History and Geography teacher Mr. Stephen O'Brien and two of his second year students Orson O'Sullivan and Gareth Hughes who made a great presentation to the Learning Revolution last Friday on their Cross-Curricular project using the Caravel ship. The project involved History, Geography and Technical Graphics and was a great success! Thanks to all involved for the great work done!
Report written below!
Cross Curricular Exercise
(History, Geography and Technical Graphics)
The second year group 2 ASM completed a
cross curricular lesson exercise that encompassed history, geography and technical
The project was based on the Caravel ship, used in the 15th
century during the Age of Exploration. The first aspect of the exercise was Mr
Murnane’s transition year students designing a Caravel during their graphics
class, which culminated in them supplying a step by step guide to the design
process, which was put together in a 3 minute presentation, and a number of
stills. The work produced was to the highest order and a credit to the class.
Once the Caravel was designed the class was
planned, the start of which was the students being given a brief overview of
what was to happen, they were assigned some research and to come up with some
questions. On the day the class went to the graphics room, and Mr Corcoran
started us off with a talk on his crossing of the Atlantic, the presentation
consisted of a PowerPoint presentation and talk, with the students taking
notes. After the talk there was an opportunity for questions and answers.
Mr Murnane then proceeded to give the
students some background on the design of the Caravel and some excellent
historical background to the ship. Mr Murnane focussed his presentation on the
mast and the difficulties of the day in acquiring and placing it, with the
actual tool used to smooth it, which again heightened the students
interest. The class then attempted to
design a mast and sail on the computers, which while they found difficult, they
successfully completed the task in the main. This section of the exercise was
the first time many of the students had experienced graphics and was a key tool
of the cross curricular in pulling together their various learning skills.
The following class was devoted to group
work were we brought the various aspects of the class together on the
whiteboard, and the students agreed upon the structure for their reports. The
reports consisted of the students tracing the Caravel, which was a still
supplied by Mr Murnane, and labelling it, and a section on Mr Corcoran’s talk,
the Caravel and finally a paragraph on what they taught were the benefits of
Reporting the Process
The reports handed back were of an
excellent standard, and the students really enjoyed and benefitted from the
exercise. The students were able to put into context the difficulties
experienced crossing the Atlantic by Mr Corcoran and they showed a better
understanding of what the actual experience of crossing in a Caravel would have
been like. The design section gave them a concept of the design process and an
experience into the subject of graphics. They managed to relate all of their
learning to the caravel and into an historical context, with a lot of geography
used as well.
Two of the students presented their
finished reports to the Learning Revolution, at lunch on Friday, and all
teachers present were highly impressed with the finished reports. The students
reported that they enjoyed the experience, of using different subjects to learn
and found the various learning methods helpful.
There were some very interesting outcomes
from the exercise, firstly the students were clearly invigorated and drawn into
the learning experience. They also reported that the different learning methods
were enjoyable, with the cross curricular, and three different teachers
involvement extremely interesting and giving a greater learning experience.
Secondly, while looking at the finished reports, they were a number of students
that preformed far better than they usually would on tests, with one in
particular standing out as excellent, which highlighted that the different
approach to teaching and learning can really benefit some students.
I would like to thank Mr Murnane for
putting so much work and effort into the exercise, and his transition year
group for the excellent work that they done, which can and will be used as a
resource in the future. I would also like to thank Mr Corcoran for the time and
effort he put into the presentation which the students found really enjoyable.
-Mr. Stephen O’Brien