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Comhlรกmh's Skills in Development Education Training

Contents Skills in Development Education course


Boy or Girl – Does it Matter?


by Liam and Niav

The Girl Effect


by Gemma and Marta

A Divided World


by Kate and Jen

Exploring Sustainability and Economic Growth


by Deirdre and Stephanie

Global Land Grab


by Ana and Tom

Critical Review of Human Rights


by Freda and Amy

Group Works


by Jim

6 Hats


by Ronan and Paul and Janet

Extra Resources

Acknowledgements: Thanks to Trócaire and Irish Aid for funding this training course and resource. Thanks to the course participants for their attendance, contributions and enthusiasm. Thanks to Frank Naughton, Lizzie Downes and Helen Lowri for their facilitation during this training course. Design by Advantage Point Promotions. Produced by Alison Leahy, Comhlámh.


Skills in Development Education course Comhlámh works to challenge society on the root causes of global poverty and inequality. We empower people to demand fair global relations. One way we do this is by supporting people who are interested in educating and raising awareness about global inequality. This means any individual who is interested in finding out what is happening around the world and asking themselves and others ‘is this fair?’ and ‘what can we do about it?’

Our focus


Comhlámh’s Skills in Development Education course focuses on strategies and skills people can use to make development education relevant for others. These include challenging perspectives, exploring global power relations, and identifying ways that people and countries around the world are interdependent. Those who attend experience and try out these skills, but also learn about the reasons that we use these methods.

One way the course encourages critical reflection and evaluation is that during the course participants fill out a learning journal. This supports them to individually reflect on their learning. It also encourages learning between sessions and provides a way for them to capture their learning. Each session is evaluated. This encourages participants to consider what they are learning and what they could use from each session – including quick ways to evaluate development education activity. It also means the course can be responsive to their needs and interests.

While the course does centre on skills development we also try to deepen each person’s understanding of their own values and of certain key issues. This is because we see the skills as tools we can use to get people talking I was intimidated by what about an issue. Once they have started talking we need to I didn’t know before. I have be prepared to support these gained the confidence to be discussions. intrigued by what I don’t know.

Reflection, analysis, and action skills

Other people’s passion for Development Education has motivated me.

The course is informed by Freire’s belief that transformative education should be more than either just talking about the issues or just taking action. We believe that it needs to include reflection, analysis and action. For this reason the course looks at more than how to inform people about global justice issues. It includes trying out ways to empower people to do something with their newfound knowledge about global inequality and exploitation. In addition, it looks at ways to make sure that we learn from the actions we take, by evaluating them and critically reflecting upon them.


In addition, the course is evaluated at the final session, and a few months after it finishes. The post course evaluation is carried out to assess how participants have changed as a result of the training. It looks at how they may be using their new skills, knowledge or attitudes, and if they’ve identified any changes in the groups they work with.

Trying out new skills During the course participants take part in a range of development education methodologies, guided by Comhlámh and external facilitators. We discuss these methodologies, looking at if they work well and how they could be effectively used. By reflecting on their experience of these methodologies it is hoped that participants will gain confidence in their ability to carry out development education projects in the future. This is further encouraged during the final three workshops when participants facilitate a development education activity with the rest of the group.

Skills in Development Education 2011

Introduction to Development Education

While the course covers a few key areas each time it is run, it also changes depending on feedback from previous participants on what worked well and what could be better. Each course is also shaped by those who attend, from their motivations for doing the course and what they hope to learn (gathered in their application forms) and by their involvement during the course. The next few pages provide an overview of the 2011 course and the development education activities developed and run during the course by the participants.

At the first session we got to know each other, and shared our ideas about development education and why we wanted to learn more about it. We debated: Is it political? Is it all about aid? Does it include what’s happening in Ireland? What is the point of raising awareness about these issues? And what issues are we talking about?

In 2011 the course ran over ten Tuesday evenings from February to early April in Dublin city centre. Every year there is great interest in the course and this year was no different. It was at full capacity with 20 participants, 16 of whom fully completed the course including planning, facilitating and evaluating a development education activity with the rest of the group. The group included people who had volunteered overseas and others who either had studied or were studying development related issues. It was also attended by people working and volunteering in development agencies, volunteer sending agencies, and activist groups in Ireland. Some participants were working with schools and in the youth sector, while others aspired to get involved in these areas.

I’m more aware of the theory and education paradigms behind development work; I’m impressed with the practical methodologies and ‘tips and tricks’ that can be used to get the message across.

We discussed the knowledge, skills and values we hoped to inspire in others. And tried out a few ways to do this including the ‘Development Compass Rose’ and the ‘Why, why, why chain’. We finished with a role play activity that showed that we had some excellent actors in the group and on a more serious note, that development is a contested idea that perhaps means something different to everyone.

How to do a Moving Debate 1. Prepare statements and discussion prompts. 2. Put up ‘I AGREE’ and ‘I DISAGREE’ posters at either end of the room. 3. Read out a statement. If they agree they should stand at the ‘I Agree’ side of the room. If they disagree they should stand at the ‘I Disagree’ side of the room. If they are undecided or both agree and disagree they can pick somewhere in the middle to stand. During the discussion if they change their mind they should move to show this. 4. Ask them to share how they chose where to stand. If they find it difficult to decide or to share their views ask them to discuss the statement in pairs first. Then try again with the wider group.


Exploring Global Development Issues: Trade Justice

Creative Planning & Evaluation

The second workshop looked at ways to explore the root causes of global poverty, using the example of global trade rules. It aimed to show that you don’t need to be an expert to tackle these issues. It also looked at how to balance providing people with new information with making them aware of the knowledge they already have.

Following a discussion on whether or not to plan and evaluate our development education activities we tried out and debated a variety of ways it could be done. In particular we tried out creative planning methods such as using the metaphors of a river and a hot air balloon. We discussed whether this made our plans better, or just more fun. We arrived at the conclusion that it made them more inclusive and more wide-ranging.

Good follow on, I am developing more information on issues and I definitely became more comfortable expressing opinions. We started by looking at a few ways to introduce the topic of trade that relate it to people’s lives and highlight its importance. These included a game of globingo and making human ‘chains of justice’ We also discussed the journey around the world of the last thing we ate and brainstormed why we trade. This showed us that from our own life experience as consumers we already know a lot about the global trade system - and more importantly, that we play a part in it and have an opinion on it.

I learnt how to

We looked at how the Showed how way we evaluate and important it is to selfwhat we evaluate is reflect on what goal affected by our own we have and how we assumptions and reach these goals. values. We debated the pros and cons of various types of evaluation and tried out some of the activities in the RISC ‘How do we know its working?’ toolkit. ( I hadn’t realised the importance of planning and evaluating before.

We then played a simulation highlight trade and game based on the ‘Trading economic issues Game’ ( through interaction which got very competitive and fun activity. and left us with some very designed scraps of paper. By the end of the session we were comfortably discussing the pros and cons of export taxes and policy space.

Facilitation Skills It was excellent. It really made me think about facilitation from different perspectives. Our first guest facilitator, Frank Naughton (, joined us for a challenging discussion on the nature of knowledge. We looked at ways to carry out ‘authentic enquiry'.

Authentic Enquiry A bottom up approach to learning that begins with the learner’s own experience. Instead of asking them what they know about a topic, ask them how they experience it in their own lives. Through facilitated discussion they can reflect on these experiences, identify questions to explore, and connect their information to existing knowledge on this topic. We debated whether we were presenting information for an audience or exploring a topic with participants. Then we related that to how we planned for and facilitated a group. I learnt how to present and deliver a programme, allowing the participation of everyone.


Education and Taking Action Building on discussions during previous sessions on the action component of development education, we split into groups to try out a few ways to not only ensure a group learns about an issue but also to start them thinking, or even planning, to do something about it. These included a competition for the most impossible awareness raising activity, practicing lobbying our TD (handily enough this was around the time of the general election) and one group even performed a rap. Some very useful exercises this week. I would use most of them again. We discussed how we could try to motivate a group to take action while making sure to avoid using our power as the facilitator to force the group to do what we thought was right. Finally we looked at ways to plan and evaluate any actions we take, making sure that they are part of an authentic learner-centred educational process.

Images & Messages in Development Education Lizzie Downes (email thebiggerpicture2(at), our second guest facilitator, looked at a variety of ways to learn using images. We realised how working with images can enable us to see things from another perspective. We tried out lots of ways to educate using images, such as by cropping them, or adding speech bubbles and captions to an image. We also debated the ethics I learnt how to use of taking and using images, images effectively such as the challenges of representing people’s dignity to draw out different and being accountable. We people’s opinions on discussed ways to adhere to what they see. the Dóchas Code of Conduct on Images and Messages. ( It will make me question images and my use of them, and source images that were obtained in the right way.

Photo Activities Cropping You have one half of a photo. Discuss as a group what you think is shown in the rest of the photograph, using any possible clues. Then draw the missing piece of the image. Speech bubbles Imagine that you are one/some of the people in the photo. Write a speech or thought bubbles for the person/people. Captioning Choose a photo from the selection and write a caption to go with it. Decide what target audience /publication the caption will be for.

Power, Oppression & Diversity: Developing a Critical Analysis Our final guest facilitator, Helen Lowri (, showed us how to work with a group to develop a critical analysis of power, and to identify power inequalities and oppression. We lined up across the room to explore our own personal power and relate that to our wider understanding of the concept of power. Really interesting discussion, which I would definitely bring up again in other contexts. We identified the consequences of us using or not using our personal power, both on ourselves and others. We used discussion, brainstorming and a simulation game to identify who has power, who doesn’t, and how people use power.

Excellent session to learn about power issues that are relevant in all parts of society and the things that power affects. (It) also focused on both good and bad sides of power.

Personal perceptions of power 1. Ask the group to organise themselves in a line across the room with most powerful at one end and least powerful at the other end. 2. Ask them not to speak for the entire exercise and to move quickly through it. 3. Next ask them to share with the person beside them their observations from that exercise. 4. Highlight that the point is that we are aware of power even if unconsciously so. 5. Brainstorm: What is Power to you? 6. Record responses.

Practical sessions The development education activities carried out by the course participants are described on the next few pages. During the course they worked in groups to prepare their activities. They chose a topic that interested them, learnt about it, and then tried out ways to explore that topic with the rest of the group. These mini workshops cover a variety of issues from land grabbing to ‘the girl effect’. On top of getting to discuss many fascinating topics the group experienced diverse styles of facilitation and got feedback on their own facilitation skills from a friendly, encouraging group of peers.

Running the practical sessions 1. Once a group had run their 15 minute activity we reflected on it, and shared feedback and suggestions. 2. The facilitators first said what they thought went well. 3. Then they shared what didn’t go so well, and how they would change it. 4. The rest of the group then did the same. 5. Record responses.


Boy or Girl Does it Matter?

Exploring Gender Issues Globally Role Play drama based on Boal’s Theatre of the Oppressed Facilitators: Niav & Liam

Activity outline: 1.

Invite participants to stand - boys on the right, girls on the left.

To raise awareness of gender inequity on a global scale.


Give each participant a country card fact sheet (blue for boy, pink for a girl).

Target Audience:


Open the activity with comments such as:

Session Aim:

Youth group

Statistics can mask reality

Activity learning objectives:

Participants will learn, in an experiential way, about gender inequality globally;

Regional / social inequalities are not always reflected in country data

Urban /rural disparities and economic dualism can also result in biased figures

Some statistics are not available

This activity aims to begin a process of discussion and reflection

Participants will, in a tactile way, develop an empathy with and understanding of the inherent injustice of global gender inequality; To promote discussion and reflection.

Materials required:


Country cards, Country fact sheets, Masks


Are literacy rates for you more than 60%?

Do you expect to live more than 60 years?

Worldometer, real time statistics:


Invite participants to step forward one pace if answer is yes and back one pace if answer is no.

Geohive global stastistics:


Facilitator chooses participants at random and invites them to strike a ‘frozen’ pose that illustrates his or her feeling about his or her position or status.


Reinforce this emotion by asking participant to choose and wear a mask that he or she feels embodies his or her status.

US Census Bureau: United Nations: World Bank data: The World Factbook:


Facilitator asks questions relating to key genderrelated facts. For example:

Sweden. e in Stockholm in My name is Archana. I am a Hindu femal me is Bjorn. I liv na y M e. I live outside Kolkata. My name is Séamus. I live 78.7 years in Galway. I expect to live to 66.4 years I expect to live to les is 99% I expect to live to 76.5 yea and for fellow ma rs racy rate for me The literacy rate for me and for other lite e Th e ur India ult The literacy rate for me n females is 53.7% and for fellow Irish mal eden work in agric 78% of women in India work in agricultur es is 99% 6% of men in Sw e staf (a man) 12% of men in Ireland wor Gu rl Ca is try un k in agriculture co The President of my country is Pratibha The King of my eldt (a man) Devisingh Patil The President of my cou r is Fredrik Reinf ntry is Mary McAleese (a ste (a woma ini M n) e im Pr e woman) Th se dies The Taoiseach is Enda Ken ou sp y again if my ny (a man) The Prime Minister is Manmohan Singh I am free to marr (a Man) y I am free to marry again rr ma l se who I wil if my spouse dies I am not free to marry again if my spous I am free to choo e dies I am free to choose who I will marry I am not free to choose who I will marr y My name is Luis. I live in Fortalez a. . I tu expect to live to ck bu m Ti in e 68 liv years I ali y. M th in ro tu Do ck bu is e Tim m The literacy rates My na ph. I live in for me and fellow My name is Jose % e to 52 years males is 88.4% males is 39.6 rs 26 fe yea % of the men in r I expect to liv 48 he ot to e r liv fo to d ct an Brazil work in ag .5% pe e ex 53 m I is r fo les ma te ra low y riculture fel ac er for d lit re The President of The for me an in agricultu my country is Di The literacy rate in Mali work Toure e en lm ur ai m a ult an Rousseff (a woma wo ric ag um of in To % Th rk e Vice-President 66 ali wo n) y is Amadou is Michel Temer 20% of men in M t of my countr ou Toumanai ad ( Am a man) is try I un am The Presiden co fre my e of to nt ma ide rr es y again if my spou The Pr ) se dies (a Man) I am free to choo Sidibe (a Man Toure (a Man) se who I will marr an) ter is Modibo M is (a in e M dib e es Si im di ibo Pr y se od M ou The is sp r y ste m ini if M n The Prime to marry agai dies ry ain if my spouse I am not free who I will mar free to marry ag se My name is am I oo ch to y Brisa. I liv I am not free se who I will marr e in Fortale I expect to I am free to choo za. live to 76.1 ye ar s My name Th e lit er ac is Kylie. y rate for me and for I live in I expect My name is Brad. I live in Seattle. 19% of wom Adelaide. other femal to live to en in Brazi es in Brazi years 8 4 years l work in ag The litera l is 88.8 I expect to live to 75.6 Th e P riculture re si cy rate fo d is en USA in t s of male fellow m for y and me r co for me and rate un cy litera tr 3% of A The y is Th D e for other ilma Rouss Vice-Presi ustralian eff (a wom dent is Mic Australia women w 99% an) The Gov hel Temer n female I am free to ork in ag ernor-G (a man) s e is r ultur m ic agric 99% in ar u work ry lt USA e in u n ag men re of e ai 4% ra n l of my c The Prim if m I y am sp ou free to choo ountry is se dies e Ministe k Obama (a Man) se who I w Quentin r is Juli The President of my country Bara I am fre ill marry a Eileen Bryce (a e to mar an) wom (a on G Clint m ry il Hilla a la is n ry again rd (a wo ) The Secretary of State I am fre man) if my spo e to cho use dies se dies ose who I am free to marry again if my spou I will ma My name is Rani. I am a Hindu Male. I live in Kolkata. rry y marr will I who se choo I am free to I expect to live to 63.2 years My name is Moise. I live in Kinshasa The literacy rate for me and for fellow males in India is Palm Springs. . ffany. I live in I expect to live to 45.2 years 75.3% My name is Ti s % e to 80.8 year females is 99 The literacy rate for me and for fellow 41% of males in India work in agriculture I expect to liv for other US males in Congo is d an e m r fo te ra 76.2% y ac er The President of my country is Pratibha Devisingh Patil re The lit ltu cu ri in ag in USA work 19% of males in Congo work in agric (a woman) a (a Man) am 1% of women Ob ulture ak ar B y t of my countr The President of my country is Jose The Prime Minister is Manmohan Singh (a Man) n (a woman) The Presiden ph Kabila (a man) Hillary Clinto is e at St of y The Prime Minister is Adolphe Muz ar I am free to marry again if my spouse dies et cr Se es e di Th ito (a Man) if my spouse marry again I am free to marry again if my spou I am to not free to choose who I will marry ee fr am I se dies will marry choose who I I am free to choose who I will marr to ee fr am I y are. live in Kild Róisín. I is e am n My years en is 99% Irish wom live to 81.3 for other I expect to d an e m lture y rate for k in agricu The literac woman) eland wor Ir in cAleese (a en M y ar M is 2% of wom y countr ent of my man) The Presid a Kenny (a d n E is ch ea is ouse dies The Tao n if my sp marry agai to ee ry fr ar I am o I will m choose wh to ee fr I am

My name is in Malmo. Jason. I liv netta. I live e in Melbo My name is Ag I expect to ur s ne ar . live to 79 ye e to 83 ye Sweden ars r females in I expect to liv The literacy e and for othe m r rate for Aus fo te ra y tralian mal The literac 6% of males es is 99% in Australia lture is 99% n work in ag The Governo work in agricu riculture en in Sweden r-General m wo man) of f 1% of my coun (a man) Carl Gusta (a try is Quent my country is of man) ng in Ki (a e B t ry ld Th fe ce in The Prime Minister of r is Fredrik Re my country Prime Ministe es e di (a woman) Th se ou is Julia Eile if my sp marry again en Gillard I am free to I am free to will marry I marry agai o wh n if my spou free to choose I am free to am I se dies choose who I will marry

Feedback & suggestions: •

The rope, masks, colourful handouts, and methodology used made the activity fun.

The instructions were very clear and easy to follow.

Facilitators created a fun atmosphere and made participants comfortable to be a bit silly.

The drama part of the activity fit in very well however without more of a drama warm-up it wouldn’t work with certain groups.

Facilitators were clear about the difficulty in finding accurate data and pointed out that the data described an average, and ignored inequalities within countries.

The questions used in the debrief were well chosen and focused on the activity objectives. They didn’t lead participants but encouraged them to reflect on what they had learnt, how it had challenged their assumptions, and how it made them think a bit differently about global gender relations and global differences.

There was a good combination of countries used for the handouts, from all parts of the world and with different cultures and systems.


The Girl Effect Video and group discussion Facilitators:


Session Aim:

YouTube Video “The Girl Effect: The Clock is Ticking” [online] (Accessed April 2001)

To provoke reflection about the need of access to education in order to empower girls.

The Girl Effect Organisation

Marta & Gemma

Target Audience: Our local community.

Activity learning objective: Learners will reflect on and increase their awareness of the importance of education.

Development Education methodologies used: Video to energise the audience Discussion in small groups Open discussion

Handout: The Effect Of Education on Girls 1. What were you thinking while watching the video? ______________________________________ ______________________________________ ______________________________________ 2. What incidents happened to the girl child? ______________________________________

Activity outline:





We will show you a video of 3 minutes from www. on YouTube. The title is “the clock is ticking”. The tick goes forward and rewinds.

3. What factors enabled/impended her success?

Watch the video carefully and then in pairs or small groups discuss the questions on the handout.



Facilitators visit each group and helps with the discussion (especially if they have questions).



Hold a brief group discussion.


Explain at the end that if we had more time we would have paused the video in the middle to talk about it a little bit, then reminded them what to do afterwards and watched the rest of the video.


4. How would you apply what you learned from the show? ______________________________________ ______________________________________ ______________________________________


ticking The clock is poverty She lives in control is out of her Her future ge 12) oman now (a y she is a w an m of es In the ey e is. No, really sh 13 by the age of ing married be of y it al he re is 15 She faces t he time she egnant by t Pr , 14 at Married birth rvives child And if she su t her family dy to suppor bo er h ll se o g HIV have t and spreadin She might contracting r fo sk ri her at old. Right? Which puts for a 12 year ed in ag im u Not life yo

Feedback & suggestions: •

Having the text from the video on the handout was a good idea as it made it easier for people to discuss the video without having to play the video multiple times.

The questions on the handout were effective in getting the group to identify the pertinent information, reflect on their reaction to it, and discuss they can do something about this issue.

The activity was well introduced and explained. The discussion after the video was well facilitated, with a good balance between the group being asked for their feedback and the facilitators making their points. The discussion was shared between the two facilitators.

If there had been more time facilitators would have liked to pause the video in the middle, talk about it little bit, remind the group what to do afterwards and start it again.

They would learn how to use the video/ projector well before coming to present.

At the end the facilitators could have summarised briefly important issues, events, ideas, and suggestions.

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The activity could have used a bit more time but was not rushed.

od But ....The go


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news is ther

d her at Let’s rewin 12) ealthy (age Happy and h y (age 14) tor regularl Visits a doc fe here she is sa l (age 16) W oo h sc in s living She stay ). To earn a tion (age 18 ca u ed this: er h ething like She used it looks som d an s ot sh lling the Now she is ca d HIV She can avoi ady hen she is re e children w av h d an ry She can mar y like she is n are health re ild ch er h and

The clock is



A Divided World

Simulation game and group discussion Facilitators: Kate & Jen

Activity Outline: 1.

Around the room post 7 sheets of paper with one of the countries or continents in the table below identified on each sheet.


Explain that the group represents the millions of people living in the world. Ask three volunteers to guess how many people should stand beside the various sheets and to divide the group accordingly.


Now divide the group according the figures in the table below, which reflect the relative breakdown of the world’s population.


Explore the concept of inequality and how it affects access to even our most basic needs such as food.

The facilitator now displays the food divided into 30 pieces and explains that this represents all the food in the world. Each country/continent group must decide how much of the world’s food i.e. how many of the 30 chocolate squares their country/continent gets in reality.



Participants share their guess with the entire group.


Now the real division is made as indicated below i.e. China receives 4 squares, Asia receives 1.5 squares and so on.

Activity Context: This activity will be used in a Youth Work context focusing primarily on young people from disadvantaged backgrounds to introduce concepts of ‘Human Rights’ and ‘Global Justice’ in an active, engaging and uncomplicated manner; and in doing so foster a spirit of social solidarity.

Activity Aim: That young people will understand how the world’s food is divided globally and how this inequality impacts on people’s rights.

Activity learning objective: Examine how food is divided globally;

Role play, team-work, group discussion, critical analysis.

Materials Needed: Paper and pens, 30 pieces of Fair Trade chocolate to represent food.


Discussion suggestions: •

Did you get more or less chocolate than expected? How did this make you feel?

Think about the way food is divided globally. Do you think this is fair?

Do people have the right to food? What if they can’t afford it?

Who is responsible for ensuring this right?

If you didn’t have enough food, how would this affect you?

Tea India

Coffee Nicaragua

Cocoa Ghana

Cotton Uganda

Bananas Ecuador


Feedback & suggestions:

World population and food distribution activities dividedworldfoodcrisisexercise.pdf Web%20Site/Discover%20More/Schools/For%20 Teachers/Divided%20World.pdf

The activity works well for the chosen audience, a youth group, because it involves mobility, and is highly visual and symbolic.

It can be used as an introduction to an array of topics.

The combination of groups of countries and continents confused the participants a bit, but facilitators explained the reason for the combination and dealt with the confusion. They could use a map to clearly show where countries/continents are geographically located.

Providing chocolate was a good incentive for the group to pay attention. Facilitators could have reduced the number of chocolate squares according to group size.

Using paper faces to round out the participant numbers was a good idea that still kept the visual impact of the activity.

Facilitators could use flipchart paper to visually show the figures in the table to avoid confusion at the end.

The activity was well planned as it could be fully done and discussed within the 15 minutes provided.

The game is sourced from The Right Stuff; an education resource on the UN Convention of the Rights of the Child 1998. Although the figures below may not be an accurate reflection of the current statistics, the inequity in food distribution continues to be a recurrent theme.

Global population and food distribution Country

World populations (Group of 30)

World Squares of populations chocolate (Group of 20) for each group


















North America



South America




Exploring Sustainability and Economic Growth Post your thoughts - Gallery walk Facilitators: Stephanie & Deirdre


Hang the excerpts and quotes on the wall.


Give participants post-its. Ask them to walk around the room and read the excerpts and quotes.


They are to write on the post-its if they disagree or agree with them, or any other thoughts they have. And stick up the post-its.


Once they have done this ask them to pick an excerpt or quote they found interesting and to stand beside it.

Participants will learn about different theories of economic growth.


Ask them to discuss it with others standing nearby.

Activity learning objectives:

Resources (Quotes)

Participants will consider their own opinions and understanding of economic growth through exposure to a range of theories on the topic.


Speakers at Comhlámh First Wednesday debates,


Speakers at Comhlámh First Wednesday debates,

Chart Paper, Post-it Notes, Quotes from a Newspaper Article, or positions from Speakers at a Comhlámh First Wednesday Debate


The New Resource Grab: How EU Trade Policy on Raw Materials is Undermining Development (November 2010), files/pdfs/The%20New%20Resource%20Grab.pdf

Session Outline:




Tim Jackson, Prosperity without Growth Economics for a Finite Planet (October 2009)

Session Aim: Participants will explore diverse opinions through critiquing various statements. (Statements are drawn from a previous session that included: a debate, a movie, a newspaper article).

Target Audience: Skills in Development Education course participants.

Session learning objectives:

Materials Needed:


Activity outline:

Approx Time


45 Minutes

Group witnesses Comhlámh’s First Wednesday Debate (or views documentary or reads newspaper article)

15 Minutes

Gallery Walk


15 Minutes

They discuss their newfound understandings and opinions on the issue of economic growth

Victor Lebow, Price Competition in 1955, www.



Feedback & suggestions:

We are at a unique point in human history; we are at the limits of growth, the maximum extent of the global economy that will ever be.

Facilitators explained very well how the activity fit into a complete workshop.

David Korowicz

The quotes used for the gallery walk provided a wide variety of viewpoints and so encouraged participants to reflect and discuss the issue. They included a useful mix of facts and opinions. They were short and there weren’t too many of them so people easily had time to read and comment on them within the time given.

The activity used individual reflection, small group discussion and then discussion with the entire group. This gave participants the space to clarify their own thoughts before speaking to others, and to share their ideas in a small, and therefore less intimidating, group before having to speak in front of everyone. The post-its allowed people who didn’t want to talk to share their views.

For this activity the group would need to be highly literate and understand economic language. Facilitators could have checked if the group needed any terms explained and could have included images or cartoons.

The facilitators used the space in the room well. The activity allowed participants to move around and choose whom they wanted to talk to.

The main reason that economic growth continues is human ingenuity and the capacity to do things differently and that leads to technological changes which allow us to use resources more efficiently. Dan O’Brien The average European consumes three times as many resources as the average Asian and four times as many as the average Africa. Comhlámh report, The New Resource Grab We have to continue to encourage people those who have disposable income - to spend in the domestic economy. Brian Cowen There is no alternative. Margaret Thatcher’s defense of the neo-liberal economic policies pursued by Britain In the advanced economies there is mounting evidence that ever-increasing consumption adds little to human happiness and may even impede it. Tim Jackson Our enormously productive economy… demands that we make consumption our way of life, that we convert the buying and use of goods into rituals, that we seek our spiritual satisfaction, our ego satisfaction, in consumption… We need things consumed, burned up, replaced and discarded at an everaccelerating rate.  Victor LeBeau Six months after the date of sale, only 1% of the stuff we purchase is still in use! This is by design. After the Second World War, the American economy needed stimulating. The government and corporations decided to make consumption the priority. Annie Leonard


Global Land Grab Video and gallery walk

Facilitators: Tom & Ana

Activity Outline: 1.

Watch the video outlining how rising food prices have launched a global scramble for fertile land, and how companies buy land from governments without consulting the people living on that land. ‘Land-grab’ for food security: (5.33 min)


Use the images and quotes to launch a discussion. Divide participants into groups of 3. Each person chooses a quote or an image that they consider relevant for the subject. Each group discusses their images and quotes. (5 min)


Reconvene the participants and discuss the issue through open debate. (5 min)


Discuss: ‘How can we help small farmers tackle hunger within their communities and improve global food production’ (3 min)


Evaluation: Participants choose from a range of emotional flash cards provided by the facilitators. Provide three blank sheets of paper for participants who can’t find the emotion they are feeling described in the flash cards. The participants can draw or write how the session made them feel.

Target Audience: Adults with no previous knowledge of the subject.

Session learning objectives: Learn how countries from the Global South are affected by the global economy Learn how hunger and poverty can be alleviated or further entrenched by actions of countries in the Global North.

Activity learning objectives: Learners will: Become familiar with the Global Land Grab issue; Form a critical opinion on the issue; Draw up ideas of: ‘How can we help small farmers tackle hunger within their communities and improve global food production.’

Emoticon Flash Cards Illustration: John Spooner


Excerpts from Quotes used: The world's largest palm oil producer Indonesia is due to implement a two-year ban on granting new concessions of land to plantation companies in forest areas. There are also restrictions on the availability of land in Malaysia. This has led companies like Sime Darby, which has more than half a million hectares of palm oil in Indonesia and Malaysia, to look elsewhere.

(Foreign direct) investment can help (developing countries) achieve food sufficiency and food security within their borders, to restore the land with sustainable practices, and to promote long-term development. If the end goal is really to resolve the food and climate crises, all investment flows should be assessed based on their ability to achieve this. Alexandra Spieldoch, The Institute for Policy Studies, 18/06/2009

Tom Levitt, The Ecologist, 25/03/2011 Before it fell apart, the proposed land deal between Madagascar and the South Korean company Daewoo would have included nearly half of the country's arable land. The lease would have lasted 99 years, with virtually no required taxes or other benefits flowing back to Madagascar or to the local community. Not surprisingly, the public in Madagascar rose up in protest, which contributed to the overthrow of the government. Alexandra Spieldoch, The Institute for Policy Studies, 18/06/2009 Rich governments and corporations are triggering alarm for the poor as they buy up the rights to millions of hectares of agricultural land in developing countries in an effort to secure their own long-term food supplies. Julian Borger, The Guardian The World Bank appears deeply torn on this issue. While one report endorses the Bank's open-door globalisation agenda, the subtext dissents on every page. "Large land acquisitions come at a high cost…It warns of a "resource curse" that may enrich a small elite, leaving wreckage behind. Ambrose Evans-Pritchard, Telegraph Media Group Limited, 2011

Feedback & suggestions:

At the African Union (AU), the agriculture • commissioner, Facilitators explained very well how the activity Rhoda Peace Tumusiime, is fit into a complete workshop. worried that many land buyers are ignoring the of local farmers communities. • interests The quotes used for theand gallery walk provided a But the AU also recognises that new wide variety of viewpoints and bringing so encouraged capital into Africa could be positive if it is participants to reflect and discuss the issue. The directed in athe rightmix way.of facts and opinions. They included useful

were shortPagano, and there weren’t too many of Margareta them so people easily had time to read and comment Currently thetime African countries of on themnone withinofthe given. interest to investors achieve even a quarter of • itsThe activityproductivity. used individual reflection, potential Rather than justsmall focus group discussion and then discussion withit the only on an expansion of uncultivated land, group. This gave participants the space isentire important that investors and governments to clarify their own thoughts before speaking support improvements in technology, to others, andand to share their ideas in aimprove small, infrastructure, institutions that can and therefore less intimidating, group before productivity on existing farmland, having to speak in front of everyone. The post-its Klaus Deininger, World Bank Report: Rising allowed people who didn’t want to talk to share Global Interest in Farmland their views. •

For this activity the group would need to be highly literate and understand economic language. Facilitators could have checked if the group needed any terms explained and could have included images or cartoons.

The facilitators used the space in the room well. The activity allowed participants to move around and choose whom they wanted to talk to.


Critical Review of Human Rights Negotiations Role Play Facilitators: Amy & Freda

Session Aim: To enable participants to assess the relevance of human rights; To enable participants to critically reflect upon the worth of human rights as a means of bringing justice and reconciliation;

Activity outline: 1.

Participants are divided into 5 groups and given the scenario.


Role cards are then distributed to each group and they are given 4 minutes to discuss and prepare before mock negotiations take place.


Explain to them that negotiations have been called to discuss a peaceful and mutually beneficial solution to the problems in the Gaza strip and the lifting of the blockade. Your group must select a representative to speak on their behalf at these negotiations.


Ask them in groups discuss their role and viewpoint and elect one group member to speak at negotiations on their behalf.


Each group has 1 minute approx to present their case with 3 minutes extra for further discussion at the negotiation table.


Feedback from participants.

To enable participants to reflect upon enforcement of human rights at state and civil society levels.

Target Audience: 20 adults taking part in 6 week development education course on Israel and Palestine. This activity takes place near the end of session 4 after a discussion on human rights, group work on human rights reports, and examination of case studies.

Activity learning objectives: Participants will assess human rights and responsibilities from different perspectives in the Israeli/ Palestinian conflict by role playing negotiations to ease the humanitarian crisis in Gaza.

Feedback & Suggestions:


Excluding the Hamas representative effectively highlighted real-world comparisons but facilitators also pointed out the fictitious nature of the scenario. The role play demonstrated how difficult these kinds of negotations are.

The activity was clearly introduced and the role play was facilitated very well, with both facilitators sharing the space.

The scenario needs to be focused on one event since the activity already demands a lot of knowledge from the group.

To carry out this activity participants would need to know a lot about this issue (as stated in the activity outline).

The roles provided useful and relevant information. They ensured there was a diversity of viewpoints represented. They allowed participants to empathise with all of the roles and to understand the many issues that affect each role’s views on the situation.

Facilitators allowed the role play to have its own life and clearly enjoyed the discussions.

They were well informed about the issue.

More time to debrief after the role play would have been useful.

Scenario Negotiations have been called to discuss a peaceful and mutually beneficial solution to the problems in the Gaza strip and the lifting of the blockade. Your group must select a representative to speak on their behalf at these negotiations.

Background The Gaza strip has been under an economic blockade imposed by the Israeli state since 2006 when Hamas were elected to government. This has resulted in trade and aid embargoes, travel restrictions, food, fuel and medical shortages. In addition Israel launched Operation Cast Lead, a military assault on Gaza on Dec 27th 2008. This operation left 1,455 Palestinians dead and over 5,000 injured. 14 Israelis died and 182 were injured. Gaza has remained blocked ever since making reconstruction and access to proper medical care almost impossible.

Role cards Palestinian viewpoint 1 - Fatah You are a Palestinian politician from the Fatah party. Your family have been displaced and your land confiscated. Your home has been home demolished, your friends wounded and in some cases killed. The blockade of Gaza has left many people unable to rebuild their homes and dependent on food aid. There is an international aid embargo for your people yet Israeli trade continues unharmed despite numerous international human rights violations. You want to negotiate an end to the blockade and a start point for the rebuilding of Gazan infrastructure. You believe in the right to return to your homes, for an end to apartheid and for democracy in your country.

Palestinian viewpoint 2 - Hamas You are a democratically elected minister in the Hamas party that governs Gaza. You have seen your people suffer because of Israel's blockade of Gaza. Your family have been displaced and your land confiscated. Your home has been home demolished, your friends wounded and in some cases killed. The blockade of Gaza has left many people unable to rebuild their homes and dependent on food aid. There is an international aid embargo for your people yet Israeli trade continues unharmed despite numerous international human rights violations. You believe in the right to return to your homes, for an end to apartheid and for democracy in your country. You are banned from attending negotiations because Israel, the US and the EU view your party as a terrorist organisation. You must decide how best to affect change from the position you and your party are in.

Israeli viewpoint You are an Israeli government official. You believe that Israel has offered Palestine every opportunity for peace, even agreeing to a two-state land agreement. Numerous efforts to end the violent confrontation and renew the peace process have failed due to the ongoing and escalating Palestinian terrorism supported by the Palestinian Authority. You believe that Israel is entitled to the land it holds and is making every effort to aid the Palestinian economy and to have two separate and non-violent states. You believe that the blockade is neccessary to stop terrorists from importing weapons.

International human rights organisation viewpoint You believe that Palestinian national, human and democratic rights are gravely violated by Israeli state policy. You believe that the blockade of Gaza is inhumane and constitutes collective punishment of the civilian population. You believe that Israel is in direct contravention of international human rights law by building the wall in the West Bank as it is built largely in Palestinian territory. You work to highlight Israel's lack of compliance with international law, the Geneva Convention and the terms of its trade agreements. You are concerned with statistics that show the level of Palestinians being displaced, with homes destroyed and limited access to education and healthcare. You are also concerned with the aid embargo in Gaza.

US viewpoint You are an American representative of the Middle East Quartet, a group made up of the UN, USA, EU and Russia established in 2002 to negotiate for peace in the Middle East. Your government gives approx 3 billion in bilateral military aid to Israel each year. Your country has a free trade agreement with Israel to export/import goods. A recent poll shows that the American people see Israel as a strong world ally and often US foreign policy seems to have a pro-Israel mentality.

UN viewpoint You have been working on the ground in Gaza during and since Operation Cast Lead. You have condemned Israel's use of illegal weapons and disproportionate force during Cast Lead and have referred publicly to the blockade as collective punishment which has turned Gaza into an 'open-air prison'. You work with Palestinian NGOs and run your own UN schools. You believe that Gazans should be allowed to import what they need to rebuild their lives, homes, infrastructure and society, that the blockade must be lifted immediately and that Gazans should be allowed freedom to travel and to export.


Group works

Roleplay and Group Discussion Facilitators: Jim

Session Aim: Participants will identify factors that develop positive change to happen in a community.

Target Audience: Skills in Development Education course participants.

Activity learning objectives: Participants will develop negotiation skills and deepen their understanding of other people’s needs and viewpoints.

Materials needed:

Scenario You are a group of residents, local authority, HSE and the Gardai. You always work as a consultation group in your community. There is a grant available for your community to promote a community development project for all the inhabitants of your area. The grant (€15000) for the project must be beneficial for the entire community, but mostly for youths and elderly. On your first meeting, you discussed several suggestions and you need to decide what to do and how to plan it: The suggestions were: •

A carnival to raise awareness in the community of issues affecting the community such as antisocial behaviour, drugs and alcohol.

An event that will be a showcase for all of the activities in the community.

A festival on arts and drama, involving youths and young people.

A week of activities, workshops and seminars with the participation of the policy makers, stakeholders and the community.

Role card Scenario card Flipchart paper and pens

Activity outline:



Show the powerpoint presentation.


Divide participants into 5 groups.


Give each group a role card and the scenario. Explain the scenario to the group.


Give them a few minutes to discuss and prepare before the community meeting takes place.


Ask them to start the meeting and observe the discussions.


Read through the discussion and reflection suggestions to finish.

A good decision must be taken immediately as time is running out. The project must show who will be targeted and what you expect from it.

Role Cards •

Women’s network for the area

Youth worker from the community

Garda officer

Local authority community worker

Elderly association

Committee members' discussion and reflection questions •

How did you participate in this meeting?

Did you feel listened to?

Did you listen to others?

Were you clear about the purpose of the meeting?

What feelings do you think others had during the meeting?

What interventions worked well?

What was not so helpful?

What would you do differently?


Factors that help develop positive change to happen in a community 33 Tap into people’s frustration and anger on issues, so that they will be motivated and energized to do something about their situation or problems 33 Seek out allies who connect to the same situation and have a commitment and will to support us 33 When things are not fair but unequal people get angry and want to change their situation 33 Take collective action – like petitions or marches to protest 33 Take leadership and initiate and plan actions – communicate to others – coffee morning, dropins 33 Form a group and plan actions and solutions to community problems 33 Run different events to get people involved and motivated 33 Research who in authority is responsible and have them accountable to the community 33 Take ownership and power on local issues that affect you 33 Raise awareness and highlight problems, know your rights and take leadership

Feedback & suggestions: •

The powerpoint information was excellent and was presented very well. Another option could be to ask the group to brainstorm their own thoughts on this issue first and then show them the powerpoint.

The information on the powerpoint complimented the role play activity in that it enabled participants to take a step back from the roles they had played and to relate their experience during the role play to the advice on the powerpoint. It might have worked better to do the roleplay first and then show the powerpoint as it would have resonated more with participants.

When the group’s discussion didn’t follow the plan for the activity the facilitator tried to steer it back to the plan. It would have worked better to stay with the discussion the group was having, since roleplays are unpredictable and you have to follow them wherever they go.

The scenario and roles gave the participants a lot to work with and set the scene for an enjoyable and realistic role play.

Debriefing a Role Play Activity Immediately after a drama activity it is useful to discuss the issue while learners are still in their role. This will enable them to really explore how their role feels and to identify why they feel that way. In this way they will deepen their understanding of their role’s life experience. During activities they may act out a conflict or disagreement with other learner so they may feel a bit angry or upset at this point. Before they can objectively discuss the issue they need to step out of their role. You can do this in a variety of ways. It can be useful to get learners to do something symbolic or physical e.g. give back or rip up their role card, take off a prop they were using, turn around, and so on. This action reinforces them giving up their role and becoming themselves again. They are then able to discuss the issue from their own point of view. This is an important step because it enables them to identify their own feelings and deepen their understanding of why they feel this way.

33 Take an integrated approach to community issues – more power in numbers 33 Get other organisations involved in campaign – access funding and resources 33 Seek access to decision-making fora – taking community positions and representation on local issues with decision-makers.


6 Hats Session

Group discussion Facilitators: Janet, Ronan & Paul

Target Audience: Skills in Development Education course participants.

Activity learning objectives: Learners will: Develop an action plan; Understand the benefit of looking at an issue from many points of view.

Development Education methodologies used:   ‘Six Thinking Hats’ is used to look at decisions from a number of important, different perspectives; from a rational, emotional, optimistic, creative or negative viewpoint. This forces you to move outside your habitual thinking style, and helps you to get a more rounded view of a situation.

Activity outline:


The Situation: The members of this course will to continue to meet on Tuesdays and create a group focusing on development and other issues. It will be built around supportive practices for existing and new campaigns, networking, and sharing best practice & information. Please use the ‘6 Hats’ session to tease out and discuss any ideas, advice & potential problems surrounding the new group. 

Feedback & suggestions: •

The methodology was explained very well and the handout was clear.

The props made the activity fun and visual. When each group gave feedback the hats made their ‘style of thinking’ clear.

The facilitation and planning wasn’t equally shared between the three facilitators, however they did support each other well during the activity.

The feedback was facilitated well. Each group was kept focused on their task and comparisons between the points made by each group were identified and explored.


Explain the situation to the group.


Divide into six groups.


Give each group coloured hats and ‘Explanation of hat colour and function card’.

Facilitators checked on all of the groups while they were carrying out the activity.


After 10 minutes get each group to feedback and facilitate discussion.

The methodology supported the activity objectives.


Decide on a few action points.

It ably demonstrated to the group how to use this methodology however more time would be needed to fully carry out the activity.

Explanation of hat colour and function cards: White Hat:

Red Hat:

With this thinking hat, you focus on the data available. Look at the information you have, and see what you can learn from it.

'Wearing' the red hat, you look at problems using intuition, gut reaction, and emotion. Also try to think how other people will react emotionally. Try to understand the responses of people who do not fully know your reasoning.

Black Hat:

Yellow Hat:

Using black hat thinking, look at all the bad points of the decision. Look at it cautiously and defensively. Try to see why it might not work. This is important because it highlights the weak points in a plan.

The yellow hat helps you to think positively. It is the optimistic viewpoint that helps you to see all the benefits of the decision and the value in it. Yellow Hat thinking helps you to keep going when everything looks gloomy and difficult.

Green Hat:

Blue Hat:

The Green Hat stands for creativity. This is where you can develop creative solutions to a problem. It is a freewheeling way of thinking, in which there is little criticism of ideas.

The Blue Hat stands for process control. This is the hat worn by people chairing meetings. When running into difficulties because ideas are running dry, they may direct activity into Green Hat thinking. When contingency plans are needed, they will ask for Black Hat thinking, etc.

Graphic facilitation by Brandy Agerbeck,


Extra Resources Critical Review of Human Rights:

Global Land Grab:

Israeli Government Portal

The Transnational Institute

Suite 101 – freelance journalism

Share The World’s Resources

If Americans Knew – independent research and information organisation Congressional Research Service U.S. Foreign Aid to Israel UN Human Rights Council Report of United Nations Fact Finding Mission on The Gaza Conflict (TheGoldstone Report) hrcouncildocs/12session/A-HRC-12-48.pdf  Educating for Justice: Palestine Education  Amnesty International Israel/Gaza: Operation ‘Cast Lead’ - 22 Days of Death and Destruction - Facts and Figures documentphp?id=ENGMDE150212009 Al-Haq Position Paper, April 2009 Operation Cast Lead and the Distortion of International Law ofInternationalLaw.pdf Ireland Palestine Solidarity Campaign


Action Aid Ireland Sudan Tribune Institute of Development Studies Indigenous Peoples Issues & Resources Food Freedom Afronline The Voice of Africa International Food Policy Research Institute Food Crisis and the Global Land Grab Development Education website Ethiopia’s land rush: Feeding the world: video/2011/mar/21/ethiopia-land-rush

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