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The Greek Community of Melbourne Schools celebrate Apokries and Clean Monday

The Greek Community of Melbourne (GCM) Schools recently celebrated Apokries and Clean Monday with a series of activities and events both inside and outside the classroom. These events gave students the chance to experience these important days in Greek tradition.

During the celebrations, students and teachers revived customs and traditions from all over Greece, bringing a Greek flavour to the Carnival and Clean Monday festivities. Each school organised events from Friday, March 15 to Tuesday, March 19.

Students and teachers discussed the meaning of Clean Monday and Lent, and brought traditional customs to life, such as the Vlach “Shaving of the groom”, the Pontian “Koukaras”, and the Macedonian “Haskas”. They danced around the “gaitanaki”, flew kites, shared fasting foods, and experienced the atmosphere of the celebrations as they’re done in Greece.

These events are consistently included in GCM School’s program because the school recognises their importance in deepening students’ connections with their Greek origins and roots. They understand that forming an identity is a complex process that involves both spiritual and emotional growth and can be achieved by connecting theoretical knowledge to shared experiences.

Guided by the principles of holistic approach and experiential learning, which are included in the educational planning of the Victorian Ministry of Education, GCM Schools strive to develop a dynamic learning program that focuses on students, encourages their active involvement in the educational process, enriches their linguistic and cultural experiences, develops bonds between class members, and ultimately creates communities.