Top of the mornin’ to you! As we’re sure you already know, St. Patrick’s Day is just around the corner. Every year St. Patrick’s Day is celebrated on March 17th, the anniversary of the death of the Irish patron saint, St. Patrick. This holiday has been observed on this day by Irish families for over 1,000 years.
Who Was Saint Patrick?
According to History.com, Saint Patrick lived during the fifth century and is the patron saint and national apostle of Ireland. He was born in Roman Britain and at just 16 years old he was kidnapped and brought to Ireland as a slave. After escaping, he returned to Ireland and is credited with bringing Christianity to its people. History.com shares “In the centuries following Patrick’s death the mythology surrounding his life became ever more ingrained in the Irish culture: Perhaps the most well-known legend is that he explained the Holy Trinity (Father, Son and Holy Spirit) using the three leaves of a native Irish clover, the shamrock.”
Educators are consistently looking for ways to engage their students, but also provide important lessons and knowledge. Holidays such as St. Patrick’s Day are the perfect way to do so. This year the holiday falls on a Sunday, which makes celebrating in K-12 schools difficult. We suggest continuing the celebration on Monday, March 18th.
You’re in luck! We’ve compiled a list of 4 great ideas that several K-12 schools have incorporated into their classrooms for St. Patty’s. These include informative lessons on Irish culture, history, and traditions, as well as fun activities promoting teamwork and creativity. Bring the luck of the Irish into your school and share the excitement with your students, fellow faculty, and parents at home with a quick and easy school notification or digital newsletter.
4 St. Patrick’s Day Themed Lessons for Your Students
- History of Irish Writers
There are several incredible Irish born authors including W.B. Yeats, Oscar Wilde, and George Bernard Shaw. Try sharing history on these authors, or encouraging your students to think about how these writers’ Irish heritage influenced their writing. For younger students consider looking at classic Irish folklore.
- Potato Science Project & Irish Potato Famine History
Potatoes are a big part of Irish history, so incorporate them in your lesson! TeachHub suggests growing a potato in a jar of water so young students can see the root system. For older students they recommend “growing several potatoes in a variety of solutions – plain water, water with fertilizer, water with bleach, etc. – and see which grows best.” You can also teach your students the history of the Irish Potato Famine as a St. Patrick’s Day lesson as it is controversial and related to World History, American History, and Government.
- Celtic Knot History & Tutorial
This is a fun St. Patrick’s Day themed art project teachers could cover in the classroom. There is a lot of history behind Celtic Europe outlined here. National Education Association also encourages teachers to use this great resource – a tutorial on the introduction to knot work construction. “This tutorial covers basic interlacing techniques, simple border and panel construction, analysis of existing patterns, interlaced corners, more advanced patterns (such as “doubled” knots), and provides links to other, advanced sources for your further research.”
- Patrick’s Day Scavenger Hunt
Encourage your students to hunt for gold! We Are Teachers recommend getting your students up and moving with this free printable scavenger hunt. “You can time the hunt, create groups, or even conduct the activity outdoors. To extend the activity, you might have your students decorate old tissue boxes as treasure chests in which they can store their findings.”
At Alert Solutions we strive to bring interesting and different ideas to teachers to help engage students. We certainly hope these 4 St. Patrick’s Day lessons come in handy! Working with K-12 schools and districts across the country, and internationally, we believe being a resource to our customers is one of the components that makes us a wonderful company to work with.
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