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Ireland: Giant's Causeway, Irish Stew, & the Blarney Stone

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I am a Christian. I was an 8th-grade American History teacher. I am currently a freelance writer, public speaker, & homeschooling mom of 9.

Image credit: http://www.iwanttobehere.com/

Image credit: http://www.iwanttobehere.com/

Do you want to know more about Ireland? Are you a lover of travel, geography teacher, homeschooling or involved parent, student, or life-long learner? In an effort to make world geography more meaningful and memorable, I've compiled all you will need to locate Ireland on a map, cook an Irish meal, watch YouTube clips on Ireland, color the flag, create an Irish craft, read a book about Ireland, and more! This is part of a fun series of lessons covering world geography. You can find the links for all the countries at Around the World in 26 Letters.

Map showing Ireland

Map showing Ireland

Where is Ireland?

Locate Ireland on this map of Europe. Use this map of Ireland to label the capitol, Dublin.

Mark other relevant features (rivers, mountains, famous locations, etc.) if desired.

If you'd like to spend a bit more time researching the country, you can add the language, currency, type of government, religion, and/or famous landmarks. Write them on the back of the map.

You can easily find all this information at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ireland.

Giant's Causeway

Giant's Causeway

Fun Facts About Ireland

1. The cloudiest place in Ireland, Eireann Omag, supposedly only receives as little as 3 hours of sunlight each day.

2. The most popular purchases made by tourists in Ireland are Guinness glasses, Waterford Crystal, blackthorn walking sticks, & Aran Isle sweaters.

3. An unusual Irish birthday tradition is to lift the birthday child upside down and gently bump his head on the floor, 1 time for each year the child has been alive plus one. This is supposed to bring the child good luck.

4. To celebrate Saint Patrick's Day, the Irish do not wear green. Instead, their tradition is to pin sprigs of shamrocks on their coats in remembrance of St. Patrick, who used the shamrock to illustrate the 3-in-1 idea of the Holy Trinity.

5. Giant's Causeway, one of the most popular attractions in Ireland, is an area of about 40,000 interlocking hexagonal basalt columns. According to legend, these were the result of a giant building a road and then tearing it up after being outwitted by Fionn.

Info Credit

i-is-for-ireland

Irish Meal

Prepare and eat:

  • Traditional Irish Stew,
  • Irish Soda Bread,
  • Guinness (for adults if desired), and
  • Brown Lemonade (lemonade with food coloring added to make it the color of ale). (You can read more about Brown Lemonade at wikipedia.org.)
  • Finish off the meal with Irish Breakfast Tea with cream (or milk) and sugar and
  • Gran's Apple Tart. Gran's Apple Tart was one of our family's favorite desserts from all the various countries that tried during this culinary adventure.
Irish Stew

Irish Stew

Irish Stew

Irish Stew is traditionally a very simple low-cost meal.

Prep timeCook timeReady inYields

10 min

1 hour

1 hour 10 min

6

Ingredients

  • 2 large onions
  • 4 large carrots
  • 1/2 stewing steak or mince or lamb
  • 8 large peeled potatoes
  • salt & pepper (to taste)

Instructions

  1. Cut all ingredients into small, bite-size chunks. (If using stewing mince, roll it into small meatballs.) Fill a pot with water and add the potatoes and meat. Bring it to a boil and then add the carrots and onions. Simmer the stew for about an hour or until the ingredients are tender. Season with salt and pepper. (This recipe came from yourirish.com.)
Irish Soda Bread

Irish Soda Bread

Irish Soda Bread

Irish Soda Bread is traditionally served with breakfast but we ate it with our stew for dinner.

Prep timeCook timeReady inYields

7 min

28 min

35 min

6-8

Ingredients

  • 4 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups buttermilk (or 1 tsp. lemon juice and 1 1/2 cups milk)

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 425°F and spray a baking sheet with non-stick cooking spray. Mix the ingredients together. If desired, turn the dough out onto a lightly floured counter top or sheet of wax paper and knead lightly. Place the dough onto the baking sheet and shape it into a round loaf. Use a knife or kitchen shears to create a cross shape on the top. Bake for 25 minutes and serve warm. (This recipe came from yourirish.com.)
Gran's Irish  Apple Tart

Gran's Irish Apple Tart

Gran's Apple Tart

Apple Pie/Tart recipes were usually passed down from one generation to the next. They are still a common dessert enjoyed in Ireland. The crust is quite different from American Apple Pie. Of all the desserts we tried while studying various countries, this was one of my children's favorite desserts.

Prep timeCook timeReady inYields

35 min

25 min

1 hour

8

Ingredients

  • FILLING:
  • 3 large peeled Granny Smith apples that have been cored and sliced thinly
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1 Tablespoon freshly grated ginger
  • PASTRY:
  • 3 1/2 cups flour
  • 2/3 heaping cup sugar
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cup butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 egg plus 2 egg yolks
  • 1 egg beaten with 1 teaspoon of water (for sealing and glazing the top)
  • FOR SERVING:
  • ice cream or whipped cream

Instructions

  1. 1) To make the filling, place all the ingredients together and let sit for 30 minutes.
  2. 2) Preheat the oven to 350F. Spray a 10-inch oven safe dinner plate, tart pan, or baking sheet with non-stick cooking spray.
  3. 3) To make the pasty , combine the flours, salt & sugar in a large bowl. Cut in the butter until coarse crumbs form. Mix in the vanilla and 1 egg plus 2 egg yolks. Add a couple teaspoons of water if the dough is too stiff. Knead the dough on a floured surface for a few minutes and then divide into 2 balls. Roll each ball into a 1/4 - 1/2 inch thick circle.
  4. 4) To assemble the tart, place the bottom pastry onto the plate/pan/baking sheet. Fill with apples. Brush the outer edge of the bottom pastry with the beaten egg. Top with the second pastry. If desired, top with decorated bits of pastry. Crimp the pastry edges together. If desired, brush the top crust with the beaten egg and slice 4 slits in the middle on the top to allow steam to escape.
  5. 5) Bake for 1 hour or until golden brown. Serve warm with whipped cream, custard, or vanilla ice cream.
  6. (This recipe & photo came from marriedanirishfarmer.com.)
Flag of Ireland

Flag of Ireland

Ireland's Flag

Print and color the flag of Ireland and learn the history and meaning of it from http://en.wikipedia.org/.

Visiting Ireland on YouTube

When I was searching out YouTube video clips that provided helpful information about Ireland, these were our favorites, They are completely child-friendly and my children found them to be the most interesting from all the options we watched.

Blarney Stone Craft Image Credit: http://crafts.kaboose.com/kissed-blarney-stone.html

Blarney Stone Craft Image Credit: http://crafts.kaboose.com/kissed-blarney-stone.html

Kissed Blarney Stone

Make a kissed Blarney Stone Craft by following the directions from crafts.kaboose.com.

Find more great activity ideas at crafts.lovetoknow.com and activityvillage.co.uk.

Our Favorite Picture Books About Ireland

Pray for the people of Ireland

To find out about the religious nature of Ireland and specific ways you can pray for the country, go to http://www.operationworld.org/country/irel/owtext.html .

Where is Dublin, the capital of Ireland?

Other countries starting with the letter I

Would you prefer to study a different country? Try one of these.

Iceland

India

Indonesia

Iran

Iraq

Israel

Italy

Go to http://iijuan12.hubpages.com/hub/around-the-world-in-26-letters to find links to all the countries we "visited." Each webpage features a menu, craft, books, video clips, worksheets, and more!

© 2012 Shannon

What first comes to mind when you think of Ireland? - Or just leave a note to let me know you dropped by! I love getting feedback from you!

Shannon (author) from Florida on March 06, 2015:

Thank you so much!

Lee Cloak on March 06, 2015:

Nice hub, an interesting read, thanks!

Shannon (author) from Florida on November 30, 2012:

@one SquidAddict: Dublin looks like a beautiful place to visit!

one SquidAddict on November 30, 2012:

I have been to Dublin a few times but hope to go back and explore the south west.

Shannon (author) from Florida on August 22, 2012:

@Elyn MacInnis: Definitely! Thank you for stopping by!

Elyn MacInnis from Shanghai, China on August 22, 2012:

I would love to visit Ireland - I hear that they have some really fantastic food, and I love the bagpipes and Celtic music. Sounds like a lot of fun!

Shannon (author) from Florida on August 22, 2012:

@melissiaoliver: Good to know! Thank you!

melissiaoliver on August 22, 2012:

Nice lens, (although the Giant's Causeway is actually in Northern Ireland, not the Republic!) The recipes look really yummy, I'll have to try them out some day!

Shannon (author) from Florida on August 21, 2012:

@PlethoraReader: Thank you so much for dropping by!

Matthew from Silicon Valley on August 21, 2012:

I have indeed and enjoyed this amazing country. Granted driving on those narrow country roads were a bit of a challenge, but it really is a beautiful fascinating country.

Shannon (author) from Florida on August 20, 2012:

@aquarian_insight: I would love to visit Eireann Omag too! Thank you for dropping by!

aquarian_insight on August 20, 2012:

I think I'd love to visit Eireann Omag as I love cloudy days. I have not had the pleasure of visiting Ireland as yet, but I plan to do that soon. Thank you for so much information.

Shannon (author) from Florida on August 16, 2012:

@SheilaMilne: Thank you for stopping by!

Shannon (author) from Florida on August 16, 2012:

@pawpaw911: Yes, we have a family Irish Stew recipe as well.

Shannon (author) from Florida on August 16, 2012:

@LoriBeninger: Thank you! So do I!

Shannon (author) from Florida on August 16, 2012:

@RinchenChodron: Thank you!

RinchenChodron on August 16, 2012:

Fun to read this lens.

LoriBeninger on August 16, 2012:

How fun...I want to visit!

pawpaw911 on August 16, 2012:

I have never visited, but I would like to some day. I have a couple of branches of my tree that go back there. About the only thing that has survived in my family from there though, is Irish Stew.

SheilaMilne from Kent, UK on August 16, 2012:

I was born there and hope to visit home again before too long. :)

Shannon (author) from Florida on August 08, 2012:

@Max Globe: Thank you!

Shannon (author) from Florida on August 08, 2012:

@Travel Shepherd: Thank you! So what you're saying is that I really should go ahead and make the homemade pie crust rather than simply substitute the Pillsbury pie crust from the store? I guess we'll try it again. I don't think it will be too difficult to convince my children that we need to make another apple pie!

Max Globe on August 08, 2012:

Nice work, soldier :)

Michael Shepherd from Ennis, Co. Clare, Ireland on August 08, 2012:

Hi, Good job of encompassing Ireland.

However, that doesn't look like the apple pie that I find in Ireland; the standard is a tart with lots of pastry and little apple.

Cheers,

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