Our Lady’s Secondary School History tour to Berlin


Before Christmas a group of forty five senior history students from Mr. Kelly’s and Mr. O Boyle’s history classes in Our Lady's Secondary School, Castleblayney had the opportunity of bringing their Leaving Certificate History syllabus to life when they visited the historical German city of Berlin from December 5th to December 8th.

After arriving on Wednesday afternoon the students visited the Jewish Museum where they were divided into three groups and covered key topics such as Jewish response to National Socialism, the emergence of Jews in the modern world and women in Judaism.

Next up, the students had the opportunity to get into the festive spirit with a visit to the world renowned Berlin Christmas markets as well as relaxing with some ice skating in the outdoor skating arenas.

Thursday began with a guided tour, taking in the political, economic and social history of the city including features such as the Brandenburg Gate, Holocaust Memorial, Berlin Wall and a visit to the former headquarters of the SS the Topography of Terror.

This was followed by an interesting and informative visit to Stasi Prison used for holding political prisoners during the Cold War period, while on Thursday evening the students had the opportunity to visit the German Parliament headquarters at the Reichstag.

Friday was also an event- filled day beginning with an eagerly anticipated visit to Sachsenhausen Concentration Camp which was used by Hitler and the Nazi’s during World War 2.

After overcoming the initial disappointment of the main camp being closed due to weather, the students were treated to an excellent talk and exhibition on the history of the camp and its role during World War 2.

This was followed by a visit to the Olympic Stadium were students marvelled at the magnificent architecture and history of this famous building.

On Saturday evening a tired and weary group arrived home safely to Castleblayney with many interesting facts and additional knowledge that can be put to good use in the months ahead as well as many treasured memories that will last a lifetime.