Read Hebrew America and Canada
Every Fall, tens of thousands of Jewish adults gather in hundreds of locations across North America to learn to read Hebrew — the language of our people! READ HEBREW AMERICA is the ideal way to learn how to follow synagogue services, to be more involved in your children’s Jewish education, or simply to enhance your own ties to Judaism. These five FREE hour and a half lessons are available for beginners and intermediates
About Read Hebrew America and Canada
1. What Is Read Hebrew America/Canada?
- READ HEBREW AMERICA and CANADA (RHA/C) is NJOP’s mega Hebrew literacy campaign to win back the hearts of North American Jews. The Annual RHA/C will take place starting in mid-October until Chanukah, with a focus on the month of November. RHA/C invites tens-of-thousands of Jewish adults into synagogues and Jewish centers throughout the United States and Canada to foster Jewish identity and create awareness about the importance of Hebrew literacy. Read Hebrew America and Canada programs include: the Hebrew Reading Crash Courses Level I and II, the One Day Review, and the Hebrew Writing Crash Course.
2. How Is The Hebrew Reading Class Scheduled?
- The Hebrew Reading Crash Course Level I and Level II can both run over a period of 5 weeks. Each of the five classes is an hour-and-a-half long and is held on the same day and time each week.
3. What Is The Cost?
- FREE! The National Jewish Outreach Program is proud to be able to present this program at no cost to the students or the synagogues/Jewish centers. If you are asked for money at any of our registered locations, please let NJOP know immediately.
4. How Do I Register?
- Find and register for a class online here or call 1-800-44-HEBRE(W).
5. Who Can Participate In RHA/C?
- Read Hebrew America/Canada is a Hebrew literacy campaign for Jewish adults. The program is intended for members of the Jewish faith. We limit our courses to Jews so that we do not misrepresent our mission and our activities when we fund-raise. The courses of the National Jewish Outreach Program were designed for adults. Young adults may attend with an adult, but please check with the instructor first.
6. Will I Learn To Speak Hebrew?
- The Hebrew Reading Crash Courses are designed to teach students the fundamentals of reading Hebrew. If you are interested in learning how to speak Hebrew, we recommend that you contact a local ULPAN organization.
- ULPAN-New York City at JCC: 212-580-0099 www.jccnyc.org
- 92nd St. Y 212-427-6000 www.92ndsty.org
- Central Queens Y 718-268-5011 members.aol.com/cqueensy/index/htm
- ULPAN-New Jersey 201-488-6800 www.jewishbergen.org
- ULPAN-Baltimore Hebrew University 410-578-6902, 888-248-7420 x 6902
- ULPAN – LA University of Judaism 310-476-9777 x 246
7. Will I Be Learning Biblical Or Modern Hebrew?
- The Hebrew Reading Crash Courses introduce students to plain Hebrew with the phonetics used in Israel today. The lessons are based on the Hebrew found in the Jewish prayerbook.
8. When Will The Class Be Offered Again?
- Since the Hebrew Reading Crash Courses can be, and are, run throughout the year, your local synagogue may offer the class again. However, since NJOP has inaugurated November as Jewish Literacy Month, and since there is special advertising during the Read Hebrew America and Canada campaign, most synagogues choose to run the program in the fall. If there is no possible way for you to participate in the program at the current time, please check back with NJOP throughout the year to see if another location in your area is running the course.
9. If I Miss A Class, Can I Still Attend?
- Because of the brevity of the course, we strongly suggest not missing any of the classes. If you have missed the first class, please contact the instructor to see if he/she will mind your joining the class late.
10. What If The Class Is Too Fast Or I Need More Time?
- NJOP recognizes that everyone learns at their own speed. The class has been designed for students who have no background knowledge of the Hebrew alphabet. However, it does sometimes happen that a class will be made up of a majority of students who have some experience and hurry the class along. Please don’t be intimidated. Speak to the teacher privately, and remember, reviewing at home is critical.
- If, however, you feel that you are still unfamiliar with the Hebrew words, please feel free to take the class again, for free, as often as you find necessary.
- NJOP’s Twebrew School blog is an excellent review tool which can be used to supplement your Hebrew lessons.
11. I Can’t Get To A Class, Can I Do It At Home?
- NJOP Strongly recommends participating in a class rather than studying by one’s self. Students who learn with a class have a much better rate of retention and benefit from hearing the instructor’s pronunciation.
- Unfortunately, not everyone lives in a city with a registered location. Due to the structure of our fund-raising, however, we are unable to give the materials to independent students for free (only to registered classes). If you are interested in learning to read Hebrew, we suggest purchasing one of the following from NJOP:
- Reishith Binah Hebrew Primer* ($5) The Reishith Binah Hebrew primer used in the Hebrew Reading Crash Course is available for purchase. We recommend that you buy it in conjunction with the:
- Hebrew Reading Crash Course Read-along Tape ($7) Learning to read Hebrew without hearing the language is extremely difficult. This read-along tape will facilitate correct pronunciation.
- NJOP has also created a new Hebrew initiative for the Twitter generation: Twitter + Hebrew = Twebrew School! With bite-sized (just over Twitter’s 140 character limit) lessons about each Hebrew letter and short YouTube videos with a real Hebrew School teacher, you can learn how to read Hebrew at your own comfortable pace. A great refresher for Hebrew Reading Crash Course Graduates and new students alike! You can access this material here. The instructional videos correspond with the lessons in the Reishith Binah Hebrew primer.
* The Reishith Binah is also available in: Russian and Spanish
Click here if you are interested in attending a program or class.