Jewish Gems Cards

Tips and Tricks

1. Presentation

On the first day of Camp/Hebrew School, introduce the card system. Show the kids a full album (don't let them take too close of a look, you want them curious!). They are these awesome cards about all sorts of exciting Jewish topics, like Kosher (pizza), and Chanukah (gelt), and bedtime (yay!). Explain that each kid will be able to earn these cards (all of these cards!) - and an album throughout the summer/year). Use lots of animated adjectives (gorgeous, magnificent, state of the art computer illustrated, Made in the U.S.A. etc.) - this gets the kids psyched about this cool collection.

2. Implementation

After such a beautiful presentation (well done!), the kids will be clamoring to know, how do I get a card? Simple. All you need to do is... behave, participate, be involved, do something supercalifragilisticexpialidocious (pronounced soo-per-kal-uh-fraj-uh-lis-tik-ek-spee-al-i-doh-shuhs), or just be awesome.

Now, It's not so simple to get a card. You see, you might have behaved well, but perhaps you could have behaved even better. Or sometimes, there might simply be one or two cards to give out, and your friend might have given it a better effort (note: kids should be rewarded based on what you can expect from that individual child. If s/he gave it his/her 100% percent, and another kid behaved better, but only 90% of their ability, kid 1 wins.) So you really want to make sure that you are on top of your game, to ensure that you are able to earn all the cards!

3. Tips and Tricks

• Don't make all the cards available right away. Decide when each card will be released.

• Designate certain cards to be "rare cards". Have the kids think that there are only two or three of card #7 (or whichever one you choose), because the graphics were so hard to print, or because they got lost in the UPS warehouse, or because it's a special edition by the artist. The kids will do anything to earn these cards. (Of course, after some time, this card will become just another card, and be replaced by another, new "rare card". Conversely, the "easy cards" from week #1, are super hard to come by later, as you phase them out (until you're almost at the end, at which point all the cards enter/return to the game).

• Start off with the cards being more exclusive, where it's harder to get a card, with only a few cards being given out to the bunk/class. This establishes the value of the cards. Only the kids that really earn them and deserve them, get them. As time goes on, it becomes easier to get cards.

• Don't let the kids choose which card they get (unless you decided to allow them that privilege, maybe because they were the absolute best). If they get a "double", let them hold on to it and trade with their friends. "I'm not a bank".

• If it's a short camp, or you see that the kids still have many cards to earn (or if a kid is getting into it late in the game), you can introduce a new way of earning cards: Learn the information on the back of two cards, get tested on it, and earn a third card. (Some children have memorized the content of all 40 cards!).

• Albums can be given out as a prize. If you'd like to do this, get some plastic card holders until they receive their album. Click here for a card holder - up to 15 cards.

• Synchronize your lessons with the cards' themes for added effect.

• Decide whether you want the album going home each time or staying on premises.