What you might need to know

  • This lesson focuses on levels of decision-making. It sounds daunting but children get it really well. We use a Russian doll to explain how each level is nestled into a bigger one. It’s not the EU that will decide what books are bought for the local library and it’s not the Lord Mayor who will decide on air pollution targets for the EU. We play the Decision-making game with the sheets that you will find in the Resource section.
  • The second part of the lesson deals with the Single Market. We get the children to define what a market is – you buy and sell goods in a market. Single means one/united. So we explain how the European Union has developed a Single Market where there is no internal barrier or tax when you sell goods from Cork to Berlin just like there’s none if you sell the same goods from Cork to Galway.
  • The Single Market is absolutely crucial for the children to understand. It is underpinned by four key freedoms of movement: freedom of movement of people, goods, capital and services. For example, the UK didn’t want to apply the freedom of movement of people. As much as the UK has been accommodated since it has come into the EU with a lesser contribution to the EU budget or an option not to take part in the Euro, this was absolutely not acceptable. Those 4 freedoms of movement are the DNA of the EU.
  • To get the children involved, we distribute toys, puzzles or bulb packages and get them to find the common label which indicates that this was produced according the standards of safety of the Single Market. No matter where it is made, as long as it has a CE on it (which stands for Conformity européenne – European conformity) then it is meeting the adequate EU standards no matter whether you buy your toy in Romania or Portugal.
  • The last slide for this lesson refers to the EU rule which says that no meat injected with antibiotics or hormones can be imported into the EU. This is why it is important to check what will come from the UK into Ireland and therefore the EU since the EU rules will not apply to the UK anymore.