The Irish Cultural Society has announced its annual writing contest for students in the 9th through 12th grades in Nassau County (NY) high schools. The materials describing the contest have been mailed to the English Departments of the Nassau schools, public and private, and they have been posted on the Society’s web site. The contest has been named the Martin J. Kelly Writing Contest in memory of the Society’s recently deceased president.
The writing project for the 2016 contest is built upon the new SAT Essay model. The writers have to identify a main idea in the Proclamation of Ireland’s independence read at the start of the Easter Rising in Dublin 100 years ago and to analyze the rhetorical devices used by the authors, such as metaphor, parallelism and antithesis, to persuade the Irish people to rally behind the cause of independence.
The Society’s web site also contains “Helpful Hints,” suggestions to the contestants about how to approach the writing task. The project itself is a task promoted by the new Common Core Curriculum. Entries are due by March 17, 2016.
The Society has been sponsoring a writing contest for more than 31 years. This year, 39 prizes will be awarded, from $200 to $35, at the Society’s May 4 Awards Ceremony at the Garden City Library. Every entrant will receive a Certificate of Merit mailed to the student’s sponsoring teacher. Each library of the schools with an entrant into the contest will receive books on an Irish subject in appreciation of the role libraries play in promoting literacy.
Any interested student can get copies of the materials for the contest in the English Department of the student’s school and on the web site, www.irish-society.org.