On the 7th of February, 16 Year 10 students and 3 Year 12 students arrived at school, suitcases in hand. We were all super-excited at the prospect of finally getting to meet our exchange partners, and getting to experience life in Valencia. Upon arrival, after a short flight, we were greeted by all our partners waiting for us at the bus station, and were taken to the school for some ice-breaking activities, dancing, and lots of pizza! It was then time to go to our partner’s homes and meet the rest of the family.
On day one, Saturday, we all enjoyed a beautiful boat trip around the Albufera’s natural park and its amazing coastal views. This gave us time to really get to know our partners, and enjoy the lovely Spanish sun.
Day two consisted of a day out with our host families, and this gave us the opportunity to explore the area and spend more time with our families.
On Monday, our partners unfortunately had to return to their ordinary school day, with the Year 12 students beginning their work experience, so we started the day with some language-based games in school, challenging our Spanish and our partners’ English. Afterwards, we took a trip to the Bioparc in Valencia. We were challenged with a Spanish tour guide, but even so learnt a lot about all the different animals. We enjoyed a relaxing evening of bowling in the local shopping centre before returning to our homes. Tuesday was filled with a long day of exploring Valencia, including climbing a tower in Valencia Cathedral and going into some Spanish markets. Our last day was spent at the aquarium before going straight back to our homes to pack.
Back at the school, we were greeted by a farewell party, with letters from our partners and many tears. It was a very emotional goodbye and we were very sad to leave our host families. We are hoping that they will be able to come for their return trip soon, when the circumstances will allow it and we are all really looking forward to seeing our partners again.
We all had such an amazing experience and would like to thank Miss Scanu for organizing the trip, and Miss Delahunty and Mrs Dickinson for also helping us have such a good time. Our Spanish families all took such good care of us and we would definitely recommend it to students taking GCSE Spanish in the future as this was truly one of the best experiences of my life!
Charlotte Price, Year 10