From 3rd to 8th Dec. 2017 Prof. Ivan Batakliev Lower Secondary School, Pazardzhik, Bulgaria was a host of the first LTT meeting which marked the beginning of the realization of the mobilities of the Erasmus+ KA2 project “THE FUTURE IS AT SCHOOL”.
19 Italian students, 20 Bulgarian students and 4 Bulgarian teachers took part in the activities. Five work corners were prepared, including: making of survachki, New Year cards using the technique painting on glass and making of New Year candles using decoupage technique. The work teams consisted of Bulgarian and Italian students which gave them the opportunity to get to know each other, to communicate, to work and have fun together.
Meanwhile local coordinators and their teams attended two work sessions. The partners presented via power point presentations and short videos their countries, regions and schools. They had a look at the Erasmus corner of the project of the Bulgarian host school. They had the opportunity to watch a short film on the information TV system at school showing one of the activities already carried out – students presenting to their classmates, parents and teachers all countries and towns included in the project. The results of the questionnaires carried out among the students were discussed and a plan of the upcoming project activities and travels was made. It was also decided that the mobilities of the Polish partner who withdrew from the project to be distributed according to the wishes and opportunities of each partner.
After lunch all participants visited Sveta Bogoroditsa Church, they heard the legend of its creation and were able to see its marvelous wooden iconostasis, unique in the Balkan Peninsula. Then the group visited the Ethnographic Museum of Pazardzhik. They learned about the past and present of the Pazardzhik region in historical, economic and artistic terms. The participants examined the Ethnography exposition representing Agriculture, Crafts, Fabrics and Clothing, Furniture and Interior, Musical Instruments and Works of art. Then the students from Italy and Bulgaria together with representatives of the museum personnel made flowers using the old Bulgarian technique – thickening of untreated wool.
All participants from Italy, Spain, Turkey and Bulgaria visited Plovdiv City. They examined the expositions – Botany, Mammals, Aquarium, Terrarium, Birds but undoubtedly the greatest interest provoked The Tropic Hall – the newest attraction in the Regional Museum of Natural History – Plovdiv. In this hall the participants had the opportunity to see a variety of living tropical butterflies, which fly freely through the jungle with real plants from the southern countries. They could feel the specific tropical climate and even to have a butterfly landing on them. After the unique experience in the museum the group went to the old town of Plovdiv and accompanied by a tour guide visited the Archaeological Complex “Nebet Tepe”, the Thracian Village and the Ancient Theater of Philippopolis.
The participants in the project had a work session at Professor Ivan Batakiev Lower Secondary School. They visited classes in primary and lower secondary level. They met with students and teachers from the school. Students from Bulgaria and Italy continued their work with applied materials provided by the partners which were characteristic of the folk art of the individual countries. The students had fun playing different games and dancing , they exchanged small gifts and souvenirs.
At 16.00 the Festival of Arts was held at the Centre for Youth Creative Activities of Pazardzhik, where students from the school, teachers, parents and directors were invited. The program included performers from the Bulgarian and the Italian schools. This festival brought a lot of positive emotions to all attendees. Children sang, danced and had fun together. After that the project participants were invited to attend a rehearsal of Folk Dance Group “Chavdar”, where they learned traditional Bulgarian folk dances.
The group visited Bachkovo Monastery Dormition of the Holy Mother of God, which is one of the oldest on the Balkan Peninsula and second largest after the Rila Monastery. Founded in 1083 by the Georgian brothers Gregory and Abbasi Bakuriani, it has unique combination of Byzantine, Georgian and Bulgarian culture. The participants were delighted by the monastery located on the picturesque bank of the Chepelare River (Chaya) in the Western Rhodopes. After a walk along the alley with typical Bulgarian crafts items and souvenirs, the participants had lunch in a traditional Bulgarian restaurant.