Infusing Israel at Camp


Camp is a natural environment for young people to explore their relationship with Israel and Israelis. The immersive experience of camp provides great opportunities to infuse Israel into the fabric of everyday life, and to sustain a meaningful culture of Israel education in the camp and the camp community that will extend beyond the summer.

Israeli Music 🎶

Add Israeli music to your summer soundtrack in the dining room, cabins, and outdoors with these iCenter Israeli music Spotify playlists.

Additionally, in the wake of October 7, new Israeli music has reflected the country’s mood and older songs have taken on new meaning. Explore these additional playlists curated to bring relevant songs, lyrics, and background into camp programs.

Get To Know Israelis at Camp 🇮🇱

Invite Israeli shlichim to lead an activity for your bunk or unit. A simple activity like “meet the counselor” or storytelling can be a great starting point that can lead to impactful relationship-building. 

This can be especially impactful this summer—for the past 8+ months, North American campers and staff have been hearing about Israel mostly on social media and the news. Camp provides a unique opportunity to build meaningful connections with directly with Israelis.

Hebrew Word of the Day 📣

Ready to use Hebrew slang like an Israeli? Yalla! Hang these vibrant and fun slang posters around camp and weave cool Hebrew slang into activities, big and small. You can highlight one of these words or phrases every morning as your Hebrew Word of the Day.

Celebrating Birthdays 🎉

Spice up birthday celebrations with loads of Israeli Yom Huledet (birthday) fun! Sing Israeli birthday songs, like Yom Huledet Sameach (same tune as Happy Birthday to You in English), and play Israeli birthday games. Find more ideas here.

Create a ‘Megilah’ for Your Cabin 📝

Inspired by Israel’s Declaration of Independence (Hebrew: Megilat Ha’atzmaut), campers can write a “Megilat Tzrif,” an agreement amongst the cabin members that establishes norms and shared priorities for the summer. It’s a great way to bring campers together in the first hours or days after they get off the bus, and to frame their collective experience in an exciting, aspirational way.

Programs and Activities 🎲

Israel can be woven into any activity, even if it’s not the main topic. For example, add Israeli cheers and songs for color wars (ask your shlichim!), learn about the social justice work of Israeli nonprofits, or name camp sports teams after Israeli soccer or basketball teams (ask the shlichim for ideas, or learn more yourself.)

Tap Into the Richness Your Shlichim Bring 💡

Whether you’re bringing two or 22 Israelis to camp, provide opportunities for them to join program planning committees and encourage North American and Israeli staff members to collaborate as they work to make the summer fun, exciting, and creative for everyone.

Working together to create great activities and develop bonds is more important than ever this summer—Israeli and North American staff have been living in different realities in the months since the October 7 attacks.

Israeli Food 🌯

Get to know the tastes and smells of Israeli food at camp! Find a recipe to make in a cooking elective or give your camp chef some new ideas for fun and delicious themed meals. If you can stock the canteen with Israeli snacks, that’s another simple way to bring a taste of Israel.

Sharing People, Places, and Culture 🏞️

Bring the sights, history, and stories of Israel to camp through The iCenter’s Israel Resource Cards. This unique resource summarizes key Israeli moments, people, places. Download them, blow them up and hang in the dining hall, your unit’s meeting space, and around the bunks—they’re great conversation starters and additions to activities.

Make a Beit Cafe in the Staff Lounge ☕️

Whether it’s a fixture of the camp landscape all summer long or a special event one or two nights each session, an Israel-themed beit cafe (coffeehouse) lounge can be fun and meaningful. Gather a group of Israeli and North American staff members to set it up, create a snacks and drinks menu, and choose a playlist to set the mood. You can also encourage the planning group to create up a brief activity to encourage discussions and deepen connections between Israeli and North American staff.