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As part of BATH’s international youth project, ‘Brazilliant’, we have recently welcomed our first group of Brazilian exchange visitors to King James. Eight young people and two leaders joined us in school to share their vibrant culture and infectious positivity.
The visit was organised by our Drama Teacher, Mr Elliott, who established the link with Brazil during a working visit to the country last year. In Navirai, he worked with young people to form BANHO, a sister group to our own BATH (Bishop Auckland Theatre Hooligans), and although this was the first visit to the UK for our Brazilian friends, King James students have already enjoyed two life-changing trips to Brazil in the past 12 months. They are now looking forward to the third, which will take place during the Easter holidays 2017.
During their stay, the BANHO group attended lessons at King James, visited local primary schools to share their culture, and performed with BATH in a fundraising dance show, with all money raised going towards developing the project further. Prior to the evening show, over 300 primary school pupils also enjoyed a free matinee performance at King James.
By special invitation, and as an example of outstanding international liaison, BATH and BANHO also performed ‘The Crucifixion’ together at the International Schools Conference for attending Head Teachers and members of The British Council.
And, to give BANHO a taste of the North East, visits were arranged to Hamsterley Forest, Whitby, the Metro Centre, Durham City and Seaton Carew, where our visitors experienced fish and chips for the first time!
As an extension of the project, 16 year old João Vitor Rizzo Rei will be staying with us for six months to learn English and to work in partner primary schools with our Dance and Drama groups and the Martin Gray Football Academy. We hope he enjoys his time with us.
As we all strive for global harmony, international projects offer our young people an opportunity to learn about other cultures. There are a number of reasons why many of our students are unable to attend school trips abroad, however exchange visits such as this allow us to bring authentic international learning experiences to them instead.
King James I Academy, South Church Road, Bishop Auckland, County Durham DL14 7JZ