Classes and Education
Where prospective converts go to learn more about Judaism
We are so lucky here in the Bay Area to have so many learning opportunities. Covering the entire bay is Lehrhaus Judaica, the AdultSchool. Their classes are cited in synagogues all around the bay. You can see their catalog online at www.lehrhaus.org. Lehrhaus has just posted their online catalog for 2011, including Rabbi Adar's Intro classes around the Bay Area - be sure to take a look!
Each synagogue offers classes. If you are interested in a particular synagogue, call them and ask to receive their class schedule. Most of the classes will run like a school year: starting in the fall, with a second "semester" of classes beginning around Jan - Feb. Summer is often a slow time for Jewish classes. The rabbis and teachers get the summer break, too!
What sort of classes are a good start? An "Introduction to Judaism" class is a good beginning. These classes vary in length. Some of the Intro classes are ten weeks and the big EastBay one is 20 weeks. But the rabbis all study individually with those seeking to convert so you want to ask your rabbi about what he or she wants you to take. If you want to get an idea of what the range can be, you can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Many classes will begin right after the High Holidays in October. Synagogues and Lehrhaus (the adult Jewish School) will begin classes throughout September/October. If you are at the beginning of your conversion studies, you want to be looking for a beginning or introduction to Judaism class. If you are not sure you’ll convert, just sign up for a class and see what you think. If you KNOW you want to convert, you need to talk to your rabbi about which class he or she sends students to. If you don’t have a sponsoring rabbi yet but you want one, email us (email@example.com). We can help you meet a few rabbis to see where you feel there is a “fit.”
Introduction to Judaism Classes Around the Bay Area
The East Bay Introduction to the Jewish Experience starts on January 16, 2013 in Berkeley. It's co-sponsored by Congregation Beth El and Temple Sinai, and taught by Rabbi Ruth Adar. You can register here.
What about other classes on specific topics?
You definitely want to expand your knowledge. You may want to take a class on the liturgy of the service, or Jewish history or music. You will certainly want to learn some Hebrew. Or, how about a Jewish cooking class? These types of offerings are available all over the San Francisco Bay Area, depending on the Jewish time of year. Again, one of us can talk to you, or you can go straight to a rabbi, or check the Lehrhaus site (www.lehrhaus.org).
Lehrhaus Judaica is offering a series of classes called "More Jewish Experience," meant to be taken after you complete the Intro series of classes, but anyone can take them:
More Jewish Experience - Texts: Pirkei Avot
You can find out more about these classes and register for them at the Lehrhaus Judaica website.
Be sure to check our What's New page for classes that have been recently announced!