Duns Primary School and their guests had a gastronomic trip around the world at their Global Cafe in Duns Volunteer Hall last week.
The school has pupils from 14 different countries, from Europe, Africa and America, and Val Steele, Scottish Borders Council’s peripatetic teacher in English as an additional language, came up with the idea of the Global Cafe to involve parents from other parts of the world in the life of the school.
“Quite often a lot of the parents whose children I work with don’t get involved in life at the school because of language and culture barriers and I put the idea of a Global Cafe forward as a way of getting parents involved,” Val explained.
“I had the support of the head teacher, and the staff and the children got together to form a global action team.
“They translated letters home to parents into various languages asking for donations and ideas and wrote invitations to bi-lingual pupils at Berwickshire High School inviting them along.
“Parents were amazing and decorated all their tables with traditional ornaments, they put so much effort into it, and the Dutch family were talking to the German family who were speaking to the Portuguese family - it was a big success.
The event has formed the foundation for parents to feel comfortable at the school and there is talk of including a Continental Cafe at the next school fete.
Val added: “Contacting the parents was really hard because most of them don’t answer the phone because they don’t speak good English. Once they understood what it was all about, however, they threw themselves into it with as much enthusiasm as the children who were “high as kites” as they fed and entertained the 450 children and 220 adults who visited the Global Cafe.”