The Grand Tour
The context of this exercise is inspired by the concept of the Grand Tour, a term that refers to the European tour that the young people belonging to the aristocracy, in particular English, did, as a path of personal and cultural formation, in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries.
The Dark side of chocolate
The exercise focuses on a product – chocolate – that is part of the cultural heritage of different countries, both in Europe and in the world and looks at it from two different points of view.
Chocolate is a product beloved by many, able to transform itself in a form of art expression but it also reminds to a bloody moment of human history which seems to come back in the massive contemporary production, as exposed by a handful of organizations and journalists who denounced in recent years the widespread use of child labor, especially in Western Africa.
The exercise presents in detail one activity and designs two more that teachers and trainers will be able to finalise following the model.
The dark side of chocolate
The context from which the exercise takes inspiration is the new Novel Food Regulation (EU) 2015/2283. “It aims to improve the conditions, so that businesses can bring new and innovative food to the EU market more easily, while still maintaining a high level of food safety for European consumers. The Regulation offers European consumers the benefit of a broader choice of food and a more favourable environment for Europe’s agri-food industry – the second largest employment sector in Europe – to benefit from innovation, which is good for growth and jobs. The theme chosen is very broad and can be approached from different points of view. Our proposals suggest a deepening of cultural, legal and economic nature through an analysis of the pros and cons.
The Regulation offers European consumers the benefit of a broader choice of food and a more favourable environment for Europe’s agri-food industry – the second largest employment sector in Europe – to benefit from innovation, which is good for growth and jobs.
The theme chosen is very broad and can be approached from different points of view. Our proposals suggest a deepening of cultural, legal and economic nature through an analysis of the pros and cons.
The Food Museum
The exercise is inspired by the recent ICOM proposal – the main international organization that represents museums and its professionals – of a new definition of museum, alternative to the current one where Museums “are democratising, inclusive and polyphonic spaces for critical dialogue about the pasts and the futures”.
Starting from this current and stimulating debate, the exercise that we present is the exploration of the museum world: a journey, through the first activity, of flavors, tastes and disgusts and an analysis of strengths, weaknesses, threats and opportunity, in the second activity. The exercise presents one activity in detail and outlines a second one that teachers and trainers will be able to finalize following the proposed model.
Image: FICO Eataly World, Bologna, BO, Italia
The workbook BETA version for trainers
Here is the first version of the workbook presenting some of the exercises we’re testing with students.
The key words on which we worked in outlining this Activity are two: agriculture and biodiversity. When the concept of “transmission of cultural heritage”- as a commitment and duty towards the future – was added to these two words the result was the Svalbard Global Seed Vault: the rock-cut vault of the Svalbard islands in which the human agricultural heritage is protected from earthquakes, wars, climate changes, genetic and biological alterations. The exercise guides students through the discovery of the vault and the study of biodiversity, as a crucial element of humanity’s cultural heritage. In particular, the exercise can be enhanced in the context of cooking classes, with a view to enhancing biodiversity in the food sector. In addition, as the Seed Vault contains seeds from all over the world, the exercise can be exploited to study geography, starting from the exploration of the countries that contributed to the creation of the Vault. From a wider perspective, the exercise can be presented as a point of reference for a debate on climate changes, as well as for a reflection on genetic and biological alterations. The exercise presents an activity in detail and outlines a second one that teachers and trainers will be able to finalize following the proposed model.
European coastal and maritime regions have – over several millennia – developed a rich, multi-layered and varied cultural heritage. At the crossroads of different types of contacts of European peoples with each other and with other regions of the world (from commerce to conquest, from cultural exchange to mass tourism) they represent an extremely rich tangible heritage (coastal towns and villages, submerged landscapes and underwater artefacts, harbours, dams, lighthouses, arsenals, buildings of the fishing and marine industry, boat builders, etc.). As a result of a combination of natural landscapes and human ingeniousness, including unique types of transcultural communication and ethnic diversity, specific coastal cultural landscapes emerged on the shores and sea beds of Europe.
Fishing has been for centuries the livelihood of communities from Europe: fishing has affected traditions, landscape, economy, language, literature, archaeology, jobs in the past but will continue to produce a wealth of products and resources.
Fishing in Europe is one of the sources of income in most countries and communities and the way the sector is evolving will have a strong impact on the way European sustainability and consumption. The maritime coastal areas in Europe are 38.000 kilometres and the European Union has a specific department promoting, among other thing, Europe’s unique marine heritage of landscapes, wildlife and habitats in combination with a range of maritime cultural heritage. The European Maritime and Fisheries Fund (EMFF) is one of the five European Structural and Investment Funds.
It is important that we are aware of this sector as a significant part of our history, traditions and way of living, eating and working.
Today, coastal cultural landscapes are very much exposed to environmental challenges such as climate change. With several coastal zones being among the densest populated areas, mixed metropolitan coastal landscapes have emerged around historic port cities posing new challenges for conservation, management and transmission of existing tangible and intangible values.
The exercise we present you is a travel proposal, to discover a small traveling fish that has, since ancient times, crossed Europe, both at sea and on land routes. Known and used since ancient times, the anchovy has always united countries and people, in a communion of traditions, recipes and stories. Anchovy is a fish that lives where the sea is bluer and that, like a small queen with a blue mantle, has been able to conquer us with its ease and ability to move, its transformism, its ability to make precious the simplest recipes of the countries she visited in her long history. Expanding the perspective, the exercise also outlines, as an additional resource, a chain of thoughts that suggests a transversal reflection on the theme of migration: the migration of fishes and that of people where biology, past and contemporary history, social studies reveal extra-ordinary elements of connections. The exercise presents in detail one activity and design one more that teachers and trainers will be able to finalize following the model.
Bread is human history’s basic, thousand-year old ‘ingredient’: a food linked with man’s sustenance, survival and religious worshiping but also with less or more sophisticated culinary practices of all sorts. Survival practices, habits and preferences in taste have very much changed over the centuries. But bread hasn’t. It has remained, and still is, integral to our diet: a food that has lasted beyond any racial, religious, geographic, social or political differences. Just like everything else, it has also adapted, and continues to do so until today, to scientific and technological developments, dietary trends as well as the peculiarities and preferences of different times and places.
Bread means conviviality, tradition and heritage. It’s a part of our identity. Bread is fashionable. Everyone has a memory with his grandparents, when their grandmother brought slices of bread for a snack.
Bread is everywhere in our civilizations and bread and wheat are the DNA of European civilisation. We find it everywhere and all the time, whether to spread pâté, or jam. Its multiple uses are a testimony to the fact that this foodstuff evolved differently among the European countries.
The exercise focuses on beer, as part of the cultural heritage of all the European countries. Beer is the oldest recorded recipe in the world. The ancient Egyptians first documented the brewing process on papyrus scrolls around 5000 B.C. They used beer for religious ceremonies. Before the Egyptians, the primitive cultures of Mesopotamia are believed to have been the first brewers, around 10000 B.C.
Then, from the Middle East beer arrived in Europe where it became an integral part of life. Beer represents some of our society’s greatest traditions and pleasures, but it is also important for the entire European economic sector.
Each country has its own traditional beer or its own way to use it.
For these reasons it is important to know this drink better and understand how important it is for the European cultural heritage.
The activity can be carried out in lessons of general subjects (Culture) and/or in Cookery and/or Bar.
The exercise focuses on tea, as part of the cultural heritage of the European countries. Tea represents one of our society’s greatest traditions and pleasures. It will warm us if we are cool, it will cool us if we are too heated and it will cheer us if we are depressed (in addition, it contains multiple benefits). Tea is the second most consumed drink in the world after water. For this reason it is important to know it, to discover its history and its current use.
Wine in Europe comes from very old traditions. Wine was considered healthy. Wines in Europe represent all that is traditional in winemaking.
In no other place a wine reflects the culture of the people who created it and the flavours of the land in which it grew as it does in Europe. Some of the wines are named after the places where they were created, some others after the grapes from which they were born. European wines follow local tastes more than international trends.
The idea for the design of this exercise comes from a visit to the Icelandic artist Rán Flygenring’s exhibition: “Eggshibition” and from the words by which the artist presented her work. “It can seem such a random thing to think of, something you look past at the supermarket, but as we say in Icelandic: ‘all birds come from eggs.’ They’re the origin of everything, they’re a symbol of birth, life and resurrection. They are food and they are home, but there are also so many instances of eggs in the art and pop culture that one never thinks about, like the Fabergé eggs, Kinder eggs, the surprise Easter eggs or the golden egg.”
As in the words of the young Icelandic illustrator, the exercise swings among the spaces of myth, economy and art in a mutual contamination that underlines the complexity of the issue and reveals its cultural charm. The exercise can be exploited in courses that include economics lessons, as well as in the HORECA sector. The exercise presents in detail one activity and outlines one more that teachers and trainers will be able to finalise following the model.
This exercise focuses on the Swedish tradition of ‘Fika’ which is considered a way to refresh oneself, relationships and mind. Fika is a big part of everyday Swedish life. In summary, fika is essentially a coffee break. But it is also much more than that, it has often been described as a social institution or even in some cases as a phenomenon.
Swedish people are often described as distant and antisocial, fika gives them an opportunity to meet and hang out with new friends, get to know new people and make networks.
In many workplaces, fika is an important part of a regular schedule, having two fika’s a day is not an uncommon occurrence usually around 10:00 and 15:00.
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This exercise is primarily focused around such an event called ‘Julbord’. Which is the customary tradition of a smorgasbord (a buffet offering a variety of foods) of food centred around Christmas. A type of festive Swedish smorgasbord is the ‘Julbord’ meaning Christmas table. The classic Swedish ‘Julbord’ is central to festive Swedish tradition, it often includes bread and dipping options, a variety of fish, baked ham, meatballs, pork ribs, cheeses, sausages, potatoes of various cooking styles, salads, boiled cabbage, kale and puddings made from rice.
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Packaging is the first thing a consumer sees when he/she looks at a product and it is a communication and marketing tool that, while often underestimated, plays a crucial role in shaping the success or failure history of a product. As regards, in particular, food packaging, it is widely recognized that packaging is much more than an element for the preservation of food products: through special editions, promotional items, depictions of regional landscapes and historical monuments, the packaging tells stories and dialogues with the consumer. With its omnipresence, it evokes the profile of the product, its history and its value and can become, under a circular economy perspective, an important tool for a global waste reduction policy. Starting from these considerations, the proposed activities guide the students to reflect on these elements and ask them to measure themselves in the creation of new packaging models, in connection with the local economic context. The exercise presents an activity in detail and outlines a second one that teachers and trainers will be able to finalize following the model.
The idea for this exercise born from a shot by Joseph Nicéphore Niépce – French inventor and pioneer of photography – who snapped the first food photograph in 1832: a still life photograph representing a table with a bowl, a few utensils, a goblet, and a heel of bread.
Starting from this point, the exercise focuses on the connection between food and visual art. Proposing the exploration of XVII and XVIII centuries art, as a basic source of inspiration, the exercise suggests a journey throughout the world of contemporary food photography combining two photographic subjects that are closest to many: culture and food. The exercise presents in detail one activity and design one more that teachers and trainers will be able to finalise following the model.
The exercise has three levels of depth: it starts from observing everyday life in our towns, then proceeds with thinking back about our roots and ends with expanding our views on Europe. Cultural Heritage is shaped by individual history and by a common history. The general objective of these activities is to make students aware that the heritage of a nation and a continent is made of several pieces of a jigsaw that, ever changing and moving their positions, become its distinctive features. The activities will explore complex concepts like prejudices, migrations, diversity so the teachers/trainers need to be well prepared in advance.
The activities are designed for students of the VET courses, in particular for the HORECA sectors, but can also be used in general subjects (geography, culture..) of any sector of VET education.
The exercise is inspired by the European Heritage Label initiative, originated out of an intergovernmental cooperation, was created in 2006, under which 68 sites in 19 countries received the label. New criteria and a new selection procedure were introduced in 2011 when the European Heritage Label was established at the level of the European Union (Decision 1194/2011/EU of the European Parliament and of the Council of 16 November 2011).The European Heritage Label brings together outstanding heritage sites with a symbolic European value. All the labelled sites – from monuments and landscapes, to books and archives, objects and intangible heritage have played a significant role in the history and culture of Europe or in European integration. Exercise aims to introduce the students to European Heritage sites, which are milestones in the creation of today’s Europe. Spanning from the dawn of civilization to the Europe we see today, these sites celebrate and symbolize European ideals, values, history and integration.
When we visualize cultural heritage, most often we have in mind a significant piece of architecture, a work of art, or even a particular meal – a tangible product – and much less often associate it with certain traditions and customs – phenomena that we attribute to intangible cultural heritage. Language and dialects, festivals and customs, folklore and folk art, traditional crafts, trades, songs, music, dance and knowledge – all helped the countries to survive and be peculiar during the hard times and adversity. Intangible cultural heritage are activities, well established over time, images, forms of expression, knowledge, skills, as well as their facilities, objects, products of human activity and related cultural spaces, are recognized over time by communities, groups and, in some cases, individuals. This phenomenon, passed down from generation to generation, is constantly rebuilt by communities and groups, which leads to the sense of responsibility to the environment, close interaction with nature, and history. It also gives us a sense of identity and continuity, thus promoting respect for cultural diversity and human creativity.
Due to the impact of globalization, the policy of unification and the lack of appreciation of the importance of intangible cultural heritage, many of its forms are endangered. In order to stop this process, UNESCO adopted the Convention for the Protection of the Intangible Cultural Heritage, which entered into force in 2006 April 20th. The UNESCO Convention for the Protection of the Intangible Cultural Heritage regulates 3 lists to which the Member States may designate values and activities, in accordance with the selection criteria and the definition of the Convention’s intangible cultural heritage. These are:
- Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity,
- List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage in Need of Immediate Protection and the
- Register of Good Practices / Activities for the Protection of the Intangible Cultural Heritage.
The Intergovernmental Committee of States Parties to the Convention for the Protection of the Intangible Cultural Heritage is responsible for compiling and maintaining these lists and the register.
The purpose of the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity is to raise awareness, highlight the importance of the intangible cultural heritage, promote intercultural dialogue and respect for cultural diversity.
The list of intangible cultural heritage requiring urgent protection shall include the values of intangible cultural heritage which, despite the efforts of the community, group, individuals or states, are in danger of disappearing. This list is also intended for intangible cultural heritage which is in danger of disappearing if urgent assistance is not provided.
The Register of Good Practices for the Protection of the Intangible Cultural Heritage shall record national, subregional and regional programs, projects and activities for the protection of the intangible cultural heritage that best reflect the principles and objectives of the Convention. (Source: Unesco)
Lists of Intangible Cultural Heritage and the Register of good safeguarding practices can be found here.
Historical events are everywhere in the world. They impact people in many ways. People are inspired by important characters and events. Historical events remain and people still refer to them today.
An example of a historical era is the Viking age. It is of major importance because it lasted for more than 300 hundred years. Their knowledge in navigation and shipbuilding as well as their conquests left a mark in history. Many vestiges of their presence can still be found nowadays in Europe.
Historical events help people to better understand the world they belong to. As the Berber proverb says: “When you don’t know where you’re going, look where you come from”. Also, the students from the vocational education sector of tourism, accumulate information and develop their knowledge of general culture.
This activity is an improvement of the thinking for the students because knowing important historical events, they can learn from them and they can be guided and inspired to create and think in a correct and knowledgeable way.
Vikings invaded a lot of different places to loot and bring back treasures, but it is much more than that, they settled in English cities like York, turning it into a major river port on the Viking trading route throughout northern Europe.
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Winter is the coldest season of the year, the days are shorter and the nights are longer but that doesn’t stop people from staying active. At the same time, there is a need for people who want to explore certain tourist seasonal places or just stay, for example, in an ice hotel.
About Ice Hotel:
A world famous hotel and an art exhibition made of ice and snow. The Ice Hotel was Founded in 1989 and it is reborn in a new guise every winter, in the Swedish village of Jukkasjärvi – 200 km north of the Arctic Circle. During the winter season, a positive growth for tourism has been noted across the EU. There are many pull factors during the winter;
- Christmas time
- Winter cuisine traditions / winter customs
- Winter weather cold / humid / ice / snow
- Christmas markets
- Winter Sports; alpine skiing, snowboarding, cross-country skiing.
Tourism in Sweden has been growing for many years. Since 1995, the number of nights spent at hotels, holiday villages and youth hostels has increased by nearly 60 per cent. The number of nights spent by foreigners has increased by just over 88 per cent during this period, and the domestic volumes by just over 50 per cent. This trend grew stronger in 2014, and nights spent by foreigners increased by all of 6.7 per cent. This topic and activities are created for VET students of the tourism sector.
These exercises focus on winter and tourism, a big complex topic and shows how different tourism and winter is in different countries of Europe. The exercise presents three activities in which students and teachers are involved.
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Tourism is becoming one of the fastest growing sectors in the world.Conform Goodman, “By literature, we mean the written thoughts and feelings of intelligent men and women arranged in a way that shall give pleasure to the reader”.
Tourism is travel for recreational, leisure or business purposes. The World Tourism Organization (WTO) declared that tourism is presently the world’s largest industry. Tourism can be promoted through proper literary presentation. Tourist destinations are immovable assets of a state or a country. Their resourcefulness and value increases when they are observed through literature and visual media.
According to the World Tourism Organization, the tourism sector employs 11% of the global workforce. Literary tourism describes tourism that is motivated by interest in an author, literary creation, setting or the literary heritage of a destination. Tourists also enjoy visiting birthplaces, burial sites, museums, literary trails and other sites associated with authors or literary creations. William Worsdworth’s cottage, Thomas Hardy’s birthplace and Shakespeare’s tomb are all popular visitor destinations in the UK. Tourists also enjoy attractions with more generic literary associations such as Jamaica Inn on Bodmin Moor in Cornwall or the guided literary pub tours of Edinburgh.
Cultural heritage can be preserved in literature as well; especially literary tourism. Literature’s relationship with tourism has already been consecrated through Literary Tourism, but this marriage of worlds has yet to be described from a geographical perspective. Based on studies carried out in Romania, Literacy Tourism has played a crucial role in shaping the country’s image and people and focuses on promoting aspects and personalities from the literary world. Working with specialised forms of tourism represents a mature and efficient approach toward the sustainable promotion of a destination’s cultural heritage. Literature survives the test of time and is always apprehended.
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Swedish architecture is a simple one, but with history and significance. What is interesting about it is that it comes down to simplicity and shows what can be created beautifully with little money.
A bit of information of Swedish architecture- The Middle Ages lasted about 500 years in the country and are estimated to have ended with the crowning of King Gustav Vasa in 1523. At the beginning of the Middle Age period, generally buildings were constructed of timber (wood).
Then in the 12th century Romanesque monasteries and churches were built of the stronger material of stone. The buildings of this style have major thick walls, large towers and other distinctive features. Although history shows that a number of castles were built in this style, even far more churches were constructed in that style. The style of Romanesque architecture is characterised by semi-circular arches. Then it progressed into pointed arches and became known as the Gothic style. This soon became in vogue and brick was often used to form such buildings.
This was a period in history when architects drew inspiration from other countries abroad while still retaining some inherent styles of past Swedish architecture. The materials utilized were often brick and wood.
The quote: “Sweden is a country that will never create architecture of any significance. You have a society in which nothing can be built to stick out”, comes from Frank Gehry, the architect behind the architecturally challenging Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao. Gehry, who has the whole world as his workplace, knows that a city can radically improve its level of attraction through modern architecture.
Over the last decade, Sweden has successfully exported its design and fashion. And when the foreign ministry used modern architecture to market Sweden in the virtual online world of “Second Life” it could be taken as a sign that Sweden takes architecture seriously. In view of the fact that Sweden was at the historic forefront of modern architecture, expectations are understandably high for anyone wishing to visit Stockholm – the Capital of Scandinavia.
Almost eight out of ten Swedes are either “not religious” or “convinced atheists”, according to a new global study that concluded that the Nordic nation is the least religious in the West.
Students improve their understanding of the history of religion and architecture so they understand the present of things.
Swedes’ beliefs contrast dramatically with the vast majority of most other nationalities on the planet, with more than six out of ten people surveyed across 65 different countries describing themselves as “religious”.
There are more than 3500 churches in Sweden and the Swedish Church (Svenska Kyrkan) says it has 6.3 million members in a country just shy of 10 million people. Before 1996, children whose parents were members of the Swedish Church were automatically enrolled at birth. But according to Statistics Sweden, just five percent of Swedes are regular church goers. One in three couples that get married in Sweden choose a civil ceremony.
Mosque and synagogue attendance is however rising thanks to growing numbers of immigrants arriving in Sweden from the middle east in recent years, and the Christian religion still plays a cultural role in Swedish life, with traditions such as Lucia (when children dress up as the female saint) remaining popular.
Gunnar Sjöberg said: “In Sweden compared to other countries, religious beliefs are very personal, people don’t talk about religion a lot in everyday life. But when we speak to people about whether or not they pray, they often say ‘yes'”.
This activity improves the general culture of the students from the VET sector, and by accumulating information it develops for the future career in which they will enroll. Its main focus is on the tourism sector and would support students pursuing careers as a tour guide, museum exhibitionist, travel agents or a recreation guide.
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The European artists have produced works that influenced the world. The European art, from its beginning, fascinated and dominated the world of art. A number of the most influential art movements marked their birth on this vast continent. The dominance of the contemporary European artists is also evident in the art market today, variety of art fairs, and in the collections of the most influential galleries and museums, where the artists from Germany, Britain, Italy, Switzerland and France, prove to be a powerful and influential force.
The exercises can be carried out in the vocational training courses during the “Culture” or “Citizenship” subjects/hours as it involves general competencies and the result will be a widening of knowledge about Europe and European heritage in arts.
Men have been trying to touch the sky since the dawn of time. Living in tall buildings has actually become synonymous with being at the top of the social order. Even when looking at the Egyptian pharaohs, it’s quite obvious that they believed “the taller, the better”. The truth of this statement is not lost on the current generation, where skyscrapers were initially meant for commercial vanity, rather than cultural significance. For centuries and right up until 1901, the tallest buildings in the world were always either a church or cathedral. (Source)
The Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat (CTBUH) has developed their own system for classifying tall buildings, measuring from the “level of the lowest, significant, open-air, pedestrian entrance to the architectural top of the building, including spires, but not including antennae, signage, flag poles or other functional-technical equipment.” Using this system more than 3,400 buildings have been categorized as over 150 meters tall. (Source)
Today, going through the list of these tallest buildings, we can notice that the one’s in Europe are not the world leaders by height – the top of this list belongs to Asia and North America continents. There can be some explanations and reasons for this – the urban situation of the city, social and economic factors. For example, in the end 19th century, with the construction of several very high-rise hotels in London (one of the largest hotels in the world, the Grand Midland at the time), the idea of builders to design a tall building was criticized by the administration of Queen Victoria. Concerns were raised because of the aesthetics and firefighting requirements of these buildings. As a result, regulations were adopted and used to be applied to limit the height of buildings, with some exceptions until 1950. For similar reasons, in the first half of the XXth century, high-rise construction was also constrained in other European cities. Various offers, such as Plan Voisin by Le Corbiuze, one of the earliest proponents of skyscrapers, made public in 1925, draw an idea to reconstruct the center of Paris – to demolish the old city, except for the most important buildings, and to reclaim the area with newly skyscrapers with planted area around, demonstrated the trends, but not the real practice. So, at a time, when Europe architects were taking their first steps to height, constrained by traditions and government regulations, the real skyscrapers being built in the US were competing against each other to set new records. As a result, most European cities today have tall buildings as exception, stand-alone objects, not world high-altitude contestants.
Masterpiece “Mona Lisa” by Leonardo da Vinci is one of the most known examples of tangible cultural heritage in a visual art area. The name of it sometimes is used as a label describing the most popular exhibit of the museum (e.g. https://www.edvardmunch.org/the-scream.jsp, https://www.princessehof.nl/collectie/topstukken/mingvaas/). At the same time, it is one of the thousands of examples from the cultural heritage objects listed in UNESCO World Heritage List (can be found here: https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/) or cultural property list of individual countries. For example Lithuania has more than 7000 thousands registered movable cultural property objects (List can be find here: https://kvr.kpd.lt/#/heritage-search). What makes our eyes stop near some of them or pass through others? What is behind them: details, connections, stories? How to learn to see the creation not the item? The exercise was inspired by the publication “How to look at art” by Jane Norman, the author of a popular lecture series at the Metropolitan museum “The art of seeing”.
We expect that implementation of the exercise will encourage students to take a closer look at the world wide known cultural heritage objects and at the same time to learn more about the cultural property around them.
This exercise aims to survey one of the most known summer holidays in Europe and all around the world – The Midsummer, St. John’s Day, Ligo, festival of the Dew – the roots of this festival traditions in different countries, its transformation during the years and festival practices in our days.
This celebration is one of the oldest in human history, and practiced in nations throughout the world. The origins of the fest reaches stone age, when people worshiped natural phenomena, influencing their lives, also called in pagan times – sun, thunder, plants and ect. The people noticed that on the second part of June the sun changes its direction of movement and the days begin to shorten. Depending on location, the summer solstice refers to the time of the year when the day is longest in the northern hemisphere. During this time, the axis of the Earth is tilted to its maximum towards the sun.
It was believed that during the summer solstice, plants had great powers of healing. On the eve of this day, herbs were picked and bonfires were lit to ward off the evil spirits, which were believed to roam around freely when the sun was turning towards the southern hemisphere. Some also celebrated the festival with the hope of getting a good harvest in autumn.
During the years also the similar winter holiday – Christmas, has been incorporated into the Christian religious calendar as “St. John’s Day” and reached current times. While the actual date of the summer solstice falls on June 20 or 21, the fest is commonly held on June 24. The reason for the difference likely resides in the fact that the old Julian calendar marked the summer solstice on June 24.
Nowadays this celebration is an official public holiday in the countries of Estonia, Finland, Latvia, Lithuania, and Sweden as well as the province of Quebec in Canada. However, many strong traditions exist across the world for the June Midsummer’s Day, regardless of holiday status.
The most common tradition across most parts of the world is the tradition of bonfire. Typical customs may include the gathering of the perennial herb St. John’s Wort for medicinal, religious, or spiritual use. The collection of flowers for floral wreaths is popular. The wreaths are dried and hung in the house all year until the next St. John’s Day.
Nowadays, some of the traditions of this fest are kept only by enthusiasts of the ancient history, some of them today got modern forms.
In Estonia, for example, the lighting of the bonfire and jumping over it is still an important tradition, done to bring prosperity and luck as well as protect the home. In Turin, Italy, people from surrounding areas come to dance around a bonfire placed by the Cult of St. John in the city square for two days. In Denmark, a special Midsummer hymn called “We Love Our Country” is traditionally sung around the bonfire. In the town of Kuldīga (Latvia), crowd people participate in a naked jog through the town at 3 a.m., taking them over the Venta River. In Norway and Sweden, the practice of having both fake and real marriages occurs.
This exercise focuses on the importance of a long-standing tradition – Midsummer Festival – Midsummer is a celebration that is generally celebrated in Sweden.
In Sweden, the most common celebration of midsummer is tied to a dance around the ‘Maypole’ a pole garnished in leaves and flowers. People form rings around the pole and begin dancing to famous traditional songs.
Another famous tradition of Midsummer is to create a garland or ‘Flower Crown’ out of flowers and this wire, that will be worn during the festivities.
In popular performances, the feast has pre-Christian origins, but evidence of a pre-Christian Scandinavian feast around June 24 is missing. The Christian church celebrates the birth of John the Baptist on June 24 since the 300’s.
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Many of us will agree that a wedding is an important event in a person’s life. A new social structure, continuing the thread of the country’s tribal traditions and customs, and at the same time able to create its own ones, is formed during it. For many years, most of the countries have had weddings as a clearly structured, tightly framed traditional ritual, organized by the efforts of family and close relatives, nurturing country-specific cultural traditions. Today, looking around or searching on the internet, we can easily discover the new wedding trends – wedding tourism, the popularity of which is growing every year.
Wedding Tourism is a travel concept where a couple, and typically their guests, travel to a foreign location to get married. Wedding tourism is often termed as ‘Marriage Tourism’ or ‘Destination Weddings’, but the market also encompasses honeymoons. Other sources of wedding tourism relates to the trends of cultural tourism. Cultural tourism means travel concerned with experiencing cultural environments, including landscapes, the visual and performing arts, and special (local) lifestyles, values, traditions, events as well as other ways of creative and inter-cultural exchange processes (www.unesco.com)
Exotics, mild climate, global wedding parties trends, the desire to avoid tedious and complex wedding attributes that can be considered as too archaic for today, the desire to gain different cultural experiences – these are just some of the reasons for the fast development of this market. For this purpose, travel agencies, hotels, manors offer service packages that help newlyweds to avoid many of the preparation worries associated with this occasion. Undoubtedly, this has a positive effect on the development of the tourism market and the economic benefits for such countries.
Wedding tourism plays a vital role for the businesses involved in the travel and tourism sector. Destination wedding tourism annual spending is estimated to account for US$16 billion and the revenue share of wedding tourism in the overall industry. For example Italy wedding industry, one of the most popular destinations of the couples, from 2015 to 2019, fixes a significant increase of the total turnover. Data shows that this sector registered a turnover of roughly 380.3 million euros in 2015. This figure rose to approximately 540 million euros in 2019 (Source: www.statista.com).
In addition to the opinions of such wedding supporters, we can also find apprehensive feedback that this negatively affects the authenticity of country-specific wedding traditions – country-specific cultural identity. This exercise invites to examine 2 aspects of this celebration – the fostering of traditions during the wedding and the potential economic benefits for the service provider participating in the wedding organization market.
This exercise focuses on renewable energy. This is an important factor for a lot of countries and can be utilized by students wanting to create a more cost-effective, safe environment for businesses related to their vocation, or local care. Energy is a factor of everybody’s everyday life, all across the world. It is utilized from the most basic of activities to the most extreme. The current energy trend is one that takes more than it gives back. In order to reconcile this, renewable energy needs to be the new goal for people working in any industry. Understanding how it works can be a main factor in being able to manipulate how businesses run and how smoothly workers can manage situations.
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Over the last decades, tourism has become one of the leading socio-economic sectors in the world today. The World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) states that in 2018 there were a record 1.4bn international tourist arrivals, arise of 6% over 2017. There are opportunities for new business establishments, working places, improvement of livelihoods, renewal of places and communities, and the promotion of natural and cultural heritage if tourism is properly managed.
Among the different motivations for travelling, visiting cultural sites and discovering local customs and traditions rank high on traveler’s list (e.g. initiative GiUnesco: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iNjQ4jAOkVU) tourism thus forms an important component of international tourism and can contribute to ensure the conservation of heritage, foster mutual understanding and a sense of pride in host communities.
Tourism also has a special, two-way relationship with the environment. On the one hand, it is an industry bound to territory, dependent on the national, regional and local resources of a country. The quality of the environment is essential, as this is very often what attracts people to visit a place, and persuades them to return. Evidence of this can be found in the 2016 edition of the EU Eurobarometer survey on Europeans’ preferences on tourism, confirming that nature and landscape remain predominant factors in choosing holiday destinations, while the quality of natural features continues to be the main reason for wanting to return to the same place. On the other hand, tourism has major impacts on the environment, not least due to the sheer size of the industry. It is one of the world’s largest and fastest-growing economic sectors.
To ensure that tourism is used effectively as a tool for cultural preservation, the World Tourism Organization is working closely with the UNESCO World Heritage and Sustainable Tourism Programme to create an international framework for sustainable tourism management at world heritage sites. Considering that more than 40% of the world heritage sites listed by UNESCO are in Europe and that seven out of the ten most visited countries in the world are European, the safeguarding of these sites needs the contribution of each of us. European policy, social responsibility, interest of different social groups will be explored within this exercise.
People tend to communicate with words, both written and verbal. But sometimes, conveying ideas is done in other ways. You’ve heard the old saying ”a picture’s worth a thousand words”, right? That’s because art can get ideas across using a different kind of vocabulary. Some people respond more to visual images than words.
Communication is a crucial part of working in the business sector and can strengthen your client relationships.
Art also gives the imagination free-reign, allowing you to experience the surrounding world in different ways and then record how you feel about it without relying on words. The impact of art in the workplace is often underestimated. Splashes of color in a painting can alter the mood of a meeting room or a piece of unusual artwork can provide a talking point in a bland corporate space. But can artwork have a direct impact on employee productivity or well-being? It seems the answer is yes.
Communication is not always saying words to someone. Modern art- graffiti, is a way of communication and art that people use in our days.
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In this exercise we come up with an idea to encourage students to recognize their authentic heritage and also personal contribution to uphold the common heritage from the past. Responsible consumption, environmental protection is not only green ideas, that is widely escalated today, but also an opportunity to ensure continuity of existence of the architecture, works of craftsmen’s, natural environment, family history. The story developed through 3 activities of this exercise will expose the importance of the preservation and renovation of the cultural heritage as one of the key factors ensuring the sustainability of our environment and cultural diversity.
“Lots of researches implemented around the world demonstrate that preservation of cultural heritage enhances environmental, social, cultural and economic sustainability. Cultural heritage can contribute towards well-being and quality of life of communities, can help to mitigate the impacts of cultural globalization and can become an incentive for sustainable economic development. Preservation of cultural heritage is often understood as a barrier to economic development, though various economic benefits can be generated by cultural heritage and its preservation: creation of income and jobs, job training and maintenance of craftsmanship skills, revival of city centers, heritage tourism, increase in property values, enhancement of small business et cetera. Re-use of abandoned or inefficiently used historic buildings is fundamental for reviving communities and improving the quality of life. In order to implement sustainable development strategies and to improve the quality of life it is essential to recognize cultural heritage as a valuable resource and development incentive.”
Article: Cultural Heritage in the Context of Sustainable Development.
Author: Indre Grazuleviciute-Vileniske, 2006
In ancient times, people clothed their bodies with tree bark, leaves, feathers, beast hides, tied it with strands of dried beasts or plants. Development of the human intelligence also influenced the choice of the clothes – clothing made of linen, cotton, hemp, woolen appeared. Women’s, men’s, and children’s clothing has become distinct. A particular type of clothing that formed in the course of the history of each country or region was a national folk costume. Influenced by historical, economic, social, and natural conditions, they convey to us knowledge of the traditions, customs, and ways of life of each nation. Folk costume, worn by a concrete person, also could indicate his social, marital or religious status.
How do we define the folk costume nowadays? A folk costume – the set of clothes typical for a particular country or period of history, or suitable for a particular activity (also called regional costume, national costume, or traditional garment). (Source: Cambridge dictionary). Folk costumes (also regional costume, national costume, or traditional garment) also can be defined as the ensemble of garments, jewelry, and accessories rooted in the past that is worn by an identifiable group of people. National costumes generally preserve traditional arts and crafts that are an important part of a country, region, or culture’s heritage. This makes them a great way to learn about history. National dress can also display, either overtly or subtly, the colonial history of countries around the world. For example, the Lithuanian folk costume, created at the turn of the 19th and 20th centuries, when ideas of national rebirth in the country were evoking, was important part of national identity beside own language or customs, distinguished by clothing, fabric patterns and color combinations as at that time, the peasants still retained the centuries-old traditional garments with their characteristic materials, colors, embroidery, decorations, and idiosyncrasies. During the reign of Lithuania under the Russian tsarist government and the national revivalists, in order to strengthen the country’s national identity, peasant clothing began to be appreciated and presented as a nation’s value, photographs of people wearing were published in various publications.
Different examples of making a folk costume as an important part of the national history comes from Sweden where, according to some sources, the Swedish nationella dräkten was designed to deter Swedes from emulating the extravagant eighteenth-century European fashions.
Despite that folk costumes nowadays are worn during the national holidays or representing the country abroad during cultural heritage events mostly, the importance and impress of it undoubtedly can be recognized in the costumes and accessories we wear today.
“There are hidden codes or nonverbal communication in these costumes. If you study the colors, the position of the scarves, the tilt of the hats, you can find out whether someone has reached marrying age, whether they’re grieving over a deceased loved one, and so forth. The costumes can tell us a lot. They were sort of like the Instagram and Facebook of their time”, says Gregor Hohenberg, photographer. Source
“Traditional craftsmanship is perhaps the most tangible manifestation of intangible cultural heritage. However, the 2003 Convention is mainly concerned with the skills and knowledge involved in craftsmanship rather than the craft products themselves. Rather than focusing on preserving craft objects, safeguarding attempts should instead concentrate on encouraging artisans to continue to produce craft and to pass their skills and knowledge onto others, particularly within their own communities…” From the text of the Convention for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage Intangible Cultural Heritage – UNESCO
There are numerous expressions of traditional craftsmanship: tools; clothing and jewellery; costumes and props for festivals and performing arts; storage containers, objects used for storage, transport and shelter; decorative art and ritual objects; musical instruments and household utensils, and toys, both for amusement and education. Many of these objects are only intended to be used for a short time, such as those created for festival rites, while others may become heirloom that are passed from generation to generation. The skills involved in creating craft objects are as varied as the items themselves and range from delicate, detailed work such as producing paper motives to robust, rugged tasks like creating a sturdy basket or thick blanket.
The activity can be carried out during general subject (culture, history, geography) subjects, English Language, ICT.
At global level, food production will have to double in order to feed a population of 9 billion people in 2050. The EU has around 11 million farms. The EU food sector is the largest employment sector in the EU, providing some 44 million jobs (which represents around 7 % of EU gross domestic product). The EU supports its farmers because food production is vulnerable to factors beyond farmers’ control such as economic, environment- or weather-related crises. Thanks to its agricultural policy and the resources provided, the EU plays an important role in ensuring food security for us
Students are guided to discover that much of what they consume and use every day comes from a farm — milk, meat, fruit, vegetables, bread, olive oil, eggs, flowers, clothing, cosmetics and so on. They will discover how important it is not to lose contact with the farming world and to help agriculture productions. The exercises apply to vocational training courses in the HORECA sector.