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GAA oral history project kicks off at Scariff school

Clare’s Colin Ryan with transition year pupils at Scariff Community College at the launch of their GAA Oral History Project. Photograph by Declan Monaghan

PUPILS at Scariff Community College took on the roles of historians last Friday as they began their GAA Oral History Project by interviewing their teacher and All-Ireland hurling U-21 medal holder, Colin Ryan.
The national project, which forms part of the 125th anniversary of the GAA, aims to record the rich, diverse and complex history of the GAA through the words of local people.
It involves the chosen interviewee filling out a questionnaire and an audio recording of the interview with the person is also made. The project is being run by the GAA and Boston College.
Transition year pupils from Scariff Community College kick-started their project by recording Colin Ryan, a member of the successful U-21 Clare team. Currently teaching in the school, the pupils focused in on Colin’s big day at the All-Ireland final and also asked questions about preparation and his training regimes.
As part of the project, pupils will be interviewing many people in the East Clare area about their involvement, experiences and memories of the GAA over the coming months. Each pupil will carry out two interviews.
The pupils are participating in the project as part of their Irish class studies. Irish  teacher, Darina Sheridan explained, “In transition year, an opportunity is given to study various aspects of Irish culture, not just focusing on written and spoken Irish and so the GAA Oral History Project lends itself very nicely to the cultural module of Irish class for the students”.
The project will be running in the community college over the course of this school year and it is hoped that before the final project is sent to the GAA for archiving, a local exhibition may be organised.
All the material gathered through the research for the project will form part of an archive, which will ultimately transfer to the GAA museum in Croke Park where it will be made available to future generations.


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