Creative Arts Summer School, 14-24 June 2021

Access Classics is excited to be part of the virtual Creative Arts Summer School 2021! This free Summer School, which is funded by the Department of Education and Skills Programme for Access to Higher Education (PATH) fund, aims to introduce participants from underrepresented groups to different pathways to higher education. It is a collaborative project run by the National College of Art and Design, MTU Crawford College of Art, Marino Institute of Education, RCSI University of Medicine & Health Sciences, University College Dublin, Institute of Art, Design and Technology, and Trinity College Dublin. During the Summer School, participants will be given the opportunity to participate in a virtual programme of, for example, creative arts workshops, campus tours and informative talks on course options and various student supports. Access Classics will give their workshop “Classics: The ancient world today” on 24 June. You can find more information on this exciting initiative here and here.

Young Classicist Awards 2021 winners

Congratulations to all winners and finalists of the Young Classicist Awards 2021! UCD Access Classics’ Dr Christopher Farrell and Dr Bridget Martin were delighted to act as judges, alongside Dr Cosetta Cadau (Department of Ancient Classics, Maynooth), Gina Mockler (UCD School of Education) and Dr Charlie Kerrigan (Department of Classics, Trinity), and were very impressed with the imagination, research and standard of the entries! Massive congratulations to all students and schools involved and to Seamus O’Sullivan for his fantastic organisation of the awards! Full details on the winning entries can be found here.

Education Awards 2021

Access Classics is delighted to be shortlisted for the Best Education Outreach Award for the Education Awards 2021! Congratulations to all those shortlisted – more information on each can be found here. We look forward to meeting everyone virtually during the online ceremony in May!

News from the Panoply Vase Animation Project!

Attention, everyone!! The excellent Panoply Vase Animation Project is joining forces with the University of Cambridge Schools Classics Project to launch five new animations to help bring the excitement of mythology and animation into classrooms! These animations, which were made for the Our Mythical Childhood project (through the Universities of Roehampton and Warsaw) all relate to Greek mythology: Heracles and the Erymanthian Boar, Dionysus, Iris, Libation, and Sappho 44.

The event will take place on 24 April, 1–5.30pm:

The animations will be shown during the first hour, and this will include, for the first time, the showing of a recording of Sappho 44 sung in Greek and accompanied by a lyre. It will be sung to the tune it would have had in antiquity – this is not to be missed!  

The remainder of the afternoon will be dedicated to a pedagogy session, which will begin with a short talk by an experienced teacher on using the animations to teach visual literacy in Greek Art. This will be followed by:

o   information on the materials available to accompany each animation

o   some brief information on how the animations fit in with the UK GCSE/A-Level curriculums**

o   some short presentations from teachers on their experiences of using the animations in the classroom

o   a look at the mini documentaries that Panoply has made to go with them

**Teachers of the Irish Junior and Senior Cycle Classics curricula might also find these very helpful and interesting!

For the Junior Cycle, all would be a great accompaniment to the core Myth strand, and Sappho 44 would work very well with both the World of the Achilles strand and the Ancient Greek language option!

For the current Senior Cycle, the animations of Dionysus and Sappho 44 could add to the Greek Drama and Ancient Epic topics, and all would feed into the Art and Architecture in Greek Society topic.

For the new Senior Cycle curriculum, the animations could be really helpful resources for the World of Heroes (Heracles and the Erymanthian Boar; Sappho 44), Drama and Spectacle (Dionysus) and Gods and Humans (Libation) strands.

You can find more information about this great event at this link, and you can book your place here

Students enjoying a Panoply workshop!

March update!

What a month! Access Classics has had a jam-packed few weeks – hold on to your hats…

Firstly, we were delighted to speak about our experience of setting up an education outreach programme at the UCD Agile Work Smarter Together 2021 Conference. It was great to share what we have learned and also to learn from others’ experiences – thank you and well done to all involved! Taking to heart the idea of working together, we joined forces with the fantastic SPARC UCDictionary team to create an exciting competition! Enter your favourite Ancient Greek or Latin word to the UCDictionary and you could win a prize! The competition is open until 5 April (see details in the post below) so there’s still time to enter!

Casting the net even wider, Access Classics was delighted to be part of the Creative Arts Spring School, an exciting initiative which gives participants the chance to take part in a virtual programme of, for example, creative arts workshops, campus tours and informative talks on course options and various student supports across six colleges and universities in Dublin. Through this Spring School, underrepresented groups are introduced to different pathways to higher education – how brilliant is that!? Access Classics was honoured to be part of this important initiative, and Dr Bridget Martin spent two wonderful Saturdays taking the engaged participants through a tour of connections between the ancient and modern world!

The Creative Arts Summer School is one of the projects of Dublin Learning City, a festival that promotes learning through an amazing range of creative online activities. With the encouragement of UCD Access and Lifelong Learning, Access Classics continued their participation in the festival by offering a virtual night at the UCD Museum! Dr Christopher Farrell took the audience through a ‘reading’ of a 2,300-year-old coin depicting Alexander the Great and Athena, the Greek goddess of war and wisdom! You can download the handout from the event in the post below!

Back on more familiar ground, Access Classics held online workshops in two second-level schools in early March, introducing the students to aspects of daily life in ancient Greece. Thank you to the Classics students and teachers of St Andrew’s and Sandymount Park ETSS for inviting us and being so attentive!

Speaking of online events…drumroll, please! Last week, we launched our podcast series on the ancient Greek gods, beginning at the top of the food chain with Zeus and Hera (click on the Podcast tab to have a listen!). Huge thanks to Eleanor Kellett and Maria Wood for their amazing work on the podcasts, and to Access Classics’ Tasneem Filaih for her editing wizardry! Working with the Classical Association of Ireland Teachers, we also released the first two of our videos addressing topics on the current Senior Cycle Classical Studies curriculum. Go to the Resources tab to listen to our videos on Greek Tragedy and Alexander!

Thank you so much to everyone involved in our activities this month!

A Virtual Night at the UCD Classical Museum

Join Access Classics for A Virtual Night at the UCD Classical Museum!

Tuesday 23 March at 6 pm

The talk can be accessed over Zoom. Simply click the link, and we’ll see you there!

If you would like to see other examples of the types of artefacts held at the UCD Classical Museum, check out our short tour on YouTube.


Attention all language lovers!!

Access Classics is delighted to join forces with the SPARC UCDictionary project in order to bring you an exciting competition! To enter, fill out the form at this link with your favourite Latin or Greek word(s) by 5 April 2021 and you could win a One4All voucher. The total prize value is up to €100!

If you would like to enter a word but are unsure of how to enter the original Greek script, just send us an email at and we can help. We look forward to reading your great entries!

Young Classicist Awards

Calling all young Classicists! The Young Classicist Awards 2021 is now open for entries! This exciting initiative encourages secondary-school students to present a project on any aspect of Classics – this can be a craft, such as a poster or a painting, or it can involve some manner of performance, such as singing or recitation.

The awards categories are as follows:

Robin Miller Award – Senior. This award is for senior competitors, from 4th to 6th year.

Dionysus Award – Junior. This award is for junior competitors, from 1st to 3rd year.

Athena Award. This is open to all students, and it encourages students to connect their project to one of the UN sustainable development goals.

Palma Lingua Antiqua. This award is open to all students who have Ancient Greek and/or Latin as a substantial part of their project.

The deadline for entries is 23 April 2021, and all entries must be submitted digitally. Full details on entry requirements and dates, past winners and contact information can be found in the documents below. Access Classics was delighted to be part of the Young Classicist Awards last year, and we can’t wait to see all the great entries this year! Good luck to all!

For a copy of the brochure, poster, success criteria and application form, please click on the images below.



Success criteria:

Application form:

Access Classics Website Webinar Launch

The launch of our website ( last Wednesday brought a spring to our step during a dreary January! Our webinar event, hosted by the Head of the School of Classics, Dr Martin Brady, comprised the Access Classics team (Ms Tasneem Filaih, Dr Bridget Martin and Dr Christopher Farrell) giving an overview of the programme and invited panellists from schools which have participated in the programme from its infancy describing what Access Classics has brought to their schools and students.

Firstly, Dr Martin Brady introduced co-director of the programme Dr Bridget Martin, who discussed the aims and methodology of Access Classics. Dr Martin also discussed her Transition Year Unit, which she referred to as Access Classics’ “Trojan Horse” as it has the potential to introduce Classics to secondary schools throughout Ireland which currently cannot or do not offer Classics as a subject, as well as offering additional resources to those schools which do currently offer Classics and/or the Classical languages. Co-director Dr Christopher Farrell then spoke about current resources for the Junior and Senior Cycle Classics offerings (featured on our website!) and future resources to come down the line.

Mr Danny Delany, who is a Classics teacher in St Fintan’s High School, Sutton, discussed his class’ school trip to the UCD campus, hosted by Access Classics. The students were given a tour of the campus by UCD students and a tour of the Classical Museum by Dr Christopher Farrell and Dr Bridget Martin. He explained that the students were delighted to examine artefacts in person, bringing to life what they had previously seen only in pictures in school books! The excitement of this trip and a school visit by the Access team, Mr Delany said, generated conservation about and awareness of Classics as a subject in his school and is encouraging uptake of the subject. Mr Delaney also discussed an online session hosted by Dr Farrell during the pandemic, which his students enjoyed immensely!

(Anti-clockwise from top right) Ms Tasneem Filaih, Mr Danny Delany, Dr Louise Maguire, Dr Bridget Martin, Dr Christopher Farrell and Head of the School of Classics, Dr Martin Brady.

Dr Louise Maguire, head of Latin in Blackrock College, also discussed her and her students’ experience as one of the pilot schools for the Access Classics programme. During her presentation, Dr Maguire described her students’ joy at being able to handle artefacts from the ancient world during an object handling session and showed some very interesting examples of the Transition Year Unit resources being used in the classroom, particularly those related to language! Dr Maguire also highlighted the benefit of having a ready source of information for pupils to ask about the pursuit of Classics at third level, and she explained the value of the sense of community which the programme can bring to teachers and students alike.

The website launch ended with a quick reflection on what would be coming soon to the website, how schools could engage and interact with Access Classic, and the current and upcoming social media tools generated and overseen by Ms Tasneem Filaih, co-founder and team member of Access Classics. Dr Brady ended the webinar by thanking all attendees for joining and the panellists for presenting. He also offered special congratulations to the Access Classics team on their recent (December 2020) UCD Values In Action award!

Access Classics would like to thank once again Dr Louise Maguire and Mr Danny Delaney for sharing their and their students’ experiences of Access Classics and everyone who gave up an hour of their very limited time to join us for the launch! Make sure to keep an eye on our website for new resources and to keep up to date with our news, and get in contact if you have any questions, requests or suggestions!