Notes from the Comenius Meeting in Spain,
Tuesday 28th October to Thursday 30th October, 2008
CP Riomar School, Castro Urdiales, Spain (Hosts)
Volksschule, Oberbergkirchen, Bayern, Germany
Secondary School Number 1, Rovinari. Gorj, Romania
Skipper Clement School International Department
Visit to Riomar School
Participants were given a very interesting and captivating tour of the school. All classes were visited, plus the IT suite and gymnasium. The behaviour of the children was extemporary and welcoming. There were interesting displays all through the school, which is modern and well equipped. Participants were particularly interested in the similarities and differences between the different school systems. It was also obvious that the Comenius work was well valued in the school. There was a prominent exhibition of the work in the school foyer.
A reception was held with a representative of the Cantabrian Education Department and the School Principal after which participants were able to talk with school staff over a buffet lunch. Participants were presented with excellent published books showing the children’s research into the history of Castro Urdiales.
A single site Comenius blog was created, with links to the individual schools blogs and websites- www.4environment.blogspot.com. This is to be used for announcements for all of the schools, and short items of general interest. More detailed and longer items and students work should be put on the individual school blogs as before, with an alert to the shared log so people know to look! It is also useful to email all the participants when you have put something on the blog site you wish them to see and take action from. Pictures should be put on the blogs using Picasa when possible.
Children should be encouraged to introduce themselves on their blogs. For child protection reasons it is best to use first names and an initial to identify the children.
Schools added their eco symbols to the blog sites.
Eco School Status
Paul explained about this international award that recognises the work of schools in sustainability and environmental enhancements. The first level is relatively easy to achieve. The website is www.eco-schools.org. Schools will need to navigate from this page to their own counties details to register. Most schools are also taking part in Agenda 21 activities in their home areas.
Our next project is to make an item using recycled materials. If possible this should be a Christmas present or decoration, but schools could do it at another time of the year if that is not convenient. Once finished it would be good if they could be photographed, and put on the blogs with a short description of their use, and how they were made.
Final meeting – Germany, May 12th to May 14th 2009.
More details to follow. The main activities will be to produce an evaluation of the project and decide on ways forward for the future.
Our Spanish hosts gave us a very interesting tour of the region including a fishing village and beach resort (Noja), the provincial capital of Santander, the world famous Altamira caves and the medieval mountain village of Santillana del Mar.
Tour of Castro Urdiales
The final day included a professionally guided tour of the historic sites of Castro, including the Romano-Gothic church, castle and old town. Participants met with the Mayor of Castro who welcomed them to the town and presented them with a book on the area.
Thank you to Jose and Ana for organising an excellent three days and looking after us so well! Thank you to all of the participants for the work they are doing in school and their friendly and cooperative approach to this vital project.
Paul Bish, 3rd November 2008.