This project is developing an online digital resource for teachers to access and a programme of support and training for teachers to enable them to utilise it effectively with students at Key Stage 3 in Northern Ireland and students in transfer year in the Border Counties.
There are a number of modules available with 8-10 lessons each, including: the Civil Rights Movement, the Decade of Anniversaries, Milestones to Peace, and International Learning. The resources include lesson plans, factsheets, digital tasks, and audio and video footage for use in lessons.
Teachers have received training and support from the project in learning how to use software applications such as Comic Life, Audacity, Video-Editing, and GIMP image editing. This enables teachers to support students to undertake exercises which enable them to explore historical events, such as creating a comic or graphic novel based on seeing an event through the eyes of the “other side”. Each trained teacher can then use the materials with a class of around 15-20 students, which implies that the project has a potential reach to well over 1000 students. In addition, participating teachers are asked to undertake peer training for 4 further teachers on Comic Life and other software packages.
An important ingredient of the project is the support provided by the Nerve Centre to teachers undertaking the training. Nerve Centre staff attend and assist teachers at initial sessions to provide ICT support if needed. While the digital resource is critical to the programme, the project is seen as a package that provides both an online resource and hands-on support .
What worked well and what, if anything, didn't?
Teachers have been able to contribute their ideas regarding which topics should be included. •Teachers have been able to test modules, e.g. teachers have recently tested the first module on Civil Rights and have given feedback to the project.
Because the modules are computer based, the project is engaging students who tend to be less engaged in textbook teaching. •The project fits with teachers’ targets around use of ICT.
Call 028 7126 0562, email firstname.lastname@example.org or see www.nervecentre.org/teachingdividedhistories