— by Alisa Maze
We are all created in the image of G-d, and each have a responsibility to conduct our lives in a manner that reflects well on G-d. Parents, educators, camp staff need to set this example to the children in their lives.
Respect means choosing to do or say the right things in a specific situation. This may look a little different at home, at shul, at school or at summer camp, but nonetheless respect is commanded in all of these places.
We need to reinforce good manners by making a conscious effort to talk about how we relate to others. We can accomplish this by creating a list of behaviors that reflect this and then behaving in a way that we want our children to emulate.
One way schools and camps present an opportunity to respect differences is by mixing children up in classes, groups on class trips, and bunks where they may be with children they may not “like.” By mixing up groups, our children may find a common interest they did not know they had just by being together and having a learning activity together. Who know what new friendships and interests may be discovered?