From 17 to 20 January, Maynooth University, opened its doors to the core team of Learning to Disagree. Anthony Malone and Majella Dempsey, representatives of Maynooth University in the project, hosted the third development and training seminar. In earlier seminars in Topola (Serbia) and Berlin, the core team started developing learning materials on how to teach and assess dialogue, debate, and discussion about controversial subjects in the classroom.

On Friday morning, Denise Nolan, a National Officer with the Junior Cycle for Teachers History Team, introduced participants to the latest developments in Irish curriculum reform. “Junior Cycle places students at the center of the educational experience, enabling them to actively participate in their communities and in society and to be resourceful and confident learners in all aspects and stages of their lives.”

In order to guide the development of learning activities, Helen Snelson (Mount School York) and Majella Dempsey and Anthony Malone developed teaching strategies and assessment tools to provide the core team with examples on how to transform the content they had been collecting into lesson plans.

On Thursday, the Russell Library opened its doors for core team members to discover their rich collections of old manuscripts, maps, and prayer books.

The core team, divided in different groups, further developed the learning materials of the first three topics: people on the move, borders, and surviving under pressure. Each of these three topics will consist of collections of perspectives from politicians, citizens and (international) organizations. Marko Suica and Lidija Zupanic-Suica, (Education for the 21st Century), presented their research on the fourth topic that the L2D team will work on: contested cultural heritage.

In the coming months the materials will be finalized and piloted with students. Eventually, all materials will include relevant context in the form of additional sources and timelines, as well as hands-on teaching strategies and assessment tools. The materials will be made available on Historiana in early 2020 as e-learning activities and stand-alone learning activities and source collections.

Read the full report of the training here.

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