Lesson 3 - The Province of Northern Ireland

Understanding 1917 & Beyond

Lesson 3 - The Province of Northern Ireland

Northern Ireland was “formed” as part of the Government of Ireland Act 1920 but it did not officially break from Ireland until after the signing of the Anglo-Irish Treaty in December 1921. Within the terms of the Treaty, Northern Ireland had one month after it was signed to opt-out of the Irish Free State and remain a part of Britain. The Anglo-Irish Treaty was implemented on 6th December 1922 with the signing of the Constitution of the Irish Free State Act. The following day, the House of Commons of Northern Ireland opted out of the newly constituted Irish Free State.

Resources with links to Statutory Requirements



  • Review the resources and links to understand how Northern Ireland came into existence.
  • 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 moving images, 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;
  • select, classify, compare and evaluate information; and
  • communicate with a sense of audience and purpose.

Thinking, Problem-Solving and Decision-Making

Pupils have the opportunity to:

  • sequence, order, classify, and make comparisons;
  • make links between cause and effect;
  • justify methods, opinions and conclusions; and
  • use different types of questions.

Being Creative

Pupils have the opportunity to:

  • experiment with ideas and questions;
  • learn from and value other people’s ideas;
  • 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;
  • focus, sustain attention and persist with tasks; and
  • review learning and some aspect that might be improved.

Opportunities to develop

Possible Task

Using image-editing software, edit a map to show the border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland, with captions explaining how and why partition occurred.

Working in pairs, research and save a suitable image of the island of Ireland and, using image-editing software, add a border to the map and a text box explaining how and why Northern Ireland came into existence.

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

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