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St Austin's

Catholic Primary School

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Romania Visit - Day 3

Friday May 24th: Vineri, 24 mai

We had a fabulous final day in Salva. Bright and early in the morning, we initially met in our partner school’s computer suite. Salva does not have the same number of computers that we have and the school is part of a government scheme to lend computers and tablets to the school and therefore they must follow a strict programme for computing lessons.

 

The best part of the morning was when we got to observe some lessons. The first lesson for Miss Clarke was in the computing suite with Grade 8 children (13-14 year olds), the students modelled how they use the tablets in order to help them with their maths; using many different apps. The teacher also modelled how she would use the app ‘Kahoot’ in her classes, creating quizzes to consolidate and assess learning. Miss Clarke’s maths skills were tested when she partnered up with a student to take part in a maths quiz but thankfully, they came first! Towards the end of the lesson, Miss Clarke and a teacher from Spain decided to introduce the Romanian students to the interactive game ‘heads up’ where you have to guess the object without saying its name. We had tremendous fun with the students but it also helped them to practise their English.

Miss Clarke’s second lesson observation was an art lesson with Grade 3 (7 years olds) and the theme for the lesson was Erasmus. Each child and teacher were given an image of a boy and girl and we had to decorate them including the flags of each country. Together, we created a beautiful image that represented a bond between our Erasmus countries. After we had created our masterpiece, we all signed the piece with our names and then the teacher instructed the children to move the desks against the walls and we participated in a dance session! The lesson was very exciting to say the least.

 

Mr Carney’s first lesson observation was a cross curricular lesson with grade 4 children (8 year olds) involving English , art, geography and technology. The children were initially given some jigsaw pieces and had to put them together to make up a famous landmark from one of the countries. They then used their geography skills to identify on a map of Europe where each country was. These included Big Ben, The Eiffel Tower, The Colisseum and La Sagrada Familia. Finally they used an App to check their knowledge and understanding of the different countries. The children scored points based on both getting the correct answer and the speed of their response- they had great fun competing against each other

Mr Carney’s second lesson was an English lesson for 10 year olds. After practicing their English skills by reading a play script text they then had to speak in pairs demonstrating their English skills by saying something about the partner countries.

Child 1 “Hello”

Child 2”Hello”

Child 1 What is your name?”

Child 2”My name is Robert”

Child 1 Where are you from?”

Child 2”I am from England”

Child 1 Tell me something about England”

Child 2”We do all sorts of weird things there.”

We never got to find out what the weird things were but we think it was something to do with our traditions for example things like the changing of the guard.

 

After break we had our first meeting of the day where provisional dates for future visits were given. We are delighted to tell you that our visitors will be coming to Liverpool in November!

The team have also discussed several projects planned for year three. This will include researching black history month, researching women in science and technology and the celebration of European day of languages.

 

The most exciting project planned is a cross curricular one where a character will go on a journey around the world stopping at different places along the way including Paris, Liverpool, Seville and Romania as well as many other places. There will be an exciting start to the characters journey which we hope will invest all of the children in the character’s journey.

There will also be a project with an environmental focus, each partner school will share good practise about how our schools are becoming ‘greener’ and what we can do to ‘save the planet’.

Furthermore, we will also be sharing the different types of activity that our schools do to celebrate ‘World Book Day.’

 

During the afternoon of our already jam-packed day, we walked up a very steep hill to visit a modern ‘Christian Orthodox Monastery’. We got half way up the hill when we got caught in the most horrendous storm – heavy rain was a real feature of every day of our visit with at least one torrential shower every day. The journey was worth it because the church was absolutely stunning and we enjoyed spending time with our fellow teachers.

 

The rain thankfully stopped and we went on to our next activity which was a visit to a famous house which made traditional Romanian clothing. The decoration on the different types of clothing was made using seeds which were coloured using natural dyes. The detail was stunning and a handmade belt could take up to a month to make (working on it at least 10 hours a day!) This old Romanian tradition has been kept going by the owner, Virginia Linul who went to University to research how to do this. Virginia has two certificates hanging up in her museum recognising the fact that she has organised two achievements which are actually in the Guinness book of world records.

Following this, we went outside where we were taught how to make some traditional bread cakes using flour, cheese, onions and herbs. We all had to wear a pinafore and gloves as we were taught how to make the cakes using traditional methods. Our partners laughed when they saw Mr Carney in his! Eventually after preparing the dough, cheese and herb mixture, two elderly Romanian women placed our creations into a stone oven using a long metal handle to push the metal pan in and then removing it with a hook on the end. Whilst our bread cakes were cooking, we all took part in traditional Romanian dancing. Some of the teachers from Salva school also came to join us.

In the evening, we returned to the school where we were treated to a farewell performance by the pupils of the school involving traditional dance, poetry and singing. This was followed by a certificate ceremony and speeches. Many people had worked hard to put on an incredible show and once again we were blown away by the hospitality of the school.

 

We are extremely lucky to be partnered with such wonderful schools. We have learnt so much about a totally different culture to our own and we have much to take back with us. The Romanian village we stayed in was extremely small however the people were incredibly generous at all times both in terms of their hospitality but also their passion for giving their children a very special education and their willingness to let us be part of it. We would urge all of our children to continue to learn about other cultures. While Salva, Romania is so different in many ways to Liverpool,   by sharing our experiences of each other’s cultures it increases our understanding of the world we live in and makes us appreciate more what we have and what we can do make our world even better .Thank you to Valy , the teachers, parents and pupils of Salva , our European partners from France, Spain and Italy and to everyone who made our visit so unforgettable. When we get back to school we will share with you in more detail some of our experiences and hope you are able to appreciate the special relationship we have with our partners and the opportunities it will give our school to learn even more about the world we live in.

 

Who designed La Segrada Familia?

In which country would you find the Colisseum?

What ‘weird things’ do you think the Romanian children were thinking about that we do in the UK?

(Supporting Sunderland isn’t one of them!)

 

Mr Carney and Miss Clarke.

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