New Term for myStory
It is hard to believe that the summer holidays are almost coming to an end, but we are really excited to get back into the swing of the academic year and share our Transition Year history programme, myStory.
What is myStory?
myStory (originally GENEius Pathways) is our extended and fully-supported schools’ programme, tailored specifically to Transition Year groups. Over 8 weeks, students gradually build up their own family history, using a thematic, documentary and social history approach. Teachers and TY Co-Ordinators receive weekly PDF resource packs from us which include teacher handbooks, discussion points, tutorials and student worksheets.
The first six weeks involve research, investigation and building up the family history portfolio, while the final two weeks are based on a creative project, allowing the students to focus on a topic they found most interesting in their own research. Previous students have submitted short films, poetry, fictional stories, photography projects and more. While the suggested time to complete the programme is 8 weeks, it is completely flexible should you wish to spread it out over a longer period of time. Activities can easily be slotted in to history or heritage classes, with plenty of investigative work for home. At the end of the programme, students receive a certificate of participation.
How does it work?
Your class group start off with an introductory workshop with the Irish Family History Centre, which gives students and teachers a welcome session to the programme and teaches the skills necessary for carrying out the project. For example: how to get started, interpreting primary sources, critical thinking skills and building a narrative. We have delivered workshops across the country, meaning you can come to us, or we can come to you!
What are the curriculum links?
Our programme looks at Working with Evidence, including the Role of the Historian, Document-Based Research and a Research Study. Students will also explore social and cultural history concepts (the changing role of women, what records can tell us about everyday life, etc), from Later Modern topics such as Irish History and Europe and the Wider World. For example, many students will have ancestors who fought in WWI and WWII as well as other significant political and social events they will want to learn about – this independent research is encouraged. Throughout the course, students will develop vital and transferable skills for use in their formal education and future careers.
Is it supported?
The programme is fully supported from beginning to end. Not only do groups receive weekly PDF resource packs, we are always available by email should there be any questions along the way, so no question will be left unanswered!
Do students of non-Irish heritage get as much out of the programme as those with Irish roots?
Absolutely – the programme is fully flexible and can be tailored to suit any nationality. While some social history elements focus on particular Irish records, the students’ own individual research can take them absolutely anywhere and it is recommended to compare and contrast the Irish experience with the experiences of other nationalities. Students are fully encouraged to carry out independent research on their own cultural traditions to include in their portfolio, and we have heard fantastic stories from students of diverse backgrounds, such as Africa, Russia and Eastern Europe. We have many recommendations and tips along the way to assist in the programme so if you have particular requirements please do let us know.
How long is the introductory session?
We can easily slot our workshop into a single history class, but can cater it to suit your own schedule.
What size groups can you take?
We recommend group sizes of about 25-30, and can deliver multiple workshops where necessary. For example, some TY groups have one group workshop in the first term, and another group workshop later in the year. This depends on your own class schedule – many schools will use myStory as their history module and simply slot it in to these classes each week. We have also run back-to-back sessions for extra large groups where TY is compulsory.
If you would like to request a callback or an email with more information about the programme, please get in touch by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
We look forward to hearing from you!
By Claire Murray, Education