In defence of teaching History

We really, really need to take on a number of opinions before going ahead with a new Junior Cert programme. I hope the minister will finally listen to teachers like Fintan

Fintan O'Mahony



This is my response to this article from The Irish Times.

You bet Junior-cycle reform remains a contentious topic! You bet many history teachers think it represents a threat to the subject we love!

The problem isn’t the breath of the current syllabus, but that when we were asked a decade ago to clean up the vast course we made recommendations about shortening it. Those recommendations are sitting on a shelf gathering dust somewhere in Marlborough St. That’s what happens when you consult teachers, sure you’d be better off not asking them for their opinions at all!

Teachable moments come thick and fast in history class, we know well how to turn dry topics like Gothic architecture or French revolutionary peasants (to pick two from today alone) into gold for students. Long gone are the days of ‘learn the textbook of by heart girls and boys’. We use…

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