Throughout the year GOMA has a range of programmes, workshops and events tailored to the needs of youth engagement and education for various age groups and DEIS (Department of Education and Skills) schools. Such workshops and events are carried out by qualified, vetted and paid facilitators, some of which have participated in the Teacher Artist Partnership CPD residency programme.
Part of this programme includes Discovery Days. These are run throughout the year and are tailored to both primary and secondary schools. Discovery Days are briefed and tailored to the current exhibition. The Leaving Certificate gallery question is factored into the gallery discovery day and is run in two parts. Discovery Days is a free service provided by the gallery and is designed to introduce students and teachers to the gallery space to improve observation and aid in being comfortable in the gallery setting. Teachers and students are guided through the process of approaching art with a focus on discussion and critique. Descriptive language is engaged, analysis, interpretation, getting involved and making subjects personal is both encouraged and guided.
Seasonal workshops for primary schools are part of this programme where schools are invited to partake. It begins with an introduction to the gallery and exhibition followed by a workshop such as puppet making. Once the puppets are made, participants are encouraged to act out scenarios through their puppets during projects held throughout the year where students are asked to participate. The gallery space has a week in our programme allocated to primary schools’ exhibition projects. Previous projects have seen the artwork from primary schools printed on postcards and displayed in the gallery. It is encouraging that parents bring their children to this event as it is opened as a coffee morning with the aim of schools bringing communities together through their parents.