This film about their trip to Israel in June 2014 was shot, narrated and produced by the students of Team Israel 2014:Anisha Lewis Jack Pelose Andres Ponce Maya Theiss-Sakata Michael Waheed with a special shout out to editors Andres and Jack! Contact us to find out about joining our June 2015 return visit to Israel.
Monday, June 16
Today we began our first day of volunteering at the Tamrat el Zeitoun Waldorf School. We started off the day by visiting the kindergarten and grades 1-5 to teach the children fun English songs and games. It was exciting for us to see the kids so engaged and having fun in our mini-lessons. By the end of the classes, the students were following us out of the door and asking us to stay. It was heartwarming to see them laughing and having fun, and to see that they were enjoying our company and presence at their school. We loved interacting with the different students and being a part of their daily school life in any way we could.
After visiting the different classes, we turned our attention towards the school itself. Yesterday, we assessed the improvements we wanted to accomplish around the school, and today we began fulfilling our vision by cleaning the walls that lead to the classrooms. Everyone had a great attitude and worked hard to accomplish our first task. By the time we were done, the hallway looked great and was already contributing to a healthier looking school.
It is an amazing feeling to support our Waldorf community by extending our care to other parts of the world. We’ve been given an amazing opportunity to share our appreciation of Waldorf education with others. After just our first day, we can already see how incredibly special this school is and we feel grateful to be given the opportunity to support a branch of our extensive worldwide community.
Israel. Truly at last.
Yesterday brought together the new sights and smells of the eccentric open air market and the balmy breeze and warm waters of the Tel Aviv beach.
Today we finally ventured south out of the city: through crowded streets of crazed drivers to the Masachim Film School and our first honest interaction with the people of Israel. We were welcomed and promptly began the exchange of respective slang with the high schoolers. Next came a friendly fútbol game resulting in Andres getting schooled and general bonding. After a good laugh, we juggled and socialized. It became increasingly clear that although we, as kids and as cultures, were starkly different, we were also remarkably similar.
As today comes to a close, we can only imagine what tomorrow will bring.
- Michael and Team Israel
Well, we finally touched down at around 2:55 this morning, Israel time. Back home at home it was around 4 in the afternoon, so plenty of friends and family were awake and contacting us while we waited for our bags. Funny story, actually, about our bags. As we sat and waited for them to come out of the carousel, little did we know that they were not actually going to appear. After about an hour, our fear was realized: our bags had been lost somewhere along the way. We were not the only disgruntled passengers to lose our luggage, however, and en mass we stormed the lost and found counter trying to find out any information about our missing materials. Eventually we had sorted everything out, but now we have to wait until tomorrow, Thursday, June 12, for our bags to fly to us from Amsterdam where they were misplaced.
Still, even without our bags we are enjoying the sights and sounds of Israel in the wee hours of the morning. Actually, it is kind of freeing having no luggage to lug around. Who knows, the next time you see a picture of us we might just be free of all of our belongings. It is, after all, easier to enjoy a sunset without them.
Good morning California! It is already after 5:00 pm here in Amsterdam. With two flights already done, we are at our last stop before Israel. Despite the long layover, we are staying busy by preparing for the the trip in every way possible. We are reviewing the schedule, testing all of our tech gear, and wearing in our decks of playing cards. The trip felt like an adventure a minute after we stepped off the plane in LAX and learned that we had to exit and re-enter the airport and then wait in line to reprint all of our boarding passes before rushing to our transatlantic flight, which was leaving 45 minutes later. We made the flight and realized that despite the hassle, LAX was worth it because Maya joined us there.
The 10 hour flight went well enough. Some of us even had *gasp* empty seats next to us to stretch out. The Amsterdam airport has been pretty cool too - we found a place to get Dutch omelets and fruit smoothies. Another highlight was the collection of China that the Netherlands is so famous for, including some smoothies. Another highlight was the collection of porcelain china that the Netherlands is so famous for, including some enormous plastic replicas that we could all fit inside.
We are trying to to get all of these moments on camera, and most of them will show up on Instagram. Please be sure to to follow us on twitter and Instagram, like us on Facebook, and check in with us on our blog. The next time you hear from us, we should be in Israel.
We are leaving in 10 days! All the details are set: we have great places to stay, things to do, work lined up for us at Tamrat El Zeitoun, and most importantly, a wonderful group of students and adults to share this wonderful adventure. Check out the photos below of students painting to raise funds for their trip! Go Anisha, Jack and Andres!
Keep watching for pre-trip posts -- and daily video blogs once we get to Israel. The coolest thing is we now have a GoPro to take along -- so you can enjoy the fun along with us.
Shalom and salaam,
We are leaving in 16 days! All the details are set: we have great places to stay, things to do, work lined up for us at Tamrat El Zeitoun, and most importantly, a wonderful group of students and adults to share this wonderful adventure. Keep watching for pre-trip posts -- and daily video blogs once we get to Israel. The coolest thing is we now have a GoPro to take along -- so you can enjoy the fun along with us.
Shalom and salaam,