Curriculum

 

 

At SMGS, we pride ourselves on recognising the ever changing demands of our student body and offer support as well as adapting our programmes in order to best prepare students for exams and to develop them into mature and responsible adults before they embark on their futures in University, their professional career or entrepreneurship.

 

 
 

Recognising individual needs

SMGS adopts a mixed ability approach and recognises the individual needs of all our students. All subjects are available to students at Higher and Ordinary Levels and banding is used in Gaeilge, English and Maths in order for students to maximise their individual ability in these particular subjects.

 

Specialised Facilities

SMGS has a number of specialised classrooms, the quantity of which will increase dramatically with the new school, equipped to the highest standard. These include rooms for: Engineering/metalwork, Woodwork/Construction studies, Art, Home Economics, Technical Graphics/DCG,  Music, Computers, Ipad suites, 3 Science labs, Reading den.

 

Special Education needs

We are committed to the achievement of the level of academic excellence appropriate to each of our students. Students can access resource teaching providedthey have an up-to-date Educational Psychological Assessment.

 

STEM AS A LINCHPIN

Science and IT development are a proud linchpin of our school and our successes in science competitions are a reflection of our commitment to science and the support of our talented teachers.

 

 
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JUNIOR CERTIFICATE

Students are offered at wide range of subjects to ensure the complete spectrum of students' interests and abilities are catered for.

 

Junior Cert Exam Subjects:

Junior Cycle Students also study (Non-exam subjects):

Junior Cert Option Subjects:

 

 

LEAVING CERTIFICATE

Students may take eight examination subjects with the option of studying LCVP or PE. After the core three subjects of Gaeilge, English and Maths, students also choose four option subjects. The final option choices for Leaving Certificate reflect the personal wishes, future career aspirations, aptitudes and abilities of the students.

 

Leaving cert core subjects:

Leaving Cert option Subject:

 

 

Leaving Certificate Vocational Program

Along with the traditional Leaving Certificate subjects, SMGS also offers the Leaving Certificate Vocational Programme (LCVP). This is a student- centred and student directed course which enhances the other option subjects by educating students about the world of work, business and entrepreneurship.

 

SMGS Subject information

 


Junior Cycle Subjects:


 

Junior Cycle English

English is an international language spoken or being learned by people in almost every part of the world. In Junior Certificate English you will learn how to communicate more effectively with others and to express your point of view in many different ways.You will also have many opportunities to use your imagination and to find out about great writers. By the end of the Junior Certificate course, you should be better able to understand your world and to say what you think about it.

 

Junior Cycle Irish

The aim of Junior Certificate Irish is to improve your ability to communicate through Irish.You will focus on improving your language skills through concentrating on four areas; your spoken language through speaking; your listening skills through listening to others, CDs and tapes; your written skills through writing in Irish, and your reading skills through reading passages, poems and stories written in Irish. All students of SMGS will also be invited to take part in the annual festivities as paart of Seachtain na Gaeilge.

 

Junior Cycle Mathematics

In Mathematics, you will develop your problem-solving skills and your ability to present logical arguments.You will be better able to use what you learned in Mathematics in real life situations in everyday life and work.

 

Junior Cycle History

History involves the study of people who lived in the past - ordinary people as well as famous people. In History class in SMGS, you will learn about the sources of evidence on which we base our understanding of their lives. You will find out about important changes that, over time, have helped to shape the world in which you live.

 

Junior Cycle Geography

In Geography you will study about places, people and what shapes the environment. You will learn how the environment influences people, and how they change the environment.You will develop your ability to draw and understand maps, graphs and diagrams, as well as studying photographs and collecting information outside the classroom through fieldwork with a trip organised for all first year students in SMGS.

 

Junior Cycle Business Studies

Business Studies helps you to make more informed decisions in the everyday business of living. It gives you a better understanding of the world of work. It encourages you to think about how and why people start up in business and why you too might also consider starting a business.

 

Junior Cycle Modern Languages - French/German

The modern languages you can learn for Junior Certificate in SMGS are French or German. Depending on your school, you can choose one or more of these subjects. In learning a modern language, you will begin to understand what you read and hear, and to talk and write in the language.

 

Junior Cycle Art, Craft and Design

In Art, Craft, Design in SMGS you will have the opportunity to create images and objects using a variety of tools, materials and special equipment. To understand Art, Craft, Design it is important to make things yourself so that you learn and understand by doing.

 

Junior Cycle Science

We come across science in everyday things in the world around us, both living and non-living. Studying Science in SMGS will help you to understand the importance of science in our lives and in the environment. Opportunities are available to SMGS students also to take part in various scientific competitions including The BT Young Scientist Exhibition and Scifest.

 

Junior Cycle Materials Technology (Woodwork)

Materials Technology Wood (MTW) is one of the technology subjects offered at junior cycle. In MTW you will learn to design small projects and the skills required to use tools and equipment to make your designs.You will work mainly with wood but also with other materials. You will learn about wood as a material and how it is produced.

 

Junior Cycle Metalwork

Metalwork is one of the technology subjects offered in SMGS. It is an activity-based course focusing on metal, how to work with it and how to assemble different parts. Other materials such as plastics and wood are also investigated and used in project work.You will be working with basic electronic components too.

 

Junior Cycle Technical Graphics

Technical Graphics is one of the technology subjects offered at junior cycle in SMGS. In Technical Graphics you will learn how to represent 3-D objects on paper and on computer.You will develop problem solving and creative thinking skills through the solution of graphical problems.

 

Junior Cycle Music

Music is an important part of everyone’s life. In Junior Certificate Music, you will sing and learn how to play an instrument.You will listen to many types of music such as pop, classical and traditional Irish music and you will also start composing.

 

Junior Cycle Home Economics

Home Economics is a subject where you will learn how to take care of yourself, others, your home and your environment. As Home Economics is a very practical subject, you will carry out a lot of activities in school and at home.

 

Junior Cycle CSPE

Civic, Social and Political Education (CSPE) is taught to all Junior Certificate students in SMGS. It aims to help you to become actively involved in your community, your country and the wider world.

 

Junior Cycle PE

Physical Education (PE) is a subject where you can take part in and learn about physical activities.You learn about how important keeping fit is for the health of your body and mind. In some activities you work on your own and in others you work with your classmates as part of a team.

 

Junior Cycle Religion

In Religious Education (RE) you will learn about what people believe, why they believe and how these beliefs influence their own lives, the lives of others and the world around us.You will explore how many religions, particularly Christian religions, have shaped the Ireland you live in today.

 

Junior Cycle SPHE

In Social, Personal and Health Education (SPHE) you learn about what might help you to make choices for a confident and healthy life. In SPHE class in SMGS you will learn how to get on with your classmates better, as well as help each other to be healthy, safe and well.


 

Senior Cycle Subjects:


 

Leaving Cycle English

Leaving Certificate English invites students into rich experiences with language so that they become fluent and thoughtful users of it and more aware of its significance in their lives. It develops a range of literacy and oral skills in a variety of areas, personal, social, and cultural. Students develop a wide range of skills and concepts. These will allow them to interpret and enjoy a range of material so that they become independent learners who can operate independently in the world beyond the school.Leaving Certificate English is assessed at two levels, Ordinary and Higher level. 

 

Senior Cycle Irish

Leaving Certificate Irish builds upon the language developed during Junior Cycle. All four language skills are further developed in order to enable the learner take an active part in the bilingual society in which we live in today in Ireland. The learner is encouraged to develop and share her/his views on a range of topics. The learner is also prepared during Senior Cycle for further study in or through Irish.

Irish is assessed at three levels i.e. Foundation Level, Ordinary Level or Higher Level. The learner’s oral competency is assessed around Easter of the final year, in an oral examination worth 40%, at each level, of the overall mark, and the other three skills are assessed in June. Aspects of literary works must be studied at Ordinary Level while at Higher Level these same works and additional material must be studied in greater detail.

 

Senior Cycle Mathematics

Mathematics at Senior Cycle builds on the learning at Junior Cycle and develops mathematical knowledge, skills and understanding needed for continuing education, life and work. Through their study of mathematics, students develop a flexible, disciplined way of thinking which enables them to solve problems in mathematical and real world contexts.

The syllabus is provided at three levels – Higher, Ordinary and Foundation level and is also assessed at these levels. There are two examination papers at each level.

 

Senior Cycle History

Leaving Certificate history deals with the experience of human life in the past. The study of history involves an investigation of the surviving evidence relating to such experience. It brings students into contact with human experiences that are often very different from their own and fosters their developing understanding of the human condition and human motivation. Through its focus on the evaluation of evidence, it contributes significantly to the development of students' skills of critical thinking. Through its focus on research, it allows students the opportunity to develop their skills of independent learning.

Leaving Certificate history is assessed at two levels, Ordinary level and Higher level. There are two assessment components: a research study report (submitted prior to the examination) and a written examination.

 

Senior Cycle Geography

Leaving Certificate Geography will help students develop an understanding of the changing relationships between the physical and human worlds. Through their study of geography, students will develop geographical skills that will help them to make informed judgements about issues at local, national and international levels.

Leaving Certificate geography may be studied at Ordinary or Higher level. The course is divided into core, elective and optional units of study. Geography is assessed at Ordinary and Higher level. Students are expected to complete a report on a geographical investigation which is conducted during a fieldwork trip at the beginning of 6th Year in SMGS and students also must sit a written examination.

 

Senior Cycle Business Studies

Leaving Certificate business creates an awareness of the importance of business activity and develops a positive and ethical attitude towards enterprise. The learning experiences in business develop students’ critical thinking, creative and organisational skills while enhancing literacy and numeracy skills using real-life examples. Business provides students with a learning foundation for a wide range of careers in business, marketing, law, enterprise and management.

This syllabus is for students in the senior cycle of post-primary education and is assessed at Ordinary and Higher levels.

 

Senior Cycle Accounting

Leaving Certificate accounting provides students with the knowledge, understanding and skills in accounting and financial management necessary for managing personal and basic company accounts. The learning experiences in accounting develop students’ organisational, logical thinking, planning and problem-solving skills for their future life, work and study. It also develops their numeracy skills within the context of business and enterprise. The syllabus is for students in the senior cycle of post-primary education and is assessed at Higher and Ordinary levels.

 

Senior Cycle Economics

Leaving Certificate economics provides students with the knowledge and skills necessary for understanding how the Irish and global economy functions. The learning experiences in economics develop students’ critical thinking, problem solving, decision-making and numeracy skills. Economics provides students with a learning foundation for a wide range of careers in business, economics, finance, enterprise and management.

This syllabus is for students in the senior cycle of post-primary education and is assessed at Ordinary and Higher levels.

 

Senior Cycle Modern Languages - French/ German

Leaving Certificate French and German follow a common syllabus framework for the teaching and examining of modern languages in the Leaving Certificate. The syllabus aims to develop learners’ communicative skills in the French, to develop their strategies for effective language learning and raise their awareness of cultural, social and political diversity.

Assessment is by means of a written examination, and an aural and oral examination at two levels, Ordinary level and Higher level.

 

Leaving Cycle Art

Leaving Certificate art is made up of four units linked together and based on the everyday visual experience of the student's own environment.

The practical work can include Life Sketching, Still Life, Imaginative Composition, Design and Craftwork. Students also study the History and Appreciation of Art, which covers Irish and European Art, and Art Appreciation.

This syllabus is for students in the senior cycle of post-primary education and is assessed at Ordinary and Higher levels.

 

Senior Cycle Physics

Leaving Certificate Physics aims to give students an understanding of the fundamental principles of physics and their application to everyday life. It offers a general education in physics to all students, enabling them to develop an understanding of the scientific method and their ability to observe, to think logically and to communicate effectively. Science technology and society (STS) is an integral part of the syllabus so that students can be aware of the principles of the applications of physics in the everyday world. 

This syllabus is for students in the senior cycle of post-primary education and is assessed at Higher and Ordinary levels.

 

Senior Cycle Chemistry

Leaving Certificate chemistry aims to provide a relevant course for students who will complete their study of chemistry at this level while, at the same time, providing a foundation course for those who will continue to study chemistry or a related subjects following completion of their Leaving Certificate. This syllabus is for students in the senior cycle of post-primary education and is assessed at Ordinary and Higher levels.

 

Senior Cycle Biology

Biology is the study of life. Through the study of Biology in SMGS students explore the diversity of life and the inter-relationships between organisms and their environment. They become aware of the use of living organisms and their products to enhance human health and the environment.

The Leaving Certificate Biology syllabus is for students in the senior cycle of post-primary education and is assessed at Ordinary and Higher levels.

 

Senior Cycle Agricultural Science

Leaving Certificate Agricultural Science involves the study of the science and technology underlying the principles and practices of agriculture. It aims to develop knowledge, skills and attitudes that promote the sustainability of agricultural resources, and places emphasis on the managed use of these resources. Plants and animal types associated with agriculture are studied, and investigations are undertaken into such aspects as soil, ecology, plant and animal physiology, farm crops, farming practices, genetics and microbiology.

Agricultural Science is assessed at two levels, Ordinary level and Higher level, through a written examination and an assessment work undertaken during the course with a farm visit in 5th Year.

 

Senior Cycle Construction Studies

Leaving Certificate construction studies provides students in the senior cycle of post-primary education with an introduction to the knowledge and skills involved in construction technology and construction materials and processes. Students develop their ability to communicate ideas and information and to apply accurate observation and scientific investigation through exploring materials and processes.

Construction studies is assessed at two levels, Ordinary level and Higher level, by means of a written examination, a practical test, and an assessment of student project work.

 

Senior Cycle Engineering

Leaving Certificate engineering is the study of mechanical engineering for students in the senior cycle of post-primary education. Students develop the skills and initiative in the planning, development and realization of technological projects in a safe manner. Practical resourcefulness, creativity and design in the planning and development of technological projects are emphasised. There are two main areas of study: workshop processes, and materials and technology.

Engineering is assessed at two levels, Ordinary level and Higher level, by means of a written examination, a project and a practical examination.

 

Senior Cycle Design and Communication Graphics

Leaving Certificate Design and Communication Graphics involves comprehending, analysing and communicating information presented verbally or graphically. Problem solving and creative thinking skills are developed through the analysis and solution of problems in both two and three dimensions graphics. Graphics and design are communicated using a variety of media, including computer-aided design (CAD).  The main areas of study are: Plane and Descriptive Geometry, Communication of Design and Computer Graphics, and Applied Graphics.

Design and Communication Graphics is assessed at two levels, Ordinary level and Higher level, by means of two assessment components: a student assignment, of which CAD forms a significant and compulsory element, and an examination paper.

 

Senior Cycle Music

Leaving Certificate Music involves a series of interrelated musical activities within each of the three core areas of musical experience - performing, composing and listening. In performing, students choose from a variety of individual and/or group performing activities. In composing, students develop an understanding of musical structure and form, while the listening component provides for rich aural experiences through exposure to music of different periods, styles and genres.

This syllabus is for students in the senior cycle of post-primary education and is assessed at Higher and Ordinary levels.

 

Senior Cycle Home Economics

Leaving Certificate home economics provides students with knowledge, understanding, skills and attitudes necessary for managing their own lives, for further and higher education and work. The learning experiences in home economics develop flexibility and adaptability in students, prepare them for a consumer-oriented society and provide a learning foundation for a wide range of careers in food, textiles, science, design, social studies and tourism. This syllabus is for students in the senior cycle of post-primary education and is assessed at Higher and Ordinary levels.

 

Senior Cycle Religion

Leaving Certificate religious education in SMGS promotes tolerance and mutual understanding. It is a broad course which seeks to develop the skills needed to engage in meaningful dialogue with those of other or of no religious traditions.

Religious Education is not examined as a Leaving Certificate examination subject in SMGS.