Mocks.ie – Higher Level Leaving Cert English Blog!!
Welcome to our Leaving Cert English Higher Level Blog!! Ever wondered how to make the most of all your notes, push that C to a B ..Or better still an A!!! Or what are the secrets to polishing up your English grade….read on, we will take you through the tips and techniques that you can apply and use to maximise your grade potential!!! All the notes you need are available here on our website and the blog will talk you through how best to use them to write A answers!!
Blog Post 1 "Maximising your result potential in the Single Text question with planning and study “
60 marks – Every 4 marks is 1%....Lets make sure that you get the maximum here!!
Most students take a Shakespearean text and this year it is Shakespeare’s tragedy “Macbeth”.
“Nought's had, all's spent,
Where our desire is got without content;
'Tis safer to be that which we destroy
Than by destruction dwell in doubtful joy” Lady Macbeth
On paper 2, the Single Text question is the second highest scoring question in terms of marks. It offers 60 marks to students and with careful preparation you should be able to maximise these 60 marks in your favour!!
Planning and studying for your “Macbeth” answer are the first step!!
1. Firstly, in planning for any potential questions you must ensure that you have a detailed knowledge of the play and key scenes with key quotes. Get your hands on a good set of notes that give a detailed summary of the play here.
Full Notes http://www.mocks.ie/LeavingCert/RevisionNotes.aspx
Free Quick Notes http://www.mocks.ie/LeavingCert/Subjects/English.aspx
Free Video http://www.mocks.ie/LeavingCert/Videos.aspx?SubjectID=3
It essential that you know the play in great detail, the key scenes and events. The examiner must get a sense of this from your answer, a lack of detailed reference or quotes will easily be recognised however it is easy to rectify!!
2. Know your quotes!!! Interestingly the Chief Examiner had a point to make about using quotes
“Quotations were used liberally, but not always accurately or judiciously”
In other words, if you want your answer to benefit from quotes and gain you mark,
ü Choose your quotes wisely
ü Use them appropriately
ü Know them correctly!!
We have made good use of quotes throughout the notes on mocks.ie; however, you can tailor them to suit your own opinions in relation to various characters and themes or issues.
3. Make a checklist!! I would advise making a list of important events/ themes/ characters and having a key quote for each. Many quotes will overlap and while you may think this is a long list of quotes it is actually very manageable. You can use the index of our “Macbeth” notes as good guide to what areas you should cover in planning and studying for this question
However, this is purely your preparation, any answer you write on “Macbeth” will involve analysis, NOT a summary of the events of the play!
4. Form your OWN opinion! The examiner will be correcting a lot of exam scripts….you want yours to stand out, not read like a set of learned off information, therefore form your own opinion, and give it!! Remember that your opinion is valid once it is well supported by reference or quotation. It is a good idea to consider how you feel about the main characters and why…tease this idea out for yourself and form your opinions this way. While there are lots of notes available on the different characters and issues in the play, you do not have to agree with all of them! Offer a balanced argument in your response, this will have the added effect of making your answer much more personal and stand out from the rest of the answers that the examiner is correcting that day!!!! There are a range of notes on the themes and characters here which are a good basis for forming your own opinions. Use these as a good starting point from which to build your ideas and opinions.
The next Chief Examiners report is due out in early 2014, we will keep you posted here when it is published and what recommendations and areas he will be looking for from candidates in this year’s Leaving Cert English exams!!
Next Blog Post …..Writing an A answer for the Single Text “Macbeth”