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Visited by Journalists and one of the biggest Newspapers in Estonia

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During the final workshop we were visited by journalists and one of the biggest newspapers in Estonia published following article.

Taken to the marshland
Maarja-Magdaleena middle school offered its guests quiet and wild nature

By Asso Ladva


„We are going to take them to Endla marsh, they won’t be expecting that,” says Ariana Rooba, the headmistress of Maarja-Magdaleena middle school, after the guests have praised the greenness and quiet of Estonia.”They’ll get even more of that quiet and wild nature; we’ve still got some of that left.

This week, students and teachers from Turkey, Poland, Spain and Germany and only teachers from Greece and Netherlands came to visit Maarja-Magdaleena middle school. Thanks to the ending of the project, the number of merely 66 students doubled.

“It’s like our school has been added with 50% extra people”, was Henri Poolak, a student at Maarja-Magdaleena middle school, amused. The whole school family is working to take care of the 30 guests and after an IT workshop the guests are taken to the Endla national park for a hike.

“The students in the seven countries have learned everything related to paper – history, culture, environmental issues but the future of paper as well”, says Egle Lellep, the teacher of natural sciences at Maarja-Magdaleena middle school, explaining what was done with the resources given for the Erasmus+ project, by the European Union, and why all these interesting people gathered here.

Made the students learn

“At our school everyone got a chance to participate in the project”, praises Lellep. “Almost half of the students got to travel somewhere. Moreover, the students got to see other countries and people. They became a lot more confident in communicating, especially the boys.”

Communicating with young people from other countries made a lot of students more motivated to learn, “They come to the lessons and say that they weren’t able to say simple things and that they want to acquire a foreign language. So the motivation to learn is definitely bigger than before.”

A Spain girl Noelia describes temperamentally that their school went to see how recycled paper is used and that they learned what is stone paper – it’s a paper-like product made of stone dust and plastic waste which was invented in Taiwan and which is slowly starting to conquer Europe. Producing it doesn’t require any water or wood – environment friendly in every way.” “The students and teachers learn to think out of the box,” says a Greek teacher Zoe, who taught Greek alphabet and how to write their names with Greek letters to the students of Maarja-Magdaleena middle school. “Besides learning new things we also got to know Europe. Estonia, for example is not known very well in Greece.”

They praise the quiet and the greenness

The students and teachers visiting all praise how quiet and green Estonia is and in that part no one disagrees. None of them have any idea what is a marsh or a swamp but for that reason, the evening trip to the marsh is particularly looked forward to. “I was shocked about how small this school is”, is a Polish visitor Ola amazed. “But the computers over here are lot better. And they have student housing.” “I thought that in Estonia it is possible to get by with Swedish, just like in Finland,” says a Dutch teacher Alexandra who is married to a Norwegian and therefore knows Scandinavian languages. “But it comes out that Swedish is useless here.”

The Spanish students are also amazed at how small the school is – for them 60 people equals only with two classrooms.

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