Collingwood students spent 8 days in their Spanish partners’ homes in Aguilas, South-East Spain.
The visit was action-packed, with new experiences every day. A day and a half was spent in lessons at school, the annual school music concert was held in the town theatre whilst we were there and we spent time in Spanish homes living the Spanish life and eating lovely Spanish things...
This was apart from the major trips we had. We went to Granada by coach, a major outing, but very worthwhile for both this great university city, but also for the 8th wonder of the world, the Alhambra – medieval Muslim and later palaces set over the city. A second city visit was to Cartagena, a Carthaginian, then Roman, city which still had a lot of Roman treasures to show us, and a natural harbour which held Spanish navy vessels.
Within Aguilas we had a fascinating visit to the Mayor’s parlour, where one of our group was interviewed in Spanish (!) for local TV (very impressive Emilie!). Our group was also given a great reading and speaking exercise in town after which we were rewarded with copious Spanish ice cream. It was indeed noticeable how a number of our students made visible progress with their Spanish, some being in homes where no English was known.
A special highlight for all of us was being treated to a boat ride around the harbour of Aguilas, something not many of us had done in Britain. Given the best temperatures of the week (25 degrees) – it made a fitting final kindly gesture from our Spanish hosts.
The partner school – IES Europa – made tremendous efforts to give us a wonderful stay in their town. The Head teacher was delighted with his gift from us – the blue school sweatshirt, and wore it proudly. I trust we can give the Spanish group an equally good time when they come to us in April. The students will be in school lessons for at least two days, and I hope our students of Spanish will benefit from this experience.