The Yad b'Yad School in Jerusalem has the look of most Israeli public schools. A little bit frayed around the edges, overcrowded, and noisy. Looking around at the furniture and the classroom accoutrements, the school, like most, lacks anything that might typically be called state of the art. But Yad B'Yad is not typical Israeli anything. Yad B'Yad brings together thousands of Jewish and Arab kids in six schools and communities throughout Israel, including this one we visited
After a great night in our first class hotel, we headed outside the old city to get a scenic view of the Temple Mount. Then we headed to Yad B'Yad, a school dedicated to connecting Israeli and Palestinian students by putting ten of each in every class. We toured the school and met the students that go there and in the process, learned a valuable lesson of coexistence. After spending lunch in a Jerusalem market, we went to Yad Vashem. The museum, along with our tour guide Noam
We started off the morning with a lot of hugging and crying, saying farewell to our Haifa friends. Then the Puzzle team picked us up and we headed south to Tel Aviv. We arrived and our tour companion Noam gave us a brief overview of Israel, as we sat and picnicked with some pizza. We then continued into Independence Hall, greeted by a lovely tour guide. She explained the history of how Israel came to be, with many great details keeping us interested. After a coffee stop at on
We started the day going to the Alon School that we partner with and meeting the 5th grade students. We did an art project together about how to make a giving community. Their English was amazing and we had so much fun together. We brought them Valentine's candy and they loved it.
Then we toured the German colony in Haifa. Although the tour guide wasn't very exciting we saw lots of beautiful sights. We went to theGrand Canyon mall together and had a lot of fun seeing the d
Today, we had free time with our host families for most of the day. We all did different things for the day, but I visited the ancient City of Acre (or Akko). With the Enbal's, we arrived in the mid-morning and wandered throughout the streets and local market, with a combination of Arab and Jewish merchants. The waterfront gave us an amazing view of the Bay of Haifa, allowing us to see Haifa from afar. We then took a tour of the buried city founded by crusaders hundreds of ye
Everyone had an amazing first full day full of beautiful views, long hikes and lots of fun. Our morning started when we all woke up to breakfast at our host family's houses. From there we met again at the Alliance school for a tour and team building activities. After, a bus picked us up and brought us to Tzipori where a guide taught us about how the ancient city had been occupied by all kinds of different people who contributed to the architecture and art of
As the bus pulled in at Terminal E of Logan Airport, most had not yet settled on the fact that they were on their way to the Holy Land. We stood in line to be interrogated and get bags checked, and then passed through security and sat down at the Vineyard Grille for dinner. Afterwards, we boarded our flight, and after rearranging out seats, we prepared for the ten hour flight. As the plane accelerated down the runway, we all looked at each other with excitement and felt the s
Today we sent our Israel travelers on their way! Our late session of grades 3-5 heard about the trip from them, found out what year they would be going in 10th grade, and blessed them before they got on the bus to go to the airport. Here are some thoughts from our 5th graders… Are you excited to go on this trip when you are in 10th grade? Of course I am excited to go to Israel, why would I not be? What are you most looking forward to when you go on the trip? I really want to
Need we say more? For our Grade 10 teens tomorrow can't come fast enough! The group will be heading to the airport late in the afternoon. We will update the blog at that time with a photo and new post.
I hate packing, especially for a long time away. All of those stupid little decisions: how much stuff should I bring? What if it gets cold? Do I pack flat or roll everything? Will they be tough at the counter and weigh my bag? What if my bag is too heavy? I'll need to do laundry at some point; but where? Laundromat or bundle service? And then all the electronics and the chargers... it's insane! But as much as I detest packing, there's something special about packing for Israe