Cross-Atlantic Collaboration Leads to Students Creating Website About Ancient Fort

Craigavon, Co. Armagh – March 13, 2012

Students from Lurgan Junior High, Lismore Comprehensive School and the University of Notre Dame are spending the week working together to build a website to educate the community about the ancient fort on Lismore school grounds.  Lismore is hosting seven students from Notre Dame and four from Lurgan to collaborate on a comprehensive project that encompasses archaeology, cinematography, and digital technology.

This project is intended to foster innovation and creativity as the Lurgan and Lismore students develop technical skills crucial in today’s digital age. Many of the students knew little about the fort before beginning work on the project, and hope to raise the community’s awareness about its importance. Fionntán Fields, a year 10 student from Lismore, said of the project: “I hope that it will make the school and the community come together more.”

The grounds of Lismore School, one of the few Catholic schools in the area not named after a saint, include an ancient ring fort, or rath, that likely dates between 900 A.D. and 1200 A.D. Students from the three schools have embarked on a project to help teach the community about this important piece of history and culture that gives Lismore School its name. Lismore, or “lios mor,” means “big fort.”

Clodagh Cordner, a year nine student from Lurgan Junior High School (LJHS) interested in archaeology, said, “I’ve learned about different types of forts like ring forts and stone forts, why people build them and what life was like in that time.” Cordner said of the collaborative aspects of the project: “It gives me confidence to work with others and builds friendships.”

The Lismore and Lurgan students are focusing on specific aspects of the project in order to learn and develop new skills sets.  The students aim to have the site up by the end of the week and hope to continue to add to it after the Lurgan and Notre Dame students return home.

“The schools work really well together,” said Jonathan Ginesa, a year ten student from Lismore. “The people I’ve met and worked with from Notre Dame and Lurgan have been great.”

Jonny Hunter, a year nine student from LJHS, said of his experience so far: “At the very start, it was weird because I didn’t know anyone. I thought it was going to be hard to talk to people and make friends, but it’s been good so far. I love doing the photo editing.”

Caroline Maloney, a Notre Dame student in her last year of study, said, “I think we all have a lot to learn from each other. It’s really nice to hear the cross-cultural ideas and to see how they interplay. The students we’re working with have a great sense of idealism and creativity, and it’s great to organize all the ideas and make them into a website.“

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