Morning Session: Ice Breakers and Speed Dating
Our first day at the youth exchange kicked off with vibrant energy and enthusiasm. The participants dived into ice-breaking activities, starting with the engaging game of “Two Truths and a Lie.” This exercise not only sparked curiosity but also paved the way for initial bonding, as everyone shared intriguing facts about themselves. The session progressed with a “speed dating” activity, focusing on selected topics, allowing participants to interact in a fun and dynamic manner.
Mid-Morning: Strengthening Team Spirit
As the morning unfolded, several team-building games and name games were introduced. These activities were not just about fun; they were carefully designed to forge a strong team spirit and set a collaborative tone for the days ahead.
Afternoon: Crafting Our Group Contract
In the afternoon, we shifted our focus to creating a group contract. Participants were grouped into teams of five and given whiteboards to jot down their expectations and rules for the exchange. One notable rule from a group was the decision to refrain from using phones during sessions. The teams engaged in reflective questions, delving into their personal goals, concerns, and hopes for the exchange. This exercise was pivotal in aligning everyone’s expectations and fostering a sense of shared responsibility.
Late Afternoon: Practicalities and Logistics
We then addressed the practical and logistical aspects of the mobility. This session was crucial in ensuring that all participants felt comfortable and informed. Specific dietary needs, such as vegetarian options and allergies, were discussed and resolved, ensuring everyone’s needs were catered to.
Evening: Challenges, Mysteries, and Climate Change Insights
The evening was marked by an interactive session where participants were divided into seven teams, each facing a series of challenges, mysteries, and puzzles related to climate change. This was not just a learning experience but also an opportunity to deepen trust and understanding within the group.
Digital Creativity: Erasmus+ Quiz and Video Making
To add a digital twist, we used Blooket to create an engaging quiz on Erasmus+. Teams were also tasked with creating videos on each of the 8 key competences, blending team spirit with digital content creation skills.
Reflection and Social Media Content Creation
The day concluded with a reflection session in national groups, aiding those less fluent in English. This was a time for introspection and sharing, helping participants process the day’s learnings and experiences. Additionally, voluntary teams were formed to create content for social media, showcasing the day’s highlights and insights.
Day 1 set a strong foundation for our journey ahead. It was a day filled with laughter, learning, and the first steps towards building a connected and empowered group of young individuals, ready to explore and grow together in this enriching exchange experience.