Irish American Goes To High School in Ireland

My family roots are in Ireland, so my parents and I thought it would be kind of fun to attend an Irish High School in Ireland. If I decide to go to college in Ireland, too, the costs of studying are super low in comparison to America. After all, the language is the same and Irish education is on a high level, too. So this is all about me, an Irish American goes to high school in Ireland. Let’s take on some details about the Irish School System.

The Irish secondary school system has a six-year course, with a state exam during the third year entitled “The Junior Certificate” and at the end of the sixth year, the “Leaving Certificate.” Year four is a transition year where students try out various new subjects and programs before choosing what to study for in their final 2-year program. The passing standards of an Irish High School are similar to those of an American High School and the American GED test. You can read about the GED here, this Best GED Classes website has many examples of how to use it.

The most appropriate years to come and study and receive validation from the Department of Education here in Ireland are those years where the students do not complete a state exam. They do however complete school exams on a regular basis, and a final grade is given for their overall performance throughout the year based on all these exams.


Is it Irish or American?

Imagine my disappointment in finding out that corned beef and cabbage is not Irish, it’s an American tradition. That’s what started me on a search of the customs of the old country. The following video about “Irish People Trying Stereotypical Irish Foods” suggests it’s Irish, but I’m telling you: corned beef and cabbage is as American as can be!

I’m an American of Irish descent. I’ve always celebrated St. Patrick’s Day with a dinner of corned beef and cabbage. I still do. But corned beef is not common on the old sod (except maybe around Cork and Dublin). The closest thing they have to it is called boiling bacon (cured pork loin). It is cooked much the same way. They don’t boil potatoes with the bacon and cabbage. They usually boil them in a separate pot.


Colorful Irish Names and their Meanings

Hi guys, it’s good to be back in Ireland! I spent the summer months with my family in America and I told my parents about some funny traditions in Ireland and how they name their children here. I did some research and let me tell you what I found out about colorful Irish names and their meanings. The following Benny Lewis video will help if you struggle how to say names like Niamh, Seán, Ciara, Cathal, or Oisín right.

Irish names are perfect for a baby girl or boy. They’re even good to use for your dog or other pets. Irish last names have a rich and colorful history. You can use these names to proudly proclaim your heritage. If you’re not Irish then you can use them just because they sound cool. I mean who wouldn’t want a Wolfhound named Ryan or an Irish Terrier called Duffy.

It’s too late for my parents to use Irish names for their kids. I guess we were born before they became really interested in family history or genealogy though they’ve always been involved in Irish clubs in America. Oh, to be young and foolish again. When I get older, I hope I’ll be wiser. I’m really into our family history.


Irish College of Druids (only in Ireland…)

Over the last two months, I’ve been pretty busy with getting the grades I need and maybe that explains (to a certain degree, Irish pubs are great, too…) why it’s been a couple of weeks since I told you about my life as a high school student life here in Ireland. I’ve been going around the Irish landscape quite a bit, though, and I discovered some weird things going on… Read on to learn all about the Irish College of Druids (only in Ireland…)

Today is Friday and my study week has come to an end and the following is something I really would like you to take good notice of! Life-changing! Just check out the following Irish instruction video, a beginner’s guide to Druidry so you may understand a bit more what I’m talking about GED to GPA

For many folks, the term “Druidry” may conjure up some images of old, long white-bearded old men with white robes. They’ll probably be casting some mysterious magical spell while using a golden sickle to cut the mistletoe… However! Modern-day Druidry is a far cry from that! It is an important spiritual path with ancient roots, that’s true. But it is actually very contemporary in its approach to our environment, to nature, and to the psychology of our modern minds…

The Irish College of Druids has evolved out of the training courses that have previously been offered by The Grove of Danu. The growing interest in the study of Irish Druidry and the enthusiasm with which these courses are being received have inspired the school to make them more widely available through a combination of local, residential and distance study for students from further afield.


Happy Saint Patrick’s Day!

Happy Saint Patrick’s Day! What many Irish here (and I guess many Americans as well) don’t know is that fourteen years before the American Declaration of Independence, the first Saint Patrick’s Day Parade was held in New York City. To be precise, on March 17, 1762!

257 years later…

The Irish Channel America, an organization that my mom and dad are involved in, is proud to wish the 35 Million Irish Americans (Source: U.S.Census 2000) Happy Saint Patrick’s Day! Just take a look a this 2018 New York City St. Patrick’s Day Parade video (though I bet you the 2019 one will be even better!):

New York St. Patrick’s Day Parade 2019 is held on Sunday, March 16, and then you can watch New York’s 5th Avenue go entirely green to celebrate the Irish heritage and culture. But first, more about The Irish Channel America, an organization that my parents are so busy with.

The Irish Channel America is connecting the 35 million Irish Americans with their culture and country of origin and to provide the Island of Ireland with a US digital platform for the promotion, development and marketing of Irish Art, Sports, Tourism, Music, Language, Literature, Film, Television, Education, Business and Finance, working with government and industry to foster new commercial and cultural relationships between the United States of America and Ireland, through television – the worlds most powerful communication medium.

But as the saying goes…
‘Everyone’s a little bit Irish on St. Patrick’s Day’


Limerick You Are My Lady, a Drinking Song

I’ve been in Ireland now for quite a while and I must admit, the atmosphere is so different than back home in the States though it took me some time to get used to it. What’s really amazing is the singing culture. Everyone here seems to know the traditional lyrics (more or less…) and singing along in the pubs is standard procedure most of the times. I even learned to play and sing Limerick You Are My Lady, a drinking song.

Unfortunately, I couldn’t make it home for Thanksgiving but I’ll be visiting my family and relatives over Christmas so that’ll make up for the holidays. I’ll bring a guitar that I bought here and I also learned one of the traditional Irish drinking songs that I’ll be glad to show my parents. It’s called, I believe, “Limerick You Are My Lady” so let me tell you a bit more about Limerick and this particular song (though I must say I adjusted the words slightly to make it more understandable for us Americans). My parents are doing some volunteer work for “the Irish Channel America” so I guess they’ll appreciate my (pretty amateurish) performance!

The drinking song “Limerick You Are My Lady” was written and sung by a bloke (another such great word here) named Dennis Allen who made it a number one hit in Ireland in 1979. The now still popular song stayed in the charts for over a year. Since then, “Limerick You Are My Lady” was recorded many times by as many as forty different artists.

The song is actually a classic Irish drinking song and this post will show you a little bit of Limerick’s colorful history. The city’s history goes back to the days when it was founded in 812 by Vikings from Scandinavia. Originally, Limerick was a walled city located on King’s Island (right in the Shannon River). The town is also known for its 1197 charter and in 1200, the construction of a massive castle was ordered by King John. The castle was besieged several times in the period 1600-1700.


Best Time to Visit Ireland – the 10 Stages of a Sunny Day in Ireland

Irish Weather – One of the most spoken-about topics in the country and when there’s the chance of a sunny day… Let’s look at the best time to visit Ireland and the ten stages of a sunny day in Ireland (so I was told by an Irish student here in Limerick) and the second part of this post gives you an idea of what is the best time to visit Ireland.

But first, the 10 stages of a sunny Irish day. Here we go:

1. Obsession – There’s to be nice weather at the weekend did you hear?? It’s gonna be a scorcher! Better get the bbq out!
2. Preparation – Do you go out? Or enjoy it at home? YOU NEED TO THINK THIS THROUGH!
3. Panic – The good weather has arrived. It’s only 10 o’clock and the world and it’s granny have taken to the roads already. Staying home is the better option.
4. Disgust – Last years summer clothes are bet on to you. All intentions of having rock hard abs by this summer went arseways.
5. Shopping – You need to stock up on sunny day essentials. Anyone who’s not stuck in traffic is in the supermarket. Burger buns and chicken wings are like gold dust!
6. The pool – You salvage last years pool from the shed and check for holes. Pumping it up takes forever and you’re sweating buckets by the end of it.
7. Filling up the pool – The kids are moaning that it takes too long. Between pumping it and filling it over an hour has gone by. They play in it for 10 minutes.
8. Exhaustion – The kids are getting whiny from the heat. Tantrums and telltales every 5 seconds while you try and sunbathe.
9. BBQ & Beer – You’ve stocked up on a box of Sol and the bbq is up and running. Crispy black chicken wings for dinner.
10. Satisfaction – That was great wasn’t it? Hope it’s the same tomorrow!!


National Food of Ireland

It’s a well-known fact that Ireland boasts one of the finest ranges of quality food in the world. This is a direct result of the high fertility of the Irish landscape and experience and agricultural competence of Irish farmers. So let’s check out some typical national food of Ireland.

Additionally, the producers of many foods in Ireland are long-established family-owned businesses who take great pride in their products. See this video about how to make a classic Irish Shepherd’s pie:

Some Irish foods are also historically acclaimed as being influential in their industry. For example, the popular Irish crisps made by the County Armagh crisp manufacturer, Tayto, were the first potato crisps in the World to have flavorings.

These facts have been recognized by many international Irish Country Cooking organizations and consequently, they provide an excellent service of delivering a comprehensive range of recipes for those with a desire to cook as the Irish do! Now if you feel like studying in Ireland as so many do, you should also try to master some of the traditional ways of cooking in Ireland. Let go with some typical Irish examples:


Things to do in Limerick Ireland – Light Moves

Light Moves, the world-renown Irish festival of dance, film and media arts, is coming back to Limerick for the fifth year in early November 2018. Light Moves will be featuring live music and dance performances, workshops, exhibitions, feature films, family screenings, short film programs, and interesting talks. So let’s take a closer look at things to do in Limerick, Ireland – Light Moves.

To get an impression, check out this 2015 Cáit Ní Dhuinnín video (dance material filmed in West Kerry and screened at the 2014 Light Moves Festival of Screendance in Limerick:

The 2018 edition of the festival of screendance will be taking place in Limerick at Belltable, St John’s Church, the University of Limerick, and Limerick City Gallery of Art.

Light Moves starts out with a couple of events on Thursday night, November 2nd. Dr. Desmond FitzGerald, University of Limerick president, will be launching the festival at Limerick City Gallery of Art (Carnegie Building, Pery Square), at 6 p.m. The Gallery will be screening thought-provoking filmwork throughout the amazing festival.

The University of Limerick

The University of Limerick (UL) is a relatively young, enterprising, and energetic university with a strong and proud record of innovative education and research excellence.

The University is independent, has an international focus, and employs some 1,300 staff members that service more than 11,500 students.

It is the school’s mission is to advance and promote knowledge and learning through academic teaching, groundbreaking research, and scholarship, all set in an environment that is encouraging innovation and continues to uphold the fundamental principles of free expression and inquiry. The school focuses particularly on generating knowledge and developing skills relevant to Ireland’s socioeconomic needs and development.

The University of Limerick was founded in 1972 under the name ‘National Institute for Higher Education’ but in 1989 the school received its classification as the University of Limerick (UL).

The school offers a wide range of academic programs from undergraduate to doctoral and postdoctoral degrees in the academic disciplines of Arts, Business, Humanities & Social Sciences, Science & Engineering, and Education & Health Sciences.