Junior Certificate English has undergone significant change over the past number of years with the introduction of classroom based assessments.

In our department we try and make sure that the students we teach in Junior and Senior cycle are exposed to key elements of these courses, not just in the classroom but throughout the halls of Colaiste Muire.

We do this through events such as literacy week, excursions to the Everyman theatre, the INEC and the Opera House for productions of the texts we are studying in class. We visit the cinema with fourth years as part of their film module and we encourage all students to read for pleasure and to avail of books from our in- class and school libraries.

The Leaving Certificate course provides students with the opportunities to study a Shakespearean text, six poets, a film and two other varied texts from a list that changes every two years.

We have been extremely busy this year promoting Coláiste Muire as a ‘haven for reading’, taking part in exciting events such as poetry slams and organising various activities during Literacy Week. Our seconds years performed their interpretation of “The Listeners” by Walter de la Mare and “The Journeyman” by Ralph Hodgson in their class groups as part of a poetry slam competition.

Literacy Week was a huge success, coinciding with World Book Day, and with all of the year groups taking part in organised activities, both inside and outside the classroom. Every morning a quote of the day was announced on the intercom. The quotes were from well-known books and the aim was to encourage the promotion of reading for pleasure in Coláiste Muire.

Second years took part in a Book Idol competition. The overall winners were Ola Morris and Adam Gumley who performed a convincing rendition of the balcony scene from Romeo and Juliet. TY students organised blind date with a book in the library for students and teachers to borrow.

The teachers and staff also enjoyed a book swap and lovely cakes during lunchtime on Thursday. As a conclusion to the Literacy Week celebrations, all students took part in a Drop Everything and Read. Students listened to classical music while reading a novel of their choice.