Image of a school tour as part of the Chester Beatty Schools Programme

Embracing Cultural Diversity in the Classroom: building an intercultural school’s programme Research and Development report

8 February, 2021

Chester Beatty launched an Intercultural museum programme for primary and post-primary schools in March 2020.  It offers students and their teachers the opportunity to explore world cultures in an Irish museum.  Participants are encouraged to engage with Chester Beatty’s Islamic, East Asian and European collections through a variety of activities including guided tours, self-guided visits, online learning resources and access to the extensive image gallery.

Intercultural dialogue and learning plays a key role in the museum’s mission and fosters dialogue with the communities represented in Chester Beatty’s unique collections.  These collections offer wonderful learning opportunities and support a number of key curricular areas from art history to world faiths. A range of free teaching resources are available to support self-guided visits and inspire activities back at school.

The research for developing the programme was carried out in co-operation with Mary Immaculate College, Limerick, Maynooth University, the Intercultural Education Service (Education Authority of Northern Ireland) and the UK Heritec Education Consultancy.  A key component of the development programme was the training of guides and facilitators in visual thinking strategies and object-based learning to reflect the school curriculum.

This report includes the background to the intercultural school’s project and includes definitions on intercultural dialogue and relevant policies, strategies and projects in both the formal education, arts and cultural sectors; the development of the intercultural school’s programme; analysis of current practices and methodologies; programme development including the training of volunteer guides, Continuous Professional Development of teachers; and pilot tours and evaluation.

Funded by Creative Ireland and the Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission.

Schools have full access to Chester Beatty’s remarkable treasures through the website thus allowing students and teachers to experience the Chester Beatty from the school desk or from home.    In addition, the CB’s new Digital Museum Guide app offers audio tours in 13 languages, virtual 3D walkthroughs of the museum, online browsing of the Chester Beatty’s world-renowned treasures, and a news section to highlight our extensive programme of events and activities.

For more details about the Chester Beatty Learning and Education Department please contact

Open today 9:45am - 5:30pm

Tuesday to Friday 9:45am - 5:30pm
Wednesday 9:45am - 8:00pm
Saturday 9:45am - 5:30pm
Sunday 12:00pm - 5:30pm

Closed Mondays: Nov - Feb
Closed 1 Jan; Good Friday; 24-26 Dec

Admission is Free
No booking required
Suggested donation €5


Chester Beatty
Dublin Castle
Dublin 2
D02 AD92