Monday, April 28, 2014

Week Two

Over the weekend, my friend's host family invited me to Park Quell. It was beautiful there! I will try to go there again before I head back to the States. 
After the park we went to the Picasso Museum and got a 50% discount for being 25 or under! The exhibit showed his work as well as local work that was dedicated to the museum for it's 50th anniversary.

Then we met her family again and they showed us shopping centers and parts of town that tourists don't really venture into. They took us to a restaurant called, Mercant Princesa. This restaurant had five or six stations and you order from any of them. We got several tapas and split the meal. I even tried olives stuffed with anchovies and small fried fish: it was actually very delicious! I just couldn't look at my food while eating!

At the end of the day, the family invited me to go with them on a tour of the Torres Vineyard and to a picnic on the beach. On the tour, we learned about the history of the Torres family and the process of how they make wine and had samples. Then at the beach, I had a raw salmon sandwich with cream cheese...not a fan, but the beach was beautiful! 

This week at the school, it is book week. An American author was invited to the school. He read several poems and books to the children and they loved it. This whole week, the entire school is learning about the author, Roald Dahl. Most of his short fairy tales are too gruesome for the children I am working with, so they are learning about Jack and the Beanstalk. Today was also my first time assisting in the nursery with three year olds. I am excited about this week because I will be implementing several of the lessons in the kinder classes, then Wednesday night I'm off to Ireland for our Labor day break! 

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Day One

Today was my first day of school. We had a meeting with the director of St. Paul's School and then we met our mentors. I would have been with first and second grade, but I told the mentor what my major was and she asked the Early Years director if I could go to a younger age group because it would be more beneficial. Now, I am in the kinder age group. Schools here are completely different from the U.S. In Spain, as soon as a child turns three they are enrolled in school. At this particular school, there is nursery, kinder, prep, then first grade and up. Students attend this school until they turn eighteen.

In my kinder class, children are learning to write their names, writing numbers zero through five, and recognizing numbers 0-10. Today I was able to sit in on the Kinder teacher's planning and helped think of ideas for a display they will be doing over Jack and the Beanstalk. Starting next week, I will be implementing activities in all three kinder classrooms. I am ready to accept the challenge!

While, we were at school, we learned about the holiday, St. Jordi, which is basically like our Valentine's day. All the men get women roses and women get men books. Streets are lined with roses and book kiosks. We went to the Centre of Barcelona and traveled down La Rambla. The Centre was packed because of the holiday. It was quite a site!

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

A Whole New World

This morning we arrived at the Barcelona Airport. We showed our passports and claimed luggage. Our contact person from St. Paul's School was waiting for us and greeted us with kisses on the cheek. While he was talking and walking through the airport with us, it still hadn't hit me that I was in Spain. Then he told us that we would be divided into pairs and we would be getting a taxi. He gave several of us a post it note with the address of the residency and euros to pay for the taxi. When he told us how to ask for the receipt in Spanish was when I realized I was in Spain. I had never rode in a taxi before, but this was a great first experience!
Upon arrival of our residency, Emilie de Villeneuve, we were introduced the the director where we were told about house rules and given a tour of the facility. We were given keys to our own rooms equipped with a sink. This is a residency for female students who are International Students. The residency is also home to several nuns who work at the reception desk and other areas of the facility.
After the tour, our contact person showed us the bus stop we would be taking to arrive at our school. He took us to a place where we could buy public transportation passes. Then he took us on a tour of the school. It was beautiful and different from any school I had ever seen! He told us that most schools in this area used to be mansions that were converted to schools.
When we were finished, he took us to a local supermarket where we were able to buy some snacks. He told us that if we wanted to go to a restaurant to eat dinner, they would not be serving until 8:30 at night. He also told us that during school days, breakfast is usually around 10:45am and it could be anything from a sandwich to cookies! Then our lunch, which is the biggest meal of the day, will be after 1:00.

Link to Emilie de Villeneuve

Link to St. Paul's School

Sunday, April 20, 2014

The Beginning

Today I celebrated Easter at my grandparent's house: it was great to spend time with my family before I board a plane to Barcelona, Spain. In just a few hours I will be arriving at the airport and it still hasn't hit me that I will be in another country, interacting with students in a first and second grade classroom. This is going to be an amazing experience that I am fortunate to have!