Lesson 1 - Second Dáil

Understanding 1917 & Beyond

Lesson 1 - Second Dáil

Following the outbreak of the War of Independence in January 1919, the British Government prohibited the first Dáil Éireann (although it continued to meet in secret). Following the introduction of the Government of Ireland Act in 1920, elections took place in May 1921 to decide membership of the House of Commons of Southern Ireland (established under the Act). Refusing to accept this new British-imposed parliamentary system, Sinn Féin instead looked upon the election as elections to Dáil Éireann.

Resources with links to Statutory Requirements



  • Review the resources and links to understand why Dáil Éireann was established and how it impacted upon the larger political landscape of the time.
  • Using the information from the links as an example, prepare and complete a creative response to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the topic.

Opportunities for Cross Curricular learning

Using ICT

The resources examine the topic utilizing a number of different media, which serve to engage pupils with the material, challenging them to think more creatively and encourage discussion.

The resources could inspire tasks that would support presenting, researching, desktop publishing, working with images and working with sound.


The resources provide pupils with the opportunity to develop their talking and listening, reading and writing skills through independent learning and shared experience.

Opportunities for Thinking Skills and Personal Capabilities

Using the content, pupils have the opportunity to investigate meaning, explore ideas and analyse the information they are provided with. Within their individual learning, through group work and by questioning ideas, there is ample scope within the materials to include a focus on TS & PC. For this section, the following strands from the TS & PC framework are the most obvious to consider:

Managing Information

Pupils have the opportunity to:

  • plan and set goals and break a task into sub-tasks;
  • use their own and others’ ideas to locate sources of information; and
  • communicate with a sense of audience and purpose.

Thinking, Problem-Solving and Decision-Making

Pupils have the opportunity to:

  • make links between cause and effect;
  • justify methods, opinions and conclusions; and
  • make connections between learning in different contexts.

Being Creative

Pupils have the opportunity to:

  • make new connections between ideas/information;
  • challenge the routine method; and
  • take risks for learning.

Working with Others

Pupils have the opportunity to:

  • listen actively and share opinions;
  • take personal responsibility for work with others and evaluate their own contribution to the group; and
  • suggest ways of improving their approach to working collaboratively.


Pupils have the opportunity to:

  • set personal targets and review them;
  • organise and plan how to go about a task; and
  • focus, sustain attention and persist with tasks.

Opportunities to develop

Possible Task

Using presentation / desktop publishing software, create a timeline of important events both leading up to, and following the establishment of the second Dáil.

Working in pairs, research and save a number of relevant images for each event and script captions to go along with the images. Use the software to order the events into a timeline and assess the causes and consequences of each event.

Areas of Learning: Language and Literacy (English/Irish with Media Education), Environment and Society (History)

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