Wednesday, 16 January 2013

1ST MEETING - GRANADA (16-20 November 2012)

1. Introduction 
The 1st meeting of the Comenius project "Cooking in Colours" was held in November 16-20, 2012. The representatives of all 4 schools met in Spanish Granada, namely:
  • Eva Svobodová, Pavlína Frančíková from Hotelová škola a Vyšší odborná škola hotelnictví a turismu Poděbrady, Czech Republic
  • Augusto Castro, Mário Carvalho, Paulo Antunes, from Escola de Tecnologia e Gestão de Barcelos, Portugal
  • Rafael Cebrian and Eva Rodriguez from CPIFP Hurtado de Mendoza, Spain
  • Ersan Albulut from Bodrum Kiz Teknik ve Meslek Lisesi, Turkey
The group in Paseo de los Triste, Granadas:
top row: Pavlina and Eva – Czech Republic, Castro, Mário and Paulo – Portugal, Ersan – Turkey
down row: Rafa - Spain

This project has been funded by the Lifelong Learning Program, i.e. Comenius Multilateral Partnership Program and will last for 2 years.
The hosting school, CPIFP Hurtado de Mendoza of Granada, was represented in this project by Rafael Cebrian and Eva Rodriguez. They prepared for the 1st meeting the program full of activities illustrating the social identity, the cultural heritage and history of the city of Granada and its surroundings. All the group visited the hosting school and were received by the school and project management. Together we discussed all the organizational measures.

The kick-off meeting helped to establish pleasant working atmosphere needed for the smooth run of the project. Needless to say, that all participants cooperated before the meeting in more than friendly manners as they have known each other from previous activities (Paulo and Rafael took part in the study visit held in Podebrady in October 2011 and other Portuguese participants accompanied Paulo during his prep-project visit in February 2012). The only “new face” in the 1st meeting was Ersan who was warmly accepted by the managing core of the project. Thanks to these friendly links it was very easy to foster more precisely the expected activities and methodology of the upcoming meetings and needed strategies for the successful realization of the project.

2. Logbook

Friday 16th November – the arrival

“A tapear!”

November 16 was the arrival day. Ersan made the longest journey but arrived as the first one in the afternoon, followed by the Portuguese who reached Granada by car early evening. Though they were driving 1100 km Paulo together with Rafa gave the warm welcome to Eva and Pavlina who arrived later evening to the Granada airport. The complete group under the Rafa´s guidance enjoyed a typical Spanish Friday night with local delicacies, the part of the Spanish gastronomic culture, tapas. We found "Tapear" a tasting ritual showing the highlights of Spanish hospitality.
"A tapear!"

Saturday 17th November – the Sierra Nevada Mountains and Flamenco

The Sierra Nevada (meaning "snowy range" in Spanish) is a mountain range in the region of Andalusia, provinces of Granada and Almería in Spain. It contains the highest point of continental Spain, Mulhacén peak at 3478 m above sea level.
Sierra Nevada

It is a popular tourist destination, as its high peaks make possible skiing in one of the Europe's most southerly ski resorts, in an area along the Mediterranean Sea predominantly known for its warm temperatures and abundant sunshine. At its foothills there are the city of Granada, Almería and Málaga. Parts of the range have been included into the Sierra Nevada National Park. The range has also been declared a biosphere reserve. The Sierra Nevada Observatory is located on the northern slopes at an elevation of 2800 m.

Acess to ski lifts

While visiting the Sierra Nevada, it snowed a lot and our impression from the skiing resort was more than perfect. The access roads to the mountain were for a while blocked. For security reasons we prolonged our lunch awaiting snow ploughs to clear access road to Granada. Because of the weather the activities planned for Saturday afternoon were postponed for the next day.

Snowing during lunch

Flamenco show – la Chumbera

Flamenco, first mentioned in literature in 1774, grew out of Andalusian and Romani music and dance styles. There is also reflected the strong Moorish, Arabic and Jewish impacts. The culture of flamenco is mainly associated with the region of Andalusia in Spain, as well as Murcia and Extremadura, and it became the symbol of Spanish culture. It includes cante (singing), toque (guitar playing), baile (dance) and palmas (handclaps). On 16 November 2010, Flamenco was declared one of the Masterpieces of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity. In this context, Rafa, led us to watch a fantastic evening performance of Flamenco in "Centro Internacional de Estudios Gitanos" in the path of Sacromonte, an unforgettable setting overlooking the Alhambra illuminated.

Sunday 18th November – Granada sightseeing and its cultural heritage

This morning the intensive rain finally stopped and the weather made it possible for us to enjoy and admire the numerous sights and monuments in Granada. We visited:
-       Granada Cathedral
-       Paseo de los Tristes (the Walk of the Sad)
-       La Alcaicería
-       La Cartuja Monastery
-       Corral de Carbón
-       El Bañuelo (Arab baths)
-       Monument of the Queen Isabel and Columbus
-       San Pedro and San Paulo Church
-       Albaicín and its neighbourhood

The group in Curral del Carbón

Visit to Alhambra

Alhambra is the palace and fortress complex located in the heart of Granada. It was constructed during the mid 10th century by the Umaid Arabic ruler Badis ben Habus of the Kingdom of Granada in al-Andalus, occupying the top of the hill of the Assabica on the southeastern border of the city of Granada.

Visiting the palace

The Alhambra's Islamic palaces were built for the last Muslim Emirs in Spain and its court, of the Nasrid dynasty. After the Reconquista (reconquest) by the Reyes Católicos ("Catholic Monarchs") in 1492, some parts were used by the Christian rulers. The Palace of Charles V, built by the Holy Roman Emperor in 1527, was inserted in the Alhambra within the Nasrid fortifications. After being allowed to fall into disrepair for centuries, the Alhambra was "re-discovered" in the 19th century by European scholars and travelers, with restorations commencing. It is now one of Spain's major tourist attractions, exhibiting the country's most significant and well known Berber Islamic architecture, together with 16th-century and later Christian buildings and gardens. The Alhambra is the UNESCO World Heritage Site, and the inspiration for many songs and stories. To visit the place of this importance was a must for our group.
View from the palace

It was a great day, especially for the “boys” as Rafa helped them to get the tickets in the evening for the Spanish league football match Granada vs. Atletico de Madrid. Though Granada lost, it was the superb experience for all the boys, they really enjoyed the Spanish passion for this sport.

Monday 19th November – “Planning the project future”

Visit to CPIFP Hurtado de Mendoza

On this day we visited the host school and learned about its academic and professional life. The school was founded in 1966 and has undergone several changes over the years, most recently, in 2008 it was completely renovated with substantial improvements in its technical and pedagogical backgrounds. The institution currently plays an important role in offering training in Hospitality and Tourism in Andalusia. We started our visit by attending the bilingual lesson in Front Office management.

Later we learned about an ongoing research project at school analysing the evolution of the students in their language proficiency throughout the course.
Bilingual classroom

Then we visited the school facilities: well equipped classrooms for theoretical training, training kitchens and auditorium, where we were presented an interesting school project on improving the public nourishment.
Training kitchen

We could check the quality of practical training during later breakfast served by the students themselves. The breakfast was attended by the school leaders and board members, so we had the chance to exchange ideas about the potential cooperation. Eva Rodriguez, who will represent the CPIFP Hurtado de Mendoza in this project along with Rafa, joined the group.

The group met with the leadership of CPIFP Hurtado de Mendoza

3. Group meeting under the guidance of the Project Coordinator

This meeting was essential, that is why Eva, the coordinator, came with the detailed presentation covering all the steps in smooth project realisation. As the project coordinator she presented the most important points and tips to consider in the planned activities. All potential ways were discussed and agreed by all the team. It was concluded that the 2nd project meeting will be in March 2013 in Podebrady, Czech Republic, followed by the 3rd meeting in October 2013 in Bodrum, Turkey and closing meeting in spring 2014 in Porto, Portugal.

Eva (Spain) and Ersan (Turkey) listen attentively to Eva´s (Czech Republic) explanation

We agreed that
  • the stays will be 4-5 days long with Sunday as the arrival day and   Fri/Sat as the departure day
  • to reduce the costs meeting organizers will try to find cheaper accommodation, preferably in school hostels or families
  • for the same reason boarding will be provided by school canteens
  • the age of the students will preferably be over 18, if younger students participate, the parents written approval will be needed
  • local transport

Concerning the program the project meetings should consist of
  • the excursion round the school/town
  • language lessons
  • visits to other subjects
  • attendance in practical subjects (school canteen, bar)
  • lessons of local language (basic Czech, Portuguese, Turkish)
  • Menus and recipes which must be prepared in advance = must be translated into unifying English and will be later the base for the cookery book

The inseparable part of the project is the cross-cultural communication. Students together with their teachers will prepare
·      brief characteristics = who are we?
·      basic data (geography, history)
·      characteristics of the national cooking
·      local language (songs, dances)
·      sightseeing

4. Conclusion:

All the team wish to express our most sincere thanks to our hosts for their warm hospitality and the exceptional quality of the meeting in Granada.

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