President Higgins reveals his thoughts on homework!
news2day, RTÉ’s news service designed specifically for children, celebrates its 20th birthday today (Friday 20 January 2023) with an exclusive interview with President of Ireland Michael D. Higgins.
To mark the show’s two decades on air, students from St Kevin’s National School, Littleton, County Tipperary put questions from RTÉ news2day viewers to President Higgins at Áras an Uachtaráin and the President revealed his thoughts on homework!
In a wide-ranging interview with RTÉ news2day – which you can watch in full here – the children asked the President “What was your favourite sport when you were in school?”, “When you were nine years old what did you want to be?” and “When did you decide you wanted to be President?”
When asked what his opinion of homework President Higgins said: “I think myself really that the time at home and the time in the school is an educational experience and it should get finished at the school and people should be able to use their time for other creative things.”
The students also asked the President about his dogs, his official trips abroad, his favourite subject in school, differences between now and when he was a child and his favourite book. The President also spoke to the children about his love of handball and the importance of friendship in their lives. RTÉ news2day will broadcast some of the President’s interview as part of this afternoon’s birthday celebrations at 4.20pm on RTÉ2 and RTÉ News channel and the full interview will be available later today on the RTÉ Player.
In a message to the children of Ireland and the viewers of RTÉ news2day, President Michael D. Higgins gave this advice: “To stay curious about everything and I think it’s important to make sure you don’t miss the joy of sharing information. And I think an important thing is friendship and to make sure that there’s no one left without friendship and that people belong. And we will all do individual things… but I think friendships that you make will in fact always be great memories and that is so important. And also have the courage to stand your own ground and let other children be allowed the space of standing their ground too because none of us are the same. We’re all unique but at the same time we have a lot going for us.”
President Higgins also encouraged the children of Ireland to speak the Irish language. He encouraged them to speak Irish in a fun way and to feel free to use whatever bits of the language that they have.
As part of this afternoon’s birthday celebrations, presenters Reem El-Hassany and Molly O’Connor will also be joined by RTÉ news2day alumni. Presenters from the past 20 years will make a return to the much-loved news programme for its birthday celebrations. Watch the 20th birthday special at 4.20pm on RTÉ2 and RTÉ Player.
news2day is RTÉ’s news service designed specifically for children, featuring Irish and international news of interest to a young audience. It is broadcast Monday-Friday at 4.20pm on RTÉ2, the RTÉ News channel and available to stream on the RTÉ Player. In addition to young viewers tuning in at home, it is also watched online in many classrooms throughout the country and used as a teaching tool.
Pictured above, left to right: Leah Hartigan, Jack Delaney, Gemma Dempsey, Michael O’Reilly from 5th and 6th class, St. Kevin’s National School, Littleton, Co. Tipperary with President of Ireland Michael D Higgins.