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Online Cologne City tour: how Moritz, a CSS team member, became a city guide

During the process of reinventing our cultural program, Moritz came up with a creative idea that allowed our participants to be present in Cologne and to learn some important facts about Colongne's history and sights. Even tough the "real feeling" students experience while walking through the narrow streets of the old city or when watching the different beautiful graffitis in the fancy neighbourhood of "Ehrenfeld", could not be recreated equally, the virtual trip, Moritz organized by the means of google maps, was welcomed by the participants as a nice alternative. By zooming in and out and jumping to sights far from each other, the virtual city tour became interactive and entertaining. For Moritz, who is a prospective teacher, it was a great opportunity to expand his historical knowlege and to train his presentation skills. His efforts were highly appreciated by the group. 

Online plattform as substitute for real life cultural exchange 

We installed writing and speaking channels that gave the students the opportunity to communicate in a private setting. This was one of the most important aspects apart from the academic program since cultural exchange is one of the most sustainable benefits for our participants. While listening to the "students' testimonials on this website" you can prove that interpersonal exchange that leads to international friendships is one of the most appreciated aspects of being a summer school participant.

In the "creative corner" participants and CSS team members shared very different things like fotos, links to podcasts they like or run themselves, links to articles they wrote, online Yoga sessions and online games that could be played together in the free time. This year, more than ever, due to their non-pysical presence, the different time zones and other daily duties, they had to put some efforts into finding dates that were suitable for the entire group. And they managed it!

Online Kitchen: 萝卜排骨玉米汤: carrot, pork ribs and sweet corn soup

Food is one of the core elements of culture and thus an online kitchen where to exchange on special and yummy recepies was not to be missed. Find out what kind of food our participants recommended to fellow students and CSS team members. 

Jaynean J.  from China wrote:

"Good morning/afternoon/evening everyone! This is what my dad cooked for today’s lunch. It’s called 萝卜排骨玉米汤 (carrot,pork ribs and sweet corn soup) in China. It’s very tasty and healthy. You can also add some thinly sliced green onions, dates or goji berries to add freshness".

Hot milk serving in Veracruz, Mexico

Krysta, our participant from Mexico shared this nice tradition of serving hot milk. And yes, it looks a bit scary;)

Lucuma: Favorit fruit from Peru - prepared in many different ways

Karina from Peru taught us about her favorit fruit called Lucuma and how it can be used for different types of delicious food. 

She wrote: "I would like to introduce Lucuma to you, one of my favorite fruits from Peru. You can have it in juices, ice cream, popsicles, cakes, yogurt, cookies, liquour or just lucuma. (You name it!)" 

source: wikimediacommons, author: Dawei20

Online Music and Online Bar: the music-bot & the Cologne Digi Bar

Cultural Exchange also means exchange of music

Music means a lot to humans and is an existential part of cultures. Music creates connections between people and helps to cope with difficult situations. By the way "In times like these" is a title by Mavis Staples (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-dz-hXCIWhU) that fits the current situation in the world. " Everybody needs someone to lean on..." are some of the words and these words were also true to all of us, CSS team and participants since we all could not meet in person and had to be isolated from parts of our families and friends.
We, the organizers, tried to create open spaces where to exchange on the challenges the participants were confronted with. In our onsite Cologne Summer Schools we used to have - and will hopefully have again, next year - an intercultural dinner where we exchange food and music and traditional dances as well.
We created "the music bot" that enabled the group to exchange music and also to "sit"  in the "music room" and share moments of relax by listening to a certain piece. If the listening should be accompanied by any kind of delicious drink, there was the option to chill in the Cologne Digi Bar and simultaniously listen to music from the music-bot.
We recognized that the variety of drinks in a digi bar covers a wider range than usual. Why? Because different time zones come along with different drinks like tee, coffee, maté, wine, beer and many more.