely, though it adds such a fantastic yellow brightness in those dark February days.People often complain that it either grows out of all proportions or that it does not flower. If pruning, do so immediately after flowering. ‘Golden Nugget’ is possibly one of the smaller varieties at a natural five foot.
An unusual, but well worth finding plant is the Sorbus reducta. It is a low 1-1.5m type of mountain ash, with all the great features of its larger tree relatives! It forms a thicket – yes, it does sucker, but does not take over, has white flowers followed by dark red berries which fade to a creamy colour. Like most mountain ashes, its autumn colour is blazing!
Butterfly bushes, buddleja, are a much maligned plant as it can self seed and become a bit of a nuisance. However, it does not really self seed much in gardens where the conditions are not ideal, (ideal conditions – derelict, dry, stony waste land). Most cultivated varieties are sterile, so there is no reason to avoid them! B. colvilei is a very unusual variety, being semi-evergreen with large panicles of tubular dark pink flowers – these clusters can reach up to 20cm. B. davidii is the common butterfly bush and is available in a range of colours such as ‘Black Knight’, deep, deep purple, ‘Empire Blue’, blue flowers with orange centre, ‘Royal Red’, deep pink/maroon. One of my favourites is ‘Harlequin’ which has variegated leaves. There is a range of smaller butterfly bush available too; the ‘buzz’ series.
These remain compact, up to 1m, however their flowers are not quite as impressive! To remedy that, plant breeders have come up with a new variety – the ‘Rocketstar’ series. I have only just planted one, but it promises a diminutive 80cm with the same large flowers as large varieties have. If this plant does what its creators claim, it will certainly be a hit in my garden!
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