Education Posts

  • Reflections on … when school doesn’t seem to be an option
    What happens when a young person just can’t go to school? One response is iScoil, a non-profit online learning service for early school leavers, aged 13-16. Educational Welfare Officers refer young people to iScoil. There, they encounter an online personalised learning plan, designed to bring out the best of the student’s abilities and to provide … Read more
  • When school isn’t an option: A parent’s story
    It started towards the end of Primary School. Fifth class had already been difficult and an ongoing family health crisis that had dropped a bomb into our life. By the last term of Fifth Class, Róisín* (name changed) had had enough. It was all just too much. “I can’t” said the previously fun, happy, smiley … Read more
  • When school isn’t an option: Libby’s story
    Hello, my name is Libby. I am a 15-year-old student of iScoil and this is my story. I started secondary school in September 2019 and I loved it. To be able to walk around school, have my own locker, go to buy lunch and eat with everyone. But when Covid hit, I was inside so … Read more
  • Reflections on … childhood adventures, play, risk and freedom
    I wonder if the idea of a museum of childhood is a contradiction in terms? A museum is a space for preservation after all, whereas childhood should be a space for unimpeded activities of playful exploring, discarding, abandoning, followed by more play. Yet, childhood makes an indelible mark on our mind’s eye, and, as science … Read more
  • On the 40th anniversary of the ban on corporal punishment…
    Ireland’s legacy of physical abuse in religious run schools Many Irish children had secure, happy school experiences. However a proportion of children who went to religious run schools experienced physical and emotional abuse.  I was a 12-year-old student when a punch from the clerical Headmaster at one of Ireland’s oldest Catholic secondary schools permanently damaged … Read more
  • Reflections on … How my primary school shaped me
    By Hadjer Taibi Updated Monday, July 10, 2023 Mohyiddin Abdul Qader (محي الدين عبد القادر) is the name of my very first school where I spent the first six years of my education. It is located in a small town called Kheir Eddine in Northwest Algeria, a close-knit community with only a few thousand residents. … Read more
  • Reflections On . . . Love Songs and Wellbeing
    By Jolanta Burke Updated / Tuesday, 14 February 2023 09:06 Songs are not just songs – they are lines of words that repeat in our heads with a tune to accompany them. They are like thoughts, and it is sometimes hard to differentiate our thoughts from the songs that get stuck in our heads on … Read more
  • Reflections On . . . The Educational Value of Folklore and Local History
    By Terry Gargan Updated / Thursday, 26 January 2023 10:26 I was about 11 years old when I first heard about the ghost in Petersville House. Anyone from around Moynalty in rural County Meath will be well familiar with what I’m referring to. It was one of the most written about folktales in the Schools’ … Read more
  • Reflections On . . . The Need for Traveller Characters in Children’s Stories
    By Nora Corocran Updated / Monday, 12 December 2022 10:07 As a member of the Irish Traveller community and an academic, I am saddened that most of our children have no real concept of Traveller traditions in contemporary society. Our community is losing its traditions. To address this, I have started writing a series of … Read more
  • Online Exhibition: We Are . . . Cantonese Irish
    攝影照片展覽︰我哋係粵語愛爾蘭人 Taispeántas grianghraife: Sinne Cantainisigh na hÉireann Cantonese immigrants come from Cantonese-speaking regions of the world. Cantonese is the second most-spoken Chinese language, with 80 million speakers worldwide. 粵語移民係一班以粵語為母語嘅人。佢哋嚟自世界唔同角落。粵語係第二大華語,全球有八千萬粵語使用者。 Is inimircigh iad inimircigh Cantainis as réigiúin dhifriúla den domhan a labhraíonn Cantainis. Is í Cantainis an dara teanga Síneach is mó a labhraí­tear, le 80 … Read more
  • Reflections On . . . Early Childhood Education and Care and LGBTQIA+ Families
    By Leah Russell Updated / Monday, 31 October 2022 10:14 For many young people who are seen as “different,” even the most familiar everyday settings can feel like unsafe places – schools, bus stops, cinemas, parks, supermarkets, online spaces. I recently watched my child, who identifies as non-binary and pansexual, scan the crowd at a … Read more
  • Reflections On . . . Studying with a Neurodiverse Difference
    By Keith Murphy Updated / Monday, 19 September 2022 10:43 Neurodiversity encompasses the concept that people experience and interact with the world around them in many different ways; there is no one “right” way of thinking, learning, and behaving, and differences are not viewed as deficits. The word neurodiversity refers to the diversity of all … Read more
  • Reflections On . . . Teaching Children about Sexuality and Relationships
    By Suzanne O’Keeffe Updated / Thursday, 24 August 2022 16:24 Teaching children about sexuality and relationships is a brave thing to do. These topics encompass, amongst other things, self-identity, morals, power, and values. When combined, one may consider sexuality to be an essentially private concern. Yet, sexuality and relationships continually feature in the public domain … Read more
  • Reflections On . . . 1980s Culture in the Digital Age
    By Dave Lordan Updated / Wednesday, 27 July 2022 12:24 NOW YOU’VE RUN TO THE TOP OF THAT HILL, WHERE TO NEXT? It is hard to overstate the gulf between the cultural experience of teens of my generation – the 1980s and 90s – and those of the digital era. Instantaneity is at the heart … Read more
  • Reflections On . . . Playing With the Pen
    By James Groome Updated / Thursday, 26 June 2022 11:32 YOU share a room with two brothers and you’re all running and gambolling before bed because going to sleep seems so boring. Your overworked mother just wants to make sure you don’t wake up with bags under your eyes but you refuse to settle down. … Read more
  • Reflections On . . . Creative Arts in Early Childhood Education
    By Paula Walshe Updated / Monday, 30 May 2022 09:38 Children love being creative, whether it is to express themselves or to just have fun. We are all familiar with poster paints and paint brushes, but there is so much more to the creative arts than painting and colouring. Isn’t it about time we spent … Read more
  • Ag Machnamh ar . . . an nGaeilge agus ar na Meáin Shóisialta
    Updated / Tuesday, 15 March 2022 11:29 Reflecting On . . . The Irish language and Social Media le Caoileann Ní Dhonnchadha Bhain mise le glúin Bebo. Láithreán líonraithe sóisialta a bhí i mBebo agus bhí mé thart ar cheithre bliana déag d’aois nuair a thosaigh mé á úsáid. Ní dhearna mé aon trácht i … Read more
  • Reflections On . . . Being a Student in Direct Provision
    By Anonymous Contributors to Voices from Direct Provision, Book 2 Updated / Monday, 24 January 2022 13:03 “I was at one Direct Provision Centre before the outbreak of Covid-19. My 4 kids and I were tested and then moved to a different centre a month ago with a verbal notice of our results from the … Read more
  • Reflections On . . . What Disney is Teaching Our Children
    By Sinéad Matson Updated / Friday, 17 December 2021 11:38 Over the Christmas break, it is very likely that you will eventually find yourself snuggled on the sofa, watching a Disney movie.  Like it or not, Disney is a force to be reckoned with on a global scale, especially in terms of how it influences … Read more
  • Reflections On . . . Having a Playful Christmas
    By Trudy Meehan & Jolanta Burke Updated / Monday, 29 November 2021 11:49 What do people who are frustrated, demotivated, aggressive, or stressed have in common? The answer is often a lack of play in their lives. Many of us know that play serves an essential developmental purpose for our children. But it also acts … Read more
  • Reflections On . . . Teaching Philosophy in Secondary Schools
    By Susan Andrews Updated / Thursday, 28 October 2021 14:11 Philosophy is often regarded as the archetypal ivory tower subject. Ironically, this conception of philosophy usually throws up the kinds of questions that philosophers are best placed to answer: what use is Philosophy? Or, as a student asked in the 2019 Philosophy by Postcard initiative, … Read more
  • Reflections On . . . Technology and the Social Skills of “Digital Natives”
    By Paula Walshe Updated / Monday, 27 September 2021 13:03 Since the onset of COVID-19, many of us have been thrust headlong into various digital environments to a level which could not have been anticipated prior to March 2020. As adults, we may actually remember a time when the internet did not occupy a place … Read more
  • Reflections On . . . Excluding Traditional Chinese from the Leaving Certificate
    By the Leaving Cert Mandarin Chinese (LCMC) Concern Group Updated / Wednesday, 25 August 2021 10:04 Recently, the decision to include Mandarin Chinese on the Leaving Certificate in 2022 has received some media attention. Dr Isabella Jackson, for example, has appeared on The Pat Kenny Show (available here). RTÉ’s China Affairs correspondent, Yvonne Murray, has also … Read more
  • Reflections On . . . The Great Early Childhood Education Language War
    By Sinéad McCauley Lambe Updated / Wednesday, 28 July 2021 10:17 Since beginning my journey into early childhood education, I have learned that this sector appears to have its own “language.” And the more I think about how language is analysed and used in early childhood education, the more I think about Brian Friel’s Translations … Read more
  • Reflections On . . . Supporting Transgender and Gender-Diverse Young People in the Classroom
    By Lloyd (Meadhbh) Houston Updated / Wednesday, 21 June 2021 12:39 When I deliver workshops for school staff on gender diversity and transgender inclusion in the classroom, I begin with an exercise I call “Unpacking the Gender Backpack.” I derived the premise for the exercise from an essay titled “My Genderqueer Backpack” by genderqueer activist, … Read more
  • Reflections On . . . Outdoor Activities and Activation Energy
    By Mira Dobutowitsch Updated / Wednesday, 19 May 2021 09:54 During the weeks leading up to Christmas, my 5-year-old housemate and I had a ritual: after dinner, we would put on our coats, hats, scarves, wellies, and go in search of adventure. There was talk of ninja schools, monsters, goblins, fairies, and superheroes. There was … Read more
  • Reflections On . . . How Not to Cause Harm to Children
    By Jolanta Burke Updated / Wednesday, 07 April 2021 10:16 What if school wellbeing programmes were bad for children? I used to think that introducing any wellbeing programme in school was better than none at all. However, the more research I read, the more I wonder about the benefits of these once-off interventions. Wellbeing is … Read more
  • Ag Machnaimh Ar . . . An Ghaeilge agus Oideachas
    Reflections On . . . the Irish Language and Education By Freya Feeney Updated / Wednesday, 17 March 2021 10:17 “Ní hí an teanga féin an fhadhb” a deirtear nuair a thagann an t-ábhar suas i gcomhrá, “ach an tslí a mhúintear ar scoil í.” Tá gach uile dalta Gaelscoile tar éis an ráitéis seo … Read more
  • Reflections On . . . Consent and Boundaries – Let’s Focus on Both
    By Gráinne Carr Updated / Friday, 12 February 2021 14:38 Consent Matters Ireland is committed to creating a consent culture in Ireland. When we talk about a “consent culture,” we mean an environment where children can learn, grow, and play without fear of bullying, abuse, or assault. We mean an environment where teens feel comfortable … Read more
  • Reflections On . . . Being a Leaving Cert Student in 2020
    By Alannah O’Sullivan Updated / Thursday, 14 January 2021 11:07 In the spring of 2020, I had just celebrated my 17th birthday with my parents and grandparents. This was one of the most stressful years of my life, but it was also a time when regular visits with my grandmother became a welcomed routine. We … Read more
  • Reflections On . . . Formal Education as a Member of the Traveller Community
    By Cathleen McDonagh Clark Updated / Wednesday, 09 December 2020 14:35 As a child, I loved to learn. This has stayed with me, both as a blessing and a trial at times. Please don’t get me wrong, I have a passion for learning. But sometimes the education system does not meet with the expectations of … Read more
  • Reflections On . . . “Coming Out” (or “Bearing Witness”?) as a Teacher
    By Seán Henry Updated / Monday, 02 November 2020 11:32 “Sir, are you gay?” Not the question a struggling substitute teacher, lacking in confidence and already considering packing it in, expects to hear one week into the job! And yet, this was precisely the question I faced in my budding days as a religion teacher. … Read more
  • Reflections On . . . Anti-Bullying Strategies in Early Education
    By Pamela Purcell Updated / Monday, 05 October 2020 11:37 Do you think the Montessori Method is particularly good at heading off any tendencies for an individual child or group of children to dominate another child? If you think it is, perhaps it is because you feel the Montessori Method offers plenty of opportunities for … Read more
  • Blog Archive: Reflections On . . .
    The Museum of Childhood Ireland’s Reflections On . . . blog invites people of all ages, ethnicities, communities, and backgrounds to address any topics regarding childhood and/or education in Ireland. Our objective is to stimulate important and timely conversations by creating a diverse and thought-provoking mosaic of the challenges and opportunities that face parents, guardians, … Read more
  • Education Seminars: Let’s Talk About . . .
    The Museum of Childhood Ireland’s Let’s Talk About . . . seminars are designed to connect the present with the past while stimulating important and timely conversations. These online sessions typically take the form of Q&A sessions and roundtable discussions. They are free of charge, open to all, and recorded for those who cannot make … Read more
  • Online Exhibition: I Love My Boots Because . . .
    ↓ ↓ ↓ Molly, Lee Gaels – Gleann na Laoi and Drispey GAA ↓ ↓ ↓ ↑ ↑ ↑ Molly, Lee Gaels – Gleann na Laoi and Drispey GAA ↑ ↑ ↑ ↓ ↓ ↓ ↓ ↓  Conal Gillard, 6th Class ↓ ↓ ↓ ↓ ↓ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ Conal Gillard, 6th Class … Read more