All participating schools met each other for the first time. Three teachers from every school were participating in this meeting. At first, they got warm welcome from the children of Çileme primary school. The children had prepared notes for every guest with sayings how to better save the Earth and they performed wonderfully the anthem of the European Union. After children’s performance all guests and school children had the opportunity to enjoy the traditional Turkish dance, performed by the group of male dancers at the school yard.
After welcome all participants got the chance to introduce their school and their region.
Estonian Gaia School was presented by Raine Lindepuu, Kristel Saage and Maret Bergström. They talked about how Gaia school differs from other schools in Estonia, about Gaia philosophy and also about Gaia school traditions.
Spanish Lope de Vega school was presented by Rosario Garcia, Vicenta Domenech and Belinda Teran. They also introduced the Spanish region of Valencia, where school is situated and talked about historical importance of the region.
Marina Vasileva, Radostina Trichkova and Galina Mihaylova introduced Private Secondary School "Dimitar Ekimov". This is very special school because the teachers of this school mainly act also as parents due to the difficult situation of the kids. Their children had made a special present to all participants of the meeting – little dolls made of recycled materials.
After presentations we scrolled through the logos and suggestions about the project logo and decided that the simple logo chosen by the Turkish team is very suitable for the purpose of the project.
Afternoon activities took place in an ancient grounds of Ephesus city. Participants had a tour around Ephesus and received a lot of information about the history of this region.
Second day of the meeting started with thorough project introduction. Turkish team had made a research about recycling in Europe in general, also about greenhouse gases and use of fossil fuels and how it contributes to global warming. We had a discussion about what are the habits in economy of participating countries. Together we decided that although we cannot really save the planet with our project, we can share the information and rise the knowledge in our children about greenhouse gases and their influence in global warming and what can each individual person do.
After discussion we had a lesson with 8-year old primary children. They had a visual story lesson. Visual stories are going to be one of our innovative teaching techniques we would like to share with other teachers. This visual story was named Wise owl and sensitive Kemal. Children as well as guests enjoyed the story very much and it was decided that each time for the meeting the hosting school is going to prepare their own visual story. After the lesson we talked to children and answered their questions about our home schools and countries.
After school activities we had a field trip to local greenhouse businesses. We saw how the greenhouses are spread through the region, what are the main plants grown and how they are distributed. Local greenhouse owner introduced us to Turkish traditional cuisine and we had a special opportunity to monitor the process of preparing the food.
Afternoon took us to the seaside part of the region, Sığacık and Urla.
Third day of the meeting was mainly for project work. The project coordinator Raine Lindepuu explained all the important documents and materials and how to present them and where to collect them. We got through the two-year project timetable, made some small changes and agreed on meeting dates. Everybody got the clear vision of what kind of work is ahead and how to plan it. After hard work we were given certificates by the Turkish school headmaster and had an official photoshoot. Three days of work is just a beginning, now we have whole two years of doing activities and all kinds of interesting things with our children and families.
project coordinator Raine