1st Comenius exchange visit in Veria, Greece
Monday, 2nd December 2013
Train, bus, plane, bus, hotel: waiting… Who? What will they be like? Arriving one after the other, the host families were awaited by the excited, nervous but also tired students from Norway, Sweden and Germany (the Hungarians and Turkish having arrived earlier) in the lobby of the Aegaes Melathron in Veria, Greece. Hello! Nice to meet you! Hi! How are you? Being heartily welcomed one after the other, they left their teachers – us –, who had been equally excited, nervous, but also tired. However, after a short time of chillaxing, the absence of our students was well compensated for by a delicious welcome dinner at the hotel restraurant, during which contacts were revived and personal, and, of course, pedagogical information exchanged.
Tuesday, 3rd December 2013
Welcome! Herzlich Willkommen! Hjertelig velkommen! Hoş geldiniz! Varmt välkommen! Üdvözöllek! ĸαλώςορίσατε at 5th High School of Veria! After a guided tour through the school and an official welcome ceremony including a sword dance as well as an introduction of all the delegations from each country (on a gigantic stage!), we visited the archeological site of Vergina. There, it was all about the tombs: of King Phillip II., father of Alexander the Great, of his wife, of one of his sons, and about the vicious fact that the builders had to lock the doors from the inside after having finished their work – luckily there was a thing called the keystone! The afternoon was studiously spent: in the first workshop, the students watched each other’s videos about their everyday life, finding surprising cross-cultural similarities (like the male aptitude for videogames J) and differences, which were to be used to formulate questions for the final product of the project – the board game. Similarly informatively a guided walking tour through Veria, starting with a visit to the town hall, filled the evening, which, despite being unexpectedly cold, became quite heated due to tasty food (as well as wine) and dancing in a traditional Greek tavern.
Wednesday, 4th December 2013
Speaking of tradition: as traditional as yesterday ended, today started: during a sightseeing of Aristotle’s School, we learned about Greece’s most famous philosopher and his equally famous student Alexander. After having received food for thought, we were well-equipped for physical exercise in the form of a walk through the Park of St. Nicolas in Noussa. The rest of the afternoon was characterised by work for both students and teachers, the former planning the following exchange visit in Germany, the latter formulating the said questions about “Everyday Europe” in the 5th High School of Veria. The rest of the evening was characterized by socialising of both the students and the teachers, the former in a pub/restaurant/bar in Veria, the latter in the winery Dalamaras in Noussa.
Thursday, 5th December 2013
Capital, here we come! And with us the sun! On the brightest day yet, we (partly) enthusiastically explored (parts of) Thessaloniki J: the Archeological Museum, which offers a wide range of artefacts, the White Tower, which offers a fantastic view of the city, and the waterfront promenade, which offers numerous little restaurants and cafés. After a collective dinner, the exchange was collectively evaluated online in the 5th School of Veria and finally the collective seperated: while the students went their own ways, the teachers had some time to rest and then met again at the farewell dinner in the hotel restaurant, exchanging impressions, presents and warm words.
Friday, 6th December 2013
Goodbye! Auf Wiedersehen! Farvel! Görüşürüz! Hej då! A viszontlátásra! Αντίο!
by Simone Matz