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Click on Community Learning

Jewish Learning Opportunities... Just a Click Away!

Welcome to our On Line Catalogue for Adult Jewish Learning. Whether you are new to Jewish study or a seasoned learner -- this resource is for all adults who wish to sample the rich offerings of Jewish learning & culture within the Greater Rochester community.
 
All courses, lectures & events are open regardless of your affiliation.

Please be sure to check this site often as listings change & will be updated often!
  

Offered Classes and Events:

Literacy: Judaic and Hebrew

Foundations for Jewish Family Living

What are the Jewish values you want to share with your children?
A new class for parents who are raising young Jewish children
* Explore core Jewish values through Jewish holidays
* Feel more confident being the teacher to your children
* Think about parent issues from a Jewish perspective
* Send an important message to your child that learning is lifelong
* Create meaningful connections to PJ Library books and to the Shalom Sesame video series

Jewish Community Center of Greater Rochester, 1200 Edgewood Avenue, Rochester, NY, 14618
Two classes will be offered on two different days:
Wednesdays: 9:15 AM - 10:45 AM (ten sessions starting on October 22, 2014) - taught by Joy Getnick, PhD
Sundays: 9:45 AM - 11:15 AM (ten sessions starting on October 5) - taught by Rabbi Michael Silbert
For more information and/or to register, contact Jacqui Lipschitz at jlipschitz@jewishrochester.org or Joy Getnick at jgetnick@jccrochester.org.  Alternatively, call Jacqui Lipschitz on 585 241 8651 or Joy Getnick on 585 461 2000 Ext. 239
Fee: $100 per student which includes a student reader

Torah Study at Temple Sinai

Torah study is facilitated by the rabbis and is an open group that all are invited to attend and participate in. Texts are read in English and no knowledge of Hebrew is required in order to be an active participant. If you’ve never tried Torah study at Temple Sinai why not drop by one Saturday morning? New participants are always welcome. If you are a “regular” we look forward to seeing you!

Date: group meets most Saturday mornings
Time: 9:15-10:15 am
Location: Temple Sinai

Website: www.tsinai.org/learning/adults/ 

Exploring Our Prayer Book

An Introduction to Mishkan T'filah
Have you ever wondered why prayers occur in a specific order; why we bow, turn around, or stand on our toes during certain prayers; what the prayers mean and how we can relate to them? These, and may other, questions will be addressed in this first adult education mini-course of the new year, offered by Rabbi's Katz and Sapowith.  Join with fellow congregants and gain insight and become more comfortable with the prayer service.  No prior knowledge or Hebrew proficiency needed or assumed.
Temple Sinai, 363 Penfield Road, Rochester, NY, 14625
Sundays: 9:00 and 11:30 AM

Making Prayer Real

"Making Prayer Real" is a 20-session curriculum developed by Rabbi Mike Comins based on his book "Making Prayer Real: Why Prayer is Difficult and What to do About It" and offered by Rabbi Sapowith.  Rabbi Comins is known for his unique approach to Jewish spirituality and it connection to nature and was the guest rabbi for one of our Spirituality Retreats.  This course is designed for anyone who wishes they could pray but cannot, for those who want to explore and develop their own personal prayer style, and for those who are lookiing for new ways to pray.  No knowledge of Hebrew is necessary, and all that is required is an open mind and an open heart!
Temple Sinai, 363 Penfield Road, Rochester, NY, 14625
Saturdays: Beginning on October 12 and continuing on selected Saturday mornings thereafter
9:15 AM

Hebrew for Adults

Gain the ability to read, and begin to understand, the Hebrew prayers we recite in our services.  We offer classes for both Beginners and Intermediate students.  The class for beginners assumes no prior knowledge of Hebrew.  Although these classes began a few weeks ago, it is definitely not too late to join in! We will help those who join now to catch up quickly.  If interested, contact Dennis Goldsmith at dgoldsmith@rochester.rr.com
Temple Sinai, 363 Penfield Road, Rochester, NY, 14625
Sundays: 10:00 AM


 

Torah Study at Cong. Beth Hamedresh- Beth Israel


There is a monthly informal Torah Study group that meets and participants discuss their way sequentially through the Torah.  All levels of background are very welcome.  Members of the community are free to join at any time.  The formal name of this group is the "Small Conservative Shul Collaborative Joint Torah Study", and it is jointly sponsored by Cong. BHBI, Temple Beth Am, and Temple Beth David.

 

Date: Third Wednesday of each month

Time: 7:30 PM
Location: Cong. Beth Hamedresh - Beth Israel

Cost: No fee

Biblical and Rabbinic Hebrew Text Study
 
We will gather to read in Hebrew texts from our sages as they attempt to help us understand the weekly parsha - the weekly Torah reading.  This class will focus on
 
(1) Familiarization with the language structure of Bible, Talmud and Midrash
(2) Study of Hebrew roots, prefixes and suffixes
(3) Repetition of most commonly used vocabulary in the texts

Instructor:  Jan Katz
Date:   Wednesday mornings, ongoing
Time:   8:00 am – 9:00 am
Location:  The Summit at Brighton
Cost: $100 per 12-month year
Contact: Jan Katz at kivakatz@gmail.com for further details

Conversational Hebrew:  Intermediate

This course will offer the opportunity for class participants to choose topics for everyday life and carry on conversations in Hebrew with one another.  A topical glossary will be provided each week.  A portion of each class will be set aside for drills in verbs, nouns pronouns and adjectives, and other common grammar.  Feel free to come and try before signing up.

Instructor:  Jan Katz
Monday mornings
Time: 8:30 – 10:00 am
Location: The Summit at Brighton
Class is ongoing, 12 months
Participants may join at anytime

Please contact Jan Katz for questions at kivakatz@gmail.com

Cost: Participants will be asked to purchase a text.

Temple Emanu-El - Beginning Hebrew Reading

This course is intended both for folks who are learning to read ("decode") Hebrew from scratch and for those who want a refresher.  The course is open to anyone - you do not need to be a member of Temple Emanu-El.  Participants may join at any time; however, advance registration is required.  For more information and to register, please contact Leslie Schwartz, president of Temple Emanu-El, at 585-944-2361, schwartzljs@gmail.com
Leslie Schwartz
Fridays: October 25, 2013 onwards
9:00 - 10:00 AM
Fee: Participants will need to purchase the text, "The Hebrew Primer - Derech Binah" by Ruby G. Strauss, Ahuva Schuller, and Lillian W. Adler

Temple Emanu-El - Intermediate Hebrew Reading

This course is intended for those who can read Hebrew, but who wish to improve their speed and accuracy.  We use Temple Emanu-El's Reform Prayer Book," Mishkan Tefilah".  The course is open to anyone - you do not need to be a member of Temple Emanu-El.  Participants may join at any time; however, advance registration is required.  For more information and to register, please contact Leslie Schwartz, president of Temple Emanu-El, at 585-944-2361, or email schwartzljs@gmail.com.
Leslie Schwartz
Sundays: October 27, 2013 onwards
10:30 - 11:30 AM
Fee: None

Temple Emanu-El - Introduction to Biblical Hebrew

This course is intended for folks who can already read Hebrew and who want to know what it means.  The Hebrew we'll be studying is that found in prayer books and Torah.  While it is close to the Modern Hebrew spoken in Israel, there are signficant (and lovely) differences.  The course is open to anyone - you do not need to be a member of Temple Emanu-El.  Participants may join at any time; however, advance registration is required.  For more information and to register, please contact Leslie Schwartz, president of Temple Emanu-El, at 585-944-2361 or email schwartzljs@gmail.com.
Leslie Schwartz
Thursdays: October 24, 2013
7:00 - 8:00 PM
Fridays: October 25, 2013
10:30 - 11:30 AM
Fee: Participants will need to purchase the text, "The Hebrew Primer - The Adult Beginner's Path to Biblical Hebrew" by Ethelyn Simon, Irene Resnikoff, and Linda Motzkin.

Temple Emanu-El - Beginning Conversational Hebrew

This course is intended for folks who want to be able to converse in Hebrew.  The course will start "at the beginning". The course is open to anyone - you do not need to be a member of Temple Emanu-El.  Participants may join at any time; however, advance registration is required.  For more information and to register, please contact Leslie Schwartz, president of Temple Emanu-El, at 585-944-2361 or email schwartzljs@gmail.com.
Leslie Schwartz
Sundays: October 27, 2013 onwards
9:00 - 10:00 AM
Fee: None

Temple Emanu-El - Intermediate Conversational Hebrew

This course is intended for folks who have some experience in Hebrew conversation and who want to increase their fluency and vocabulary.  The course is open to anyone - you do not need to be a member of Temple Emanu-El.  Participants may join at any time; however, advance registration is required.  For more information and to register, please contact Leslie Schwartz, president of Temple Emanu-El, at 585-944-2361, or email schwartzljs@gmail.com.
Jacob Vinocour
Wednesdays: October 23, 2013 onwards
7:30 - 8:30 PM
Fee: None

One on One Study for Men

Study any Jewish subject you want with your own personal teacher or in a small group. From Hebrew reading to Talmud study or anything in between

Instructor: Rabbi Avi Mammon
Date: Every Monday and Wednesday evening, ongoing
Time: 7:30pm- 8:30pm
Location: Light of Israel, 1161 Monroe Avenue
Contact: Rabbi@conglightofisrael.org / 490-3147

One on One Study for Women

Study any Jewish subject you want with your own personal teacher or in a small group. From Hebrew reading to Talmud study or anything in between

Instructor: Rabbi Avi Mammon
Date: Every Tuesday evening, ongoing
Time: 8:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m.
Location: Light of Israel, 1161 Monroe Avenue
Contact: Miriammammon@gmail.com

Open Learning

Ohr Torah, Congregation Light of Israel
Monday through Thursday
7:15 - 9 PM
Contact: Rabbi Avi Mammon at
rabbi@conglightofisrael.org or call 585 490 3147

Hilchos Shabbos (Ladies' Class)

Rabbi Baruch Davidowitz
Ohr Torah, Congregation Light of Israel
Every other Sunday
8:30 - 9:30 PM
Contact Rabbi Avi Mammon at
rabbi@conglightofisrael.org or call 585 490 3147

Ladies' Classes

Mrs Sharon Polatoff
Ohr Torah, Congregation Light of Israel
Tuesdays: 9 - 10 PM
Contact Rabbi Avi Mammon at
rabbi@conglightofisrael.org or call 585 490 3147

Jewish Living (Co-sponsored with the Jewish Federation)

This course and inclusion program is designed for adults with special learning needs who want to continue to learn more about Judaism. Participants will be actively engaged in learning more about Jewish holidays, prayers, songs, rituals, Torah lessons, and Israel.  Class sessions also include crafts, baking projects, and guest presenters.  Participation in relevant Jewish community events is scheduled throughout the year.

Instructor: Elliot Fix
Time/ Date: Wednesdays: 7:00pm-8:15pm (weekly sessions from September through May)
Location: Temple B’rith Kodesh
Fee: Please contact Elliot Fix,
efix@rochester.rr.com


BOTH: The Hillel Community Day School Adult Learning Series

Come participate in a Torah discussion! A different community rabbi or Jewish educator will facilitate on the second Thursday of each month during the school year.  Coffee and tea will be served.  Speaker and topic to be announced.
Time: 08:00 AM - 09:00 AM
Place: Hillel Community Day School
       191 Fairfield Drive
       Rochester, NY, 14620
PH: 271-6877
Contact: Melissa Nunes-Harwitt,
melissanh@gmail.com

The Small Conservative Shul Collaborative Torah Study sessions have been occurring monthly for the past 4/5 years.  These sessions are a collaboration of Congregation Beth Hamedresh-Beth Israel, Temple Beth Am and Temple Beth David, and grew out of an initiative of the 3 congregations to support having lay Jews discuss and learn more about Torah portions.  The Torah study group meets on the 3rd Wednesday of each month at 7:30 PM at BHBI (1369 East Avenue, Rochester, NY, 14610) and they have an in-depth discussion of a Torah portion for about an hour. 

Beyond the Basics 2

Join Alice Nussbaum, popular educator in the Rochester Jewish community, for the second session of "Beyond the Basics 2", a cozy drop-in for adults to learn about Jewish holidays and values in an intimate setting.  Parents and grandparents: become Jewish role models!

 High Holiday Learning with Rabbi Adam Aranov

Rosh Hashanah: Don't be a tail
Being the head takes courage and responsibility, while the tail sits back and lets the opportunities of life slip by.  Come join us for a conversation about the deeper messages of Rosh Hashanah.
Conference Room at the JCC, 1200 Edgewood Avenue, Rochester, NY, 14618
Thursday, September 18, 7 - 8 PM
Fee: Free

Yom Kippur: The FAST Lane
"My eyes saw the sin, my hands did the sin, my legs took me to the sin, but what did my stomach do?" Discover why the holiest day of the year requires fasting, and what this has to do with repentance.
Conference Room at the JCC, 1200 Edgewood Avenue, Rochester, NY, 14618
Thursday, October 2, 7 - 8 PM
Fee: Free

Sukkot: Little Sukkah on the Prairie
Learn how the holiday of Sukkot teaches us to be happy, no matter what we may seem to be lacking.
Conference Room at the JCC, 1200 Edgewood Avenue, Rochester, NY, 14618
Tuesday, October 7, 7 - 8 PM
Fee: Free

Yiddish and Yiddishkeit: Language, Literature and Culture

Deborah Rothman
Yiddish Cultural Center at the JCC, 1200 Edgewood Avenue, Rochester, NY, 14618
Nine-week sessions begin Tuesday, October 7 or Wednesday, October 8 (no class October 21 - 22, and November 25 - 26)
Tuesdays: Beginner 10:15 - 11:30 AM
          Intensive 11:30 AM - 12:30 PM
Discover the world of Yiddish in our beginner class geared toward students with little or no background.  Learn to read, carry on a basic conversation, and explore the history and culture of this expressive language.  Then, consider staying for the second hour which will focus on the development of language skills - speaking, listening, reading, and writing - at an accelerated pace.
Fee: Member - $90 per session/ Non-member - $120 per session

Wednesdays: Intermediate and Advanced 10:30 AM - 12:30 PM
This class continues to build on skills gained in previous classes.  Students will also work on textbook exercises and reading assignments, both in Yiddish and in translation.  Sign up for the year! Sign up for all three sessions - fall, winter, and spring and receive a discount.
Fee: Member - $85 per session/$255 per year
     Non-member - $110 per session/$330 per year
For more information about Jewish Life and Learning programs, contact Joy Getnick at ext. 239 or jgetnick@jccrochester.org

Jewish Culture, History and Ethics

Halachah in a Reform Context or “Who Made You the Boss of Me?”

“One of my partners is a Modern Orthodox Jew.  At my office, we have a microwave oven which we all share.  Before he warms anything up in it, he puts a cup of water in the oven and lets it boil for a few minutes.  When I asked him why he did this he explained that it is the halachically proper way to kosher a microwave oven.  Now, since I didn’t want to be disrespectful I didn’t share my thoughts with him but, I am pretty sure that no rabbi who gave opinions in the Talmud – which forms the basis of most halachic rulings and was written between 200 CE and 500 CE -- even conceived of the notion of microwave ovens, much less thought about how to kosher one!  So how can this reflect halachah?” 

The Adult Learning specialists at the Union for Reform Judaism, in consultation with Rabbi Mark Washofsky, PhD, have developed a series of interactive lessons which focus on understanding how Reform Halachah works, and why we should care about it.  By examining and discussing various case studies addressing issues such as the ethics of nuclear war, to the disclosure of personal medical information, to whether a convert whose non-Jewish parent asks the child not to recite kaddish for him exempts the child from performing this mitzvah, you will gain a deeper understanding of – and perhaps respect for – the tenets of Reform Halachah.

Instructors: Rabbi Amy Sapowith and congregant Gil Maker
Location: Temple Sinai
Date(s): Sunday mornings, beginning in February
Time: 9:00 – 11:00  or 11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m
Contact: Temple Sinai 381-6890

 "The Story of the Jews" with Simon Schama: A Brown Bag Film Series

Bring a brown bag lunch and join us for a screening of "The Story of the Jews", a five-part look at 3,000 years of Jewish history, culture, and identity, produced by PBS.  The series is written and presented by Simon Schama, an Emmy Award winning Professor of Art History and History at Columbia University.
Conference Room at the JCC, 1200 Edgewood Avenue, Rochester, NY, 14618
Mondays: September 29 - October 27, 12 - 1 PM
Fee: Free

The History of the Jews and Hollywood: A Film Series with Howard Golove

Join us for two films on the history of Jews and Hollywood.  A box lunch is provided. 
Conference Room at the JCC, 1200 Edgewood Avenue, Rochester, NY, 14618
Thursdays: October 23 and 30, 12 - 2 PM
October 23 - "Hollywood: An Empire of Their Own" (100 minutes)
October 30 - "Imaginary Witness: Hollywood and the Holocaust"(92 minutes)
Fee: Member - $7 per program
     Non-member - $10 per program
Registration is required

Interfaith Studies 

Holocaust Studies