Leaving Cert French

Aoife - Higher Level

After 6 years of studying French it all came down to today.  When I got the written paper and I first looked through it I was happy enough with the paper overall.The first comprehension was about a young man from Paris. It was relatively understandable and the questions weren’t too bad on it. The literary comprehension was a bit more difficult as usual, there was a bit of “je ne sais pas” going on in my head.When I then came to the first written question I was happy that I could have attempted both parts, the first part was about how Irish young people have plenty of reasons to be happy and to discuss this. The second part was that you had just gotten a surprising call from your friend; write what was surprising and what you did after that. I chose to do the first part as I had a bit more to say about that topic.I then read carefully through the other 6 options, there were reactions, journal intime and an email. I chose to do the journal intime about how your first day on a part time job went badly and I also chose to do my reaction on how holidays in Ireland and their price. I liked the range of options that they gave within the paper and how they gave them, they were understandable for the most part.It was then our 10 minute break to prepare ourselves for the last “read the instructions carefully”. I find this part of the exam more difficult than the written or comprehensions. The tape covered a wide range of topics, it covered school, and speeding while driving excuses, parent-child relationships. It was an ok tape there were a few guesses but I was happy after it. This leaves me with just one more exam left until the end of all this madness! I hope that everyone is getting on ok, best of luck in the rest of your exams. Aoife :)

ISSU Commentary

Pupils and teachers today described the Leaving Cert higher-level French paper as "very positive". Many students could have been perplexed by the composition question explaining why young people in Ireland have many reasons to be happy. Many students were thankful for the choice element here! The essay about the shiny happy Irish youth was part of well received written expression section on the paper. Variety was a major positive overall. Many students who had learned off essays were left bitterly disappointed. The themes were straightforward, but were not predicted. Rote learning is fast becoming a thing of the past. There were plenty of interesting topics such as an email from a French friend inquiring about the reasoning of learning the Irish language, as well as a discussion topic about street protests and their importance in fighting against bad political decisions and injustice. Many sports enthusiasts would have been overjoyed to see Euro 2012, but this turned out to be about the level of sports programmes on television. The comprehensions that start the paper were challenging but not impossible. The first one was highlighted by many as being very topical and realistic. It was about a young male, living in the suburbs who can’t afford to move out of his parent’s house. Parts of the vocabulary in the listening section were difficult according to many. Ordinary level students sat a ‘typical’ paper which had ‘well practised and predictable topics’, in the opinion of some teachers. The integration of French culture was emphasised by many as a major positive. Overall there were few complaints.

Please note: blog posts reflect the opinion of the author and not necessarily the opinion of the Irish Second-Level Students’ Union. Blogs are updated daily by 6.30 pm on scheduled examination dates.