Academics
Curriculum

Hebrew

Department: Hebrew

Driven by the belief that mastery of Hebrew promotes students’ understanding of their history, excites them about lifelong Jewish learning, and cultivates strong ties with Israel, the Bishvil Ha-Ivrit Program is an essential component of a Milken education. The Bishvil Ha-Ivrit Program creates a community of Hebrew speakers who can participate in a casual conversation or sophisticated discussion, enjoy a lecture, read a book, or write a letter or an essay. Bishvil Ha-Ivrit provides learners with many opportunities to develop language skills via the exploration of socially relevant themes, resources, and learning experiences. The program introduces students to Hebrew from all historical periods – biblical to modern – by making use of conversations, songs, articles, poetry, and more. As students gradually develop their Hebrew language proficiency and feel at home with the language, they become aware of diverse viewpoints on daily life in Israel, Jewish tradition, and history.

Beyond our Jewish Studies curriculum, students are enrolled in either a Hebrew language course or a J-CIV (Jewish culture, identity & values) class each semester that provides students with insight into Jewish history, identity, and peoplehood.

Course Listings

List of 17 items.

  • Hebrew Ulpan & Hebrew 1-4 (Grades 6-8)

    Our Hebrew program is designed to meet the needs of our diverse students. In Grades 6, 7 and 8, we offer 5 levels of Hebrew for students to explore: Hebrew Ulpan, Hebrew 1, Hebrew 2, Hebrew 3, and Hebrew 4.
    In each class, students will:
    • acquire an appreciation of Hebrew language, literature, and culture. • engage in and practice all 5 language skills: listening, speaking, reading, writing and conversing.
    • acquire practical vocabulary and basic grammatical structures. • understand the main idea in texts and presentations on topics of personal and general interest.
  • A History of the Jewish People (Grade 9 or 10 J-CIV)

    Students explore the history of Jews and Judaism—as a people, culture and religion. Students develop a lens for shaping their own identity and decision making. Students explore Jewish life from the biblical period to the present, examining how Jews have defined themselves socially and politically in differing historical and geographical settings; how Jewish belief and practice have been shaped and transformed; and how Jews have interacted with and responded to the societies in which they have lived. Note: This course is designed for students with prior Jewish day school experience or who have completed the above Jewish Life course.
  • Foundations of Hebrew (Ulpan - Upper School)

    This course is intended for students who have not studied Hebrew before or who have not mastered the following in whole or in part: reading in Hebrew (decoding of words), writing in Hebrew, and/or 150 basic Hebrew vocabulary words. Upon completion of this level, most students will be able to listen, read with comprehension, and write and speak with emerging fluency and accuracy about the topics below using the vocabulary, syntax, and morphology learned. Topics include: basic biographical information; daily activities and preferences; familiar objects from the immediate environment; and locations in Israel. ACTFL Proficiency: Novice-Low Level.
  • Hebrew 1 (Upper School)

    Students engage in all 5 language skills: listening, speaking, reading, writing and conversing. Students read and comprehend short texts, understand audio information, converse in basic Hebrew, and express coherent ideas both orally and in written compositions. Topics relate to basic personal information; self and family, daily activities and personal preferences, and some immediate needs, such as ordering food and making simple purchases.
  • Hebrew 2 (Upper School)

    Students participate in conversations about familiar topics using simple sentences, handle short social interactions in everyday situations by asking and answering simple questions, present information orally and in writing on familiar topics using a series of simple sentences, and understand the main idea of short texts or presentations on familiar topics.
  • Hebrew 3 (College Prep and Honors)

    Students participate in conversations, present basic information on topics using language that has been practiced, write short passages on topics related to everyday life, and read passages for the main idea. Students increase proficiency in conversing, speaking, listening, and reading and writing Hebrew and work with increasingly complex concepts. Students study grammatical concepts, such as: present & future tense in the Binyanim Pa’al and Pi’el. Students expand their overall command of vocabulary, syntax and grammar.
  • Hebrew 4 (Upper School)

    Students participate with increasing ease and confidence in conversations on familiar topics, talk about events and experiences in various time frames, handle social interactions in everyday situations, deliver presentations on a variety of topics and present information in various time frames, write well- organized paragraphs about events and experiences in various time frames, understand the main idea in texts on a variety of topics of personal and general interest, follow what is heard about events and experiences in various time frames, and understand the main idea in texts on a variety of topics.
  • Hebrew 5 (Upper School)

    Students participate in conversations on familiar topics using sentences and series of sentences, handle short social interactions in everyday situations by asking and answering a variety of questions. Students present and write on a wide variety of familiar topics using connected sentences, & understand the main idea in messages and presentations on a variety of topics related to everyday life and personal interests. In addition, students study texts on a variety of topics, understanding the main idea and supporting details, follow stories and descriptions of considerable length and in various time frames, and understand texts written in a variety of genres.
  • Hebrew 6 (College Prep) and Hebrew 7 (Honors) Upper School

    Students participate with ease and confidence in conversations on familiar topics, talk about events and experiences in various time frames, handle social interactions in everyday situations, sometimes even when there is an unexpected complication. They also deliver presentations on a variety of topics and present information in various time frames, write with well-organized paragraphs about events and experiences in various time frames, and understand the main idea in messages and presentations on a variety of topics of personal and general interest. The course incorporates current events which are linked to the themes and real-world problems.
  • Hebrew and Israeli Culture (Honors) Upper School

    Students focus on Modern Israeli Culture based on the different conflicts within Israeli society. Students are exposed to authentic media information which reflects those conflicts. Students acquire knowledge and create a connection with Israel. Students listen, discuss and sing modern songs which reflect the political and cultural diversity of Israeli Society. In addition, students watch films/documentaries/TV shows/news, and read and articles that reflect conflicts. Current events and news are integrated into the course as they happen and students discuss how events affect Israel and the Jewish community
  • Hebrew Literature (Honors) Upper School

    This literature course incorporates themes designed to increase student proficiency in conversing, speaking, listening, reading and writing Hebrew in the context of highly complex ideas. Students primarily read poetry and fiction written by Israeli authors. Themes are studied in depth from the philosophical, religious, legal (halacha), social and psychological perspectives. Through the content and communicative abilities described above, students expand their overall vocabulary, syntax and grammar. The course is designed to increase the fluency and complexity of the student’s comprehension and expression, as well as generate in the student a greater appreciation of Hebrew language, literature, and culture.
  • Chagim (Grade 7 J-CIV)

    This course explores Jewish lineage and heritage by having students engage in research of their family roots. Students present their family’s origin and Jewish journey, uncovering historical milestones, cultural connections, and Jewish values. Students identify timelines and explore the causes that led to their family’s (eventual) immigration to the United States and the values that propelled them forward. Students strengthen their sense of Jewish identity as a result of the exploration of their family’s experiences and journeys.
  • Shorashim (Grade 7 J-CIV)

    This course explores Jewish lineage and heritage by having students engage in research of their family roots. Students present their family’s origin and Jewish journey, uncovering historical milestones, cultural connections, and Jewish values. Students identify timelines and explore the causes that led to their family’s (eventual) immigration to the United States and the values that propelled them forward. Students strengthen their sense of Jewish identity as a result of the exploration of their family’s experiences and journeys.
  • Acting (Grade 8 J-CIV)

    In this course, students develop foundational acting skills and explore the rich history and culture of Jewish theatre. This fun and exciting class introduces the basics of how to perform improvised scenes for their fellow students. Students learn how to use “yes-and”, active listening, and scene partner support to create comedic improvised scenes. Students in this class are also given the opportunity to be a part of our Middle School improv troupe and the Middle School shows.
  • Filmmaking (Grade 8 J-CIV)

    Be your own Spielberg! Filmmaking introduces students to the world of the cinema, including the impact of Jews on the art form and the depiction of Jews, Judaism, and Jewish themes in film. Students gain skills in screenwriting, outlining a story, pitching a story, staging, shooting, lighting, sound, and editing, while working on screenplays, storyboards, and short film projects. Training includes studies in film theory, genre, and camera operation. Students will take part in creating their own 5-15 minute short film by the end of the course in a collaborative, creative environment.
  • Jewish Life, Language & Practice (Grade 9 or 10 J-CIV)

    Students learn core values, language and practices integral to Jewish life. Students explore and experience Jewish life through customs, holidays, culture, synagogue skills, and lifecycle events, with Hebrew language and texts as fundamental lenses. Learning is guided by the following questions: What are the core ideas of Judaism? What do I need to know and be able to do to actively connect to my local and global Jewish community? What are the essential tools, practices, cycles, and language one needs to participate in Jewish life? How is Judaism a system of values, ethics and wisdom to guide us in our lives today?
  • Positive Psychology and Judaism (Upper School J-CIV)

    The study of human happiness has intrigued philosophers, religious leaders, and psychologists throughout history. Our Jewish texts and traditions serve as a guide to living a happy and flourishing life. By pairing positive psychology themes with Jewish practices and values of gratitude, tikkun olam, optimism, joy, resilience, Mussar/strengths, and simchot, students will learn how ancient Jewish practices can stimulate meaning and purpose in our modern world. Being happy is a mitzvah and we will explore how Jewish texts, holidays, and rituals contribute to the science of well-being. This fusion between Positive Psychology and Judaism will celebrate all the unique ways our tradition helps equip us with a guide to happiness.

Pop Quiz with Dr. Burstyn + Mr. Gibert

Hebrew Department Faculty

List of 9 members.

  • Photo of Carmit Burstyn

    Dr. Carmit Burstyn 

    Hebrew Instructional Leader
    310.279.3943
  • Photo of Anat Ben-Haim

    Anat Ben-Haim 

    Hebrew Teacher & Faculty Mentor
    310.440.3500 x3062
  • Photo of Pnina Benperlas

    Pnina Benperlas 

    Hebrew Teacher
    310.440.3500 x3047
  • Photo of Elda Dagan

    Elda Dagan 

    Hebrew Teacher
    310.440.3500 x3048
  • Photo of Iris Harel

    Iris Harel 

    Hebrew Teacher & Division 6-8 House Leader
  • Photo of Anat Levi

    Anat Levi 

    Hebrew Teacher
  • Photo of Rachel Nissim

    Rachel Nissim 

    Hebrew Teacher
  • Photo of Ravit Shemesh

    Ravit Shemesh 

    Hebrew Teacher
  • Photo of Gala Zakai

    Mrs. Gala Zakai 

    3104096722

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At Milken Community School, we think education is more than what you know. Our School, founded on Jewish values, is about who our children can become and how they can help others become who they might be. Because the world our children will create tomorrow is born in the School we build today, our mission is to educate our children so they can surpass us.