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Onsite Guided Tour: Game, Set, Match: The History of Sports in Irish Society

Tour at a glance

Level: 3rd - 6th Class
Group size: 15
Location: Clarke Square, Soldiers & Chiefs, Curator's Choice, Irish Silver, Airgead, Way We Wore, GAA: People, Object, Stories
Duration: 45 minutes
Available: Wednesday, Thursday, Friday
Booking: Available from February 2024. Please contact to book this session

From hair hurling balls dating from the 1500s to ladies camogie dresses from the 1960s, join Museum Guides on an engaging and interactive tour focuses on the development and evolution of Ireland's sociatal and sporting past.

This tour will explore the development of a variety of sports in Ireland, including Gaelic games, soccer, rugby, cricket and horse racing. It will also place the evlolution of these sports in a wider societal context, such as the concept of domestic and garrison games, social class, nationalism and independence, and gender. 

Curriculum links

SESE History

Working as a Historian
Time and chronology/ Using evidence/ Change and continuity/ Synthesis and communication/ Cause and effect/ Empathy

Myself and My Family
Games in the past/Feasts and Festivals in the past

Local studies
My locality through the ages

Stories from the lives, myths and legends of people in the past

Life, society, work and culture in the past
Irish society in early 20th century 

Politics, Conflict and Society
1916 and the foundation of the state 


Learning outcomes

  • Develop an understanding of the links between sports and the development of Irish society
  • Learn about the roles that social class and politics played in determining the sports people would play
  • Explore the changing role of women in sport ad society n Ireland
  • Examine the iconography of sport
  • Learn about sport and material culture
  • Making connections to local history
  • Developing an understanding of the importance of artefacts in our understanding of the past.

Resources and suggestions

Before your visit

  • Visit the Museum in advance, if possible, to get familiar with the layout, key objects and key narratives
  • Plan a project around your visit. Students could research key events and organisations

At the Museum
This tour will end in the Museum's recently opened exhibition: GAA, People, Objects, Stories. After your tour, take some time to explore the other key themes and topics in the exhibition. GAA, People: Object, Stories. 

After your visit

Ideas for post-visit activities:

  • Ask students to write a review of their museum visit
  • Hold a classroom discussion around the different sports examined during the tour
  • Consider the value of museums as places to display objects that connect us with our history

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Benburb St,
Dublin 7,
D07 XKV4

+353 1 677 7444