Ean Emigration Curriculum - short version

Category: Education

Presentation Description

A version of Ean's emigration curriculum as presented at the organisation's 2007 seminar.


Presentation Transcript

Noreen Bowden noreen@ean.ie :

Noreen Bowden noreen@ean.ie

Why an emigration curriculum? :

Why an emigration curriculum? A key tool in encouraging understanding of the Irish abroad. Also useful for understanding today’s changing Ireland. Some lessons will highlight issues of preparation. There is a lack of teaching resources.

Why an education curriculum?:

Why an education curriculum? Task Force Report, 3.4: The Task Force believes that pre-departure services should, in the first instance, seek to educate people, particularly young people, about the complexities of living in different countries. The Irish are one of the most migrant people in the world and our education system should reflect this. We need to learn more about our Diaspora – its sources, its extent, its influences on the history of both Ireland and other states, its triumphs and its failures. This in turn should lead to an understanding of multi- culturalism . It should raise awareness about the differences and similarities between home and abroad and promote support for diversity and tolerance. There should be practical life-skill lessons on how to live independently in a multicultural society. The more people understand about themselves and about others, the more likely it is that they will be able to deal successfully with the challenges and opportunities of living abroad.

Why an emigration curriculum? :

Why an emigration curriculum? “ Peregrinari ! Peregrinari ! The Irish have always been wanderers. It is the curse and genius of our people.”


Goals To give students an understanding of the historic role of migration in Irish society To understand the impact of emigration on Irish society, its causes and effects. To gain an understanding of the global Irish diaspora and Irish identity in an international context. To understand the effects of migration on individuals To develop an empathy with both emigrants and immigrants into Ireland To explore the commonalities and differences of various migratory experiences

guiding principles:

guiding principles Taking advantage of global resources Highlighting the best of those resources An emphasis on primary documents Developing lively ideas for classroom exercises Cooperative – working in association with teachers


Trends Early Irish missionaries Flight of the Earls and the Wild Geese Early migration to New World (including Caribbean and South America) Famine migration Post-famine migration Twentieth century 1950s 1980s


Geography Britain US and Canada Australia and New Zealand Caribbean Continental Europe Latin America

Key questions:

Key questions   What are the social, political and economic forces driving emigration during this time period? What was pulling emigrants toward new countries? What was driving people away from Ireland? What was the relationship between those who left and those who stayed? How would you characterise the reception given to the immigrants in their new lands? What obstacles did they face?

Key questions (continued):

Key questions (continued) How did they maintain the bond with Ireland? What distinguished those that left from those that stayed? How did the migrants shape the culture of their new lands? What experiences are common to all migrants? Which experiences are specific to the destination and time?

The Resources:

The Resources Historical documents Journalist’s accounts Diaries Letters Film Art Memorials Oral histories

Cartoons :


Here and there, or Emigration, a remedy:

Here and there, or Emigration, a remedy Cartoon published in Punch, 15 July 1848.

A terrible record.:

A terrible record. Erin - In forty years I have lost, through the operation of no natural law, more than Three Millions of my Sons and Daughters, and they, the Young and the Strong, leaving behind the Old and the Infirm to weep and to die. Where is this to end? Weekly Freeman, 1881. [National Library of Ireland]



Erskine Nicol, 1850s:

Erskine Nicol, 1850s Outward Bound Homeward Bound

Letter from America:

Letter from America James Brennan, 1875 Crawford Municipal Gallery

Emigrants at Cobh:

Emigrants at Cobh Joseph Wilson, 1930

Economic Pressure:

Economic Pressure Sean Keating, 1936 Crawford Municipal Art Gallery


Exiles Patrick Hennessey 1943 Hugh Lane Municipal Gallery of Modern Art


Goodbye Kate Horgan, late 1980s




Larne Memorialising the Ulster Scots who went to America during the 18 th- century migrations. This statue is located near the harbour in Larne, County Antrim.

Famine monuments:

Famine monuments Dublin Toronto

John Behan:

John Behan National Famine Memorial at Murrisk “Arrival” at UN in New York

Derry Emigrants monument:

Derry Emigrants monument


Kiltimagh The plaque on the ground reads, “This sculpture is dedicated by Bill Durkan to the memory of the young men and women who emigrated from Kiltimagh, Bohola and the surrounding areas during the 1950s.

Sample exercises:

Sample exercises

Sample exercise 1: Classroom mapping:

Sample exercise 1: Classroom mapping Ask all students to find out about their family connections in other countries, whether these are emigrant or immigrant links. Tack each point on a world map, with a brief story about the link. Students could be encouraged to share their stories with the class in a brief oral presentation.

Sample exercise 2: Preparation:

Sample exercise 2: Preparation Look at Vere Foster’s Penny Emigrant Guide to North America Choose a destination country and a time period, and write a guide for someone interested in emigrating to that country. England Canada Montserrat Australia Argentina Make sure you cover the following topics: Transportation What to bring Arrival details: what to watch out for, where to go on arrival in the new country Job hunting Contacts in the new country Who else lives in the new country? How to keep in touch with people back home Research into the social conditions, ports, internal transport, working conditions, etc.

Sample exercise 3: passport project:

Sample exercise 3: passport project Each student should pick an identity and create an emigrant experience. This could work well as a journal exercise, in which the student takes on the perspective of the emigrant. Students should show an awareness of social, political and economic conditions in the destination country as well as in Ireland.    Students should strive to answer the following questions: What are the factors that might make this person consider leaving Ireland? (push factors) What attributes would make the destination appealing? (pull factors) How would you prepare for your departure? How would you say goodbye? What would you carry with you? How would you travel? What would your first 24 hours in your new country entail? Who would you meet in your new country? Would you find other Irish people? Who else might you meet? Would you stay near your point of arrival in your new country, or would you move on to another place? What would you bring along on your iPod? What songs in your new country might capture your experience?

Additional images:

Additional images

Irish Emigrant Landing at Liverpool:

Irish Emigrant Landing at Liverpool Erskine Nicol, 1871 National Gallery of Scotland

Possible remedies – the emigrant:

Possible remedies – the emigrant Jack B. Yeats, 1905 Private Collection

Annie Moore:

Annie Moore 14-year old Annie Moore at Cobh; she left in 1892 and became the first immigrant to arrive at Ellis Island.

The Emigrants:

The Emigrants Erskine Nicol, 1864 The Tate Gallery Ballinasloe emigrants waiting for the train

Sligo Famine Emigration:

Sligo Famine Emigration Erected on the 150 th anniversary of 1847


Questions? Noreen@emigrantnetwork.ie

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