Spirit Week and Shabbaton Stories

Neena C.
Color  War, the final day of Spirit Week, is a day I look forward to the  entire year. After countless hours of hard work and preparation, finally  all of our grade’s excitement and dedication pays off when we all  gather together in the commons and perform in front of the whole JCHS  community. Each class is given about 10 minutes to entertain the school  with a song or dance, or combination of the two, which shows off their  grade’s spirit.
This  year my class, the class of 2013 won Color War! As co-rosh (president)  of the grade, it was my responsibility to organize this presentation,  but the most satisfying part was not winning: it was seeing the whole  grade come together supporting one another and having fun. The  satisfaction came from our team’s effort and knowing that each classmate  played a part in our success.

After this day of excitement, we  went home and rested up so that we were ready for our adventures at  Walker Creek Ranch. Walker Creek Ranch is where we enjoy our annual  school-wide Shabbaton. The Shabbaton is an amazing experience for  everyone; it is a time when you can connect with your peers in a  completely different way. On the Shabbaton we have an amazing 48 hours  to reconnect with old friends and create many new friendships in a  relaxed and worry-free environment. We can breathe fresh air, take long  walks, and enjoy the rustic surroundings.

This  year a new aspect of the Shabbaton was the introduction of  “tribes.” Each student was a part of a 7-10 person mixed-grade tribe  that met once before the Shabbaton, and daily over that weekend. During  these tribe meetings, we had time to reflect on our experiences and do  some bonding activities. In my tribe, we went beyond the prompts that  had been provided for us and had real, meaningful conversations. The  tribes gave me the opportunity to become friends with people I had never  talked to and spend some quality time with them on the Shabbaton. I am  looking forward to continuing to build on these new friendships  throughout the rest of the year.
Jewish Community High School of the Bay
1835 Ellis Street, San Francisco, CA 94115
Phone: 415.345.9777
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The Jewish Community High School of the Bay (JCHS) is a unique college preparatory high school committed to integrating deep learning, universal wisdom, and Jewish values. We empower each student to embrace her or his Jewish identity, generate empathy and compassion, delight in lifelong education, and improve the world.