13 January 2020
The Stamford Endowed Schools are celebrating the 25th anniversary of their Russian exchange programme, with partner school Gimnazia no. 4, in Khimki. Over the festive break, twelve students from across the Schools travelled to Moscow for the cultural experience, to practice their foreign language skills.
Girls from Years 9-11 and boys from Years 10-12 spent a week in the capital city, with many of their activities directly relating to topics within the curriculum. In an action-packed schedule, students viewed the famous Fabergé eggs housed within the Kremlin armoury, learnt the history of Red Square and visited the pioneering space museum, The Museum of Cosmonautics. A tour of the Moscow underground and trip to St Petersburg on the SAPSAN bullet train were described as particular highlights.
A visit to the partner school allowed students to attend a variety of lessons, followed by a concert and bus tour around Moscow to witness the sights. During time with host families, students enjoyed a variety of pastimes from ice skating and a visit to the circus, to watching the Nutcracker ballet, theatre, international ice hockey and exploring the Christmas markets.
Mrs Caroline Wray, Head of Russian at Stamford School, said: “It’s hard to believe that we are celebrating our 25th anniversary already. The trip was incredibly successful, and our Russian hosts looked after us royally.
“Our tour of the Moscow underground was stunning – what a difference between this and the tube in London. It was, as usual, wonderful to see the great friendships between our pupils, particularly when they were ice skating at the beautiful outdoor ice rinks at VDNKh.
“There have truly been some memorable experiences across my years on the trip; I particularly recall the year where the coldest temperatures dropped to -22 degrees Celsius. However, this year was the first that we haven’t experienced snow, and so we were a little disappointed with the weather being the same as in Stamford!
“I have been on the trip at least 10 times now and have certainly seen some changes. Moscow has become busier, however, the investment in the city has increased hugely and it is always impressive, clean and beautiful. I’m always blown away by the warmth, hospitality and generosity of our Russian hosts, who go out of their way to make us feel welcome.”