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After two long years of waiting, last week Westbourne students finally arrived in Cantabria to begin the week long Spanish trip. This was originally due to take place in 2020, however as an effect of the pandemic, was delayed until June 2022, resulting in a buildup of excitement amongst students. A team of around 50 students, ranging from y7 to y10, and five teachers met at midnight on Saturday for the journey to Gatwick airport. Amidst the airport chaos, our (delayed!) flight delivered us safely to sunny Bilbao where the adventure began.

Learning the lingo

The trip was packed full with educational opportunities, and succeeded in its mission to encourage and engage students in the Spanish culture and language learning. Whilst away, we recorded the events of the day in our trip journals, developing our Spanish writing skills. We practised our Spanish speaking amongst the locals wherever and whenever possible. This included surveying local people in the town, visiting a market and ordering (many!) ice creams. Our understanding of Spanish culture was enriched, especially as we sampled the delicious local cuisine. We especially loved the churros y chocolate and incredible tapas experience!

Amazing cultural experiences

As well as educational opportunities, the trip was full of amazing experiences that provided lots of fun. Activities included a visit to a school, lessons in flamenco dance and surfing, visiting El Capricho De Gaudi, taking a tour of Cuevas El Castillo and of course many visits to the beach. The school visit was a particular favourite as it provided an opportunity to meet penpals whom we had been in contact with prior to the trip. Spending the day with our penpals gave us time to practise our Spanish small talk as well as swapping social media details to keep in touch, creating friendships that will last a lifetime.

To conclude the trip, the teachers planned an award ceremony where prizes were given out to students who displayed the Westbourne values and did well in the activities on the trip. I’m sure everyone would agree that this was a perfect ending to a fantastic week. Señora Wilcox said:

“It was great to see pupils taking full advantage of every opportunity and some making friends for life. Everywhere we went, people commented on how well behaved and charming the pupils were”.

Muchas gracias a todos los profesores

The success of the trip was due to the hard work and commitment of the teachers, especially Señora Wilcox! As if the trip wasn’t special enough, it was symbolic to the teachers, as Señora Wilcox and Madame George have been running this trip for many years and have got to know the family who run the hotel well.  On behalf of all the students on the trip, we are very grateful to them and say muchas gracias para todo! But don’t worry if you missed out this time, the good news is that this trip is being planned to run again in future years, so more great memories can be made! So start saving your euros…

Your choice. Their future.

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