North Suburban Synagogue Beth El
Academics

Academics

Great classes from which to choose! 

Our Sunday hours are 11:15 a.m. – 1:15 p.m.

  • 11:15 a.m. – 12:10 p.m. – First-Hour Classes
  • 12:20 p.m. –  1:15 p.m. –  Second-Hour Classes

We offer different options for our 8th through 11th graders.  Click on the link below for the class descriptions.

The Global Jewish Project

11:15 a.m.  – 12:15 p.m.
Teacher:  Tovah Goodman

Sunday, September 17
We had our first stop in Turkey. We took a visual tour of Istanbul, learned about the immigration waves into Turkey and took a look at the current political and social climate. To top off our journey we had a personal encounter with a young woman from west Turkey who now lives in Jerusalem. We had the opportunity to hear her story and ask her questions. It was a fantastic class!

Sunday, September 10
We explored how Judaism looks in a world view by seeing which countries have the highest Jewish population and what Jewish immigration patterns look like today. We started by looking at our own family history and where we come from as we are moving into other personal accounts from all over the world.

Challenges and Successes Facing Israel Today, and How You Can Help

12:20  – 1:15 p.m.
Teachers:  Lori Feldstein (from Israel) and Tovah Goodman

Sunday, September 17
This week we moved from the ancient Biblical story of the Miraglim (spies) to look at what Modern Miraglim are saying about Israel.  We focused on UN allegations brought against Israel and the responses of Modern Yehoshua’s and Calev’s who defend Israel and present her in a positive light on the world stage.  This included a former Muslim who was heavily influenced by Alan Dershowitz and now teaches for Prager University.  Students were asked to consider the motivations/ characteristics of today’s spies through the lens of the actions of the Biblical spies.  Class ended with students being asked to research what it means for Israel to be a “light Unto the Nations” as that is where we will begin our next class.

Sunday, September 10
We began the semester by looking back almost 3500 years to explore the story of the Miraglim, or the spies who Moshe sent to scout out the Land of Israel.  We then fast-forwarded to begin looking at the challenges Israel faces from those who report and speak about the Modern State of Israel.

Conversational Hebrew

12:20  – 1:15 p.m.
Teacher:  Silvi Freedson

Sunday, September 10
The students introduced themselves in Hebrew and asked their peers introductory questions. Then we continued by reading a very short article in Hebrew about medical clowns. The students worked in groups to identify the nouns and verbs in the article. Answered guiding questions. We worked on verbs (PAAl) by conjugating them by present tense and the students were asked to show what are the patterns they see. All did a great job by indicating the patterns. We finished by me asking them what kind of activities they would like to have in order to enhance their Hebrew learning.

Podcast: “Unorthodox”

11:15 a.m.  – 12:15 p.m.
Teacher:  Rachel Kamin

Each week we’ll listen to segments of Tablet Magazine’s podcast “Unorthodox.” We’ll discuss the news of the Jews and learn more about the interesting guests, books, films, and projects featured on each episode. The Jews of Ireland, South African Israeli comfort food, Rabbi Akiva’s life and legacy, whether we can joke about the Holocaust, the New York vs. Montreal bagel war, Academy Award predictions, and more have all been covered on this smart, fresh, fun take on Jewish news and culture. Join us to listen and learn!

“WWII & the Holocaust”

11:15 a.m.  – 12:15 p.m.
Teacher:  Dr. Robert Bernat

This class will focus upon the Second World War and the Holocaust.  It will examine the origins of the War reaching back to 1914, events and progress of the conflict focusing largely upon the European Theater of Operations between 1939 and 1945, as well as prosecution of a key strategic goal of the Reich, the elimination of European Jewry.  Integral to the class will be an examination of the National Socialist German Workers Party, Nazi anti-Semitism, various individuals within the Nazi hierarchy, the lives of common individuals within the Reich and conquered territories, and the Holocaust from the English Channel through the Soviet Union.  Students will be introduced to many of the political events, personalities, strategies, key battles, equipment and outcomes of the War.  Period photographs, period video and modern recreated film clips shall be included.  It is expected that students will develop a basic appreciation of the issues attendant to the most significant conflict in human history, including the principles of National Socialism, the effects of Nazi policies upon the Jewish population of Europe, and the consequences of the War that remain with us today.

“Mix-Tape, Jewish Style”

​12:20  – 1:15 p.m.
Teachers:  Hazzan Barbara Barnett and Tovah Goodman

Freedom, peace and our natural environment are compelling and sometimes controversial topics. They are also significant Jewish values, influenced and inspired by sages, artists, songwriters and poets. Now it’s the students’ chance.

After studying classical sources from Torah and Talmud, as well as songwriters like Bob Dylan and artists like Marc Chagall, students will have the opportunity to present their own take on these Jewish values through creating their own songs, poems, stories or visual art pieces.

Conversational Hebrew

12:20  – 1:15 p.m.
Teacher:  Silvi Freedson

Sunday, September 10
The students introduced themselves in Hebrew and asked their peers introductory questions. Then we continued by reading a very short article in Hebrew about medical clowns. The students worked in groups to identify the nouns and verbs in the article. Answered guiding questions. We worked on verbs (PAAl) by conjugating them by present tense and the students were asked to show what are the patterns they see. All did a great job by indicating the patterns. We finished by me asking them what kind of activities they would like to have in order to enhance their Hebrew learning.

For those students – Grades 8 through 11 – who can not attend SHHS on Sundays.

​The class will be led by Chuck Kahalnik.

​Course content will include: current events; various definitions of poverty, as well as Jewish laws on poverty; the budget game; Jews in the movies; Jewish ethics, and how to make those tough decisions;  the JCC Film Festival; Anti-Semitism in today’s world, and Jewish restaurants.

First Semester

Classes will be:

  • Sept. 13, 27
  • Oct. 18, 25
  • Nov. 1, 8, 15, 29
  • Dec. 6, 13
  • Jan. 3, 10

Second Semester

Classes will be:

  • Jan. 24, 31
  • Feb. 7, 14, 21, 28
  • Mar. 7, 14, 21, 28
  • Apr. 11, 18, 25

We are very excited to offer our students who graduated from SHHS last year ten special College Bound classes to prepare them for life after high school.  Our College Bound classes are open to both SHHS and non-SHHS graduates, so if you know of anyone who may be interested, please feel free to invite them to join us!

Life Decisions

Teacher:  Hazzan Ben Tisser

Dates (2018):

  • January 7, 21, 28,
  • February 4, 11,
  • March 11, 18, 25,
  • April 15 and 22

Time: 11:15 a.m. to 12:10 p.m.

At every stage of life we encounter new and unexpected situations. Sometimes we know how to react, but often we struggle to find the proper response, particularly as we transition from high school. In a new-found independence after high school, we find ourselves having many new experiences; our Jewish tradition has much to offer in terms of guiding us through these. Hazzan Ben Tisser will offer very real-life situations, and students will have the opportunity to learn, discuss, and debate what our tradition has to say.

NEW FOR THE 2017-2018 SCHOOL YEAR!!!

Here’s a opportunity for parents, grandparents, friends, and relatives to learn more about the Jewish culture as taught in the schools here at NSSBE.

For more information on these adult classes, which will begin this fall, please click on the links below.

​Melton Core Curriculum: The Ethics of Jewish Living

SUNDAYS, 9:15 a.m. – 10:15 a.m.
Teacher: Ali Drumm

How do Jewish teachings shed light on contemporary issues such as the environment, interpersonal relationships, end-of-life decisions, and stem-cell research? This course explores the wisdom of ancient and modern rabbis, scholars and thinkers, offering multiple Jewish approaches to conducting our lives in the communal and private spheres. New students
are welcome!

Tuition, including Sourcebook:

  • $100 for NSSBE members
  • $240 for Melton Consortium members
  • $340 for non-Consortium members

To register for Melton classes at NSS Beth El, contact Rolly Cohen at 847-291-7788 (ext. 1304) or rolly@bjechicago.org.