Transition Year Subjects

Religious Education/Community Care:

This programme focuses on the students having the experience of engaging in a Community Care Placement. In practical terms, this sees the students going out in groups, of at least two, one morning a week to spend some time helping caring organisations. These organisations are involved locally in providing a service to those in the community who have a need of one kind or another. Placement settings vary from public hospitals to nursing homes to community crèches. Students are visited on an ongoing basis by their R.E. teachers.

The Religious Education philosophy which underpins this particular programme is one which sees a value in taking Religious Education out of the classroom setting for a year and seeing what can be learned from all those who work, professionally and voluntarily, in the wider Christian caring community.

A further project has recently been added to the R.E. programme. The Churches Project aims to make TY students aware of the rich Religious heritage of Dublin City.


The work undertaken is usually in project form, each lasting several weeks, occasionally longer if appropriate. When a musical production is underway, students work on the design and manufacture of the stage sets and props. In previous years, projects have included visiting Lambert’s puppet theatre, a potter’s shop, workshops on ceramics, mask making, mirror frames, papier maché, 3D art, fashion design, photography and face painting.

We also try to visit an art gallery/museum as part of most programmes. Each year, we adjust what we do to accommodate the needs of the incoming group. Whether or not the students have studied art previously, we try to give the students an opportunity to try some artistic endeavour perhaps not previously experienced.

Computer Studies:

The European Computer Driving Licence establishes standards for everyone who uses a computer, in either a professional or a personal capacity. It is a certificate which verifies a student's competence, declares her computer skills, and makes her readily mobile within Irish business and across the community.

The ECDL builds around a special user-friendly skills card. This card records the skills demonstrated in each of seven computer-related modules. As each module is successfully passed, the corresponding skill is noted in the student's card. The final achievement of a full card leads to the awarding of a licence.

The modules are:
· Basic Concepts of Information Technology · Using a Computer and Managing Files · Word Processing · Spreadsheets · Databases/Filing Systems · Presentations and Drawings · Information Network Services

All but the first module are tests of practical skills rather than of theory. The guiding principle is reality; the licence is a definition of actual skills.

It is possible to offer a minimum of four of the above modules in Transition Year. The skills card can be used in any accredited centre within three years to continue towards ECDL certification.


This programme has theoretical and practical components. In the theoretical, we examine character, plot, structure and stagecraft. The practical element includes mime, improvisation, performance and script-writing.

These disciplines foster an appreciation of the technicalities of drama and allow students to develop leadership skills, to grow in confidence and self-esteem, to discover hidden talents and, most importantly, to have fun in the process.


The Transition Year English programme will build on the oral, reading, writing, creative and critical skills acquired at Junior Certificate. Students will learn to tackle, competently and effectively, areas to be examined in the new Leaving Certificate syllabus. We aim to explore an extensive range of genres, linguistic forms and styles. We plan to have a tour to a poetry workshop centre and may attend a theatre performance.

Assessment may be by project work, by written and oral presentation of work completed or by portfolio of original work.

Film Studies (Possible Module):

The TY Film Studies programme provides students with an opportunity to view films in an active andcritical way. Students will explore the different codes used by directors to create meaning on the screen.

Key areas of the programme include:
-an exploration of film genre -cultural settings in film -a brief introduction to film theory -writing film reviews

Financial Life Skills (Possible Module):

The aim of this programme is to provide TY students with an understanding of personal finance. It also aims to enable the students to find information for themselves.

On completion of this programme, it is hoped that the students will have:
- an understanding of money management and budgeting in a personal and household context. - a knowledge of the range of financial services and institutions available. - an appreciation of the necessity of having adequate protection for health, property, life and the future.

The programme consists of four modules:
- Budgeting and Saving - Borrowing and Credit - Insuring your assets - Protecting your future.

Gaeilge san Idirbhliain:

The Irish programme in Transition Year provides students with an opportunity to study aspects of language and culture, which, due to time constraints, are not covered for Junior or Leaving Certificate exams.

The programme consists of:
-Oral language programme to improve fluency in Irish. -Folklore module to include a guest lecturer from Irish Folklore Department, UCD. -Visit to Royal Irish Academy to encourage an appreciation of old Irish manuscripts such as ‘An Leabhar Breac’ and ‘An Cathach’. -Studying aspects of Irish folk tradition such as place-names, festivals and folk life, music and dance. -Introduction to TG4, with special emphasis on Ros na Rún -Project work.


This programme is divided into the following modules:
- Awareness of surroundings - Improving observational skills, mapping, surveying, looking with an understanding of patterns in the environment -Tourism -World Awareness: Irish Times foreign page, location of places in the news


The Guidance programme provides the time and space for students to explore their own special interests and talents and so become more aware of themselves and their place in society.

Modules include:
-Advice on subject choice for senior cycle, bearing in mind possible career options -Interest inventories and personal profiles -Students undertake to complete a career project involving entry routes and entry requirements for various courses -Personal and social education with emphasis on personal aptitudes, abilities and interests -Preparation for work and career exploration -Students are encouraged to attend, when posssible, career information seminars and open days


The TY History programme aims to provide students with learning opportunities which help to bridge the gap which exists between Junior and Leaving cycle History. A wide variety of materials is explored drawing upon topics from the local, national, European and global contexts. Students are expected to engage in individual and group activities researching, collating and presenting information in a variety of formats.

Home Economics:

Transition Year Home Economics is made up of three parts:

1. Cookery aims to deepen each student's knowledge of culinary skills from around the world, through investigation, analysis, manipulation, problem solving and communication.

2. Interior Design enables students to develop skills in interior design and room planning. They produce a room plan and decorating scheme, which reflects their understanding of style and design principles.

3. Human Nutrition aims to develop an awareness of the importance of diet, health and physical activity in order to prevent the onset of diet-related chronic disease in later life.

4. The Craft module introduces the students to a handicraft, developing skills of creativity, dexterity and appreciation.

5. The Social Studies module explores issues related to family life today and/or mental health matters.

Legal Studies (Possible Module):

This programme aims to develop each student’s awareness of the impact of the law on the community and of the individual’s rights and obligations under the law.

The following topics are amongst those covered: definition and sources of law, administration of the law, review of the court structure and the function of the jury in modern times.

The programme consists of formal input by the teacher, project work, debates, classroom discussion, use of video tapes and a visit to the Four Courts.


Transition Year provides students with an opportunity to explore some of the more practical elements of Mathematics. It allows students to consolidate core material previously studied at Junior Certificate level. Students are introduced to a number of Leaving Certificate concepts throughout the year. This introduction facilitates the transition from the Junior Certificate to Leaving Certificate courses.


By setting up a company of their own, selling shares, developing, marketing and selling actual products, the students will, through first hand experience in a real business, develop skills in personal development and enterprise. They will gain knowledge of the values, freedoms and responsibilities of the business system.

They will experience the organisation, operation and management of business. The programme will provide motivation for leadership through the development of skills, abilities and confidence.

For the past few years, all Mini-Company participants have benefitted from the Junior Achievement programme. A volunteer from the business community acts as advisor to the mini-companies and each student is presented with a certificate after completing the programme.

Modern European Languages (French/German/Spanish):

The Modern Language syllabus in Transition Year aims to maintain and build on skills acquired for Junior Certificate. Its main emphasis is to provide the students with a communicative competence in the target language through written and oral proficiency in order to prepare them for the Leaving Certificate programme.

Emphasis is placed on cultural awareness, grammar, oral work and through the use of written exercises, role-plays and aural work. Film and other audio-visual material will form part of the course.


The aim of the Transition Year Music programme is to help students develop an appreciation of all types of music ie. Classical, Irish, Jazz and Popular music. They are exposed to music from a variety of eras and develop their listening and composing skills in the course of the year. Music students and non-music students alike, are encouraged to participate in the songwriting module and enter the song contest which is held in the last term.

When there is a musical, each student takes responsibility for a designated role and gains an understanding of the importance of teamwork.

Physical Education:

The programme is designed to offer students a versatile range of skills and activities not experienced in the school P.E. programme. The skills learned are life skills and we hope that the students will use them in their present and later life. Activities such as self-defence, first aid, water sports, pitch and putt and grooming may form an integral part of the Transition Year P.E. programme.


This course is divided into three modules:
-Horticulture introduces the students to the main areas of horticultural practice involving the preparation for spring bulbs, Christmas floral arrangements, plant propagation, hanging baskets, window boxes and summer bedding plants. -Health issues will be explored, during the non-growing season, which will involve attending some lectures on women’s health topics. -The use of Biology, Chemistry and Physics in everyday life through the use of experiments, to assist students to make an informed choice about Leaving Certificate options. -Students are encouraged to enter The Young Scientist Exhibition. To date, we have enjoyed considerable achievement in this area.

Technical Graphics (Possible Module):

Working with Ard Scoil Rís is a mutually beneficial arrangement for both schools. The boys come to our school for Cookery and the girls have a Technical Graphics module in Ard Scoil Rís.

The course aims to develop the creative imagination by encouraging the students to reason in two and three dimensions and by applying these abilities to the solution of graphical and spatial problems. The cognitive and practical skills developed will allow students to interpret and communicate information and ideas graphically, thereby encouraging competency in the universal language of design and technology.