By Daron Fong
The 2016 Instilling Goodness & Developing Virtue Boy’s Summer camp was packed with fun, creative, and educational activities for the kids, with focus on the core values of the school including kindness, the theme of this year’s camp. This year the boys school had about 75 students and counselors, with 36 dorm students and 18 counselors.
Our camp this year was organized to be more fun and enjoyable for the kids, with many core classes retained and some additional fun activities added in. The daily schedule would begin with Meditation & Storytelling taught by the storytelling guru Dharma Master Shun (or essentially Awesome Storytelling with Minimal Meditation), Calligraphy taught by the patient Jin Fo Shr, Group Board Games with 2013 alumnus Emory Jiang, Chinese taught by DVBS junior Michael Zhao, and both English and Arts and Crafts taught by veteran educator and strongwoman Miss Ackley.
This year, some new class additions included group activities led by recent graduate Aaron So, which replaced community service time much to the delight of the students. Additionally, a new smash hit with the kids was Vinyasa-style Yoga class taught by veteran counselor Riley Fong. Yoga was one of the new extracurricular classes, with Dragon Dance or 24-Season Drumming as the other options for the students.
As for weekend activities, the students were able to get outdoors and explore the City. The campers were taught first to take care of their living space by cleaning the dormitories, and then spent the rest of Saturday afternoon at Todd Grove Park for lunch and play sports such as capture the flag on the lawn. Sunday’s activities were action-packed, with a morning hike in the back mountain of CTTB led by Nakula Hertz, followed by the students’ favorite water games competition.
The water games competition was part of a scavenger hunt that the counselors organized, with the students aiming to uncover the identity of the mysterious person who had saved a man’s life in the swimming pools. To solve the mystery, the students attempted to earn points and clues at five different station games, all the while getting soaked and sprayed with water by overzealous counselors and their handy buckets of water and water balloons. Ultimately, the groups were able to discover that our savior in the (imaginary) story was Dharma Master Shun, who had actually run away quickly before being identified because he was rushing to get back to school for his Meditation class (he was already 5 minutes late). The games were a hit with the students in the blistering Sunday heat. And a lesson in our story was that sometimes true kindness need not be repaid with recognition.
All in all, the 2016 boys summer camp was marked with many educational moments, times of fun, bonds of new and old friendship, and training for both the students and counselors. The work of the volunteer teachers and counselors helped make this summer camp a blast, and we’re hoping that many of us can return next year to keep the tradition and excitement going!