Baile

How to Teach Irish Effectively in the Classroom (2017)

What kind of course is it?

This online summer course, which is worth 3 EPV days, is aimed at primary school teachers who are interested in getting new ideas for teaching Irish in the classroom and who would like to learn about using the communicative approach in their teaching.

EPV days:

3

Course starts:

03/07/2017

Course ends:

25/08/2017

Course length:

20 hours

Number of units:

5

Bilingual:

Discussion forum:

Audio content:

Video content:

Interactive exercises:

Downloadable content:

Introduction

This online summer course, which is worth 3 EPV days, is aimed at primary school teachers who are interested in getting new ideas for teaching Irish in the classroom and who would like to learn about using the communicative approach in their teaching. In each module two sample lessons based on themes from the curriculum are presented and the emphasis in these lessons is on the communicative approach. The pre-communicative, the communicative and the post-communicative phases are included in the case of each lesson.

Although we would encourage you to use as much Irish as possible in your answers, you can use English if you need to.

The main objectives of the course are:

  • to give teachers a better understanding of the communicative approach and to show them how to use it more effectively in their teaching
  • to give teachers new ideas for teaching Irish and to enable them to implement these ideas in the classroom in order to improve the standard teaching in Irish class, to inspire interest in the language and to improve the ability of pupils to communicate
  • to improve teachers’ Irish language skills and to give them confidence in teaching the language.

Author

This course was written by Siobhán Patten. Siobhán is originally from Achill, County Mayo. She spent several years working as a primary school teacher before being employed by Gaelchultúr, first as a tutor and then as Specialised Courses Manager.

Siobhán has extensive experience in developing syllabuses, teaching materials and lessons plans for learners of Irish of various ages and at various levels of competency.

Gaelchultúr published her first book, Gníomhaíochtaí Gasta, in 2013. That book contains 60 communication activities, aimed at primary school teachers who teach classes 3–6 in both T1 and T2 schools.



Course guide

Course layout

There are five modules in this course and each module contains a mixture of sample lessons, sample activities, useful vocabulary, videos and exercises.

All the exercises are interactive. Once you’ve completed an exercise, you can then click on the ‘Seol’ (Send) button and receive feedback immediately. You’ll be told which answers were correct and which were incorrect, and you’ll be given the correct answers and a score.

At the beginning of each module, you’re told what the focus of that module is.

In order to move from one screen to another, all you have to do is click on the arrows which appear on the left-hand side (to go back) or on the right-hand side (to go forward), at the top and bottom of each screen. You can also click on any line of text under the words PLEAN AN AONAID on the left-hand side of the screen in order to access another part of the module.

On the last page of each module, An leathanach scoir, you’re given an overview of the work you’ve done in that module and your total score for the module. You’re given several choices as well: to continue to the next module, to redo the module you’ve just completed, or go back to the very beginning of the course.

Forum

A discussion forum is provided for How to Teach Irish Effectively in the Classroom. In this forum, teachers will answer the interactive question at the end of each module, as well as the reflective question at the very end of the course.

Those registered for the course will also have an opportunity to contact other teachers through the discussion forum. They’ll be able to send messages, ask and discuss questions, and express ideas.

Assessment

There are interactive exercises in each module, and once you’ve completed an exercise you can then click on the Seol (Send) button and receive feedback immediately. While you’re given a score for these exercises, they’re not assessed for the purposes of the award of EPV days; their aim is to stimulate the user’s interaction with the course content, and to give him/her the opportunity to practise what he/she has learned.

Participation in the online debate forum is an obligatory part of each module. Learners must participate in the forum by sharing ideas with the other participants and by completing written tasks.

At the end of the course, the participants must answer a reflective question. This question will confirm that you’ve engaged with the course content, and it will give you the opportunity to reflect on the implementation of the course content in the classroom.

Assessment of your work is based predominantly on the standard of your written work, but a record will also be kept of the amount of time you spent working on the course.

Important

In order to earn 3 EPV days, the course must be completed between 3 July 2017 and 25 August 2017. During that period, it’s up to you to decide when to study the course content.

Department of Education and Skills criteria for online courses stipulate that participants may complete one online course for the awarding of 3 EPV days, two online courses for 4 EPV days and three online courses for 5 EPV days.


FAQs

When can I register for the course?

Immediately!

When can I start the course?

Any time from the beginning of July onwards. In order to earn 3 EPV days, the course must be completed between 3 July 2017 and 25 August 2017.

By what date will I have to have completed the course?

By 25 August 2017. In order to earn 3 EPV days, the course must be completed some time between 3 July 2017 and 25 August 2017. During that period it’s up to you to decide when to study the course content.

What work will I have to do in each module?

You will have to read the material in the module and do all the interactive exercises.
When you have done all that work, you will have to answer the interactive question at the end of the module. You must post this answer on the course forum.
You must publish at least one post per module in the forums aside from answering the interactive questions.
At the very end of the course, you must answer the reflective question. Again, you must post your answer on the course forum.

How many hours must I spend doing the course work?

Approximately 20 hours.

Is the course material written in Irish or in English?

The course is bilingual - each sentence in Irish is translated into English.

Will I have to answer the interactive question at the end of each module in Irish?

No. We would encourage you to use as much Irish as possible in your answers, but you can use English if you need to.

Can I undertake the course using my smartphone or my tablet computer. e.g. iPad?

Most of ranganna.com can be used on smartphones and tablet computers, however the site’s multimedia content does not work on all devices. It would be advisable, therefore, to try a sample unit of the course you’re interested in on the device before registering for that course.

What happens if I have a question?

Write it on the forum or write to your course facilitator.
If you have any difficulties with the site, call (01) 484 5220 or write to eolas@ranganna.com.

Can I do more than one course?

Absolutely! Department of Education and Skills criteria for online courses stipulate that participants may complete one online course for the awarding of 3 EPV days, two online courses for 4 EPV days and three online courses for 5 EPV days.

How will I know when I have completed the course?

You will have completed the course when:

  • you have spent approximately 20 hours working on the course material
  • you have answered the five interactive questions as well as the reflective question
  • you have published at least one post per module in the forums aside from answering the interactive questions
  • the course facilitator is happy that your work is of a suitably high standard.

You will receive your certificate and CPD record within two working days of having completed the course. It takes a little while to compile the answers, and to prepare the certificate and record.


If you have any other questions, email eolas@ranganna.com, or call either (1890) 252 900 or (01) 484 5220.

Feedback

I got a lot from the course and thought that it was very practical as it divided the Irish course up into its various themes e.g. ‘An scoil’ and ‘Mé féin’. There were also many useful resources in the PDF files that will be very beneficial to me in the classroom. The course gave new and exciting ideas (e.g. games) for teaching Irish in the classroom, and these were excellently presented in video format. - NO’F.

It has been a very worthwhile course as I knew it would be. I will definitely be using the activities and feel enthusiastic about teaching Irish. I also will be sharing some ideas – especially ‘Cuir na longa go tóin poill’ – with my colleagues; it’s a great idea for teaching verbs. - IG

Through completing the course I have gained huge insight into how to structure, pace and deliver a lesson. The video clips were excellent as they followed a clear and step-by-step approach. The course content was fantastic. I envisage revisiting ranganna.com as well as using the printable resources to support and improve my teaching. - DS