In line with our students’ suggestions and aspirations and with the aim of maximising their opportunities to improve and make use of their developing knowledge of Croatian, the Croatian Language School has introduced into its portfolio the ‘Croatian Language and Culture’ programme.
A five-day pilot project was organised which took place at the end of May 2012 with the goal of enabling our students get to know the cities of Split, Mostar and Sarajevo and to become familiar with their history and culture.The project was a great success and an encouragement to continue with such projects.
In June of the following year, the school organised a week-long study trip exploring the islands of Middle Dalmatia and their culture while sailing along the route from Split to Dubrovnik. In June 2014, it played host to its students in Orebić, on the Pelješac peninsula, and in June 2015, CLS and its students headed towards Cavtat and through our ‘Cavtat – Southern light’ study programme we introduced Southern Dalmatia to our students.
In June 2016 we had our ‘Zadar’s gems – Crystal falls and pearls of Northern Dalmatia‘ study programme which centred around our school’s home for the week in Kožino, a few miles from Zadar and in 2017 we were based in Fažana, Istria from where we explored the towns of the peninsula as well as the Brijuni Islands off the coast in our ‘Bewitching Brijuni and Terra Magica’ programme. For 2018 we are once again returning to Southern Dalmatia and will be based on the island of Šipan. We will be exploring the Elaphite Islands in our programme ‘The Secrets of the Elaphite Islands – Another World on our Doorstep’, plans for which are already well advanced.
During the week-long CLS ‘Language and Culture’ programme, students have twelve hours of lessons in language tuition, organised in four three-hour long sessions on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday.
The classes are conducted at two different levels:
and will take place at the school’s home, where certain social events will also be held. This year we are also planning to introduce a number of early morning yoga sessions, in which all students are invited to participate if they wish.
Sunday and Wednesday are set aside for whole day excursions: On Sunday the plan is to take a full-day boat trip concentrating on the neighbouring island of Koločep and on Wednesday we will be visiting some lesser known sights and places in and around Dubrovnik. On Monday a half-day excursion to the other main island of the Elaphite archipelago, Lopud, will dovetail with lessons. On Tuesday after lessons students will be free to explore our base island of Šipan either independently or by joining a group walk to Šipanska Luka arriving in time for dinner. On Thursday after lessons we will take a trip to Mali Ston and the neighbouring part of the Pelješac peninsula. Friday evening will be an opportunity to relax at the farewell party, which we are currently planning to hold on the terrace of the school’s home for the week overlooking the sea.
During the special programme of excursions, students have the chance to practise their Croatian amongst themselves, with native speakers, excursion organisers and tour guides. In their free time, students are be able to try out their language skills in and around town, in shops, restaurants etc.
We think that the ‘Croatian Language and Culture’ study programme represents a valuable contribution to the CLS ongoing mission, both here in London and globally, to provide a high standard of Croatian language study and the opportunity to gain knowledge about Croatia and its culture.