From the 14th until the 23rd of November 2022, 52 students and teachers from the two schools Szkoła Podstawowa and Szkoła Podstawowa in Praszka, Poland took part in an Erasmus+ exchange with students of the Italian school Istituto Professionale di Stato per i Servizi di Enogastronomia e l’ospitalità alberghiera “P. Piazza” in Palermo.
The first group from Poland arrived on the 14th of November.
The first day of activities was on the 15th of November. The activities were held in the school Pietro Piazza. Pietro Piazza is a high-school in Palermo where the students are being educated and prepared for a career in either the tourist sector as a receptionist, in the hospitality sector as a waiter/waitress or in the gastronomical sector as a cook.
First the Italian students gave a presentation about Palermo and their school, which was followed by a presentation from the Polish students about their school and Poland. They even sang a Polish song and taught us a traditional Polish dance.
Next we played some knowledge games to get to know each other better and after, the Italian students gave a tour around the school.
Meanwhile, the second group from Poland arrived in Palermo.
On the second day of activities, we went again to the school, where also the second group from Poland got a presentation and a tour of the school. After the tour, we visited the neighbourhood of the school, accompanied by the Italian students of the tourist sector.
After the tour, the Polish and Italian students took part in some green activities. In front of the school are some flower beds which the students cleaned and weeded and after they planted 6 lemon and orange trees. When they were finished, they all went to lunch, had free time and met again at a restaurant for dinner.
On the third day we visited Villa Giulia, a big garden next to the sea. There we also got a tour with historical information which was followed by a workshop about the environment. The students had to answer some questions about what they know about climate change, some questions about how green their city is and for the last activity they had to draw some posters in groups about an environmental topic.
On the fourth day we visited the historical centre of Palermo. We went to Parco d’Orleans, a garden which is filled with a lot of different kinds of birds and animals. After that we went to the cathedral, Quattro Canti, Piazza Pretoria and the Ballarò market. Also during this visit, the Italian students of the tourist sector accompanied us and talked about the historical background of the places we visited.
On the fifth day we brought the Polish students and teachers to Mondello, the most famous beach in Palermo. The Polish students immediately changed into their bathing suits and ran into the sea, while the Italians were watching them from a safe distance with their jackets on. After the students got tired from swimming and had dried up, we played a group building game with a parachute.
After that we walked along the seaside, at the foot of the mountain Capogallo, a natural reserve. And just when it started raining we arrived back on the bus and went back to the hotel.
On the sixth day it was raining all day, so we went with all the Polish students to the shopping mall. We stayed there for 3 hours, the students did some shopping, we had lunch and we headed back to the hotel.
On day 7 we went back to the school, where the Italian students and teachers showed us the tourist reception, where three students told us about their internship experiences abroad, and we were shown the kitchen and restaurant of the school. After this we all had lunch in the restaurant of the school, where we had a meal cooked by the students of the gastronomical sector and were waited on by the students of the hospitality sector.
On the final day of activities we had a workshop about the history of the EU with a total of 100 students. They did a quiz, some brainstorming and, in groups, they had to collect information about some European topics and present it to the others.
After the workshop we had lunch and in the evening we had our last dinner together.
In the morning of the 23d of November both groups from Poland got on the bus to the airport and departed back to Poland.
A special thank goes to Stowarzyszenie Semper Avanti, the Polish organization that invited us to join this interesting experience.