STRIVE Update: Our Work Experience in Spain Continued

A few weeks ago, we met 3 students completing work experience in Spain as part of the STRIVE scheme. Abigail, Caitlin and Jordan, who are spending 4 weeks work experience in Santa Coloma primary schools, have updated us on their experience.  The students will be sharing their journey from 20th May to 20th June 2018 in Santa Coloma de Gramenet, Barcelona, Spain.

25/05/18 – Caitlin

It was my second day at my school today and we’ve been busy practising an end of year dance ready for the summer. Me and the other teachers created the dance together and we then encouraged the children to copy the moves. They all enjoyed it very much and showed a lot of enthusiasm! On my lunch break, me and Jordan went to an Italian restaurant for a lovely three course meal and then headed back to our schools. We had Music in the afternoon which was fantastic – the children were teaching me their class song, involving the high and low sounds of their voice and noises they can make using their body.

We had story time during the next period, and I created an activity so the children could have a go at learning English. I was able to read the Three Little Pigs in Catalan and translate it into English, allowing the children to have a go at pronouncing some of the words.  I placed out photocopies of each picture in the book and asked the children if they wanted to have a go at placing the events of the story in order. The teacher really involved herself in this activity, supporting me to teach the children effectively. Before home time, I asked the children to introduce themselves individually and they allowed me to introduce myself too. The children seemed to really enjoy my activity, so it was a successful day!


26/05/18 – Abigail

Today we went to the re-opening of the traditional market in Barcelona, which had fresh meat, fruit, vegetables, pasta and much more. The market attracted large crowds and it was lovely to embrace the Spanish culture, with music and family activities in the background. We visited Irene’s home – she has been an amazing host throughout our stay so far. She provided a delicious brunch with breath taking views of Barcelona from the rooftop. We then finished the day off with a bite to eat at Barcelona beach.


27/05/18 – Jordan

We’ve officially been here a week! Today we met up with one of the students we met earlier on this week and she took us into Barcelona to see some of the sights. We got to visit the Sagrada Familia, an incredible church built in the late 1800’s. We also got to see the Arc de Triomf before walking through the streets of Barcelona to La Rambla; the main street in the centre of Barcelona. We then spent the evening relaxing and learning some Catalan in preparation for placement this week.


30/05/18 – Jordan

I feel like we’ve really settled in now and I’m enjoying the placement. The language barrier is a bit of a struggle but I’m starting to pick up on some of the Spanish and Catalan now and the children are all trying really hard to speak English to me. This week I’ve been in the second grade with children aged 7 and 8. I’ll be spending each week in a different class, going into the higher year groups in the upcoming weeks. Spanish schools appear to be more relaxed and less regimented than schools in England. The children get to wear their own clothes and call their teacher by the first name. They’re also at school until 4.30pm, but this does include a 2 and a half hour lunch break, when teachers have meetings before eating their lunch.


01/06/18 – Abigail

Our first week is complete and it feels like such an achievement. I have learnt so much already about the different comparisons from schools in the UK compared to schools in Santa Coloma. I love the atmosphere and the way the school days are run. I’m looking forward to what I’m going to do here for the rest of the placement.

04/06/18 – Abigail

Today was a good day at school. I was supporting the English teacher and we were finishing off introductions for each child to present to other classes e.g. my name is, I am _______ years old and to say how they are feeling. The children enjoyed me being in the classroom as an English person, and to be there in the English lesson was amazing for them.


07/06/18 – Caitlin

Today we have been very creative in the classroom, experimenting using paints and making a water colour effect. I helped the children make their own water colour effects and they really enjoyed watching the colours change. After break time we practised maths and the children took part in a range of activities in groups and individually. They used counters to help them add and subtract and then moved onto using circle stickers independently on their own work. The children also really enjoyed their English lesson this morning with myself and Alex. They had a go at saying the names of different relatives such as ‘grandma, grandad, mother, father’. They also used the playground to help identify different colours in English, which was great as they learned English while being physically active too!


15/06/18 – Caitlin

Today it was my last day at placement and I was so sad to leave, all the teachers were so lovely to me and I brought them all chocolates and a leaving card which they really appreciated. I brought my class teacher a bunch of flowers and some presents and she was overwhelmed. It has been an amazing experience at the school, meeting some children and teachers I would have never thought to gain such a good relationship with. Everyone was sad to see me leave. They put together a booklet with the class photograph on the top and all pictures from each child that I had been working with in my class which I will keep forever. In the evening, Abigail, Jordan, my parents and I visited the magic fountain and it was amazing, I had such a great time.


Check out our first blog post on our work experience in Spain to see our journey so far.

Until next time!