The study of History aims to enable students to develop the necessary conceptual understanding, disciplinary skills and subject knowledge to investigate the actions of people in the past and to come to a deeper understanding of the human condition. Students also come to see the world, and their place in it, from an historical perspective; and understand how the people and events of the past have shaped the contemporary world. (ncca.ie)

In Colaiste Muire students study history as a compulsory subject from first to fourth year and then they can choose whether to keep the subject at senior level. Our aim in this school is to provide students with a broad grounding in World, European and Irish history and a clear understanding on the work of the historian. In this modern age where we are bombarded by information we believe interpreting evidence is a key skill that students can use to engage with the world around us and from their first day in History class these are the skills we encourage our students to develop.

This year we started the new Junior Cert with our present first years. This new course will include two in class assessments that happen in second and third year. Students will now undertake a research project on an aspect of local history called ‘The Past in my Place’ and ‘A Life in Time’ which gives students an opportunity to research a figure from the past that is of interest to them. If parents would like more information on these new changes to the course they can be accessed here: History

This research aspect is also a part of the Leaving Cert course. Students here conduct a research project that is worth 20% of their Leaving Cert mark and this research is conducted over the course of fifth and sixth year. In Colaiste Muire we study the Later Modern Period from 1815 to 1993. Students study two topics from Irish history and two from the history of Europe and the wider world from the selected field of study. The history syllabus for LC can be accessed here: History Syllabus for LC

We try in the history department to make the study of history come alive for the students and we do this through interactive teaching methods, online research, Cork city library visits, field trips, cinema trips and tours. We are very happy that students in this school all study history to third year as we feel that the study of history who support our students to be engaged and active citizens not just of their local area but of a changing world.

The value of teaching History

Northern Ireland tour

Students from Senior history travelled to Belfast and Derry on the 3rd to the 4th of May 2019 to experience and learn more about a topic that they have been studying in class, ‘Politics and Society in Northern Ireland’ from 1949 to the present. This trip builds on material from junior cert history course when students learned about the Plantations and the partition of Ireland in 1920.

After an early start from Crosshaven, our first port of call was the magnificent ‘Titanic’ museum in Belfast. Here students learned about the early industrial years of the late nineteenth and twentieth century and the Harland and Wolff shipyard’s most famous ship, The Titanic.

The group then received tours of West Belfast. The first tour was of the Catholic / Nationalist area of West Belfast from the point of view of a Nationalist guide and then we crossed through the ‘peace’ gates and toured the Loyalist / Protestant area and received a tour from a guide from this area. Both tours were very informative and provided plenty of food for thought.

We continued on to Derry where we spent the night and the next morning we went on a walking tour of the area. This tour covered the history of Derry from its early settlers to its recent new found fame as a location of the Channel 4 series, ‘Derry Girls’. We toured the city walls and viewed the murals in the Bogside area of Derry.

Our final stop was the Seamus Heaney museum in Bellaghy, ‘Home Place’ where we learned about Derry’s famous Nobel Prize winning poet, his life and his works.

An inspiring end to a memorable trip.

Séamus Heaney

History says, don’t hope

On this side of the grave.

But then, once in a lifetime

The longed-for tidal wave

Of justice can rise up,

And hope and history rhyme.

Seamus Heaney.