All went smoothly at the security check and the plane took off in time. We hope the HTL Leoben students had a great time in Ireland and we wish them all the best for their future. Many regards from the H2 team in Ireland!
Today is already the last day in Ireland before the group will fly home tomorrow. The students have made their way cross-country over to Dublin where they had a guided city tour. The have now checked into their hostel and are currently enjoying some free time in the capital of Ireland. Some students were planning to visit the Jameson Whiskey Distillery and others might wander over to the famous Guinness Storehouse. We wish them a pleasant and exciting day!
In the early morning hours the group said their good-byes to their host families. The students were picked up by our busdriver Michael at 7am. It was a 3.5 hour drive up to County Clare but they finally arrived to the Aillwee Cave and had a guided tour. They continued to the famous Polnabrone Dolmen in the Burren National Park - one of Ireland's most iconic archaeological monuments. The next stop was the stunning viewing point at the Cliffs of Moher. There were a few rain showers throughout the day, but it between there were some dry periods, too and at least there was no fog. The final stretch up to Galway was the coastal route along the 'Wild Atlantic Way' where the students took another stop to breath in the fresh ocean air and to climb up the rocks of the Burren National Park. They arrived to Galway in the evening and everyone in the group was looking forward to some nice pub foods (seats had been reserved for them at the Monroe's Tavern). It was a great day with wonderful opportunities to take in and enjoy the beautiful Irish landscape.
It is already the final day of English lessons. Amongst other topics, Lucy has been playing a "true or false" game, Jackie has been engaging the students in a discussion and Peter has been analysis and singing some typical Irish songs (he brought his ukulele). At the end of the last English lesson the teachers will present the student reports and hand out the H2 certificates.
In the afternoon the students will head to Blarney Castle - a fort, more than 600 years old. The will climb up the stairs to the top of the castle to kiss the famous "Blarney Stone" (which promises to give the "gift of the gab" (the ability to speak easily and confidently in a way that makes people want to listen to you and believe you). They will discover the extensive castle grounds and will walk to the poison garden, fern garden and "Rock Close" with its famous "Wishing Steps" which have to be climbed backwards with eyes closed. Only then a wish can be granted. Best of luck to everyone!
Host Family day - time to sleep in, relax and to enjoy a typical Irish breakfast with black pudding, beans, toast, fried egg, tomatoes and sausages! The day was sunny and dry again, so many host families went to Crosshaven with their students to go for a stroll and some ice cream.
In the evening the group met again for some Ceili dance lessons at St. Mary's School. Fionan, the teacher also brought along some female dancers to join in (as 37 students of our group were boys :-) ). It was exhausing (with all the steps and turns to remember) but very enjoyable!
Wow - the summer has arrived to Ireland. Sunshine and temperatures around 18 degrees - perfect weather for the afternoon activity. The English lessons with Lucy, Jackie and Peter were already finished at 12.30pm to give the students enough time for their excursion to Kinsale. Kinsale is a lovely fishing village right at the Atlantic sea and has a rich history (i.e. the battle of 1601). It has colourful houses and narrow streets, really nice restaurants and cafes and many galleries along the pier. The group met up with Barry, our tour guide, at Charles Fort from where they enjoyed a fabulous view onto Kinsale. Later on they went for a stroll around town, learning more about pirates that once lived in Kinsale, a "White Lady" and the "Giant of Kinsale". There was also the "Kinsale Food Festival" on and many restaurant offered delicious tasters from their street stalls. The next stop was the "Old Head of Kinsale". The cliffs there are beautiful and the view onto the Atlantic sea is stunning. The final stop for the day was the sandy beach in Garrettstown - the sun was still shining and it was warm enough to enjoy a little bit of "beach time".
It is a beautiful day with sunshine and blue skies. The students have English lessons until 1.40pm today and will take a little break afterwards. They will then walk over to the Minane Bridge GAA pitch where they will be trained and introduced to two typical Irish sports - Gaelic Football and Hurling. Two trainers of the Gaelic Athletic Association will explain the rules. Later on in the afternoon the students can put their knowledge into action during a game of Hurling! Best of luck to all of them!
It is the first morning at the H2 International Academy. Our English teachers for the week are Lucy, Jackie and Peter. They have prepared some warm-up games and songs to get everybody into the swing of speaking English! We wish all students a fun week while learning English. In the afternoon the group will head to Cork City for a guided tour and some free time in the afternoon. The sun just came out, so we keep our fingers crossed for good weather throughout the afternoon. If you like to check the weather here in Ireland, the best forecast ist the Met Office.
41 students and 3 teachers arrived to Dublin safe and sound, with a little delay of about 30min. They were picked up by a member of the H2 team, Michael, our busdriver. The journey down to Carrigaline took about 4 hours. When they arrived, they were greeted by our lovely host families and other members of the H2 team, Gina and Lisa. As it was already 11:45pm everyone was happy to finally crawl into their beds and to get some rest.