Maria Pătcaș, 11B
Euroweek is an annual meeting between students and teachers from European nations. It takes place every year at the end of September and is held to signify the importance of unity and acknowledgement of different cultures, traditions and people from around Europe.
This year, eight students from our school participated in this project: Selin Bakimci, Cezara Amafteesei, Flavia Bradin, Alexia Ghiță, Andrei Bota, Maya Morcan, Maria Pătcaș and Sara Lucaci. They were accompanied by two teachers, prof. Diana Șimonca and prof. Diana Achim. Together, they were hosted by schools from two wonderful cities, Kalundborg, from Denmark and Kalmar, from Sweden. The project started on the 21st of September and ended on the 28th, out of which three days were spent in Denmark and four, in Sweden.
The group arrived on the 22nd of September at the Copenhagen Airport at around midnight and they instantly made friends with the girls from Portugal, which were extremely kind and welcoming. They bonded very well over the small language similarities between Romanian and Portuguese. This was often a subject of discussion during the project, with students being fascinated with learning new words and finding fun facts and differences between their mother tongues.
On day no. 1, our students participated in the opening ceremony, in which they got to hear everything about the greatness of the Danish host school and its students. After that, they went on a small tour of Kalundborg, which included splendid scenery from the North Sea. They also got to be a part of the flag parade. That brought much pride and joy to our students as they waved the Romanian flag among the other 20 countries.
On the second day, the group got split up, every student joining others from different corners of Europe to come up with ideas on how to make schools more sustainable. They also learned a traditional Danish dance called “Les Lanciers” and had fun together trying to memorize it as quickly as possible. That evening, the international meal took place in the school cafeteria. Every country brought some traditional food and treats and displayed them so others could try them. It was thrilling to taste a small piece of everyone’s culture.
On the third day, the groups visited Copenhagen for the first half of the day by taking a boat through the canals of the city. There, they admired the colourful houses, the busy people who still found a moment to wave at our students from their bikes and the mystical old buildings, which held so much history between their walls. They visited the war museum, where they got to meet an Afghanistan war veteran, who explained what it was like to be on a battlefield and what it took to live there for six months. After the visit, all of the students and teachers left for Sweden.
On the fourth day, they went on the second flag parade around Kalmar city centre and after that, went on a tour, which consisted in finding the most popular places in the city. The evening was spent at home with their host families for some, and for others, it was spent learning how to make Swedish traditional dishes for the teachers.
The fifth day was a sports day, in which students went on some kind of treasure hunt but with outdoors activities. They were once again split into different groups, each group accompanied by Swedish students as their guides. That evening was spent at a party held by the school, which had fun music and activities for everyone.
On the sixth day, everyone participated in an entrepreneurship workshop. The goal was to think of and come up with a business plan to solve some kind of issue in the world. For example, one group had to invent a product or a way to bring clean water to South Sudan. Later in the evening, the Romanians and other countries got to present their traditional moment. Our country’s moment consisted of the ritual of bread-making named “Praznicul de pită nouă”. That night we had to say our goodbyes to most of the countries, as some of them left a few hours later.
The seventh day was spent mostly on buses and airplanes, with our students trying to enjoy their last moments in Sweden and Denmark. They were all a little bit sad about leaving because it was such a life-changing experience, but they were also happy about seeing their families and friends and sleeping in their bed from home.
It was a very well-spent time and an unforgettable opportunity, which benefited the students in ways you cannot imagine. They made loads of new friends and got to experience what the educational system is like in those countries. Everything seemed new, at first scary, but also exciting and in some ways, enticing.
They all hope that their experience encourages you to try and get out of your comfort zone and participate in as many exchanges and projects as possible because it is truly worth it and makes life more interesting!