Friday, 2 December 2016

Workshop 3 by Ishai Cohen

Sunday November 13th was Cohort 9's 3rd workshop. For the beginning of the workshop we were with Cohort 8. We started off with some icebreaker, to you know... Break the ice. Then our wonderful JC Jared Boretsky started off the tikoun olam discussion. He spoke about what tikoun olam is and that it's one of the four pillars of diller. We were then split up into groups, with a mix of Cohort 8 and 9 kids. We then continued our discussion on tikoun olam in smaller groups. After that we wrapped up the discussion and cohort 8 left. We had a short snack break. Then the committees did their updates. 

We started with a leadership program, which focused on another diller pillar. It stated off with the leader game, where one person would go out of the room and then inside the room we picked one leader who would start up different patterns (clapping snapping etc.) and everyone else had to do the same, the person who went outside had to figure out who started the pattern. After that we did a quieter activity where everyone read questions. Every answer was highlighted in a different color and each color corresponded to the same color bead. We would put the colored beads on a piece of rope. We sat down and each color corresponded to a different type of leadership. So we got to see more or less what type of leadership everyone preferred. Once we knew more about our leadership styles, we did a discussion where Sarah made a statement about leadership qualities and we stood along a spectrum from Disagree to Agree. It was interesting to see how people's views differed and to argue our points. We wrapped up the program by considering some quotes about leadership from Yitzchak Rabin, Dr. Seuss, Rabbi Sacks, etc and discussing their significance. We then filled an endless survey and that was the end of our 3rd workshop. Up next, our first shabbaton!

Thursday, 27 October 2016

Workshop 2 - Names and Identities by Eli Rubineau

On Sunday, October 23rd, Diller Montreal cohort 9 had a workshop about names and personal identities. Before we got into it, we started with a check in and caught each other up on what has been happening since last workshop. Then, some committees presented: The Israel update committee did a news report and we discussed the UNESCO controversy about the Temple Mount, and the Parsha committee did a quiz about sukkot since there was no parsha this week, and we learned about the holiday's customs.

As we got into the main part of the workshop, we started out talking with partners about what our names mean and what where they come from, and sharing with the group. Hearing so many different origin stories was such an eye opening experience.

After that, a quote was posed to the group. It reads "Every man has three names: one by which his parents call him; another, by which he is known to the outside world; and a third, the name which his own deeds have procured for him." We discussed in small groups what we thought it meant to have multiple names, and some examples of them.

Next, we watched a couple small documentary clips on the subject of names. We came together as a whole to talk about how a name can affect the way someone lives their life, and how important it is to make your name yours.

The last activity was to make a collage of magazine clippings that represents our identity. We used the collages to explain a little more about ourselves to the group and talk about our personalities and preferences.

After a small wrap up and summary, we wished each other chag sameach and parted ways. Until the next time, cohort 9.

by Eli Rubineau

Wednesday, 28 September 2016

Cohort 9's First Workshop! - by Josh Reinhart

So far as Cohort 9 we've had an orientation, volunteered together (at Federation CJA's Yom Yocheved Clothing Giveaway), and gone for ice cream as a group. This past Sunday, however was our first actual Diller workshop.

In our first actual workshop with Diller, we did an icebreaker where we told embarrassing stories about ourselves in the time it took to tie a ribbon around one of our fingers. Then we listened to a report on Israeli news by our Israeli shinshinim, Nir and Shahar, who are working in the Montreal Jewish Community this year and will be helping out at all our Diller meetings.

After that we went outside to work with a person from Dynamix to improve our teamwork and leadership skills, by playing a bunch of games that were pretty fun. The first game we played was rock, paper or scissors, and we had to all battle each other until there was one victor.The second game we played was one where we had to make two lines, one team for each line and flip a bunch of frisbees, these frisbees were numbered so we had to flip all ten frisbees in the order of the consecutive numbers, ex:1,2,3,4,5....

The third game we played was one where you had to traverse a maze created by a bunch of coloured dots that were scattered on the ground, and we had to work together to find the correct pattern to get out of the maze.

The fourth game we played was one where we had to use a bunch of open tubes to take a bunch of balls from one bucket and transport them through the use of teamwork, with the tubes into another bucket. The fifth game we played was one where we had create a human ladder, first we had two separate teams with only one person climbing the ladder, then we had one team with two people climbing the ladder. To create the ladder you had to people holding a stick together with a bunch of other people beside him doing the same thing, then the person climbing the ladder had to crawl along the sticks, held by the people. 

The final game we played was one where you had to transport a bunch of balls from one bucket to another by holding on to a board with strings that had a hole cut into it. Everybody cheated for that one it was pretty hilarious honestly. Each of the games  had us develop and use different skills necessary for teamwork, including communication (verbal and non-verbal), trust, listening, patience, and concentration.

Then after we said our goodbyes to the Dynamix person, we went back inside, had snacks, then talked about the different jobs we could be given for the next workshop, then we went on and talked about our different personal values and which ones we want our Diller  group to follow.  I think that everybody had a good time, it was lots of fun and I really enjoyed it, can't wait for the next one!

-Josh Reinhart

Wednesday, 3 August 2016

ISS July 22 by Hannah Bicher

On July 22nd, the Montreal and Bash Banash Diller Teen Fellows departed from Congress and went on a long drive to the beautiful Tzvat. We walked through the city (which was crowded with groups) and visited a synagogue. Our tour guide, Samuel - who we were reunited with - taught us about the history of Tzvat and its growth into the spiritual, mystical city that it is today.

We had some free time to get souvenirs at some of the stores there, after which we went to speak to Avraham, a Kabbalah artist, who talked about the deep meaning behind his artwork. I have already been there but it was exciting to be there again. 

We left the beautiful city to go white water rafting on the Jordan river. First we made a pit stop to eat delicious pizzas and then we were on our way to the start. Everyone had so much fun, we splashed and raced to the end. We even allied with new friends. 

Finally, we travelled to the kibbutz we are staying at and we got ready for Shabbat. Our last Shabbat together with the Israelis was so meaningful and fun. It's sad that it was our last Shabbat together but it was the best one yet.

by Hannah Bicher

Sunday, 24 July 2016

Congress day 3 by Naomi Spiegelman

After a relatively sleepless night, my room woke up and got ready for our third day at congress. I "woke" everyone up because breakfast was from 7:15-8:00 am. After breakfast, we all got on our bus to go to Kfar Giladi to start the day. On the bus ride, I explained what it means to me to be a leader, with the help of Peru's recent elections. It ended with my giving everyone cute llama key chains.

Upon arrival to Kfar Giladi, in front of the majestic Roaring Lion statue, we were split up into our tribes to start our tour tracks to experience Israel in a different way.

On my track, we first went to this beautifully constructed memorial site to commemorate the seventy-three soldiers that were killed in Lebanon. Our tour guide, whose son was one of seventy-three, explained to us about what happened and showed me the importance of living every day to the fullest, taking advantage of opportunities to help out. Afterwards, we did a mini hike and then lunch.

After lunch, we had an interesting unit about Israel run by the Junior Staff. This tribe unit allowed us to learn different points of view, as well as to think about the responsibility of Jews in the diaspora to Israel and vice-versa.

After our content unit and break, we each went to different discussions. I had the luck of listening to Yaniv Rivlin from the Schusterman Foundation. He takes people that are questioning/confused about Israel on journeys, because the only way to see Israel properly is in your own eyes. He also stressed to continue doing what you are doing, get a global perspective, explore, don't be afraid to do what you believe in. This was definitely the highlight of my day.

After this, we had group photos and dinner on the tel hai campus. Once we finished eating we went back to our hostels. We had a really nice ma'agal la'ila where we sculpted something we missed from home, so that we could put that thought aside and focus on our last week of the Israel Summer Seminar. 

By Naomi Spiegelman