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Children’s School Lives Study: Report 7

Children’s School Lives Study: Report 7

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CSPE and Key Skills

In addition to their specific content and knowledge, the subjects and short courses of junior cycle provide students with opportunities to develop a range of key skills. The junior cycle curriculum focuses on eight key skills.

The 8 key skills are set out in detail in Key Skills of Junior Cycle.

This course offers opportunities to support all key skills, but some are particularly significant. The examples below identify some of the elements that are related to learning activities in CSPE. Teachers can also build many of the other elements of particular key skills into their classroom planning.

Key skill

Key skill element

Student learning activity

Being creative


Students use their imaginations to

  • develop empathetic thinking by considering issues from different perspectives
  • take inspiration from the community leaders and activists they encounter in their research and in person
  • envision ways that they can make a positive difference in the world.
Being literate  Reading for enjoyment and with critical understanding Students research, examine and critique case studies and information presented in different media.
Being numerate            Seeing patterns, trends and relationships Students develop an awareness of the patterns, trends and relationships between different economic, environmental, political and social issues and the links between causes and effects.


Discussing and debating

Students become more confident through class debates and discussions as they learn how to present their opinions and support these with evidence from case studies and/or numerical data.

Managing information and thinking

Thinking creatively and critically

Students question their assumptions and the assumptions of others. They are encouraged to reflect on their understanding and review it in light of new information.

Managing myself

Being able to reflect on my own learning

Throughout the course students reflect on their learning and how it relates to their lives. They also reflect on and evaluate progress in carrying out their actions.

Staying well

Being social

Students become aware of themselves as local and global citizens with rights and responsibilities and develop a sense of care for the wellbeing of others as they learn how their wellbeing is connected to the wellbeing of others and of our planet.

Working with others

Contributing to making the world a better place

There is a strong focus on linking learning with action. Through taking meaningful action, students become more empowered and see how, by working with others, they can make a real difference.

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