A former taxi driver "took a chance" and drove his children to school because his wife was unwell and unable to drive, a court heard.
Yang Yu (36) was serving a five-year driving ban when he was stopped by gardai.
Judge Dermot Dempsey said Yu had shown a total disregard for road traffic legislation.
He fined Yu €200, banned him from driving for six years and imposed a three-month prison sentence.
The incident took place at Gainsborough Avenue, Malahide, last April 4.
Gda George Thurlow said he was on patrol at around 9am, when he stopped Yu driving a 2003-registered vehicle.
The officer said Yu admitted he was not insured to drive the car.
The court heard he has 13 previous convictions, and received a driving ban of five years in 2014.
Defence solicitor Fiona D'Arcy said Yu was married with four young children.
He has lived in Ireland for 15 years, is unemployed and on social welfare.
Ms D'Arcy said Yu previously worked as a taxi driver but was unable to continue in that field as he was disqualified.
She said Yu's wife, who has heart trouble, would normally take the children to school, but on this day she was sick, so Yu took a gamble and drove them himself. The court heard that Yu is completing a course in hospitality and tourism and is due to finish in September.
The defendant, with an address at Glen Ellan Court, Swords, admitted before Swords District Court to driv- ing without insurance or a licence.
Ms D'Arcy asked the judge not to send Yu to jail, and asked him to postpone sentencing so he could finish his course.
However, Judge Dempsey refused to postpone sentencing and imposed the three-month jail term, saying he was not prepared to "leave Yu out and about" as he had "no regard for the Road Traffic Acts".
Yu immediately appealed the sentence.