Open Your Dev Head, Mary Immaculate College

Open Your Dev Head, Mary Immaculate College

‘Open Your Dev Head’ was a development education awareness day which saw over 100 local primary school children come to MIC to work with B.Ed students on development education mini-lessons.img_0397

Third year B.Ed students who have chosen DICE as their education elective spent all semester designing and creating new and innovative development education resources. Students were encouraged to choose their own theme and structure for their resources and taught mini-lessons on themes such as gender, migration, human rights, climate change and global poverty. The resources ranged from interactive board games to drama to discussion and creative art based activities. During the event students engaged in station teaching which allowed them to trial their resource three times with different groups in fifteen minute intervals.img_0399

In order to ensure they were creating something new, students chose their themes and format following a review of existing resources and an in depth look at the audit of Irish development education resources to identify gaps in the field. Throughout the semester students got advice from Irish organisations 80:20 and Trócaire who have both been engaged in creating development education resources for Irish teachers for many years.thumb_img_0395_1024

An integral part of the event was gaining feedback from participating school children and their class teachers on the resources being piloted. At the conclusion of the event, the children were encouraged to write their feedback for the students on post-it notes which were then displayed for all the children, teachers and B.Ed students to see. Examples of the children’s very useful feedback can be seen below. Teachers also gave high praise and were very keen to find out if they could get copies of the resources or use the lessons in their own teaching.

Great Cross-curricular learning

Froebel Students at the Just Forests Exhibition

Froebel Students at the Just Forests Exhibition

Beginning with an audit of wood products in the classroom,and extending it to the whole school environment and to the the home as a homework assignment, children will immediately grasp the extent to which we depend on wood in everyday life. In Circle Time children could explore the question “What would happen if we ran out of wood?

Just Forests Exhibition in Froebel College

Tom Roche, Therese Hegarty & Brian Tubbert at the 'Just Forests' Exhibition in Froebel College

From this practical and critical engagement, the information from the Just Forest Exhibition might mean even more to the children. The exhibition itself opens up direct links to the Geography, Music, Religion and Science curricula. The panels offer statistics which can support Maths development. Exploring trees in the vicinity of the school opens up possibilities for visual arts and creative writing. Without any effort on the teacher’s part the exhibition involves children in cross curricular learning.

Children could be given opportunities to frame their own questions either about wood, forests and sustainability or about their own part in environmental responsibility and these questions can be the stimulus for further research. The exhibition and the discussions that can emerge offer children not only a wealth of information but opportunities to question their own values and attitudes and awareness of their own actions. The FCS logo and the new legislation being introduced in March allows children to see that change is possible and that their decisions can make a difference.

Further information can be found on www.justforests.org.

Therese Hegarty
DICE Lecturer
Froebel College

31 January, 2013.

Congratulations to Froebel College of Education

Congratulations to Froebel College of Education
The staff and students of Froebel College were recently honoured for their work on the Yellow Flag Programme, an intercultural education project run by the Irish Traveller Movement. For the last 18 months, with the support of the DICE Project, Froebel College have been taking part in an eight step accredited programme which promotes equality and inclusion in education. A report documenting their experiences of the project was launched by Aodhan O Riordan, T.D, with special guest John Joe Nevin. The report highlighted that intercultural teaching practice rooted in human rights principles contribute to more comprehensively addressing issues of diversity as those messages filter into schools with newly qualified B.Ed. and H.Dip. teachers entering the education system.
Yellow Flag Award

Pictured L-R: Olympic Medallist John Joe Nevin, Froebel President Marie McLoughlin, Aodhan O Riordan T.D., Therese Hegarty Froebel DICE Lecturer.

According to Paula Madden the Yellow Flag Coordinator; “Colleges of Education must be supported and resourced to develop affirmative action programmes which encourage greater participation of Travellers and other under-represented ethnic minorities to become teachers and in turn role models to young people. It is equally important the Department of Education and Skills and the Higher Education Authority address the deficit amongst the current teacher population and provide resources and training in the area of anti-racism and interculturalism.”  For further information please see www.froebel.ie and www.yellowflag.ie.

The DICE Project would like to congratulate the President, staff and students of Froebel College for all their hard work in promoting intercultural education in their college and in particular to Therese Hegarty for her vision and commitment to the project from the beginning.