The last days in September (week 40) were a challenge for the Icelandic participants in the project. We were supposed to welcome our partners from Finland and Norway in Iceland. According to the application we wanted to visit selected places and work together in groups.
Due to COVID-19 it is impossible to visit other countries and we as hosts for the first visit had to find ways to go on with the project. This semester we are working with global goal 13 in the project, Climate action. We wanted to teach the participants in the project about climate changes, how it can be seen in Iceland and the impact of climate changes on the whole Earth. We worked on five different topics; retreating glaciers, changes in the vegetation, more frequent landslides, climate changes because of eruptions and climate changes because of human activity.
We decided to take our Icelandic students to selected places which are connected to the topic of the emphasis this semester. The Katla Geopark and Vatnajökull Nationalpark are supporting parties with FAS and experts from those institutions took care of sharing information about topics. We went on our trip on the 29th of September to the south of Iceland and visited places where we can see and experience the changes. From each place our experts gave a lesson which was possible to see online on the YouTube Channel of FAS. Those lectures have now been uploaded to our website. Our trip lasted two days and we experienced all kind of weather. During the trip, the students’ sense of place was also systematically strengthened by having them pay regular attention to the local environment and what was in front of their eyes. Overall, it was a good trip, and our students learned a lot.
The last day in week 40 the participants in the project worked together in groups. We had five groups and in each group were two students from each country. It was not easy at the beginning but after a while the work started to get better. At the end of the day all groups had done good work.
This partnership has really been a challenge because of COVID-19. However, it is most important to have found a way to make the project work even if no visitors come. Thanks to technology, a lot can be done. But we all hope we can visit our partners in Norway in spring 2021.