The Christmas holidays provide an excellent opportunity for you to undertake some concrete revision for your Leaving Certificate exams. A small amount of work each day – around 45 minutes per day for English – will reap many rewards. I have tried to cover as much of the course as possible for you to revise, but if there is anything missing we can cover it together in class.
Remember that the mock exams take place around three weeks after we return from the Christmas holidays – this will help to provide some extra motivation!
Here is a list of the topics that you should revise over the holidays:
Be sure that you can recognise and write in each of the five uses of language – language of information, language of argument, language of persuasion, language of argument and aesthetic use of language.
Revise the various type of Question Bs that may arise, such as a letter, review, talk, speech, interview, diary, report and so on.
As your Single Study text, you must be very familiar with all aspects of ‘Dancing at Lughnasa’ – character, theme, style, imagery etc.
Know your three Modes of Comparison well – Theme or Issue, General Vision and Viewpoint and Literary Genre.
Ensure that you are very familiar with your three comparative texts – ‘How Many Miles to Babylon?’, ‘Inside I’m Dancing’ and ‘Hamlet’.
Remember that you have studied seven of your eight poets in class. Do not include Kinsella in your revision. We will study him after the mock exams. All others should be revised.
The following is a suggestion as to how you might cover all of this material. Feel free to adjust it according to your needs and your time.
- Thurs 22nd Dec – Language of Narration – know how to recognise it when you read it and what is required when you are asked to write using this type of language. Practise writing narrative paragraphs.
- Fri 23rd Dec – the poetry of Philip Larkin – themes, techniques, imagery, key quotes etc. Add to the notes that you have already.
- Sat 24th Dec – Diary entry and report writing – what are the conventions required for each of these pieces of writing? Can you recognise the language in these formats and can you write one of these? Practice.
- Mon 26th Dec – Letter writing and reviews
- Tues 27th Dec – ‘Dancing at Lughnasa’ – the major characters – add to the notes you have already made.
- Wed 28th Dec – ‘Dancing at Lughnasa’ – minor characters, style, imagery
- Thurs 29th Dec – the poetry of Eavan Boland.
- Fri 30th Dec – language of information and aesthetic use of language – how would you recognise each of these uses of language? With aesthetic use of language, be sure to revise literary techniques.
- Sat 31st Dec – ‘Dancing at Lughnasa’ – themes. Add to your own notes. Be sure you know your quotes. Go over past papers.
- Sun 1st Jan – talk and speech – practice.
- Mon 2nd Jan – Literary Genre – what does this mode entail? Examples: use of dialogue, flashback, chronological order, suspense, imagery, conclusion of the story etc.
- Tues 3rd Jan – Literary Genre – how do the above aspects relate to our three texts? Start planning essays and writing sample paragraphs.
- Wed 4th Jan – Language of Argument and Language of Persuasion – these two have many similarities and yet are quite distinct. Can you identify the distinctions? Practice writing in both of of these genres of writing.
- Thurs 5th Jan – General Vision and Viewpoint – what does this mode entail? Examples: outlook on life, moral stance, key relationships, the treatment of women etc.
- Fri 6th Jan – General Vision and Viewpoint – how do the above aspects relate to our three texts? Start planning essays and writing sample paragraphs.
- Sat 7th Jan – the poetry of Robert Frost – add to your notes.
- Sun 8th Jan – the poetry of Adrienne Rich – add to your notes.
Best of luck with all of your revision!