The 3rd Erasmus+ student mobility took place from October 8th to 14th, 2022 in Almadén, Spain. The groups from Augsburg, Banská Bystrica and Sterzing took very early flights to have the opportunity to visit the city center of Madrid on Saturday. After meeting the group from Belgium in the afternoon at the airport, the whole group travelled to Almadén by bus where they were finally warmly welcomed by their Spanish hosts.
On Sunday, October 9, the students stayed with their host families although they also carried out some joint activities such as the climb to the Virgen del Castillo in Chillón, a town near Almadén. Teachers and students also tasted typical Spanish food; like for example, the chocolate with churros.
The reception was held on Monday at the center by the Director Mr. José María Villalón. In addition, the dynamics of group work that we were going to carry out was explained to all the students. After a guided visit of the bullring arena the group was received by the mayoress of Almadén: Doña María del Carmen Montes at the town hall of Almadén. In the evening, the “Fugger-Forum” with the title “Footsteps of Jakob Fugger” took place in the auditorium of the center, with the participation of experts from Spain, Mr. Angel Hernández – and from Germany – Mrs. Katharina Dehner from the Fugger and Welser museum Augsburg.
The 3rd day of the mobility began in the center, where all the students met to organize the different groups and classmates with whom they were going to spend the day. After this, the group headed towards the Mining Park of Minas de Almadén. After a short introduction by the head of the museum the Erasmus+-group was devided in two smaller groups to be ready to go 100m under the ground to explore the historical mine and its relationship with the Fugger family during the Spanish imperial era and the repercussions that these activities had throughout the country and in the dayly life of the families of Almadén. The groups went down into the interior of the mine, where they went through part of the galleries, until they reached the underground railway that would take the groups right to the Mercury Technological Center. There was a presentation about the difficult, time consuming and very expensive but in the end sucessfull environmental recovery of the mine in Almadén by Javier Carrasco. After lunch, various activities where carried out at the University of Almadén where the group argued about the existing pollution problems in their respective countries and thus seek solutions for each of them, resembling the members of the European Parliament.
On Wednesday, October 12, the group visited Almagro, a city where representatives of the Fugger family maintained a trading station. The tour of the city, which included stops at the world-famous Corral de Comedias Theater, some city palaces of the most important families in Almagro and the Church of San Agustín, which has been converted into an art museum, ended with a visit to the Fugger Palace. On the way back, the group also visited Calatrava la Nueva Castle, whose properties were ceded by Carlos I to the Fugger family.
The wonderful city of Córdoba was the main topic on the touristic agenda for Thursday. The group had a guided tour through the Mosque, the Jewish Quarter, the Roman bridge and the Torre de Calahorra. With this visit the group was able to learn another part of the Spanish culture.
Friday, October 14, began with workshops at the University of Almadén. All students and teachers had to do three different workshops about history, geology and biology. Students were able to measure their personal mercury concentration by analyzing their hair. To celebrate the Erasmus days, we made tongue twisters in different languages. Here is the link to the final video Tongue Twister challenge – #Erasmusdays 2022. To evaluate mobility, we painted our feelings on the stained glass windows of the I.E.S. Pablo Ruiz Picasso. In the evening, we had a farewell party at the Peraleda site. Certificates were presented to all participants. The ceremony ended with a party that turned into a Spanish fiesta with music and dancing before saying goodbye to Almadén a few hours later.
We hope to meet again soon; this time in Antwerp, Belgium from March 4 to 11, 2022.