Spain. Traditional Festival and Celebrations


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Spain. Traditional Festival and Celebrations

  1. 1. OUR COUNTRY: SPAIN Spain (España), officially the Kingdom of Spain (Reino de España), is a sovereign state and a member of the European Union located in south-western Europe on the Iberian Peninsula. Its mainland is bordered to the south and east by the Mediterranean Sea except for a small land boundary with the British Overseas Territory of Gibraltar; to the north and north east by France, Andorra, and the Bay of Biscay; and to the northwest and west by the Atlantic Ocean and Portugal. Spanish territory also includes the Balearic Islands in the Mediterranean, the Canary Islands in the Atlantic Ocean off the African coast, and two autonomous cities in North Africa, Ceuta and Melilla, that border Morocco. Spain is a democracy organised in the form of a parliamentary government under a constitutional monarchy. OUR TOWN: LOS CORRALES DE BUELNA It is located in the North of Spain, in the region of Cantabria. With a population of 12,000 inhabitants, is 39 Km. south of the capital city of Cantabria, Santander. The vast majority of people work on industry, although there are still some families dedicated to farming. OUR SCHOOL: SAN JUAN BAUTISTA – LA SALLE San Juan Bautista is a state-aided Primary school from pre-school to 12 years old. It also comprises Secondary Education, Higher- Secondary Education and Higher Degree Vocational Training. The school was founded by Mrs. Felisa Campuzano in 1890. During the last few years, the school has experienced an increasing number of students from different nationalities. Also, the school is very concerned about students with special educational needs. The school has set up a bilingual programme for our secondary students. And we are also using CLIL methodology at Primary Stage. OUR WINNING LOGO (by Luis Fernández, Year 6) SPAIN - 1
  2. 2. SAINT CECILIA’S DAY 22nd November Saint Cecilia (November 22nd Santa Cecilia - Día de los Músicos) is the patroness of musicians and Church music because, as she was dying, she sang to God. It is also written that as the musicians played at her wedding, she "sang in her heart to the Lord". Her feast day is celebrated in the Roman Catholic, Anglican, Eastern Orthodox, and Eastern Catholic Churches on November 22. She is one of seven women, excluding the Blessed Virgin, commemorated by name in the Canon of the Mass. It was long supposed that she was a noble lady of Rome who, with her husband Valerian, his brother Tiburtius, and a Roman soldier Maximus, suffered martyrdom in about 230, under the Emperor Alexander Severus. Every year our school, San Juan Bautista, celebrates the Day of Saint Cecilia patroness of musicians (22nd of November). This year Marcos Bárcena, one of the most well-known and important artist of traditional music in Cantabria, has been with us to celebrate this day. SPAIN - 2
  3. 3. Márcos Bárcena began his musical career at the age of 13 when he discovered the music of the Beatles. He was a co-founder of some of the most representative folk music groups in Cantabria as Luétiga and Atlántica. He is a non-stop composer of songs of pure folk style; he has released more than twenty albums and has been the ambassador of our music all over the world. He currently teaches at various schools of traditional music, performs chatting-concerts whose theme is the traditional music and continues to serve both solo and with different groups. Marcos Bárcena gave a didactic concert for Primary, Secondary, students of training cycles and our European partners (Turkish, English and Latvian) of the Comenius project who were visiting us at that moment. SPAIN - 3
  4. 4. The concert was very enjoyable and consisted in a journey through the musical tradition of Cantabria and the North of Spain in general. Marcos Bárcena acted with more than ten different instruments like bagpipes, guitars, flutes, bodharán… in addition to his own voice. He presented a chatting-concert making a journey through time, touching themes specific to each station, completing the annual cycle of root music. He played romances, marzas, etc. that students followed with full attention. It was a great experience for all, something different for a special day. CHRISTMAS IN SPAIN 22nd December – 6th January The chronological order of notable Christmas events in Spain is as follows: SPAIN - 4
  5. 5. Christmas lights are usually lit in the main cities in the first week of December by which time the shops are fully stocked with Christmas supplies. December 8th – This is the public holiday of Immaculada (Feast of the Immaculate Conception) which marks the beginning of the religious Christmas celebrations. Christmas trees are common at home, but again they don’t appear until the second half of December. Also at home, there are intricate, miniature nativity scenes called Belenes (Bethlehems) which depict life in the village where Jesus was born. The Belén always includes the baby Jesus, Mary and Joseph, as well as the Three Kings, Baltasar, Melchior and Gaspar. 22nd December – All over Spain people never stray far from a TV or radio as the Christmas lottery is drawn over a period of many hours. Everybody buys tickets for this lottery in the hope of winning El Gordo (the fat one). Besides the big three prizes there are thousands of smaller prizes shared by people all over Spain. 24th December – Christmas Eve is called Nochebuena (Goodnight) and it is the most important family gathering of the year. In the evening, people often meet early for a few drinks with friends; then return home to enjoy a meal with the family. Most bars and restaurants close in the evening. Prawn starters followed by roast lamb would be a typical meal rounded off with a typically Christmas sweet called turrón, which is a nougat made of toasted sweet almonds. Another typical festive sweet is called Polvorón which is made from almonds, flour and sugar. Cava or Champagne would be the chosen drinks for the Christmas toast though plenty fine Spanish wines will also be consumed with the meal. 25th December – Children may receive a small gift on Nochebuena or this morning; but the day for presents is 6th January, Epiphany, when the Three Kings bring gifts for the children. Christmas Day is a national holiday in Spain, so shops are closed yet it is not a day of great celebration but rather a calm day when people go out for a walk, drop into a bar, etc. Another large family meal at lunchtime is common though it’s becoming more common to see families eating out on the afternoon of Christmas day. 28th December – This is the day of Santos Inocentes (Holy Innocents) and is the equivalent of April Fools’ Day when people play practical jokes on one another. 31st December – New Year’s Eve is known as Nochevieja (Oldnight). It is a big celebration all over the country with street parties and special nights in hotels and clubs everywhere. Until midnight people tend to stay at home and, on the stroke of midnight, it is traditional to eat 12 grapes, one on each stroke of the clock to bring good luck for the new year. In Madrid and other main cities revellers congregate in the main square (Puerta del Sol in Madrid) and eat the grapes along with a celebratory bottle of cava, then head out into the night until after sunrise. 1st January – A low key public holiday with plenty people sleeping off their excesses. 5th January – There are parades all over Spain this evening where sweets are thrown from the floats to all the children who come out to watch. Every town has its own variation such as in the Sierra Nevada where the Three Kings (Wise Men) can be seen to ski down to the village. 6th January – This is the Feast of the Epiphany when the Three Kings arrived in Bethlehem. For Spanish children this is the most important day of the year when they SPAIN - 5
  6. 6. wake up to find that Los Reyes Magos (the Three Kings/Wise Men) have left gifts for them in their house. Santa may leave them a token gift on December 25th but the Three Kings are their favourites. During the day of 6th the Three Kings continue their good work and are seen distributing gifts to children in hospitals all over Spain. 8th January – Two days after receiving their gifts children return to school, their parents go back to work and Christmas in Spain is all over for another year. CHRISTMAS AT SCHOOL The beginning of Christmas celebrations at school began, as every year, with the lighting of a Star. That star is shinning during all the Christmas period. On Monday, the 19th , every section at school met to welcome Jesus in the different celebrations that took place. It SPAIN - 6
  7. 7. was a celebration to look inside ourselves; to look for Jesus in our heart. He is our inner light. The symbol was a Star, the same that guided The Three Wise Men to Bethlehem when baby Jesus was born. One star per class, and inside the big star there were dozens of small stars stuck by the children during the previous days: every time one kid brought some food for the “Food Collecting”, a small star was stuck in the big one. After the celebration, every child carried a bag full of food to “Caritas”, an NGO next to the school. For the rest of the week, until the 22nd December (last day before Christmas holidays), there were some more activities and gestures which reminded us that Christmas is a time to share and enjoy. Gestures of solidarity through the thousands of food bags donated by the families, or through the different visits to the Old’s People Home “Las Anjanas”, placed in Corrales, made by the Secondary and Vocational students. SPAIN - 7
  8. 8. Gestures of affection like, for example, the visit that the oldest students paid to the youngest ones to share with them some carols, sweets and laughs. Gestures of creativity through the celebration of our Christmas Festivals: one for the infants and another one for primary students, both of them to enjoy some time with their families. The kids showed their artistic skills by performing some songs, dances and parodies; all of them prepared with a mixture of joy and nervous to the families’ delight. SPAIN - 8
  9. 9. THE SCHOOL DAY OF NON-VIOLENCE AND PEACE 30th January The School Day of Non-violence and Peace (or DENIP, acronym from: Día Escolar de la No-violencia y la Paz), also known as World or International Day of Non-violence and Peace, is a pioneering, non-state, non-governmental, non- official, independent, free and voluntary initiative of Non-violent and Pacifying Education, founded by the Spanish poet Llorenç Vidal Vidal in Majorca in 1964. He was influenced by Lanza del Vasto, a direct disciple of Gandhi. Del Vasto visited SPAIN - 9 DENIP logo
  10. 10. Majorca about 15 years ago, and his book "Le Retour aux Origines" ("Return to the Sources"), had an immediate influence. Different as the first proposed by the UNESCO "Armistice Day" in 1948, the "School Day of Non-violence and Peace" (DENIP) is observed on January 30th or thereabouts every year, on the anniversary of the death of Mahatma Gandhi, the great apostle of non-violence, in schools all over the world. It advocates a permanent education in and for harmony, tolerance, solidarity, respect for human rights, non-violence and peace. It is a practical activity which has neither official programming nor structural lines of action, because the message is one which maintains a permanent nucleus of basic aspects, and permits the free application of each educational centre according to its particular manner. Its basic and permanent message is: "Universal love, non-violence and peace. Universal love is better than egoism, non-violence is better than violence, and peace is better than war”. DENIP and World Association of Early Childhood Educators (AMEI-WAECE) collaborate to celebrate this event in the schools of the latter worldwide. The "School Day of Non-violence and Peace" is a seed which is planted and cultivated in the hearts of the students. It is a bright, new and positive way of looking at the world and preparing for the future. DAY OF PEACE – JANUARY 2012 The motto was “Search for your inner light”, the same that we are using this school year. SPAIN - 10 GANDHI SPANISH POET LLORENÇ VIDAL
  11. 11. The main performance took place on one of the school patios. The whole school family, students, teachers and families, took part in this celebration. One of our teachers (responsible of the Justice Department), affirmed that “it was a wonderful day to celebrate the Day of Peace, not to forget all those places where arm conflict are carried out, which make the world seem to be a bad place to live in, as well as to remind us that we all need to work together to achieve a global peace”. Using lights and candles, we built the star of La Salle in the middle of the playground to remind everyone about all the places where peace is still to come true. DAY OF PEACE – JANUARY 2011 During the previous days and under the motto of “You build peace”, a wide range of activities were carried out. We ended it up with a performance where all the school sections (Nursery, Primary & Secondary Education and the Working Training Courses), SPAIN - 11
  12. 12. presented a slogan which showed the commitment of all of us to build the necessary peace. Right after that, we freed the messages tied to balloons, to share the message with all our neighbours and the rest of the world. All the participants (nearly 1000 people), were showing a picture of a hand with a dove inside. DAY OF PEACE – JANUARY 2010 The motto this year was “Friends and siblings for Peace”. As a part of the activities, each student made a paper crane to perform “The story of the thousand paper cranes” by Sadako Sasaki. It was a wonderful visual performance: while a girl read the story, a group of students performed it. SPAIN - 12
  13. 13. To bring the act to a close, we read our wishes of peace in every language spoken at school. And we freed some pigeons, the universal symbol for Peace. LASALLIAN GREAT WEEK AT SCHOOL SAN JUAN BAUTISTA FESTIVITIES (Fiestas Colegiales San Juan Bautista) 15th May Saint Jean-Baptiste de La Salle or John Baptist de La Salle (30 April 1651 – 7 April 1719) was a priest, educational reformer, and founder of Institute of the Brothers of the Christian Schools. He is a saint of the Roman Catholic Church and the patron saint of teachers. He dedicated much of his life for the education of poor children in France; in doing so, he started many lasting educational practices. He is considered the founder of the first Catholic schools. Every May, the whole school community, students, teachers and parents celebrate the Lasallian week. It is an intense week, full of activities, games and excitement… Let’s see some of the things we have done this year. From the 11th to the 15th of May we have spent a few minutes in the morning to learn in more depth the life of our founder, St. John Baptist de La Salle in addition to sports and recreational activities. SPAIN - 13
  14. 14. The beginning of the celebrations took place on Thursday 10th with the opening speech in charge of the professional footballer and former student of the school, Víctor Sánchez. After the reading of the opening speech, we got together to form a huge Lasallian star, symbol of Union and reference for all. SPAIN - 14
  15. 15. In the afternoon, the youngest children enjoyed popular games that the teachers and parents were teaching them. While in the playground of the block B, the oldest primary students were having their already well -known competition “Salleprix”. The evening ended with a well-deserved "merendola". SPAIN - 15
  16. 16. On Friday, first hour, we met in the parish church to attend, again, the emotional celebration. After this, we all went to the playground of the block B, where many parents were waiting for us. They voluntarily came to work together and took part in the different stands prepared for the children to have fun, such as: make-up, hairdressing, the senses, elastic beds … and many others. SPAIN - 16
  17. 17. Elastic beds, archery, check your senses… SPAIN - 17
  18. 18. Many of the guys decided to stay to eat in the school with the oldest students: burgers and soft drinks for everyone! The day ended with puppets and the inflatable castles for the youngest. SPAIN - 18
  19. 19. For our oldest primary students, there was a fun competition of Wii, table tennis, karaoke and table football. And, of course! The long-awaited foam party!! SPAIN - 19
  20. 20. We are looking forward to our next Lasallian Great Week 2013!!! SPAIN - 20