They say Malta is one of those places people either love or hate. And after two weeks on the Mediterranean archipelago I can honestly say I love it.
It offered me in a fortnight encounters with what others might obtain in a whole year: high-quality training and learning, hot temperatures, windy evenings, green – a special kind of colour though – bushes, peach- and champagne-coloured buildings with no roofs, brown and green grasshoppers and lizards popping out from nowhere and anywhere, temples dating from ancient times and fences made of stone alone, as many churches as days are in a year, motorbikes with keys left in them, clouds on the sky, the much needed air conditioning when indoors, big – or calm – waves, wanderings around the islands, trip to Italy’s/Sicily’s Etna, eTwinning meetings.
I am a dedicated eTwinning ambassador, and was enthusiastic about one of the conclusions at the #eTwiam Twitter chat on June 30th 2015 where the main idea (thank you, dear friend Maria Georgiadou) was the necessity to enhance the opportunities to meet and exchange ideas among the network’s ambassadors through informal meetings as well.
Getting together with eTwinning ambassadors has always been a pleasure and an encouragement for me. Meeting with and talking to fellow-minded teachers – this is what I had in mind when one afternoon a week or so ago I headed to Mellieha to join the eTwinning Ambassadors’ Seminar organized by the Maltese National Support Service.
I was in Malta for a two-week training course at the Executive Training Institute in St. Julian’s, funded by the European Commission through its Erasmus+ Programme, and gladly took the opportunity to have more for less.
I met Amanda Debattista and Jaqueline Frendo from the Maltese National Support Service, all the Maltese ambassadors – Nathalie Scerri, Claudine Chircop, Mario Xerri, Maria Antoinette Magro, Romina Baldacchino, Gordon Cassar –, many Polish ambassadors – among them Dominika Tokarz, a friend of my dear eTwinning comrade Mariola Chodakowska-Malkiewicz – and Rute Baptista from the Central Support Service in Brussels. We were all full of energy, sharing ideas of eTwinning cooperation, collaboration and project work!
After a few days I also had a meeting with a former eTwinning ambassador of Malta, Miriam Schembri – one of Europe’s educational frontrunners, and a promoter and supporter of eTwinning for many years.
Informal meetings of eTwinning ambassadors can carry amazing significance, and I am proud and happy to be part of this remarkable network of pioneering teachers.
And then there were the amazing panoramas of the blue-green sea on those sunny days… Malta is, indeed, to be loved, and I am delighted I had this chance this July.
Daniela Bunea, Romanian eTwinning ambassador