There are lots of ways in which the Covid 19 ‘experience’ (he said euphemistically) is relevant to the Pol Soc Specification. I wouldn’t be advising students to write a WHOLE essay about Covid-19, but I do think that a well-sourced and well-supported paragraph about how Covid-19 illustrates aspects of the course could fit comfortably into lots of different types of essay. The readings will make that clearer, I hope!
I’ve ‘appropriated‘ (i.e. stolen) some of @NorthMonPolSoc‘s great resources (if you’re not already following Jon, you should be…!) and provided my own workable reading list of articles about, or by some of the Key Thinkers or key themes from the specification. Some of the articles are quite short, so you could try engaging with one a day for the next fortnight. It’d serve are really valuable Key Thinker revision too!
I’ve also included a link to my TLDR handout that is designed to help students keep notes on the articles that they have read. Alternatively, you could download the google doc and add the key data, or 1-2 key quotes from each article underneath the link so you have a useable set of qualitative and quantitative data-sets that are ‘exam ready‘.
Download the google doc here: Covid-19 and the Pol Soc Spec
There’s still lots of uncertainty around what’s happening with the Leaving Cert, but I hope that the lack of clarity isn’t getting students too down… (sad-face emoji…)
And for the record, Jon is more than happy for me to be sharing his great resources! (I always check!)
In an effort to get my head around the new remote learning landscape, I’ve been trying to put together usable weekly plans that can guide students through a meaningful process of learning. This week I’ve focused in on how the subject specification deals (both explicitly and implicitly) with power and decision making in Northern Ireland.
You can watch the screencast here. But perhaps more importantly, you should engage with the Episode Notes page which has details of how best I think these materials can be used. Make sure to download the “Screencast 5 Listen Along Guide” to remain focused during the screencast and to help you collate all the relevant materials, information, and perspectives that I’ve tried to communicate during the episode. There’s even a self-marking “Google Forms Quiz” that you should be taking mid-week to try and assess how your learning is going…
I’m very grateful to Ms Catherine McGing down in Laurel Hill in Limerick for her help in putting this week’s work together. All the good ideas are hers, all the errors are my own. Thanks Catherine!
Best of luck with your “lockdown learning”. I hope this makes it ever so slightly easier to carry out!
Finally got around to doing the screencast designed to help students get to grips with writing up the final section of their Citizenship Projects. Hopefully you’ll find it useful. I’m also including all of the PowerPoint presentations that I used so that other teachers can download them and use in class. They can update them as we find out more about the process and adapt them for their own students needs and add their own insights. Take what’s useful and discard the rest…
This time around I take THREE different examples of Section Cs that my own students completed (with varying degrees of success) over the last few years. Hopefully you’ll be able to see how to progress your work up from a H4/H3 level, up to the final example which is a H1 students. It’s all about providing a pathway to students to identify and correct their own mistakes, without falling into the most obvious pitfalls that I identify in the video…
Citizenship Project Section A ppt
Citizenship Project Section B ppt
Citizenship Project Section C ppt
Best of luck with the submission of your projects (whenever that ends up being!!!)
Delighted to have been featured in the Irish Times’s “Lockdown Listens” listing for educational podcasts in today’s paper. Find the article here. More importantly, there are lots of other excellent podcasts listed there that students should check out. Also don’t forget to check out the list I’m compiling of ‘Pol-Soc’ focused podcasts that students can dip in and out of to progress their own independent learning! Useful Podcasts for Students and Teachers
Would love to hear of any other podcasts that you’re listening to that you feel might be helpful for others…
So here’s the best I could come up with in terms of helping students to avoid some of the unnecessary pitfalls when it comes to drafting their Section B of their Citizenship Projects, which is worth the Lion’s Share of the marks (45/100). I hope you find it useful…
To make it a little easier, you should download the handout, https://polsocpodcast.files.wordpress.com/2019/11/citizenship-project-section-b-handout.pdf so that you don’t have to try and read the contents off the screen (especially if you’re watching this over your phone!
As ever, it’s only my own best judgment of what’s happening and how they have been marked, combined with a fair amount of “reverse engineering” of the projects my own students have submitted. Hopefully they’ll be of use to students who are stranded due to Covid-19… All they need is the link and a smart phone for this to work for them…
I deliberately didn’t mention that you could talk about how Covid-19 impacted your project in your “Critical Evaluation of Action Plan” section, because we don’t know how the SEC are going to react to this, but it seems perfectly reasonable to me that if you were unable to complete certain elements of the action, you can talk about that in your ‘Section B’ – though if I hear any more on that, I’ll be sure to update you as soon as I can.
Best of luck with your submission!
(definitely not an April Fool… just sayin’)
In an effort to expand my repertoire and skills somewhat, I’m starting to work a little more on screencasts. This contribution is aimed at helping students with their essay writing by working through ONE way of approaching a Children’s Rights essay.
I’m at pains to emphasize that this is not a ‘sample essay’ to be learned off by heart and reproduced in the exam (that’d be too ‘Banking Concept’ for me…!). Rather, it aims to show students how they might structure their work and highlight lots of different sources of data that students can investigate for themselves and which they can then include in their essays to strengthen their ‘Evidence’ mark. It also hopes to press home the need for ‘Alternative and Comparative Perspectives‘ (which accounts for 15% of essay marks) by conspicuously attempting to bring in different counter-arguments and different ways of looking at any given essay title.
You can watch the video here, pausing at the appropriate time to complete the tasks on the Screencast 2 Listen Along Guide. While the actual video is just under 20 minutes, you should allot 60-90 minutes in total (with access to an internet browser) to complete all the different elements of the tasks
You should also download the Children’s Referendum Case Study that has three different sections, including ‘Background and Outcome’, ‘Arguments in Favour and Against’ the Referendum, and a ‘Brief Outline of the articles in the UNCRC that are needed for Pol Soc students’. Any and all of this is relevant to how you might approach the essay and this topic more generally.
I hope you are all remaining sane during the Shutdown. From this process I’ve learned that I MUCH PREFER teaching in an actual classroom compared to this digital environment, but we don’t seem to have much choice in the matter…!
Keep sane and wash your hands.
So I spent the guts of last night and today making a screen-cast designed to help students with the process of writing up the ‘Section A’ of their Citizenship Project Report Booklets. It also deals with some common mistakes that I’ve observed with my last four groups that have worked through the process.
As ever, it’s only my own best judgment of what’s happening and how they have been marked, combined with a fair amount of “reverse engineering” of the projects my own students have submitted. Hopefully they’ll be of use to students who are stranded due to Covid-19… All they need is the link and a smart phone for this to work for them… But students’ engagement with the video would definitely be helped by downloading the samples from my students last year that can be found here. (scroll down to the bottom of the page…)
Any and all (constructive) comments and suggestions are most welcome…
Hopefully, in the coming days I’ll be able to put together content to help with the other elements of the project. But bear in mind, they’re very, very time consuming to make!
Keep well and WASH YOUR HANDS…
Just trying to pull together other bits and pieces of resources that might be of use to you and your students. Some I’ve already posted, others are little “one pagers” (I’m a big fan of ‘one-pagers’), that I’ve dug out over the last few days.
For the time being, I’ll leave them on the ‘Key Thinkers Notes’ page, but I’ll put links here also. I’ll figure out the best way to deal with that later!
As always, I’d be happy to hear any (constructive) feedback…
Keep Well – And Happy St Patrick’s Day…
This page will evolve rapidly in the coming days, but thus far, see below links to upload the Key Thinker Notes. Please also scroll down for my “Introduction” sheets, that lay out some of the suggested essay titles (drawn from the subject specification), that students case use as a focal point for their study and exam preparation…
For some of the material in the Intro to Media and Chomsky I am most grateful to @northmonpolsoc. Thanks Jon!
Please bear in mind, that I’m ramping up this content as quickly as I can. If you look at the notes and feel that there are any errors that I should be aware of, please do let me know, and I’ll do my best to try and get them fixed and updated. But also bear in mind, I’m only one man, doing my best….
Don’t forget you can test your knowledge for each of these sets of notes by trying the self-correcting Key Thinker Quizzes. Remember, recall is a critical part of all learning!
If you fancy supporting the website with a small donation to help with the cost of the website into the future (and for the copious amounts of coffee needed to make these possible), I’d be most grateful…
Oh, and this disappeared from the site for some reason…? Useful Podcasts for Students and Teachers
Here it is as a ‘Google Doc’ that anyone can add to or edit. I don’t know how to re-format the tables in Google docs, so maybe some kind soul could help with that and save me untold heartache and help us all! USEFUL PODCASTS GOOGLE DOC.
Well, in extraordinary times, we take extraordinary measures. So here’s what I’m up to…
In the next few days I’ll be dramatically expanding the scope of resources that I have available here, for everyone, for free. I’ll be focusing on making sure that all my “Key Thinker Notes” are available to download here in a menu of that name. It’ll take me some time to polish them up to a condition that won’t embarrass me, but I’ll get there eventually. I can’t guarantee that they’re perfect (I’m sure there will be some mistakes, that ye might be good enough to point out to me, so that I can fix them). I’m starting with Benedict Anderson and Andre Gunder Frank, but there’ll be more to follow quickly in the next few days. Rather than bloating your inboxes with updates, I’ll tweet out additional links about uploaded resources on @khpolsoc…
Effectively, they’re ‘student ready’. Circulate them as widely with other teachers or students as you see fit, or ignore them completely.
At the very least, nobody will ever be able to turn around to any of the Pol Soc teachers that I know and say that their students didn’t have enough resources to revise with!
I wish everyone the very best in the coming weeks. It’s going to be a stressful time for everyone. Stay safe, stay sane, stay healthy. And remember, we have always “depended on the kindness of strangers”.
Now, more than ever, we’re all a part of society, not apart from society.
And if, on the off chance, you find these extra resources useful, you might consider making a tiny donation to the site to fund the many, many, many cups of coffee that I anticipate consuming in the next few weeks…