The EU in Close-up
From February 20th to 24th almost the whole 5th grade of our school went to Brussels to visit some important European Union institutions.
Our teachers wanted us to learn more about the EU and thought that visiting institutions like the European Parliament or the European Commission will help us remember more than learning all these things in class. It actually was a better way of learning about the EU and definitely more exciting.
One of the most interesting activities was exploring the European Parliament. It was really fascinating to see the boardroom where all the politicians discuss parts of our future. But first a Member of the Parliament, Claudia Schmidt, told us about her job and some things she has experienced. She also answered our questions that we had referring to the EU.
Another interesting thing was that you could really see just by visiting Brussels that the EU is indeed multicultural. For example, very often conferences get translated in 24 different languages because the preservation of the various national languages is very important to the EU. Even though EU politicians usually understand and speak English, they insist on the diversity of European languages.
It is really important to introduce young people of our age to the EU and politics, because soon we are old enough to vote and the next election for the European Parliament is scheduled for 2019. I also think that a trip to the different EU institutions arouses the interest of young people for the EU, which is an important part of our lives and futures.
To conclude, the EU trip was very interesting and I would recommend it to everyone. It is a unique opportunity that you should take if you have the chance to in order to get to know the system we are living in better.
The EU: big failure or big success
From the februar 20th-23rd the 5th classes from BG Seekirchen visted the capital of the European Union.
Do you know how many people work for the EU? Or how difficult it is to save our freedom or to reach a compromise with 28 countries, when each one wants to get the best offer for themselves?
I didn’t know it. Only since we visited Brussels and made tours through the European Parliament, Commission and other institutions (I will tell you later more) and listened to lectures I understand how important the EU is for us.
Maybe you first think it’s boring or not interesting, but I can tell you it is quite cool. Our teacher took us there, because next year most of us are allowed to vote, but also most of us, including me, had a limited knowledge of the EU and what it would be like without it.
Our trip started already at 6.15 in the morning, because we travelled by bus. But the ride didn’t drag on, it was even funny.
So, on our first day we visited the European Parliament and got some basic information about the European Union, like that only in Brussels, about 50,000 people work for the EU. After that we went to a museum called Parliamentarian and ate some typical food, Belgian waffles. They really taste great, like all the people say.
On our second day we visited the Commission, another organ of the EU. But for me the most interesting lecture was from the Committee of the Regions. This speech was held by a German man, who was really humorous. He was telling us about some stages in his life, how he started to work for the EU and why he stayed in Brussels when he chuckled and pointed at his big belly to say that the food was really nice here, which is a weighty argument, isn’t it?
All in all, I would say it was good that we went to the capital of the European Union this year, because our knowledge of what the EU is like, got much bigger and so we are actually more sensible as to what we will vote for next year.