Hidden in the Open Space (Iceland)

Rating: 5/543 users

Intangible cultural heritage in relation with nature

Cultural heritage does not end at monuments and collections of objects. It also includes traditions or living expressions inherited from our ancestors and passed on to our descendants, such as oral traditions, performing arts, social practices, rituals, festive events, knowledge and practices concerning nature and the universe or the knowledge and skills to produce traditional crafts.
While fragile, intangible cultural heritage is an important factor in maintaining cultural diversity in the face of growing globalization. An understanding of the intangible cultural heritage of different communities helps with intercultural dialogue, and encourages mutual respect for other ways of life.
The importance of intangible cultural heritage is not the cultural manifestation itself but rather the wealth of knowledge and skills that is transmitted through it from one generation to the next. The social and economic value of this transmission of knowledge is relevant for minority groups and for mainstream social groups.
(UNESCO)
eTwinning is an important component of the course work where participants share their daily learning ideas. It also serves as monitoring and dissemination tool.

Preparation
Pre-register for the course to receive a letter of confirmation.
Prepare an article to describe cultural heritage elements from your country in relationship with the nature.
Familiarise yourself with the course materials.

Objectives
- Understand the importance of intangible cultural heritage in the European context;
- Work in cooperation with other participants preserving the cultural heritage;
- Participate in the international and intercultural exchange.
- Develop a personal activity plan how to promote opportunities for children and young people to experience culture.

Follow-up
After the course participants will reflect on the gained knowledge and its application in their own educational environment. They will complete a report to be sent to their national agency and the course organiser. The trainers will provide support for collaboration between participants encouraging them to initiate eTwinning projects, help to find partners and participate in online courses developing their knowledge of media tools.

Programme:

Day 1
Introduction. Implementing cultural heritage in education. Current situation, appoach and methods in Europe.

Day 2
Internationalisation of curriculum and the need to preserve cultural traditions, customs and believes. Conflict or agreement? School of Elves.

Day 3
Interlacing nature of cultural heritage. Similarities and differences of nature beings in Europe. In search for hidden people.

Day 4
Importance of intangible cultural heritage and its connection with nature. Troll land.

Day 5
Commercial use and popular presentation of cultural heritage. Does modern world diminish the cultural value of traditions and believes?
Protecting cultural value of nature.

Course organiser
NGO Kaunas Biennial
Location
Reykjavik, Iceland


Contact organisation

Upcoming sessions

06.04.2020 > 10.04.2020 (ID: 106774, Confirmed))
Register before 29.02.2020
13.04.2020 > 17.04.2020 (ID: 103236, Confirmed))
Register before 31.03.2020
20.04.2020 > 24.04.2020 (ID: 77870, Confirmed))
Register before 31.01.2020
06.09.2021 > 10.09.2021 (ID: 96304)
Register before 30.06.2021

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Attended 22.04.2019 - 26.04.2019

We have had the chance to know the Icelandic culture from a very close perspective: learning their love and respect for nature, which make them also respectful for all species we live in. Something we can all build and spread out to our students and school community. After visiting the school on Friday I realized how important is for teachers to keep on with our formation, sharing with others, our constant learning. We often tend to complain about the lack of resources, the demotivating attitudes... but there is always something we can do to improve any circumstance or situation we are at. I feel very grateful for having the chance to do this course. Thanks so much Rita!

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Attended 22.04.2019 - 26.04.2019

Friday, the 26th of april This course was very interesting because it evokes what is repressed in France, the invisible, which escapes humans. We drift towards a society that does not want what is not predictable, what is not reproducible. We want a society where everything is visible, even thought in brain ! But I am psychoanalytic training, because I like what escapes us, which can not be put in a box, which can not be summarized. Even though I love science, neuroscience, and originally wanted to be a neuroscientist, life has made me meet another world, the arts and philosophy, and that has increased my understanding of things, considerably. I do not really understand the world. Often I ask around me why it is like he is, why the greenhouse effect will continue ... besides, I became a teacher and psychologist for that reason. Because I do not understand !! So I loved these legends that tell us about relationship to the unknown, in the same way as art, what escapes words, what escapes meaning, what we do not know and which makes us humans. I will use this medium with pupils, in addition to art therapy, to question with them fundamental existential questions (they always ask and they address us every day, in their own way). I will talk about tales, stories of everyday life that bring us back to poetry, to the evanescence of life. We are allowed to become a being apart, to be both singular and universal in our humanity.

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Attended 23.04.2018 - 27.04.2018

Hidden in the open space This week in Iceland was a great experience. I learned a lot about the history of the country. I never knew Iceland was a nation based on no big religional system or beliefs. The nation has a great history with Vikings, Danish influence and a believe in supernatural creatures. Around the year 1.000 they mixed their own beliefs with Catholicism and christianity. Still a lot of Icelanders use their old believes, to understand their own history and learn to cope with nature. I think the course was very well organised and we did a lot of activities that gave us really good insight and understanding of the Icelandic cultural heritage and the way the people use it to live their lives still. Takk og sjáumst seinna!

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Attended 22.04.2019 - 26.04.2019

The magic of fairies and elves is as old as the world, we can even assume that it represents magic itself, it is pure, luminous and dark, powerful, and of a great spirituality, it brings us closer to Nature and its mysteries. In fact, she is simply magic. Nature has a vital role in magic, and loving and respecting it opens the door to the magic of the elven world. The elements are directly related to Elves and Fairies. To understand this magical world is to understand the Icelandic culture. It is wonderful to believe in this imaginary, it made me realize that today's generations have fewer and fewer beliefs that unite them and that education should preserve the imagination of children. I really like this formation that appealed to the child in me and I saw breathtaking landscapes.

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Attended 22.04.2019 - 26.04.2019

What a week. We passed from myths and legends to countryside beauty of Iceland to the reality of school education. Those three thinks are well connected to Icelandic way of life as everything must be connected to education as everything is a matter education. Course will help a lot in my school life as it changed the way we (as teachers) must think. Children must be freer to choose and imagination though myths and legends enhance their imagination and creativity. We will try to disseminate all these to our school and local community. There are no biggest applause for an education system than the adaption of it’s better parts.

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Attended 22.04.2019 - 26.04.2019

We started our week of with the saga museum and ended today in a school. So from legends to history, filled with icelandic nature and hidden people. This country has majestic mountains, geysirs and really interesting stories set within this landscape. The people that live with this folklore and make the most of the land and it’s legends! I’ve been amazed so many times, fascinated by the stories and Icelandic history. I’m heading home with new ideas to bring to my own classroom. As I can clearly see at the school this last day, insight in this totally different workspace gives me inspiration!

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Attended 22.04.2019 - 26.04.2019

This week has taught me several things 1. One person can make a vast difference for mane poeple and for a long time, so long as they are committed to a cause 2. Being in close contact with ones cultural heritage e.g. feeling connected to and respecting nature, can help in solving some of the global challenges we face today e.g. climate changes. A close connection between nature and humans promote respect and understanding of all the natural elements vital to mankind. This is especially interesting in the optic of climate change seen all over the world at present time. 3. Folkelore can be used to inspire people to also take action, when they experience somehting that they find unacceptable. 4. Historical events have an impact on present culture. We are a product of our history. And even decisions made by one or few persons at one point in time can help shape a community many years onwards. E.g. the official conversion to Christianity on Iceland and how þorgeir Ljósvetningagoði singlehandedly made the decision for Iceland to officially be Christian, but at the same time allow the Heathen belief system to exist unofficially. 5. The importance of developing human~skills in schools, instead of only focusing on skills that can be measured and analyzed with numbers. An investment should be made into developing the students´ creativity and 21st century skills. Together with Bildung and the ability to use one´s imagination, solutions to the challenges the world and mankind will face in the near future may be found by the young generations of today. 6. At the end of the course something that stood out the most to me, was the comparison between Iceland and my homecountry (Denmark). It seems that on Iceland there is a greater respect and the population has achieved in keeping a closer connection to nature and the environment than what is the case in Denmark. I cannot help but think that this somehow plays a factor in the willingness to actively try to make a possitive change in one´s daily life for the good of the environment and ultimately oneself.

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Attended 22.04.2019 - 26.04.2019

It was a great week learning outside and made me think about the importance of not loosing our links to nature within today's world.

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Attended 22.04.2019 - 26.04.2019

Last Monday we started the course in Iceland. The first morning we received an introduction from Rita in which she told us what the intention was of the week. Beforehand I did not expect this course to make me think that way. I always have a clear opinion about certain things, including faith. In Iceland I have seen the important role the sagas and myths play in the lives of the inhabitants. Children are raised with stories about trolls and elves. My question was whether these people believe in the stories or whether they do it for the money they can easily earn. At the beginning of the week I had a hard time empathizing with these stories. What I have really learned is to be more open to other people's stories and beliefs. I don't see anything in the rocks and stones, but it is nice to see how the people of Iceland talk about this.

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Attended 22.04.2019 - 26.04.2019

This week has been a week in which a whole new world has opened up for me. A world full of myths and legends. It was fantastic to see how much the stories are part of the children's upbringing. We ended up at a school where you saw how the students are told about the stories from the past. And all the activities of the week contribute to creating a good picture of the influence of cultural heritage on the people of Iceland. You notice it everywhere. In the cities, in nature, but also the interaction with each other are influenced by this. Because they respect their cultural heritage, it gives a way of life in which it is obvious that you respect people and nature. It is precisely this last that I take with me and I hope to be able to transfer that to the students I teach!

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Attended 18.04.2016 - 22.04.2016

We started on a cold, cold Monday in Reykjavik at the Aurora Guesthouse. After a short introduction we made our way through the center of Reykjavik to the Old Harbor in front of the Saga Museum. Here I became acquainted with the old pre-Christian history of Iceland; the belief in trolls, elves and other mythical creatures. I soon began to think about the extent to which the Icelandic people actually believe and exploit what they claim to believe. Tuesday I went to make trolls with two Icelandic ladies who helped me passionately with the workshop. This was followed by a walk through the city with a very good telling young man who took me into the world of old Norse legends and legends. Again at the end of this day I asked myself the same question: Am I being fooled here or do these people actually believe what they are telling us? Wednesday I went on a tour through the southwest of the country; the Golden Circle. A visit to beautiful waterfalls, geysers and a national park completed this circle. A walk through Hafnarfjörður was planned for Thursday. A very sweet lady with a red cap took me through the village and told a fantastic fairy tale that would be found in the village. At the end of the day I had a discussion with the group about how we feel about all the stories we have heard. Overcomes the rational ability or is there an emotional connection with the culture in which you were born and do you not have to be ashamed of it?

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Attended 22.04.2019 - 26.04.2019

I really enjoyed the ''learning in the field'' learning style during this week. The stories during the course have made me realize that we as adults, teachers, need to be more open to the students' imagination to ensure that they don't speak less creatively. Creativity is a 21st century experience that we have to teach our students, it doesn't help if we always tell our students that something is not possible. Thank you Rita for organising this great course for us!

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Attended 18.04.2016 - 22.04.2016

During the course I learned the importance of the cultural heritage that represents a guide, an essential point to face the future with responsibility towards society and our planet. This is why it is essential to protect it: the best way to preserve our cultural heritage is to share with others. All the cultures of the world interpret reality in a different way, but there are universal themes, metaphors, ideas and feelings. Recognizing these common elements in every culture favors the relationship and brotherhood among people. Respect and caring spring from knowledge: cultural exchanges and the internationalization of the curriculum stimulate teachers and students to become responsible global citizens, and to engage with issues of equity, social justice and susteinability. In this historical moment in which intolerance predominates, it is necessary to stimulate the knowledge of other traditions and cultures: confronting the different and welcoming it does not threaten our cultural heritage, but allows us to learn more about our identity and build a peaceful future . Folklore was one of the central themes of the course, as it represents the ancestral culture of all people. Folklore has been considered ambivalently by scholars: on the one hand it has been despised because it has been identified with the uncultivated rural class, on the other side known as the essential roots of a people. Folklore is the most ancient aspect of all communities of men on earth, therefore it has a universal and contemporary, autochthonous character: it is unreasonable to despise folklore. In the traditional stories that the Icelanders told us during the course, in fact, the universal and the particular, the infinite and the particolar coexist. We can find the infinite, God, in a rock, considered the house of the trolls. 80% of Icelanders believe in the existence of the smafolk, the small elven people. For a long time no body was able to explain unpredictable events such as volcanic eruptions under glaciers, geysers or thermal pools. Iceland was for a long time from the rest of the world, for the inhabitants who spent dark winters it was comforting the idea of living with other invisible beings. The Icelandic natural environment is mystical, there is an ancient magic between stones and caves, where small invisible creatures live: the elves. Every element of nature is alive and must be respected, even the rocks have a history and a soul that the Icelanders still know how to feel due to their close connection with the wild and hostile environment in which they live. In culture it is increasingly sacred: in every natural element there is God, every manifestation of nature is God. Today we need to return to popular traditions that are both archaic and current.In popolar culture se are part of natur and not the owners. The place where we grew up is both a geographical and historical place but, above all, a place of the spirit. This trip to Iceland has understood that only in contact with the material nature of rocks, water, fog, earth, grass can we feel our spirit, our soul. In the wildest nature, far from civilization, man rediscovers his humanity that unites him to all the other men on the planet earth.

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Attended 18.04.2016 - 22.04.2016

This experience in Iceland has been really great! From a professional point of view I have explored different themes and subjects. I learned about cultural heritage, how it is divided in tangible, intangible elements and the importance of nature. We cannot live without this heritage, because it arrives from our past, coexists in our present life and it will pass to next generations. I also studied the idea of folklore, how it originated, and I had the opportunity to listen to striking Icelandic stories about the elves, the trolls and other magic creatures by the local guides. I have learned that people from Iceland feel very much the contact with nature; they respect the natural elements and try not to go against them. Also the young generations preserve these stories which are part of their cultural identity. This course has also given to me the opportunity to visit new places and to do some practise. I appreciated very much the practical workshop to learn wool art crafts about Icelandic traditions, and I was able to make my own trolls. From a personal point of view, this experience has enriched me a lot. I had the chance to meet other teachers from all over the world and we spent lots of time together. We could compare our traditions, find the similarities and the differences. Then, our teacher Rita has been a great group leader, since she managed to put all these people together and made us feel at ease. She gave us advice on our work in the school classes, talked about her experiences and motivated us each day. I will never forget this experience in Iceland and I’ll try to exploit all the hints, the ideas, the concepts I received in my job and in my life.

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Attended 18.04.2016 - 22.04.2016

Rosanna I arrived in this country totally unaware of its history and its traditions and I never imagined that a country so small and isolated for geographical reasons could have so much history and cultural richness. It was very interesting to enter day after day into the hidden world of trolls, elves , and supernatural creatures, but it was even more interesting to discover how an entire people perpetrated many stories about this enchanted world with passion and love. I was struck by the seriousness and the competence with which the modern storytellers told us about the Icelandic events and traditions in this regard and how profoundly their superstition conditions everyone's life. Another aspect that struck me very much was the relationship between man and nature, the respect and gratitude that man experiences and demonstrates towards such an unbridled nature. I come from a country that is very rich in tradition and has a long history, but unfortunately we Italians are not so respectful of our cultural heritage and often our legends and myths are not so rooted in our everyday lives. We should learn from our Icelandic friends. A special mention to Rita and to her great skills….she organized a course of personal growing for all of us

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Attended 13.04.2019 - 17.04.2019

A warm farewell to ICEland! The past 5 days were enlightening to me, not just because I fulfilled a childhood dream to visit Iceland, but also because I learned much. Professionally, I’ve encountered many differences between the Icelandic and Portuguese education systems and folk culture. I’ve realized the climate and geographical positioning of a country deeply influences its identity. Therefore, I found many differences but also many similarities with the archipelago of the Azores where I live: our mild weather shaped us differently; however, our volcanic origin strengthens our similarities. I really felt at home in Iceland due to our identical heritage: active volcanism, whaling, fishing industry, gastronomy, biodiversity and Nature! I found myself in the ‘HIDDEN OPEN SPACES’ of Icelandic landscape and way of living and I return to my secluded home with a sense of belonging: we might be hidden away in faraway spaces but we are open to novelty and embrace openness with a warm welcome! Thank you for this rewarding learning experience! I return to the Azores a richer woman and teacher!

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Attended 13.04.2019 - 17.04.2019

Getting to know and learn surrounded by nature with local people was exciting. The comparison between teachers from different countries and realities has stimulated my desire to learn about different places and realities as well as my need to learn in English. Iceland has fascinated me with its traditions and particularly rugged environment. Knowing and understanding our culture by learning to see it from the point of view of other cultures, comparing the customs and beliefs of my land with those of other times and places has accompanied me throughout these days. Rita Stoskiene guided us on this journey to discover what is "Hidden in the open space" but also "Hidden in each of us". I am excited to talk about my trip abroad and my introspective journey.

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Attended 13.04.2019 - 17.04.2019

Personnel benefits - I have made sure that my attitudes towards my family acting and growing up my children concerning the cultural and natural heritage have a sense - To see innovative ways, technologies in farming (tomato farm, sheep breeding), i.e. to implement some of the innovations within our farm, such as make excursions to our farm and the natural/life garden we develop; - To disseminate the results of the sheep breeding among our family members sheep keepers - To disseminate even the impacts of the globalization, especially “money rush” – example of bee business Staff benefits Teacher/Methodology Expert - To compare various innovative methods with the focus on the outdoor teaching/activities with the ones we implement within the educational programs in URSUS environmental centre (terrain excursions, cultural and natural heritage programs, workshops on natural resources arts…), see www.ursuscentrum.cz - To get to know the innovative methods, pieces of knowledge, methods, facts… we implement within the programs at URSUS environmental centre, i.e. THINKINKG AHEAD - To exchange some pieces of information with other teachers round Europe (system of education, pupils´/students´ motivation to enhance…) - To make sure that the way of teaching I chose nearly 20 years ago is right… Not to use course books only, but to base the teaching on the interactive way with the implementation of the local/regional cultural and natural heritage programs, workshops, terrain excursions. I´m very proud of myself and my achievements. Project coordinator - to compare the activities, methods, procedures in the field of the coordinator - to implement new activities within the role of the coordinator Project manager/Director - what pieces of innovation, activities we might implement or improve at URSUS environmental centre - implement the method of Padlet program for our teachers; this one I really appreciate I could add much more impacts and benefits, but I lack the time to state them…. 😊 I will add others into my national report and within my dissemination activities, i.e. website of our organization and another organization under the Ministry of Environment (www.ursuscentrum.cz; www.dumprirody.cz), newspapers that we issue in the amount of 30.000 pieces, bulletin news, blog posts for our visitors (about 10.000 visitors/year) and many other PR tools we disseminate.

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Attended 13.04.2019 - 17.04.2019

This morning we visited an Icelandic school, the visit offered many ideas to take with us to try to realize them in our contexts of belonging. Today a very interesting and special training course has been concluded. It was a real search for a cultural heritage hidden in a nature open to the traveller. Nature has offered us great food for thought, it has allowed us a particular and unusual introspection. I was very struck by the legends of this land. In some cases they almost upset me or made me smile. But then I said to myself, but also my land is full of legends and beliefs that to others might seem strange or particular. I really enjoyed living in open spaces, they allowed me to feel an integral part of the environment. Even the wind that blew with all his strength, I interpreted it as a special greeting. This work on popular beliefs has also allowed me to be able to bring into my work environment stimuli to be implemented. The course, expertly organized by Rita, was able to put together different but complementary moments. Perhaps the exchange between the trainees is a bit missed, but it is not important, we can also reflect afterwords. An essential element was the concept of cultural heritage that we educators are obliged to pass on to new generations. The roots, if they are firm, do not uproot the tree, so if values ​​are consolidated they do not uproot the principles of every human being. I want to think that the wind, the rain and the cold of these days may be the memory of a magical land that, despite the cold outside, gives an internal warmth that I will never forget.

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Attended 13.04.2019 - 17.04.2019

The reason why I chose this course is because it was about Heritage and UNESCO is an organization that is very dear to me and because it would be carried out in the open air and it was very practical Hidden in Open Space, organized by Kaunas Biennale, has fulfilled my expectations in many ways. I am very grateful to Rita Stoskiene, the course organizer, and to my “travelling companions” on this beautiful journey. In these five days, we have been able to learn about and appreciate Icelandic natural heritage and culture. We have learnt about this country’s incredible natural diversity and respect for the environment, its fascination for stories, its ability to adapt to nature. Iceland is a country that, in my point of view, is a role model to follow in terms of how they have managed to build a sustainable society. This course has also made me reflect on what we do and WHY we do it, that taking action is a Must and that we can all make a difference. I believe that we, as teachers have tremendous responsibility in this regard. I am also grateful for all the beautiful people I have met here, for this wonderful intercultural experience and for my partners’ generosity and their wisdom.

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Attended 13.04.2019 - 17.04.2019

The last step of the k1 Erasmus plus training was held from 13 to 17 April 2018 in Reykjavík. The group of students led by the trainer Rita S. carried out the activities mainly in the open spaces. The objective pursued was to learn about the salient aspects of Icelandic culture through experience. As for my personal training experience, I have benefited from having listened to traditional stories, legendary figures and by having seen natural places in direct contact, as is used in film language. Listening to the stories of elves and trolls, of ways of living and of justified pleasant and unpleasant events typical of every existence, not in a closed room but in places of interest, has made this course an experience of personal growth. Experiencing the days immersed in part of Iceland's natural and immaterial cultural heritage has allowed me to have a perception of the emotional depth that nourishes and substantiates the Icelandic people's way of life. The human being, although differing in the cultural structures he inherits and which change from nation to nation, although he has found different answers to his needs for knowledge, remains, net of cultural differences, with the same fragile heart in need of security, hope and love. People, beyond the stories that traditions pass on, have the same nature. Confrontation, knowledge, closeness and the exchange of visions and attitudes are a balanced way to discover that common "spiritual" nature and to meet a future that sees us citizens of the same nation. Europe is an opportunity to write a common future starting from different stories.

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Attended 13.04.2019 - 17.04.2019

"Hidden in the open space" has been a very interesting course because we have been able to verify the importance of the preservation of Nature for the maintenance of cultural heritage. And this has been done in one of the places where it is most impressive, Iceland. This country is full of stories and customs that are associated with the natural environment. We have also discovered how the Icelandic people retain nature: they use the cycle of inheritance. Rita has organized and explained perfectly all this or has presented us people and guides who have taken us to the natural environment or have told us very interesting popular stories about trolls, elves ... The strengths of the course are the incredible Nature it has, the landscapes and the number of fantastic beings that make the experience wonderful. I think that anyone interested in any sample of cultural heritage should do this course because it does not disappoint. Iceland and her stories are charming. Thanks Rita, you are a great person.

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Attended 13.04.2019 - 17.04.2019

Over the course of five days Rita has made us live in the first person every story of the city, every legend, every corner ... This has not allowed us to understand the feelings that Icelanders have about nature. For Spain, I took many stories in my backpack to tell my children at school and my classmates, many ideas on how to take care of nature on a daily basis. One of the ideas that this course has given me is that it is not enough to take care of nature. We have to know it (in all its versions), we have to value it, we have to take care of it and, later we have to enjoy it. In addition, it is essential to act in favor of nature and to share all of this so that the rest of the people will also do it. We are nature and caring for and respecting nature also means taking care of ourselves and respecting ourselves. This course has combined knowledge, enjoyment and activity to perfection. I can only thank Rita and all the companeros who have lived with me this adventure. No doubt you will consider Kaunas Biennale for future training. Thank you, thank you and thank you.

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Attended 13.04.2019 - 17.04.2019

During this amazing course I’ve really felt a great connection to the unpredictable nature. Every since the unforgettable stay at the airplane for four and a half hours after landing because of the dangerous wind, we have experienced both the beauty and the dangerousness of the nature. It’s probably because of the fierceness and unpredictability of the nature why the Icelandic people are so adjusted to live as equals with their surroundigs. That’s why I think Iceland have been a perfect surrounding for this kind of course.

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Attended 13.04.2019 - 17.04.2019

The course was very well organised and very informative. We had good excursions and guides on our course and Rita is a very efficient and yet humane teacher. Her methods work very well for me. Especially reflecting on the day´s topics and learning from other people is always a good way to learn. There was listening and discussing but also experiencing and writing down the things we had learned. The subject and the topics of the course were very interesting and also important to all who teach and work with children and young people. Iceland is perfect location for this course.

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Attended 05.04.2019 - 09.04.2019

Iceland was a country fairly unknown to me, its language history or nature and with this course I expected to reverse that. Not only did we learn about Icelandic nature history and language, but also about how this country is connected to nature in their everyday life and how it shapes people's believes. Through storytelling, walking tours, hiking in nature or workshop experiences, Icelandic culture was presented to us. Icelanders live on a unique landscape with their own and unique traditions but they also find the way to be connected to the rest of the world, thus a balance between globalisation and preservation of their own culture is for me here discernible. As I find this balance of great importance in our current societies, this highly recommended course shall be a source for inspiration and reference as follow-up to my work.

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Attended 18.04.2016 - 22.04.2016

It's been a great opportunity to come to this amazing country and get to know more of It in such a different way. As Rita said, we were not tourists visiting the country, we were guests experiencing Nature from a very unique source: the People who inherited it and is responsible for preserving it. The diversity of experiences lived here, not only the scheduled ones, but also those learnt from the course colleagues made an impact on me. I can say that they have really filled my bucket, and now I can contribute a bit better to my pupils' sense of belonging, being and becoming.

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Attended 05.04.2019 - 09.04.2019

Iceland is a very special country and so was the course as well! Thank you Rita for this mythical time we spent on that island. It was so impressive to experience the strong connection between the nature and the history of Iceland. Especially in our digital time it is important to keep in mind our cultural traditions. But there is always a possibility to combine the digital world with old and magical stories or to have a certain balance between both of them. I go home with so many diverse ideas to implement into my classes. I really enjoyed listening to the Icelandic people telling us stories about the trolls and the elves who live side by side with the humans and who affect their daily life. Thank you for experiencing and sharing new thoughts about the way of teaching and about how to deal with culture.

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Attended 05.04.2019 - 09.04.2019

To learn about cultural heritage in such a practical and alluring way was a really pleasant experience. Learning from the Icelandic people and their beliefs and respect for nature exploring the unique Icelandic natural world has delivered such a tremendously valuable insight into their culture. I was impressed how open they speak about hidden people and the ‚existence‘ of mythical creatures and how it affects their daily life. A simply magical experience and mind-opening to things you cannot literally touch. Experiencing the pure power and uniqueness of the nature and the strong people was a great honor. The story telling was a source of ignition to integrate this highly creative and imaginative method more into my language classes. Students likewise as me will be fascinated. As a foreign language teacher I will try to develop the student‘s oral storytelling skills and teach them about this tradition, which will motivate them a lot more to talk and use the respective foreign language. Thank you Rita again for your passionate and inspiring way and enabling us this amazing experience!

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Attended 05.04.2019 - 09.04.2019

The title of the course is responsible for the whole days. In nature, both the culture and the whole of human history can be seen in the closest connection. Nature as a starting point for this course offers a link with the cultural heritage that brought Rita into a wonderful symbiosis. Iceland is a great place for it. We dived into traditions, legends, mythology and their anchoring in the current way of life. To stretch this arc was more than successful, thank you Rita for the many suggestions and the scholastic gain for your own school, the college and especially the students.

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Attended 18.04.2016 - 22.04.2016

The course fully met expectations. Especially the impressive nature of Iceland had a big impact on me. And all in sunshine! The encounter with the mystical beings of Iceland, the stories about them and also the eventful history of the country itself were very interesting. A workshop with wool inspired our whole group. Thank you Rita for organizing this varied week.

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Attended 05.04.2019 - 09.04.2019

Thank you Rita for putting up this course. I am happy to have been able to participate. What I take back home is a mixture of reflections on myself, my culture and my way of teaching. It was a great experience listening to stories about elves, trolls and hidden people as well as doing felting and travelling the island with you. I hope I will be able to participate in more courses and collaborate with you in the future again.

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Attended 23.04.2018 - 27.04.2018

This course has been outstanding! It has been such a privilege to meet our inspiring and knowledgeable course leader Rita and learn about cultural heritage and the importance of safeguarding it. The course has been insightful on both a professional and personal level. To learn about cultural heritage in such a practical and engaging way has really enabled me to develop a good understanding of what is it and the importance of it. Meeting the Icelandic people on the course and exploring the wonderful Icelandic natural world has given me a clear understanding of their culture and the respect they have for nature. The discussions with Rita and the group have been so informative too and have clarified my understanding and enabled me to reflect on what has been experienced. Through learning about cultural heritage in theory and seeing it practically in Iceland, I can clearly see the importance of developing the children's understanding of their own culture and the impact that this can have. The course has given me ideas, both small and large, to develop what has been taught further. Next steps will involve helping the children to learn about their own culture, storytelling and developing a greater respect for nature. From a personal point, I have developed a great friendship with an amazing group of people and had time to reflect on different ways of life. Thank you Rita for organising such a brilliant course.

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Attended 23.04.2018 - 27.04.2018

A heartfelt thank you everyone; Rita, Christelle, Eleonora, Paula,Kate and my flatmate Bina. You are in my heart and memories. This week in preparation was full of challenges and anxiety. From the moment I landed Iceland has welcomed me and made my time genuinely exquisite. I feel our group bonded over ‘cream tea ‘ and we became a family. Each day brought greater insight, inspiration and understanding. The sheer magnificence, power and uniqueness of this country is something I am still digesting. The people are so strong, content and firm in their cultural heritage and respect of nature that it beggars belief we have not maintained ours. Being here in Iceland I feel privy to their knowledge and am deeply honoured to have been part of this exceptional journey. The fact I actually met these marvellous, inspirational people; Vesturbaejarskoli staff & children, Sigurbjorg Karlsdottir, Bjarni Haroarson, Pall Guomundsson, Steiner Berg , Marten our guide, Eleonora, Christelle and the finally the fantastic Rita has been life changing. Despite sounding dramatic, it is genuinely true. We have experienced, shared and discussed intimate information, thoughts, feelings and literally bared our souls. The fact that this course was not conference style (academia based) but involved actually meeting real people, experiencing real culture and sharing reflections openly and honestly has made this project successful. I am excited with this new found insightfulness and am eager to implement this acquired knowledge. Thank you Iceland for opening my eyes, mind and soul.

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Attended 23.04.2018 - 27.04.2018

Our discussions among us teachers, whether primary or secondary, are kind of « reassuring » : we are facing mostly the same problems, but we are all sort of « cheered up » by this week, ready to come back in our schools with enthusiastic projects. Thank you Rita for this well thought program, combining so perfectly culture and nature, which was exactly what I was looking for as a philosophy teacher ! I learned about cultural elements I will be able to re-use in my classroom in order to show my pupils how protection of nature is a cultural issue, a question of beliefs. These beliefs are not to be seen only in a negative way, in a rational way, but they are actually the basis of our values / moral landsmarks... A French philosopher (J.P. Dupuy) used to say that the problem of our societies is that we know about the ecological crisis and the catastrophic changes we are facing, but we do not believe in it... I’m therefore very happy with this Erasmus training, which allowed me to meet inspiring people, including everybody in my group. I wish we could have more time to exchange together, but the week has passed so quickly that we have to be very satisfied with everything we experienced ! This week was all in all : fresh air (all points of view…sometimes really fresh though !), cultural inputs, kind and rich relationships, eruption of beauty for the eyes, awareness of ourselves…so rich ! Thanks again, Rita ! Thank you too, guys of my group ! Working with you was so delightful !

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Attended 23.04.2018 - 27.04.2018

Firstly, I’d like to say thank you to Rita for organising this wonderful course. Thank you to Rita, Christelle, Eleanora, Kate, Moomtaz and Bina for sharing this experience with me. It has been eye opening and awe inspiring on many levels. Firstly, for the new friendships and deepening of existing professional relationships where we have had the time and space to get to know each other better. It doesn’t matter where you are from, you can always find experiences in common. Secondly, I have learnt so much about Icelandic history and culture, which in turn has made me reflect on my own. It has been really interesting to learn about, and see first hand, the link between nature and cultural heritage in Iceland. I have so many ideas to take back to my school in England in order to teach the children about English cultural heritage. I Intend to begin by developing the children’s oral storytelling skills and teaching them about the this tradition. The experience has also opened my mind more to the possibilities of those things that you cannot always see or touch. The experience of meeting people who spoke openly about hidden creatures and the impact on the lives of the communities has been truly magical. Lastly, it didn’t take long to fall head over heels in love with Iceland. The people, the landscape and the stories have made this week one that I will never forget.

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Attended 23.04.2018 - 27.04.2018

This magnificent course taught me that if you understand your own culture, folklore and natural surroundings, you will succeed in making other people value those. By valueing them, it will help people to care for them. And if you care for something you will immediately enjoy it and will be eager to learn even more about it. This is where school comes in. Since more and more families get out of touch with folklore and nature, it is up to schools and up to every single teacher to create the means to step into the awareness of natural culture. Start international projects! Start involving students and their parents as well! And soon they will re-know about their own culture as they will be confronted with a different one. Therefore, share your story, enrich the lives of others and discover diversity to help preserving cultural heritage! Iceland made me realize that we need to listen to the music and the stories of stones, water, plants and trees so we don't miss the gifts of Earth but start acknowledging them. It was a privilege to attend this course. Thank you Rita! Thank you Iceland!

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Attended 23.04.2018 - 27.04.2018

Thank you Rita for an awesome experience I have had. This international project has given me an opportunity not only to reflect on my self but to to respect other cultures and beliefs around me. Even though I live in a multicultural society it is easy to get caught up in the life and surroundings of day to day life that I live in. I am my self to blame for this as you pointed out today it is important to keep tradition alive. Throughout this whole week Iceland has given me this opportunity to reconnect with my self once more. I will take back all the stories and folklore stories that I have heard and first implement this in my own home, implement and drip feed slowly in my other surroundings. I am optimistic that sharing cultural heritage will help to enrich the lives of others through diversity. It has been a pleasure working with you Rita, along with Christelle, Eleonora and my colleagues Moomtaz, Kate and Paula. I do hope I have the opportunity to be able to work with you in the future!

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Attended 18.04.2016 - 22.04.2016

Excellent, very well organized course involved in the local environment and traditions. It offers a reflection on integration of internationalization in the local tradition and maintaining a balance between them.

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Attended 17.04.2017 - 20.04.2017

Cultural and natural heritage, or more simple, the surroundings we are living in and the ordinary life, contains a lot of meanings for individuals themselves and their communities. We are not unanimous about everything. Sharing and experiencing with other people from different cultural surroundings makes our global life, hopefully, more understandable and tolerant. Great experience this five days. Days were full of stories and we did not miss the beautiful and fascinating landscape of Iceland and its peculiar people! The recomendation of the organizator for accomodation in guesthouse was very good!

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Attended 17.04.2017 - 20.04.2017

I very liked the project of the intangible cultural heritage. In the past, people used to belive and feel the nature differently. Unusual shapes in nature(sometimes, rosembling images of the real world), which were formed by water, fire and air were felt differently, seen differently, listened to more subtly and undeirstood in their own way. Here in Iceland I have realised that the people different belives finds beckground in the natural beauty.

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Attended 17.04.2017 - 20.04.2017

I have learnted how much the old beliefs (Elves, Trolls..) influence the present life much more than other countries more christianized . To know the educational project of the school that we have visited today has been a very good and learning experience that I am going to explain to my colleagues so I thing their project can inspire changes in our school.

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Attended 17.04.2017 - 20.04.2017

I am very glad that I have attended this course since I am an anthropologist and an environmental and science teacher. My first impression of the astonishing nature was fascinating. I am very happy to get the background of the intangible cultural heritage: the folklore stories, myths about elves, hidden people and trolls and the natural background of them. It all had connected together very well: the cultural and natural heritage. Reykjavik is a very colourful city, and I liked it a lot, Icelanders are very special people, that was seen in the school we visited – they were very polite, smiling, full of positive energy – a really great example and the epilogue of the course week.

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Organiser

NGO Kaunas Biennial
NGO Kaunas Biennial
Rating: 5/5182 users

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