Sunday, May 25, 2014

Physical education, and hurling

     During my trip to Ireland, I got to explore the aspects of physical education in Ireland through conversations with several well-known principals and professors in the country of Ireland. Physical education is very comparable to the United States, as they have the curriculum for it but they lack the implantation of it. Michael Cregan, the principal at Laurel Hill Secondary School, talked about how physical education is not a highly sought subject for students to take and that when students get into their senior cycle it is rarely taken.

      But recently, physical education is trying to be implemented into the leaving certification exams. Physical education in college is not a very well-known major, therefore primary and secondary schools have trouble finding adequate teachers to teach physical education. Health education is actually just picked up by teachers or other staff members at the school when they are available.

       Sports are a pretty big deal for Ireland primary and secondary students including the sport known as hurling or as camogie for girls. I got the chance to learn how to play the game of hurling by some of the members on the club team in Limerick. The game was a mix between baseball and field hockey using a wooden stick and baseball-size ball. As a big fan of sports, I had so much fun learning how to play and getting a chance to learn something I didn’t even knew existed until I came to Ireland! Another big excitement for me during this trip was going to the Ireland v. Turkey football (soccer) match. Unfortunately Ireland didn’t win, but everyone had a lot of fun being in the environment of all the avid soccer fans!

      I had a wonderful time in Ireland with a great group of people and learned so much about the education system in Ireland. Hopefully one day I will be able to return!

-Erin O’Grady

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