Animal Education Outreach has a range of materials relevant and appropriate to the junior cycle (ages 12-15). It is relevant to the recommendations in respect of the following modules,
Civic, Social and Political Education (CSPE);
Social, Personal, Heath Education (SPHE);
Home Economics (HE).
Important points in all these modules in year 1 are the encouragement of "active citizenship" and the protection of the environment. In year 3 healthy eating is a component and students are encouraged to look at food in the context of consumer choice.
An awareness of the various influences directed at diet decisions such as businesses and in particular advertising (in the context of the method used and the message intended) are encouraged.
Environmental awareness is also stressed in year 3 and the CSPE module encourages the notion of stewardship in relation to the natural world. Of the five areas of recommended study in the HE module there are three that are applicable to what the Trust has to offer; specifically, food studies, consumer studies and social / health studies.
The curriculum guidelines recommend that its aims be facilitated by open discussion, research and the possibility of inviting a guest speaker into the class.
Animal Education Outreach provides material for research projects that can be carried out by the teacher directly or in association with speakers from our organisation.
We present a range of views relating to human-nonhuman relations that include versions of animal welfare and animal rights. There are different views on these subjects. For example, proponents of animal welfare emphasise the welfare advantages of "free-range beef" over "factory farmed beef" production, while animal rightists would criticise all animal use. All of these points impact not only on the health and diet choices of children but also on their ethical choices as well.
The HE module recommends that students be aware of the reasons why individuals have different priorities about values and living patterns in relation to food. Specifically the curriculum recommends that pupils have choices in the school shop or canteen that are in support of what is being thought about a balanced diet in the SPHE module. The guidelines recommend that upon completion of the course students have an awareness of, “the social and moral dimensions” of an issue and the “factors which promote or inhibit healthy living.”
Animal Education Outreach offers the opportunity to promote the active learning which is essential to the curriculum by facilitating the exploration of issues, the acquisition of knowledge and the development of skills appropriate to this age group that are relevant to the social, personal and health dimensions of their lives. Our representatives and presenters encourage students to recognise values and develop positive attitudes in relation to themselves, other people and the wider world.
The values aim at this level is to understanding human/non human relations in the context of fostering individual social responsibility and democracy. Our aim is to help pupils to explore, analyze and evaluate human-animal issues and consequently to help them acquire the skills of moral and critical appraisal integral to completion of the Junior Certificate.