All Posts

Materials Come together Session 21

Come on, Santa Claus!” – a Bulgarian Christmas song performed by children of the “Spring” kindergarten (Borisovo, Slivo Pole Municipality, Bulgaria)

Christmas Traditions in Slovakia” –presentation of Prof. Nadezda Hrapkova, University of Third Age (Bratislava, Slovakia)

“Advent calendar Survaknitsa of Slivo Pole Municipality” and “Advent calendar of the University of Ruse students” presented by Emiliya Velikova (Ruse, Bulgaria)

“Impressions from the competition for self-made advent calendars and honouring of winners” Carmen Stadelhofer andViktoria Kurnosenko (Ulm, Germany)

Singing of the German Christmas song “Stille Nacht” in different languages – all together

Materials Come together Session 20

Traditional sports game „Shore“ from Tomaševac (Vojvodina, Serbia)“, presented by a sports teacher, Dragana Bogojević  (Perlez, Serbia)

O mio Signore”, Italian song of Eduardo Vianello, performed by Rosalia Portera and Geatano Dalessio, lecturers at the University for the Third Age, Mola di Bari (Italy); a piano and a voice

Visiting the Marquenterre bird reserve, Baie de Somme, France“, a presentation by Hugh Busher (Nottingham, England), a passionate traveler and associate professor at University of Leicester (UK)

Materials Come together Session 19

National Day of the Enlighteners” dedicated to Bulgarian educators, prepared by Emiliya Velikova
Here ist the link to the song of Bulgaria

Unde esti copilărie?“, a Romanian folk song performed by Elena Stefănuţ

Advent/Christmas Calendar Competition” – new program action in the frame of CODANEC project

The Merry Cemetery of Sapânţa” – presented by Alexandru Perian -> here you can find the contribution

Tabula Traiana”, a poem by Lazăr Dimitrie, recited by Christina Erdei

Makedonsko devojče”, a Macedonian traditional song performed by Tatjana Petrica

Materials Come together Session 18

“A song about the town of Ruse” (Песен за Русе) – a performance by Tsvetan Banev

Aria of Juliet, opera „The Capulets and the Montagues“ of Vincenzo Bellini performance by Maria Pencheva

“Christmas Calendar (Adventskalender) tradition” a presentation by Carmen Stadelhofer

“Around the River” (Край реката) – a city hit, performance by three members of the singing group “Harmony”

“Bunt sind schon die Wälder” – German poem performed by Beatrix Schnitzius

Majo Danilović, Serbia

The Outside is – In

I will keep the windows closed
So that the police hour won’t sneak inside,
But especially because I don’t want the dread to set in.
I’m Emergent!
I cannot go out,
I’d infect the virus with humans.
Why should I venture out
When I have a phobia of outdoors, 
Of wide and endless,
When I have a fear of Nature – 
There’s grass, and dandeLions, sparrows and rooks.
If I am wrong and I venture out,
I’d be run over by polluted air. 
I will upholster the window with mosaics
So that my sense of guilt doesn’t creep out.
What am I to do outside, 
Where the silence of million rejected 
sleeves of dignity latches on. 
The hell am I to do outside, 
When I’m told I’m not for the inside as well, 
But, there, for a breath, for just a few more days!
Because the inside is – out,
And the outside is – in. 

Translation: Tihana Lalić Murić

Luis Hermann, Klasse 5c, Michelberg-Gymnasium Geislingen an der Steige

The art of turning on

Anđelka Roksandić, Belgrad

The season called corona

It is May, the lindens are blooming, but we are still living with information about coronavirus. Before the state of emergency was introduced many people might have thought: „The corona won’t come to Serbia.“ However, unfortunately, the virus knows no borders and it arrived just when the nice weather had started and when I started thinking about new shoes and purse. And they are quite necessary for me (and is there a woman that doesn’t feel the same?!). However, working from home has changed habits, as well as needs.

And the emotions that began to overwhelm me are impossible to describe and measure. Has anyone ever measured the amount of emotions at any point?

While the state of emergency was the only topic of conversation, I wondered what a quarantine stay would look like (believe me, that’s how women usually feel while on maternity leave; the truth is that the reason for staying at home in these circumstances makes our mood completely different). The first thing that occurred to me was Star Wars, a favourite childhood series, when we imagined living on another planet or even a spaceship only with people we like. Very similar to the current situation, it could be said, but in a slightly changed form – we are fighting against some invisible force that ranks us all equally, regardless of gender, nation, religion, part of the world we live in.

The state of emergency, unknown to me until then, was introduced in mid-March. After a fortnight, I went shopping for the first time. Children will finally be able to eat (a whole) orange. Everything is saved and calculated so that the number of fruits can be divided by the number of days and members of the household and everyone gets necessary vitamins. Well, I am not really good at math, but I guess I’ll manage, hopefully.

Time aftger shopping is spent in the kitchen and then, in the afternoon, since I don’t have working hours (fortunately or unfortunately), I start working untill the wee hours of the night. And when will I read all these books I planned, when will I pursue a hobby?! I forgot what boredom was. Well, I don’t know what to do first. I have more duties than in regular circumstances.

When I get to the phone, I talk to my friend to cool down my head a bit. She is also working from home, with a two-year child by her side. The husband is at work. When I ask her how she is coping, she replies with a smile: „She is helping me. She has switched off my computer twice today.“ Well, so what am I complaining about, then? My children don’t switch off my computer. They just keep asking me to play a cartoon or explain homework that they don’t understand.

The almost two-month-long state of emergency was lifted two days ago, so it seems that we are a little more relaxed. However, just a little. Precautions are still recommended – wearing masks and gloves, avoiding hugs and shaking hands, as well as keeping the distance (possibly only physical). Those who can, continue to work from home. Parents with small children, don’t despair! There are still some advantages you do your job without seeing your boss on a daily basis. Can it be any better?

My only concern are my shoes and a purse. In fact, when I think about it a little more closer, I won’t even need the shoes soon because summer is already here. I am off to find those sandals I got at last year’s September sale that haven’t seen the Sun yet, to take for a little walk… around the house.

Valeria Majorov, Klasse 5c, Michelberg-Gymnasium, Geislingen an der Steige

My father and I

Alisa Pomeissl, Klasse 5a, Michelberg-Gymnasium, Geislingen an der Steige


Titina Nica Țene, Cluj-Napoca


Stay in your house, Titina,

You just don’t want to take COVID,

Life is too beautiful,

To leave behind… THE VOID!

I know it’s spring,

The forest calls you

With the procession of flowers,

And you want to stroll around.

Nature has risen

And cuckoos sing in the woods,

But this suffering,


Other springs are coming,

Stay in the house now, Titina,

For only through suffering,

We`ll reach the LIGHT!

Jura Ștefan-Alexandru, Timișoara

The year 2020

It does sound good, doesn’t it? A new decade, a new year, a new me. A cliché that is being used by a lot of people today. Well, for the humanity, 2020 is not, at least not yet, the happiest year. Why do we have to lie, it is terrible. Really. I mean, the Third World War was about to start, Australia was on fire literally, the famous basketball player Kobe Bryant passed away and a Chinese man hasn’t boiled a bat as the instructions to do so said. A pandemic that kept us stuck inside our houses more than 2 months and it still stops us from doing our daily activities, due to the restrictions imposed by the government. A pandemic that is like a gift from God for me. A pandemic that helped me to make light in my life, to clean my mind and to clarify some things that were grinding me for quite some time. A pandemic…that made me become a new person.

I was having big plans for 2020.  I wanted this year to be mine. To show everyone that my successes from the secondary school (always the first at the contests and 10 out of 10 at the final 8th grade exam) weren’t a joke. My purpose was to be the 1st at the Chemistry Olympiad and at the Mathematics Olympiad. Why these 2 subjects? Because both of them are important for me. I love maths. I always did. Since I was a little child. Maths is like an old friend, a friend that was always here me, a friend that never lets me down. A friend that I always aligned with. But the bonding with this friend became very fragile for like 5 months now. Why? Because of the chemistry. A new friend that I discovered at the beginning of the 11th grade. A friend that made me be torn between maths and chemistry. I couldn’t decide between these 2, on which subject to focus, so I decided to do them both and I risked everything.

I worked hard for both of them. Starting from December, I began preparing for these 2 subjects. One day I was doing maths, one day chemistry, sometimes I was even doing both of them at the same time! This is what I’ve been doing everyday. When I wasn’t at school and I was having free time, I was working at maths or chemistry. My desire and hope were very high. I was doing everything I could to achieve this goal. I really wanted to do it. This preparation continued for almost 3 months. Without any break.

The time passed and the Olympiad period has arived. The first one was at chemistry, at the end of January. Here I managed to get 100 points out of 100, the maximum score and to be the first in Timișoara at this Olympiad. I was so happy and so proud of myself. Everyone was applauding and complimenting me for this. One month after this, it was the time for the Maths Olympiad. That was the moment when I was suposed to show that me and maths still get along and there is still CHEMISTRY between us. Unfortunately, it wasn’t the case…

I got one of the lowest scores at the Olympiad. I think I was the last in the rankings. I was very dissapointed, discouraged and upset because of this. It was a shock for me, judging by the fact that I was always in the top 5 at the Olympiad. All my work was in vain. Also, things couldn’t get any better: I was given the cause for ridicule due to my „amazing” prestation. Practically, I worked for nothing. I worked for being ridiculised. When I did well, everybody was congratulating me. And now, when the situation isn’t all pink and things don’t go as well as before, everybody is throwing stones at me. This world…

These things were followed by the loss of some beloved family members. All came like a storm on me. But I was trying to keep my head up. Unfortunately, this thing didn’t really work…I was smiling, but it wasn’t my smile. There was a powerful typhoon inside me. I was devastated by everything that has happened to me until then. Yesterday everything was working fine, and now…it was looking like nothing is working for me anymore. Everything and everyone were against me. I wanted a looong break, otherwise I was about to burst. Well, that break has come, thanks to the coronavirus.

At the start of the pandemic, I was unladen with anxieties. Like all the bad things have dissapeared. But it wasn’t like that. I wasn’t fine at all. I was tumultuous, gusty and irascible. I didn’t like anything. I used to go to sleep at 4 AM after spending more than 12 hours a day playing on my phone and lying in my bed. Also, I was having nightmares, waking up in the morning (at 2 PM) sweaty and scared. I didn’t have the will to try to get out of this situation. I have surrendered. I didn’t want to do anything. Only to lay all day long. That’s all. I thought that I was getting mad, that I’m crazy. I was going nuts due to so much studying. Due to so many real sciences, better said. My thinking became stiff since I started high school. Why? Because I was heading to only one direction: mathematics and its derivates. That’s all. Except the must-read books for my Romanian classes, I wasn’t reading anything at all. When I was in secondary school, I used to read 2-3 books a month. Literature and History. Then I was merging liberal arts (history, geography, Romanian language …) with real sciences (maths, physics, biology, chemistry…). This thing helped me to develop my logical thinking, but it also helped me to develop my artistic and critical thinking. Unfortunately, since I began high school, I only had blinks from what I’ve had before…For me, everything was soving with the help of an algorithm. Everything was dodged-up, following a clear number of steps. Everything wasn’t natural anymore, human, but… I didn’t know what to do with my life. I didn’t know what I wanted to do now, or in 10 years, I was letting everything to happen at hazard. And I realized those things during the pandemic. It was probably the worst situation that I’ve ever been into, both physically and psychically.

But things don’t happen without a reason. Never. During the coronavirus pandemic, all schools were closed, but the courses continued online. What does that mean? It means that students receive homework and tasks to fetch up the classes that they missed at school. Even if I wanted it or not, I had to do them, otherwise it was the possibility that I won’t pass the school year due to unmade/unfinished  homework. And, like that, I entered Google Classroom in mid-March and I saw that I had a lot of tasks to do. I, studying mathematics and computer science, was expecting that most of them to be at maths and computer science, but I was wrong. The most of them were at…history. Exactly. History (an old passion of mine) at this specialization. Who heard this aberration before? If I wanted to study history, I could have easily chosen social sciences. People choose mathematics and computer science specialization for studying mathematics and computer sciences. The rest aren’t that important. That was my opinion, but it drastically changed after the events that I’m going to write about.

With moil and toil, I started working on my 2 history essays. At first, their topic (something about religion, I don’t remember it exactly) seemed very boring to me. I searched on Brainly (a Romanian website where students copy their homework from) for some ideas, but I found nothing. That determined me to write the essays on my own, due to requirement. For this, I got off my bed after 5 days, I turned on my laptop and I started reading about this topic. Reading and reading, my mind started working and I became more and more interested in this subject. I managed to finish my assignments in 3 hours, but I didn’t realise how fast the time has passed. It was the first time in months when I did something that I actually enjoyed and something that made me look at things differently, from a human angle, of the concrete life, not a mechanized one. I turned in my essays and my history teacher told me that the essays are great, that my answers were correct and complex and he congratulated me. This helped me realise that maybe not everything was lost. That maybe some variation would be benefic. Academically speaking. The mind is healthy when it is at work, in activities from all domains. Not only from domains that are related to maths. When it is involved in all kind of activities, including cultural activities and sports (yes, sports have a lot of benefits for the brain and the cognitive processes).

That was a big impulse for me. Why? Because, this way, my interest in history began to grow/ to show up again. Even the interest in humanities maybe. After 3 years of mathematics and nothing else, I felt like I needed a break. This way, I began reading daily and I had in mind that I was going to be more active, more involved. I became more calm, calculated and lucid. I wasn’t nervous anymore and I began to stop spending my day doing nothing, because I had a new passion: history of Romanians. I began reading daily at history and I started doing activities (unrelated to math) that were supposed to keep my body/mind active, for curing myself psychically mostly. I did these activities for more days and, suddenly, everything was better: I was more effective in the activities that I was doing, I was happier, I wasn’t sober anymore, practically I was a new person. Why? Because I realised that nobody could heal me, except…me. I was the remedy for my healing. I and no one else. I received advices that helped me go through this tough period (I want to mention a very special person with a wonderful soul. Rarely you cand find a person like him. His name is Sorin, an incredible man that I owe a lot because, apart from the professional life advices, he also gave me personal life advices), but the merit is mine because I put into practice everything he told me and this way I could look on the bright side. Concurrently, with the help of Sorin, I took an important decision. I was the only one in my class that didn’t know what’s going to do after high school. At the end of the 11th grade. I was wavering between polytechnic school and medicine. I was thinking about it since the 9th grade. Maybe this thing was a factor that amplified this feelings of mine. During this period, I realised that I like all the subjects in school. Can I combine them all? No. Can I combine at least some of them? Yes. Where? At medicine. Here I can combine biology, chemistry, maths and computer science and something really great could come out of that. And in my free time, I can read history books. Humanities are like a hobby for me, a pleasure, if they were a compliance, I wouldn’t have been that interested in them. Practically, during these few weeks, I managed to resolve problems that I was dealing with for more years and I was able to overcome some of my fears. What an impact a good talk had on me…and someone else’s motivation. I guess that was the key that helped me to overcome this situation: the motivation. I was motivated by other people and I realised that, if I want, I can do anything. Nothing can stop me from following my dreams. Everything is possible with a little push and will.

So, during the coronavirus pandemic, good things can happen too. Maybe this period isn’t benefic for the economy, the culture or for the sports, because it is an obstacle regarding their progress, but, for people, it is a way to discover themselves and to heal themselves in every way. We need to make full use of this period and clean our souls, to assign some priorities and to realise that everything happens with a reason and that we should learn something from this kind of experiences.

Tassel vest, from the Bistrița-Năsăud area

Text by Mihaela Marcovici

The folk costume from the Bistriţa-Năsăud area shows a certain optimism expressed by the contrast between the white fabric of the shirt and the strong red in the embroidery. The leather processed by the village furrier is transformed into “chest” (vests) and “coats”. Depending on the cut, the vests are closed or open.

The coats worn on weekdays were less adorned or not at all.

On Sundays and on holidays, men wear beautifully adorned vests adorned with ornamental tassels of different colours, made of wool or silk.

The colour of the ornamental tassels is expressed in shades of red, orange and blue, specific to young people. For the elderly, black tassels are added. This colour highlights the vitality, openness and generosity of young people, as well as the seriousness and warmth of the elderly.

The variety of colours of the tassels wants to imitate the colour of the peacocks. When the male peacock wants to “conquer” a female peacock, he folds his feathers to look as attractive as possible. Therefore, when dancing with these vests, the movement of the tassels mimics the folded feathers of the peacocks.

The number of tassels on the vest represents the well-being of the family. The richer the family from which the young man comes, the richer the tassels and they are made of silk. This element of the folk costume worn by men from the Năsăud area is completed by the peacock feather hats, which complete the image of the folk costume. There are very few craftsmen who know how to make these hats today. The hat with peacock feathers is worn by the boys, and the number of rows of feathers represents their wealth.

The Romanian people are very proud of their popular costumes. Almost everybody has at least the blouse called “ie” at home. Because such a costume is not cheap or easy to sew the seniors at the Centre decided to do it by themselves within the frame of a creative workshop.

By doing this together, we created the joy of knowing that we have preserved the legacy of popular traditions that we want to offer to future generations and share it with our neighbours.

At the same time, we want to share the way women in the past used to sew these folk costumes. They organised themselves in the so called “sittings” where they sewed, weaved or spun the wool for the fabrics.  During these “sittings” they used to sing, tell stories and play certain social games. Unfortunately, the art of making handmade clothes is barely present nowadays. Though the revival of the “sittings” at our centre we want to offer an example for good practice for the elderly and beyond.

Martin Hristov, Gabrovo


I am a lecturer at Raicho Karolev High School of Gabrovo, and a student at the University of Ruse, majoring in Methodology of Teaching Mathematics, and doing the part-time form of education.

Covid-19 led to synchronous and asynchronous learning in a digital environment at the University through the BigBlueButton (BBB) platform, and in our school through “Teams” of Microsoft, provided by the Ministry of Education and Science.

The University introduced distance learning very quickly, because the lecturers had already developed systems of files with teaching materials. In school, this process was slower because teachers had to prepare new presentation materials and students had to get hold of good computer equipment and quality Internet connection.

Very often in the classes, the discussions on the topics were transferred to the epidemic situation, because we were all worried about our health and that of our relatives.

After the pandemic, as a future math teacher, I rethought the teaching and learning of math and formulated some conclusions about teaching math in my future workplace.

1) Any environment like Covid-19 is detrimental to the learning process.

2) Teaching mathematics in a digital environment should be attractive so as not to focus the discussion on current problems, but on solving mathematical problems.

3) Since mathematics is learned not only by watching, but also by writing, the virtual whiteboard is an opportunity to increase the activity of the students and the attractiveness of learning.

4) The use of multimedia presentations to illustrate the learning material by sharing the screen proved to be a winning strategy during the teaching of mathematics under the conditions of Covid-19.

5) The possibilities for creating dynamic drawings and for easy drawing using specialized software can be provided with GeoGebra.

I think these months have shown me that we can work in a digital environment, even in the times of a pandemic. Now is the time to look for and create new teaching aids, methods and forms of teaching and learning mathematics. I hope to be able to put these views into practice and be a successful math teacher.

Profession of master carpenter

Read more about this cultural treasure …

Name: Bertram Wegemer

Place: Ulm

Country: Germany

Category: craftsmanship, handicraft


Master craftsman training and status in the craft using the example of carpentry:
My reference: In January 1994 I passed the examination for the master craftsman’s diploma in carpentry at the Ulm Chamber of Trade. Since then I have been running a master carpentry business. Like hardly any other craft, carpentry combines traditional and modern skills and knowledge. The building craftsmen, to which also the carpenters belong, preserve like hardly anybody else craftsmanship but also social traditions, which go back to the early gothic period. Outwardly well to see at the still worn dress as work clothes.


The firm anchoring not only guarantees a high level of craftsmanship, but also ensures that all knowledge is passed on. Not only craftsmanship skills are passed on, but also social and ethical standards and values. Vocational training and then execution remain at a high level.


Read more about this cultural treasure

Name: Anca Azoitei

Place: Suceava

Region: Bucovina

Origin: Romania

Category: handicraft


The richly colored and varied shapes of the traditional shirt, IA, had more than an aesthetic significance. The shirt was full of magical symbols meant to ward off the wearer from evil spirits or old women’s charms.

Whether it was made of linen or hemp, borangic or silk, the central sign of the shirt was always the cross. The shirts worn by married women differed from those worn by unmarried girls. Married and old women wore shirts with stitches in darker colors, while for the young girls the colors were lighter and brighter.


“IA reflects the identity of Romanian people. The traditional IA has a significance and value for the Romanian folklore similar to the meaning of the pyramids to Egyptians, cathedrals to French and the dams to the Dutch. IA is one visible and tangible testimony of the village tradition on our land. The Romanian costume takes us out of the field of art and leads us into that of history “, is the description made by the Romanian people in the volume” Romania – From the traditional folk harbor treasure”.

Advent calender

Read more about this cultural treasure

Name: Carmen Stadelhofer

City: Ulm

Country: Germany

Category: Tradition


The Advent calendar is initially a Christian custom and has in German speaking countries a long tradition. It is intended to increase the anticipation and the tension of the children before Christmas celebration. From the 1st of December to the 24th of December every child who has an Advent Calendar is allowed to open one small door every day, namely the door corresponding to the relevant day of the month. Behind them are small pictures or more recently sweets. In our family  we  give today  self-made Advent Calendars with 24 small numbered parcels. Seeing them and unpacking one every day makes me  also as adult looking forward to Chistmas with fun and reminds me of beautiful childhood days.


This old custom belongs to me like the advent wreath and the Christmas bakery  to get in a good mood for Christmas  as a festival of peace. Unfortunately this custom has been very commercialized by the chocolate  and other industry in the recent years. For this reason I like the self made calendars with twinny gifts. I like also very much the floating calendar existing in some localities today. For this 24 houses or windows are needed. There is a plan who decorate a window for one number of the calendar.  Very often this event is joint by  a meeting of people, staying for a while together in front of the window, singing Advent songs and taking a hot wine and Christmas cookies together.

Baking in the baking house

Read more about this cultural treasure

Name: Carmen Rouhiainen

Region: Schwabian Alb

Country: Germany

Category: bread and baking culture


I come from a village on the Swabian Alb, where baking in the wood stoves of the village baking house is regularly practiced. I grew up with this living tradition. For me it was only natural to learn the techniques from firing and controlling the oven, to rolling out “Blatz”, our Swabian pizza, and charging the oven with bread. The baking house is a place where the people of the village come together to get in touch with each other and bake together. Often one is lucky and is invited to a piece of Blatz. Once a year, on the 1st weekend of July, we celebrate our village festival around the baking house.


I would like to show and teach this tradition of baking in the baking house to others, just as it was shown and taught to me by my mother, in order to preserve the traditional craft of baking bread in stone ovens with wood. It is an important part of our actively lived village community. Everybody who is interested can learn these techniques and participate. It is a connecting and elementary work, in which a lot of work is done with the hands, which can be physically strenuous, but also just as much fun and pleasure to experience. Especially when you bite into freshly baked and still steaming “Blatz” or bread and think that there is actually nothing that could be tastier at this moment.

The CODANEC Website is released!

Our new website for the CODANEC project is now online.

Here you will find all news, information and materials concerning the project. We are also setting up a forum and an internal area for members, we have an event calrender and will post regualry about our activities.
Check regularly our website and keep up to date!
We are looking forward to a successful project, great events and many contributions from people all over the Danube region and beyond that. Read more about the CODANEC project.

Start of the CODANEC Project: take part!

„Share your personal cultural treasure. Connecting Danube Neighbours by Culture“ (CODANEC)

We want to make those intangible cultural treasures known which strengthen local and national identity and are worth sharing with European neighbors and younger people.

We want to encourage people of all ages to identify cultural skills and living traditions, share them with other participants and interested people and take part in an exchange of knowledge and information.

We honor the best presentation.

We present the results on the project website, on Facebook, at the Danube-partner meeting in Ulm in July 2020 and in a traveling exhibition.

We will provide a documentation of the living cultures in the Danube region (a book or a video), if we receive a sufficient number of contributions with living examples.


This project has received funding from the Staatsministerium Baden-Württemberg and the City of Ulm. This website was funded by BMFSJ.

Design and implementation by Arivum. All rights reserved

Skip to toolbar