Day 6

Wow our last full day here!

This morning Marko and Marko picked us up at 10.45am and we drove to Sečovlje Salina Nature Park to see how the famous Slovenian salt is harvested.

We learned about the special algae that keeps the salt away from the dirty mud. And we learned that summer is when sea water can be turned into salt because the sun evaporates the water.

We tasted salty chocolate. We liked it!



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If you want to know more you can click on this link

We were really lucky because the artist Gani Llalloshi from the painting day of the ArtDOWNUP project had his studio nearby. He invited us in for a visit.

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We had such a great time with you Gani!

We returned to school to eat a big lunch. While it was cooking we worked on our journals. Would you like to have a look???

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At 5.30pm we went to the Portoroz Auditorium to see kids from the local schools do performances honoring all of the women of Portoroz. This is because soon it will be International Women’s Day on the 8th of March. Jaka, Igor, and Zarja, our friends from CKSG presented a poem. Igor and Zarja read the poem while Jaka played piano. Well done, great show guys! After the show we met Igor’s mum Laura. She is excited for when Igor comes to London.





After the show we just happened to be passing Cacao, the amazing ice cream shop. Come on! We had to go for another scoop or two, or cake!

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We walked home in the wild wind. These weird photos are from our dark windy walk back to the school.




Good night! We feel tired, but we feel so full of good times and new experiences. We have made so many new friends! We can’t wait to see everyone at home to tell you all about it. See you tomorrow London xoxoxox and see you on Monday Riverside!

Day 5

What a beautiful sunny day we had to wake up to. Today is Friday. Today was the second day of the ArtDOWNUP project. Painting was Thursday’s activity and today we worked with clay.





Before we started the project we took a quick walk to the  sea wall. The waves were big and they were crashing against the wall. Celeste got wet! She had a sea shower.



We went to a different gallery where there was a long table and lumps of clay for each of us. We made fish sculptures. We used special tools to make shapes and textures. Nathan made a fish for his mum. He used two different types of clay. Once we had made our fish sculptures we were allowed to make whatever we wanted. One of the Slovenian kids Mateja made a doughnut, he is always making jokes about doughnuts. Matthew made a whole zoo with all of the animals and Celeste made  a pie with a snail on it.

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After the clay sculpting we went just next door to the Maritime Museum. We had to wear weird little slippers to walk on the see-through floor. Through the see-through floor we could see lots of old things that had been discovered in history by excavation. In the museum we saw boats, guns, swords and big binoculars.

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The weather was so bright and beautiful we walked along the waters edge to the end of the peninsular. 2016-03-04 13.02.47   2016-03-04 13.06.13  20160304_130534

Next we caught the bus to Portoroz. We HAD to go to Cacao for ICE CREAM!!!!! Celeste said that the ice cream she had was better than ice cream in London. Matthew thought tasted just a good. Kelly got peanut flavour, Nick and Mick had strawberry and blueberry, David had double vanilla and Matthew had double chocolate. We watched the sunset, Kelly and Matthew made a sandcastle and we walked down the wharf. What a dreamy afternoon!                                               20160304_155248   IMG-20160305-WA0016   IMG-20160305-WA0012

At 6pm we had to go and meet our Slovenian friends at a restaurant called Stara Oljka (the old olive tree). All the kids sat together and all the adults sat together. The food was good! Marko the head teacher from CKSG gave each of us a present! We each got bags, inside the bags were picture books, special Slovenian salt, as Slovenia t-shirt, stickers and special tourism books and postcards! Wow!

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Suddenly once we’d had desert we all got really sleepy. We said goodbye and Hvala to our special Slovenian friends. We walked up the big hill, back to our apartment at the school, and we all fell asleep as soon as we each went to bed. Probably we were all snoring this time!

Another totally super day! Tomorrow the plan includes a sleep in (yipee), a visit to a salty place and we’ll go in the evening to concert in the Portoroz auditorium.

We hope that you are enjoying our blog everybody!!


Day 4

Day 4

Staying at CKSG school is very nice but there is no wifi upstairs in our apartment. We’ve come up with a solution though – we could take the mattresses off our beds and ride them down the stairs so we can lie in bed and use the wifi on our phones, ipads and laptops.


Today is another day that we’ve been on the go from 8am to 8pm. Did you know that Slovenian time is one hour ahead of UK time. We left the apartment at the school in torrential rain (like London rain) and the streets had turned into rivers. Franco the bus driver drove us to Piran square. At Julius Meinl Café we had breakfast with loads of people including the Mayor.


The group included us, the CKSG kids and people from other centres and schools. The Mayor is from Ghana, his name is Peter and he kindly bought us breakfast.

We walked to the theatre on the corner of the square to start our Art DownUp project. We met an artist. He gave us paints, a blank canvas and we each had big wooden easel.


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The artist set up a big bowl of fruit for us to paint but he had forgotten the bananas. Anja dashed off to buy some! We began to paint. Wow the finished pieces were all so different and so colourful. Nathan chose to be the the photographer. All of these amazing photos were taken by him. We hope you like our creative fruit bowl paintings.



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We ate lunch in the theatre with all of our fellow artists. Then we jumped on a bus and went to Koper. In Koper we went to a really nice café called Kameral. Suddenly Anja’s phone began to ring. Anja answered and her face went red and she kept saying “Super, super yah”. We said “What Anja?” Anja told us that a Slovenian film crew were on their way to interview us about our morning doing at the Art DownUp painting project. Next thing we knew we were being interviewed on camera! It was fantastic and brilliant!

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Watch our interview by opening this link

David and Anja were not there for the interview. They were away at a radio station giving an interview about the differences in education in Slovenia and the UK. Busy busy busy! All that media attention was great but we wanted to keep exploring.


Anja and Dea took us to two cool places. The first was a library for kids.

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And the second was a gallery for science experiments. We played for hours!

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Our stomachs started to grumble. We walked down some little side streets and found a great pizza place.

Back at the school we relaxed after our big day. Nathan and Kelly made cups of tea and we laughed about the funny things that we found out during the day.

Matthew can drink a hot chocolate faster than anyone.

Nathan has a twitchy zombie finger.

Despina loves taking selfies of her thumb.

Celeste is scared of her squeaky door.

Dea likes hiding milk.

Anja is Super Banana Woman.

Mick can make electricity by riding a bicycle.

Kelly likes sitting upside down.

Nick loves being famous on camera.

David’s thumbs are too big for texting.


We piled into the living room and watched the Slovenian TV report. Everyone looked so good!


Here is a behind the scenes shot of us writing our blog…in bed, blogging in bed is the comfiest way to blog!

Tomorrow we go back to Piran for day 2 of the Art DownUp project.   And in case you were wondering – Nathan is still snoring as loud as ever!


Day 3


Hey, what’s that sound? A tractor? A jumbo jet? A lion? No! It’s Nathan snoring…and who is Nathan’s roommate….Matthew! Matthew tried to block out the sound by covering his ears with his pillow …but it didn’t work.

Today we went to Postojna Cave. We went with the eight kids from CKSG who’ll be coming to London in June.





The cave was massive! We went on a small open train traveling for 10 minutes through the incredibly amazing and drippy cave.



So many drips fell on us it was like having a cold shower. After the train ride our guide took us for a walk through the caves for 45 minutes.

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The caves were huge and dark and full of crazy stalagmites and stalactites. Some shapes looked spiky, some were curvy and melty. We saw all sorts of different shapes. We saw ones that looked like spaghetti, like ice cream, like seaweed, like cauliflower and Nick even saw a monster.


There is a strange creature that lives in the cave – a human fish – Človeška ribica! This is called a Proteus, an amphibious creature that is found only in Carsk Caves in the Balkans. This female proteus laid 50 eggs just the other day.



This was such special news that a TV reporting crew were interviewing people who were visiting the cave. Guess who will be on the news in Croatia?


….Dea, Celeste, Despina and Mick! Celeste said speaking on camera was weird, awkward, odd and strange but she liked it!

After the cave visit we drove in our mini bus to Ljubljana, the capital of Slovenia. We ate our packed lunch in the city center by the river.


We walked through the city and saw the dragon bridge.


Next we walked up a huge hill to the castle. The view was beautiful.


We posed for group photos then we had to get back to the bus to get back to Portoroz. We were having so much fun the time was flying fast!




Back at the school we were hungry and tired from so much walking and exploring. We ate dinner and now we are getting ready for a movie.

Will Nathan snore tonight too? Tune in tomorrow to find out! Hello and big hugs to all of our friends and family and everyone at Riverside.


Day 2

Last night there was a huge thunderstorm with lightening, hail, rain and thunder that crashed around the sky. Guess who was the most afraid?….Kelly!

In the morning we had breakfast; cheese, bread and ham.



And then our day began. Matthew, Nathan, Mick and Nick went into a classroom to learn Slovenian words.


The Slovenian kids taught us. It was fun and quiet hard to say the words.



Celeste was busy in another classroom. She was talking to a class telling them all about our school and how we have lots of technology. Celeste thinks that the Slovenian kids should have more technology in their school.

After lunch the sun came out and we went for a walk along the coast to the city called Piran.


We walked with two other classes from CKSG School.

The sun was shining and the sea was sparkly and blue, yaaaaay!


We had hot chocolates and orange juice in the square. Then we explored the town. We went to the salt shop, the clock tower and the city walls.

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We saw an amazing view. We could see Italy on one side and Croatia on the other side. We saw snowy mountains, and in the distance we could see Venice!



We went shopping for snacks. There were soooooo many weird and different crisps to choose from!


We got back to our apartment at the school and saw a brilliant sun set!





When we got back to the school we were hungry so we made pizzas!



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We also have written some postcards! Check the your mail people!!




What a great day. Nathan’s throat was so sore all he could eat was mashed potatoes. But Nathan thinks he is starting to feel better.


Tomorrow we will be out all day. We are going on a bus to some caves and to the capital city Ljubljana. We can’t wait to tell you about it! Speak soon!

Day 1


Can you believe it, five adults and five kids from Riverside School in Haringey are in a school in Slovenia! First we went on the mini bus. Simon was our driver. He drove us to the airport (thanks Simon).


We waited at the airport, we had lunch, we had our bags checked and then we got on the plane.



Our plane was a Ryan Air plane. Ryan Air was super helpful.

On the plane we looked out the window. We saw clouds, houses, forests, snowy mountains and the sea! And we flew across France.

When we landed we saw rain, it was cloudy and dark but a bit warmer than London! Marko and Franco came to pick us up in a car and a minibus. We drove from Trieste in Italy to Portoroz in Slovenia, the journey took 1 hour.


We arrived at the school CKSG where the cook had dinner ready for us. We ate meatballs, mash and salad with bread, yum yum.





We had a surprise visit from Anja’s mummy and brother.


After dinner we unpacked. OOOOOh no, Despina’s shower gel exploded through the suitcase! Matthew’s wash bag got covered, he had to wash it and hang it to dry….at least it was clean.5

Well, that was Day 1 so far. Let’s see what happens tomorrow.


Written by Matthew and the Riverside Slovenia Crew!