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Leaving Cert Diary: October

Leaving Cert Diary: October

Sorcha Kennedy

Last year writer, Sophie Coffey, kept us up to date in the run up to her Leaving Cert exams with her Leaving Cert Diary series…we all know how that turned out now.

This year another writer, Sorcha Kennedy, will be documenting her experience in 6th Year. With a lot still going on due to the pandemic and uncertainty over the 2021 exams, it will definitely be an interesting one to follow every month.

My start of year burst of enthusiasm to study has officially gone and I’m finding it harder to motivate myself. Like a lot of schools, my school has decided to do continuous assessment instead of Christmas exams, which means I’m constantly going from one test to another (it’s a little chaotic). However, these tests are actually super helpful for spotting what chapters I need to work on more, which has helped me focus more on study.

A Thrilling New Addition To School

The best thing to come out of this month is our brand new sixth-year kitchen (kitted out with a fridge, two kettles, microwaves, and enough tea and coffee for 50 girls). Its timing couldn’t have been better as the school (and I’m sure every other school) is absolutely freezing.

I understand that air needs to circulate and the windows need to be open, but I physically cannot wear any more layers! A few girls have even resorted to wearing gloves in class or bringing in hot water bottles. Being able to make a hot cup of tea or heat up your lunch definitely helps with the cold.

Time Is Slipping Away

As a year group, I think we’re closer than ever and we’re all beginning to realise just how little time we have left. Every once and a while, someone will do or say something that triggers all the emotions that have been building up. For example, electing our Head Girl was both a hilarious but quite emotional experience. Between the heartwarming speeches and the realisation that we’re now the sixth years that we looked up to in first year, there were naturally a few tears shed.


But there is a dark cloud looming, and that’s filling out the CAO. I know it’s approaching and I feel like the fact I have no idea what to put down is always at the back of my mind. “What are you going to put on the CAO?” seems to be the burning question in everyone’s mind when you’re in sixth year, and I think we need to normalise saying “I have no idea” because very few people actually do.

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The ‘New’ Normal

Going to school, wearing masks, and religiously sanitising your hands has become scarily normal. I don’t even think twice about it anymore, and it’s quite worrying. Although this year is anything but the typical sixth year, it feels normal to me because I don’t know any different. One issue I am having is that because we can’t have 18ths, or (now) go to town or even go shopping, my life has become consumed by school. I know in sixth year you’re supposed to “focus on school”, but still I feel like I have no break at all. I can’t go to dance, I can’t go shopping, have people over, or even see my friends outside of school. I’ve found reading and watching movies as a great way to take a break from all the chaos.

I’m very glad for the midterm break and will spend it watching Halloween movies and drinking hot chocolate, and maybe a bit of study 😉

Catch up on all of Sophie’s Exam Diaries from last year and Sorcha’s 2020/21 series.

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