By Matti Barzilai
Bruchim ha-ba’im la’ivrit! Welcome to Hebrew! This summer, GUCI has brought back Hebrew programming as part of the daily schedule. Each morning, Shoresh and Geza campers report to the Beit Am for an hour of fun activities and games that teach them Hebrew words.
We began the summer learning how to introduce ourselves in Hebrew. We then spent a few days studying what the Hebrew words that we use all over camp actually mean. Before Yom Sport, we learned the colors in Hebrew (no one caught the foreshadowing!). Last week, we practiced counting to twenty, took trust walks with the directions in Hebrew, and made puns using Hebrew words that sound like English words. This week we are interacting with Israel through its language.
Garin also has time for Ivrit every day in a joint Omanoot (art)/Hebrew program. They have been making a variety of art projects using Hebrew and, through the projects, also learning Hebrew vocabulary.
It has been a lot of fun to bring Ivrit back to GUCI. Our main goal is to create enjoyable experiences with Hebrew for our campers. We want them to experience Hebrew as a living language in addition to the language of our prayers. My favorite part of creating our Ivrit program has been seeing the sincere excitement of our campers when learning all of this vocabulary. A few campers have even begun to bring notebooks with them every day to write down each word we learn so that they can continue to use the words at home!