1. The Principality of Asturias, Spain by umAqgK6u



  Socrates-Comenius Project: “Finding
similarities; understanding differences”
The Principality of Asturias,
The Principality of Asturias is a region located in North West Spain
and lies between the Atlantic coast, on the Cantabrian Sea shore,
and the natural boundary of the Cantabrian Mountains, separating
it from the Spanish Northern plain. The region has an extension of
10,604 square kilometres and 334 km of coastline. The territory is
administratively divided in 78 municipalities
    Asturias has a population of
    about 1,076,635 inhabitants.
    Average density of population
    is 101,5 inhabitants per
    square kilometre. 80% of the
    population is concentrated in
    the Asturias central and
    metropolitan area formed by
    the most populated cities:
    Gijón, Oviedo (Administrative
    capital), Avilés, Mieres and
    Langreo, where the industrial
    activities and services are
    also concentrated. The
    peripheral areas on the
    regional East and West wings
    are basically rural and
    dedicated to agriculture,
    farming and tourism mainly.
             •   The Principality of Asturias is a region
                 administratively divided in one province
                 bringing together 78 municipalities. The
Government       territory is ruled by the Regional Government
                 as a whole and by the 78 local governments
                 ruling the different municipalities. Each one of
                 these public institutions has their own
                 competences according to the Spanish
                 Constitution and the Regional Autonomy Chart.

             Regional Government structure

             •   The Asturias Regional Government is the so
                 called ‘Principality of Asturias’, formed by the
                 President and 10 Regional Ministers (Executive
                 branch), and supported by the Regional
                 Parliament with 45 representatives (Legislative

             •   The Regional Government has a wide range of
                 competences in the regulation of the social,
                 economic and political life of the Region,
                 except those competences exclusive of the
                 Spanish National Government: Constitutional
                 law, Nationality and immigration, Foreign
                 relations, Defence and Armed Forces, Justice,
                 Criminal law, Trade law, Labour law, Civil law,
                 Social security regulation, Customs, Treasury,

• Due to its situation and difficult terrain, the
  territories along the north coast of Spain were
  never part of Islamic Spain; the north served as
  the nucleus of a small Christian enclave, the
  Kingdom of Asturias, which was linked to Spain's
  visigoth kingdom. For this reason since the 14th
  century the heir to the Spanish throne
  automatically takes the title Prince of Asturias,
  much as the heir to the British throne is the Prince
  of Wales.
Historical places
                       Geography & Climate

•   The Cantabrian mountain range (Cordillera Cantábrica) is Asturias' natural border with
    León province to the south. The Picos de Europa National Park forms the eastern range
    and contains the highest and most spectacular mountains, rising to 2648 metres at the
    Torrecerredo peak.
    The Cantabrian mountains offer opportunities for activities such as climbing, walking,
    skiing and caving, and extend some 200 kilometres in total, as far as Galicia province to
    the west of Asturias, and Cantabria province to the east.

•   The Asturian coastline is extensive, with hundreds of beaches, coves and small fishing
    villages (Cudillero, Tazones) , and summer resort towns (Llanes, Ribadesella)

•   The climate of Asturias, as with the rest of northwest Spain, is more varied than that of
    southern parts of the country. Summers are generally humid and warm, with
    considerable sunshine, but also some rain. Winters are fairly mild but with some very
    cold snaps. The cold is especially felt in the mountains, where snow is present from
    November till May.
Asturias: mountain landscape
            The Asturian language
•   In Asturias there´s a regional language called Asturiano or Bable. It´s
    not much spoken nowadays, except in small villages, though it´s
    taught in schools and university.

•   The problem with “bable” is that even within Asurias there´re many
    varieties and most words are pronounced differently in each valley.
    Most of the words come from celtic languages and from latin.

•   You´ll probably here words like “guaje” meaning child or “antroxu”
    meaning Carnival.

•   A conversation in bable may sound like this;
    BABLE: ¿Onde ta tu pa? Colo a trabayar
    ESPAÑOL: ¿Donde está tu padre? Fue a trabajar
    ENGLISH: Where is your father? He left for work
• The county of Mieres: situation
General view of Mieres; a valley between mountains

• Mieres is a municipality of Asturias, Spain with
  approximately 45,000 inhabitants. The municipality of
  Mieres is comprised of the capital Mieres del Camino,
  and many smaller villages like Baiña, Figaredo, Cenera,
  Loredo, Bustiello, etc.

• Mieres is the heart of the coal mining industry in Spain
  and the industrial backbone of Asturias. The topography
  of Mieres is mountainous with the greatest population
  centers being located in the valley along the banks of the
  Rio Caudal(Caudal River), in the center of Asturias.
  • In the sixties and seventies
    this was one of the most
    important industrial centres in
    the region with a huge steel
    and Iron factory (Fábrica the
    Mieres) and several coal
    mines around the city. At that
    time the river and this area
    was very polluted. The factory
    was moved to the coast and
    most of the coal mines are
    now closed.

  • At present we have several
    new factories in the industrial
    areas on the other side of the
    river, but services is an
    important part of the

• In Mieres there are all kind of facilities and
  services, including 3 High Schools and a
  modern Technical university where you can
  study different engineering branches. At the
  moment they are building a residence for
  students and a huge research centre.
                                              Mieres: Wilkipedia

•   Mieres del Camino is an example of working-Spain, far from the sunny vacation
    destination typically associated with Spain. Mieres is located in a valley, flanked by
    mountains along the banks of the Caudal River (Rio Caudal) and Route 66 in the center
    of Asturias.

•   Mieres has a several small museums and cultural centers, a couple of art galleries and
    numerous restaurant-bars, boutiques and shops. The highest concentration of shopping
    is located along “calle Manuel Llaneza” and the pedestrian mall on “calle La Vega”. On
    market days, the city market, the “Mercado de Mieres” and nearby streets are filled
    with all kind of vendors selling a wide variety of products, most especially food and
Mieres   Some of Mieres’ main gathering places are the Catholic
         church of San Juan de Bautista, adjacent to the Cider
         Square (Plaza de Requejo) popular for al fresco dining;
         the Jovellanos Park (Parque Jovellanos) for relaxing,
         sports and the evening “paseo”; and the plaza at the
         Ayuntamiento de Mieres (City Hall Plaza) for festivals
         and cultural gatherings.

         Mieres’ most popular and important festival St. John's
         Bonfire (La Foguera de San Juan) occurs every June
         24th's eve, and is high-lighted by a huge bonfire,
         cultural events, live concerts, fire works and great
         quantities of al fresco food and drinks. Another
         important festival is the Folixa na Primavera, in April,
         in which you can have a good time listening to celtic
         music from all over celtic countries and a bit of cider,
         sidra, the most typical asturian drink.
San Juan´s church   La LLechera´s square
          • Our school is one of
            the oldest in Mieres
            and it has recently
            being renovated. The
            main bulding was a
            palace of the Bernaldo
            de Quirós family, one
            of the most powerful
            families in this region
            since the Middle Ages.
            The palace is from the
            XVII century but there
            was a defense tower
            here since the XIII
            OUR SCHOOL
• Ten years ago there were more than 1200
  students, but now the area´s population has
  decreased and we are only 535 students and
  about 65 teachers.

• We have four years of secondary education
  (from 12-16) and 2 years of High school (1st
  and 2nd of Bachillerato, from 16-18).
• In our High School you can choose between
  3 different branches of studies:
         a. Technology and Sciences
         b. Humanities
         c. Art
            In each of the branches you can
            choose several subjects.

After the last year you have to take the
  university entrance exam or Selectivity test.

• Our school is famous for its Art
  collection and the cultural activies that
  often take place here: conferences; art
  exhibitions, trips, cultural days, etc.

• Graduation day is also very important
  in this school and we are looking
  forward to it.
      Our Comenius Project: “Finding similarities,
             understanding differences”

a) Linguistic objectives:
   To achieve a basic knowledge of the language of both
   countries participating in the project by attending classes in
   the preparation phase of the exchanges.
   To improve linguistic communication skills in English .
b) Cultural objectives:
   To promote and widen cultural awareness through the study in
   both countries of the history, culture and economy.
   To research and find similarities and differences in the history
   and culture of both regions.
   To participate in and experience culture and traditions through
   games, food, visits, music, etc. during the exchanges.
         Comenius Project: Objectives

c) Attitudinal objectives:
   To promote and foster the understanding of other
   cultures in the context of a multicultural society.
   To promote attitudes of respect and tolerance
   towards other nationalities and other people.
                     Comenius Project: Activities
•   Language classes in both countries to learn some basic linguistic skills in the
    target languages.

•   Cultural / educational visits to increase their understanding of both
    regions/countries. The visits include monuments, museums, rural villages,
    natural landscape, craft centres, local government institutions, etc.

•   Research work carried out by the students using different resources (written
    information, interviews, field work, multi-media, observation etc.) to study and
    understand the history, culture and economy of both regions.

•   Attending some regular classes and lectures in both schools in different
    subject matters (History, Mathematics, Sports, English, Economy).

•   Experiencing some customs and traditions by listening to music, participating
    in games, eating traditional food, dancing.

•   Active reflecting on cultural issues by participating in group and plenary

•   Writing essays in English in order to exchange information on the different
    topics of the project and daily diaries during the exchange time.


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