Monday, March 30, 2020

Leaving Certificate English resources

During these uncertain and anxious times for pupils, here is a summary of some resources on our site (and elsewhere) for Leaving Certificate English candidates that may be helpful when working at home. For general sharing (our own pupils have access to much of this on Firefly). Regular updates coming.

Also, English teachers: some recommendations here, as well as general teaching recommendations here, Shakespeare here.

Although Evelyn O'Connor has shuttered her site Leaving Cert English, you can still avail of lots of helpful resources and advice.




  • We're doing The Great Gatsby in the comparative: here are 15 annotated video analyses of key moments in the novel.
  • An index to the whole novel.
  • And then follow up with these questions to provoke thoughts about the moments.

  • Of course the best thing you can do is read. As widely as possible. A great site for pointing you towards excellent reading is Five Books - recommendations from some of the most expert people around. If you find it difficult to get books right now, there's always Kindle delivery.
  • We have 77 Articles of the Week for keeping your mind going (especially for the Comprehension sections of the exam).
  • Everything starts with vocabulary: check out ‘6 useful vocabulary sites’ from a top expert in this area, Alex Quigley. Spend 10 minutes every few days on Describing Words, for instance.

Revision strategies:
  • Since you're unlikely to be covering anything new at the moment, make sure you use your time efficiently and effectively in revising. Below are some excellent proven strategies -
  • The Learning Scientists have excellent advice: check out their videos here. Don't waste your time re-reading notes and using the highlighter like a paintbrush. Instead, test yourself by retrieving material (see below), space your learning out and so on.
  • And here's a fine guide on those strategies from Carl Hendrick of Wellington - 'How should students revise? A brief guide.'
  • Flashcards are always good, and of course they can simply be on paper. Quizlet is an excellent tech-version, and here are ours on Hamlet, for instance. The main thing is that answers should prompt thought about the play more generally. You could always compose flashcards that you share electronically with your peers.

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