Class Offerings and Descriptions

Class Offerings and Descriptions

The Gertrude Lederman Family Continuing Education courses at North Suburban Synagogue Beth El offer a wonderful chance to deepen your understanding of Jewish thought, culture, and identity. This program is made possible through the generous gift of the estate of Gertrude Lederman. The value she placed on Jewish education became the cornerstone of her legacy of lifelong learning in our congregation.

Contact Rachel Kamin, Director of Lifelong Learning, for more information about adult education and Marcie Eskin, Education Coordinator, for registration and other class-related information. Note: Because the cost of tuition should never be a barrier to participation in our NSS Beth El classes, we do offer financial assistance. Please contact Marcie Eskin for scholarship information.

Summer Quarter Courses 2022

Unless noted otherwise, the fee for Continuing Education courses is $60 per quarter for NSS Beth El members and $125 per quarter for guests. Payment for one course includes any additional classes during the same quarter (including Hebrew) at no additional charge. Register for Summer 2022 classes.

Summer Stories
Rachel Kamin
Mondays, 1:00 -2:00 pm in-person and/or 8:00-9:00 pm on Zoom, July 11, 18 & 25 2022 (3 sessions)
In Burning Girls and Other Stories, Veronica Schanoes crosses borders and genres with stories of fierce women at the margins of society burning their way toward the center. Fairy tales are reimagined, repurposed, and remixed, drawing deeply from leftist, labor, women’s, and Jewish history, as well as folklore and pop culture. Join us to discuss these imaginative and explosive stories. Class will meet in-person and/or on Zoom. Quarter Fee: Summer (includes a paperback copy of Burning Girls)

Breaking Jewish News & Views: Special Summer Edition
Carl Schrag
Wednesdays, 6:15 – 7:30 pm, July 20 & 27 and August 3, 2022 (3 sessions)
This special summer edition of our popular discussion-based class zooms in on local, national, and global news through a distinctly Jewish lens. We’ll talk about politics, Israel, anti-Semitism, anti-Zionism, rifts in our Jewish community, local and global Jewish affairs, campus life, and the intersection between these topics and more. Carl Schrag, who was the Editor of The Jerusalem Post, brings a journalist’s probing questions to every topic. Class will meet on Zoom. FREE

What’s in a Name? Jewish Onomastic Practices in Graeco-Roman Antiquity
Ana Igornov
Thursdays, 8:00-9:00 pm, July 14, 21 & 28, 2022 (3 sessions)
Jewish inscriptions inform us about a number of aspects of Jewish life in antiquity: mobility, professions and occupations that Jews were engaged in, cultural interactions and many others. One of the areas of research that benefits enormously from Jewish epigraphy is that of Onomastics or the study of names. What kind of names were popular among Jews of the Diaspora? Did they use nicknames? What can their names tell us? Let us review this topic about which ancient Jewish inscriptions speak to us. Class will meet on Zoom. Quarter Fee: Summer

Sisterhood Torah Fund Book Club facilitated by Rachel Kamin
The Beauty Queen of Jerusalem
Tuesday, June 14, 6:00 pm

Revisit this 2016 book club selection by Sarit Yishai-Levi and watch the television adaptation on Netflix. Join us for an in-person discussion of the book and the show, along with Israeli inspired refreshments to celebrate the end of another wonderful book club season. RSVP to 

The 2022-2023 Book Club season will begin on Saturday, September 10, after Shabbat Kiddush.

The Sisterhood Torah Fund Book Club is open to ALL STUDENTS. You do not need to be a member of Sisterhood to participate. Participants are encouraged to make a minimum annual donation of $54 to attend. The Sisterhood of NSS Beth El has a long history of supporting the Conservative/Masorti Movement’s Torah Fund through the sponsorship of an impressive array of annual classes, led by our clergy and talented staff and volunteers. Go to for more information on how to make your donation.

Writer’s Beit Midrash
Wednesdays, 9:30 am, June 15 & 29; July 13 & 27; and August 10 & 24, 2022

All fiction, non-fiction, poetry, memoir, and essay writers (published or not yet published) are welcome for discussions, exercises, camaraderie, and critique every other Wednesday morning.
Class will meet in person. FREE

Hebrew Language

Café Ivrit: Intermediate Conversational Hebrew
Silvi Freedson
Tuesdays, 6:00-7:30 pm, July 12 – August 9, 2022 (5 sessions)
This Intermediate level course will help you improve your conversational and reading skills. Class will meet on Zoom. Quarter Fee: Summer

Sicha Ivrit: Advanced Conversational Hebrew
Silvi Freedson
Thursdays, 6:00-7:30 pm, July 14 – August 11, 2022 (5 sessions)
Join this Advanced level course to study Israeli literature and culture in Hebrew. Class will meet on Zoom. Quarter Fee: Summer

Open Conversational Hebrew
Sundays, 9:30-11:00 am
Practice Hebrew conversation informally with other participants. For information, contact Judy Farby at or 847-372-1700. Class will meet on Zoom. FREE

Special Programs & Events

Stay tuned for upcoming programs.