Department Essential Questions:
How is Hebrew language connected to the culture and land of Israel?
How can language help you connect to a different people and place?
How does Hebrew language, Israel and its culture help develop your Jewish Identity?
“שני הדברים שבלעדיהם לא יהיו היהודים לעם: הארץ והלשון”
According to the Hebrew language reviver, Eliezer Ben Yehuda, as quoted above, two values help with the self actualization process of connecting the Jewish People with their nation; the land, and the language.
Additionally, we believe that the Hebrew language is a crucial vehicle for Judaism and Zionism. This philosophy has been incorporated into our Hebrew Department. Our objective is to educate students with advanced, practical, and usable skills of the language such as reading, writing, listening comprehension, and speaking. We also want our students to develop and foster a lifelong interest in the Hebrew language. To reach our objective we have based our curriculum on the NETA program, the Jerusalem examination class, and the Israeli Film and literature class.
NETA is an active, comprehensive, gradual linguistic and cognitive curriculum that meets students where they are and assists them to progress systematically through four Hebrew levels. The texts and tasks become longer and more complicated as the students’ Hebrew skills progress. All units involve themes focused geared to the interests of teenagers, such as friendship, computers, sports, leadership, freedom and more. The themes explore Jewish and Israeli culture from different historical eras, language layers, and technology.
9th: Hebrew Language (according to their level)
10th: Hebrew Language (according to their level)
11th: Hebrew Language (according to their level, Honors option)
12th: Conversational Hebrew (according to their level, Honors option) OR Hebrew Film and Literature (Honors)
The four levels are as follows:
Beginners (450 vocabulary words)
This track is for students with a minor knowledge in Hebrew. They will be able to converse, write, read and understand 5-6 sentence paragraphs about daily and personal topics.
High Beginners (1000 vocabulary words)
Students will be able to converse in 15 sentences, express opinions, ask questions and tell stories. They will also be able to write a 15 sentence paragraph in their own words.
Intermediate (1300 vocabulary words)
Students will be able to converse and write a 20 sentence paragraph and to understand essays as well as newspaper articles.
Advanced (2000 vocabulary words)
Students will be able to converse on every topic in 30 sentences, lecture on a theoretical topic, read and write composition as well as literature.
Honor Class - (11th and 12th grade):
Students who are proficient in the Hebrew language or Hebrew speakers can take this class. The required study material excerpts are from the Bible, Mishna, liturgy, medieval literature (philosophy and poetry) modern literature (prose and poetry), grammatical subjects, articles and composition writing.
Conversational Hebrew (12th grade):
In this class the students will be exposed to Israeli culture via conversations on modern, practical topics. As a class, we will focus on conversations you would be likely to have at the airport, grocery store or bank. Additionally, students will learn songs of past and present and will discuss current events in Israel and throughout the world by reading actual articles from Israeli news sources. Open to all 12th grade students.
Honors Hebrew Film and Literature – (12th grade):
In this class you will be exposed to Israeli culture, literature, and language via the screen. The class covers Israel from the following perspectives: demography, politics, daily life, people, the IDF, and actual historical events, with all of the discussions and the assignments in Hebrew. For each unit, a classic or new movie from the best selection of Israeli films will be shown. Students who elect the honors option will compose essays about topics regarding the films, and will be exposed to Israeli literature by reading and analyzing more material. The book we read is an Israeli book for teenagers about Jewish doctor and educator, Yanush Korchak, who managed an orphanage in Poland during the Holocaust. Prerequisite: Enrollment in Honors Hebrew in 11th grade.