15 students, 4 teachers a lot of curiosity and an abnormal city to discover.
That’s how our Berlin experience started…
But first let me explain what it is: a secondary Italian school in the very deep South started a project called PON, which is financed by the EU and the Italian government. It’s a very interesting opportunity for the 15 students selected to go and participate in it.
But who are they? They are 15 diffrent students with nothing in common except one thing: THEY BELIEVE THAT TRAVELLING IS ESSENTIAL.
So the adventure began on the 16th of September . It all started well, the students got quickly familiar with the city and the transport network ( with the help and support of the Berlink girls). During these first couple of days they got to know the German history, which aroused so much interest in them, but also they visited some intense places such as the concentration camp Sachsenhausen.
The students arrived here without any expectations and their mind was full of questions about their stay in Berlin. They thought that 21 days were too much and they wouldn’t have enjoyed this trip for such a long time.
But actually it ended up all the way around!
This turned out to be the best period of time to do all the things planned and nothing could have stopped them – not even the bad weather stopped them. Often these types of trips are seen as a way of having fun, amusement or a moment to distract yourself from the ordinary life, without giving any importance to every detail that characterises this particular place.
Its not about the destination, its about the journey! It is not only a get-away, but also a discovery and growth of yourself, including the way of adaptation to a different culture. These are not usual things from our daily lifes, because they make you accept first other mentalities and traditions, without judging them. The guys have the opportunity to try out something new, that is not possible to find in their native country.
For the students such a cultural and educational trip is important, because we have the chance to improve our knowledges in the field of our studies. During our school years we get to learn a lot of stuff through reading books; but being directly in touch with history it’s essential, because we can at least try to understand what happened to the previous generations. When some historical events have a leading role in our lives and have signed historical places, that are still standing today and we can experience them, touch them with our own hands and observe them live with our own eyes.
Our experience at the Berlin wall for example has been very emotional and touching. Everyone knew what that historical landmark meant, but none of us had an idea how many people died because of it. Imagining that only 30 years ago the wall-divided-Europe used to live in such a moment, that is so drastic and dramatic, was really hard.
Travelling is knowledge, it opens minds and perspectives. Travel is a ways of life.
Article written by the students from the school ISTITUTO DI ISTRUZIONE SUPERIORE BERNALDA FERRANDINA