Summer Camp Helping Teens Find Balance

By Dafna Laskin

So they don’t miss out on all the opportunities that life offers

We try so hard to teach our kids to take initiative and develop a strong work ethic, to keep going, and to do everything they can do to reach their goals. We show them good study habits, teach them how to be organized, and tell them repeatedly that it takes a lot of hard work to achieve their dreams.

But how often do we talk about balance? We’re so busy making sure they understand how they need to work in the real world, that we probably don’t spend enough time showing them how to live in it. We may worry that they’ll sleep or play video games all day when they get to college, but we should be just as worried that they might work too hard or study too much. Beyond the obvious risk of burnout, we also don’t want our kids to miss out on the things in life that make the hard work worthwhile.

Discover balance in the week

During the school year teens go from five hectic days of classes, homework, practice or rehearsals into a weekend of sports competitions, part-time jobs, studying, and socializing, without much of a break before they start all over again. Making time to observe Shabbat—making one day different—can create the mental, spiritual, and physical balance teens need to get ready for the week ahead. At Tel Yehudah, Shabbat is a time where we unplug to create a special atmosphere where we can focus on ourselves and each other.

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Discover balance in variety

It’s a joy to see our teens focused on and inspired by a single goal—a sport, a subject, a club, or a college they have their hearts set on. However, we need to make sure they aren’t too premature or myopic in their pursuits, because we also want our teens to be well-balanced adults. Whether it’s because that soccer career may not pan out or that school may not say yes, or because it may be too early for them to really know what they want, when we expose them to other activities they may discover new interests, passions, and skills they didn’t know about, and entire new worlds of possibilities.

Discover balance together

In their classes, clubs, and teams, teenagers are often surrounded by kids who are just as driven as they are. They feed off of and support each other as they all strive for success. So just imagine how great it is for them to be surrounded by other teens who are working as hard as they are to find balance? Tel Yehudah offers the opportunity for them to live, eat, playpray, create, and explore 24/7 in a community with other teens where they will work together to find the many types of balance life has for them.

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