Very early in the morning our busdriver Michael delivered them to the airport as the plane to Vienna was scheduled for a departure at 7.10am. The plane took off at without delays and after about three hours flying time the BORG Mistelbach students were back home in Austria. We hope they all had a great time on the green emerald isle.We have really enjoyed having them with us, and we wish them well in the future. Many regards from the H2 Ireland Team!
Very early in the morning the students were brought to the bus stop by their host families. The students had a wonderful time with their Irish families and it was a great opportunity for them to learn more about the daily life in Irish households. They have now gone up to Dublin for a city tour with stops at Georgian houses and the Phoenix Park (one the largest city parks in Europe). They will check into the hostel afterwards and they will then have some free time for the afternoon and evening.
It is the last day in school and it is time to say good-bye to the English teachers Lucy, Jackie, Brian and Peter. Before, the students presented the findings of their research about Ireland-related topics (ie. Irish Folk Music, Butter and St. Patrick, etc.). At the end of the lessons the students gathered in one room and four of them were awarded with a prize for the “Student of the week” (one of each class). In the afternoon they were picked up by our busdriver who brought them to the lovely town of Kinsale, right beside the Atlantic Sea. They met with the tour guides Barry and Brian at Charles Fort, a star-shaped fort from the 17th century. From there the students enjoyed a wonderful view onto Kinsale. The weather was beautiful once again. They then drove down into Kinsale and went for a guided walk around town, passing the narrow streets, colourful houses, restaurants, cafes and galleries. Later on, they had some free time to stroll around themselves. The last two stops for the day were the cliffs at the “Old Head of Kinsale” with stunning views onto the nearby beaches and coasts lines of West Cork and of course the wild Atlantic Sea. Everyone was looking forward to jump into the sea at the sandy beach of Garrettstown. They had brought towels and Swimming togs.
It’s the middle of the week, and the English lessons continue here on the south coast of Ireland. Our teachers have prepared different quizzes, role plays, discussions / debates on various topics. Peter has brought his ukulele and has been teaching our students Irish culture through singing traditional Irish Folk songs and analyising the lyrics. The students are also preparing for their presentations tomorrow. The weather is lovely again – with sunshine all morning and temperatures around 14 degrees.
In the afternoon the half of the students will walk over to the local GAA pitch in Minane Bridge. They will meet two trainers of the Gaelic Athletic Association (G.A.A.) who will show them how to play the traditional Irish sports – Hurling and Gaelic Football. Hurling is an outdoor team game of ancient Gaelic and Irish origin. The game has prehistoric origins, and has been played for 4,000 years. It is known to be the fastest game on grass and the most skilful game in the world. They will also learn about Gaelic Football – where players advance the Football up the field with a combination of carrying, bouncing, kicking, hand-passing, and soloing (dropping the ball and then toe-kicking the ball upward into the hands).The other half of the students will stay at the school where they will meet Fionán, our Ceili dance teacher. Irish céilí dancing can be traced back to the 1500’s. Most céilí dances are danced to reels or jigs (traditional Irish music). We bet our students will have a lot of fun with both afternoon activities!
The weather is beautiful – sunshine all morning and in the afternoon. After school the group headed to Cork City for a tour with our tour guide Fiona. The students will discover Cork via bus and will learn more about this “rebel” city with its nick name deriving from its involvement in the English Civil wars. They will take a look at St. Finbarr’s Cathedral and will stop at the Campus of the Cork University College. This is usually a highlight for the students as it looks a Little bit like a scenery in many of the Harry Potter movies. They will also have time to explore the famous English Market with its fresh vegetables, fish, meat and flowers. The market also stocks the typical Cork dishes called “Tripe” and “Drisheen”! Later on the students will have some free time to stroll around and to go shopping for some souvenirs and fashion
The first day of English lessons is over and the group is currently out at Garrettstown beach in West Cork, enjoying the breeze from the Atlantic Sea. Temperatures are currently around 17 degrees – spring is in the air! You can check the weather for Ireland here. In the morning they were introduced to their English teachers Lucy, Jackie, Brian and Peter. They were then split into four groups and after some introduction- and warm-up games the lessons started.
On Sunday the students were allowed to sleep in and to enjoy a relaxed morning with their host families. Some had a typical Irish breakfast with sausages, black pudding, toast, fried egg and beans. Some went for a walk at the beach and others spend the morning at home, getting to know their host families. In the afternoon the students were picked up by the bus for an excursion to Blarney Castle. The weather was lovely, no rain, sunshine and blues skies. Perfect weather for a walk around the castle grounds and the extensive gardens at Blarney. After they all had kissed the famous Blarney Stone (on top of the castle), the students went for a walk themselves – to the fern gardens, to the poison garden and to the rock close with its “Wishings Steps”. They all enjoyed the fresh air and the first signs of “spring”.
48 students and their teachers from BORG Mistelbach arrived safe and sound to Dublin. All went smoothly at the passport control and baggage claim. The group was picked up by Michael, our busdriver and H2 Team member. He guided them to the bus car park. After the luggage was stored away, they were on their way to Carrigaline which is located in the south of Ireland, in the beautiful County Cork. Unfortunately they were delayed by a lot of traffic on the way down from Dublin, so the journey took a little longer than usual. At around 7.15pm they arrived in Carrigaline and they were warmly welcomed by the H2 Team and the host families. Everyone then headed off home for some dinner and an introduction to life in their new ‘home’. We hope everyone has a good time with us and enjoys exploring this part of Ireland.