In early November, six A Level Spanish and Catalan students participated in a language exchange session with visiting St Julian’s School from Lisbon.
Miss Amado and Miss Pérez, Spanish and Catalan teachers of the BSB, organised this encounter with the British international school located in Carcavelos, between central Lisbon and Cascais.
Year 12 students Flavia, Ainoa, Estela, Georgina, Sira and Nicolás had the opportunity to stablish a relation with students of another international school and discuss literature and Spanish History, as well as to exchange ideas and views.
St Julian’s Spanish students prepared a presentation about a Catalan personality, Francesc Boix, the only Spaniard who declared in the Nurnberg trials and documented with pictures the horrors of the concentration camps. This was followed by a debate (in Spanish) about this and a range of topics, from modern language learning to Catalan independence, Europe’s economic situation, Portugal-Spanish relations and stereotypes, among many other issues. They also prepared a Portuguese lesson, and our students in turn prepared a Catalan lesson.
According to Miss Amado “The presentation and debate that followed fits really well in the units about literature and news and current affairs. Students also need to acquire debating skills for their AS speaking exam”.
Students of both schools enjoyed the experience. Our students were impressed with St Julian’s students’ Spanish level and their knowledge of our history and current situation. They also got to know Portuguese culture and how similar both countries are. They also mentioned that are hoping to pay St Julian’s a visit in Lisboa.
Miss Amado agreed, “I think this was a wonderful experience. Students of both schools worked really hard on their presentations and contributed to the session with excellent ideas and insights. It was a lovely atmosphere and I am amazed at how well they conducted themselves and how keen they were on working together”. She added “It is a new activity which has helped us set up a relation with St Julian’s. We hope to return the visit and make a yearly encounter.”