Chumash 1C – Regular: 1 Credit

This introductory course is designed for students who do not possess a strong foundation for serious Chumash study.  In this class, students develop and refine their critical thinking skills. Students learn the order and names of all five Books of the Torah and must demonstrate proficient knowledge of the content and Hebrew terminology in the Book of Shemot. While English is the primary language used for instruction, the instructor places emphasis on students’ Hebrew vocabulary development utilizing Hebrew  frequently.  Students study text in the original Hebrew and are responsible for textual content. In addition, students study morphology (word analysis) including gender, tense, parts of speech, and sentence structure. These elements are essential for independent Chumash study.

Text:  Shemot
Homework requirement: 1 1/2 -2 hours per week

Chumash 1B – Regular: 1 Credit

This introductory course is designed for students who possess average oral and written expressive and comprehensive Hebrew skills. The objective of this course is the mastery of skills necessary for reading and understanding Chumash and Rashi. In this class, students engage in cooperative learning (chavruta) to develop skills that will help them to become independent learners.  Students must know all five Books of the Chumash are expected to demonstrate good command of content, knowledge and terminology in the Book of Shemot. Students are instructed in the skills of morphology (word analysis) including recognition of prefix and suffix, gender, tense, declension, Biblical formulation of past and future tense (VaV HaHipuch), the rules and conceptual underpinnings of sentence structure (subject, predicate, objects, etc.), and the numerical equivalents of Hebrew letters. Students examine the basics of Parshanut, including the definition of pshat and drash. In addition, students must learn to identify and formulate a koshi (textual difficulty). Students are introduced to the study of Rashi, with special emphasis placed on understanding how commentary stems from serious textual analysis.

Text:  Shemot
Homework requirement: 2 hours per week

Chumash 1A – Honors: 1 Credit

In this course, Hebrew is the language of instruction, which requires students to be fluent in both oral and written expressive and comprehensive Hebrew. Cooperative learning (chavruta) is employed to develop skills that will enable students to become independent learners. Students must possess a rich vocabulary, and a grasp of morphology (word analysis) including recognition of prefix and suffix, gender, tense, declension, Biblical formulation of past and future tense (VaV HaHipuch). Also, students need to have the rules and conceptual underpinnings of sentence structure (subject, predicate, objects, etc.) and numerical equivalents of Hebrew letters mastered. In this course, students study the basics of Parshanut, including the definition of pshat and drash. Students learn to identify and formulate a koshi (textual difficulty). Students engage in the study of Rashi, and, to a lesser extent, Ramban. In each commentary, key terminology is identified, with special emphasis placed on understanding the manner by which commentary stems from serious textual analysis. Students are expected to demonstrate a rich accumulation of content knowledge and terminology in the Book of Shemot, all five Books of the Chumash. In addition, students learn to use Biblical maps of the Middle East.

Text:  Shemot
Homework requirement: 2 hours per week

Chumash 2C – Regular: 1 Credit

In this course, the primary objective is the mastery of reading comprehension skills for the Chumash and classical commentaries.  Students are introduced to key Rashi terminology as Rashi is studied with vocalized text. In addition, students learn the definition of pshat and drash, and the elements of koshi (textual difficulty). Critical thinking skills are stressed in accordance with the skill level of the class. General knowledge includes basic content of the Books of Vayikra and Bamidbar, and expressions and vocabulary associated with each Book.

Text:  Vayikra/Bamidbar 
Homework requirement: 2-3 hours per week

Chumash 2B – Regular: 1 Credit

In this class, the primary objective is the mastery of reading comprehension skills for the Chumash and classical commentaries.  Students engage in cooperative learning (chavruta) to develop skills that will help them to become independent learners.  Students must know all five Books of the Chumash and are expected to demonstrate mastery of content knowledge and terminology in the Books of Vayikra and Bamidbar. Students study the basics of Parshanut, including the definition of pshat and drash and learn to identify and formulate a koshi (textual difficulty). Students engage in the study of Rashi, and, to a lesser extent, Ramban. Key terminology of each commentary is identified, with special emphasis placed on understanding the manner by which commentary stems from serious textual analysis. In addition, students learn to use Biblical maps of the Middle East.

Text:  Vayikra and Bamidbar
Homework requirement: 2 hours per week

Chumash 2A – Honors: 1 Credit

This course is conducted in Hebrew. Students learn to classify various forms of kesha-im (textual difficulties) and to propose solutions as they are raised. Independent research of sacred commentators is conducted through cooperative study (chavruta), to find answers to questions raised in class. Students must know all five Books of the Chumash and are expected to demonstrate a rich accumulation of content knowledge and Hebrew terminology in the Books of Vayikra and Bamidbar. Emphasis is placed on the reading comprehension of Rashi, Rashbam and Ramban. Students learn how to use Sefer HaChinuch as a theoretic Halachic tool, as well as the Biblical Concordance and Biblical dictionary.

Texts:  Vayikra and Bamidbar
Homework requirement: 2-3 hours per week

Chumash 3C – Regular: 1 Credit

In this course, the primary academic objective is the mastery of reading comprehension skills for the Chumash and selected classical commentaries. Students are expected to demonstrate mastery of content knowledge and terminology in the last four Books of the Torah. Students study the basics of Parshanut, including the definition of pshat and drash, and learn to identify and formulate a koshi (textual difficulty). Also, students engage in the study of Rashi and other classical commentaries with particular attention paid to concepts and key terminology of each commentary. Special emphasis is placed on understanding the manner by which commentary stems from serious textual analysis. In addition, students learn to use Biblical maps of the Middle East.

Texts:  Devarim
Homework requirement: 2 hours per week

Chumash 3B – Regular: 1 Credit

In this class students learn to classify various forms of kesha-im (textual difficulties) and to propose solutions as they are raised. Independent research of sacred commentators is conducted through cooperative study (chavruta), to find answers to questions raised in class. Students are expected to demonstrate a significant acquisition of content knowledge and Hebrew terminology in the Books of Shemot, VaYikra, BaMidbar and Devarim, in addition to the names and order of all five Books of the Chumash, and all Sidrot in the first four Books of the Torah. Emphasis is placed on students’ reading comprehension of Rashi, Rashbam and Ramban. In addition, students learn how to use Sefer HaChinuch as a theoretic Halachic tool as well as the Biblical Concordance and Biblical dictionary.

Texts:  Devarim
Homework requirement: 2-3 hours per week

Chumash 3A – Honors: 1 Credit

In this Chumash Honors course, textual study is fast paced. Students are expected to prepare Biblical passages on their own and to identify nuances that prompt kesha-im. Students engage in the independent study of Chumash and Parshanut. Emphasis is placed on students generating textual and logical support for the commentators’ positions under study.  In the comparative analysis of commentators including Rashi, Ramban, Rashban, Seforno, and Abravanel, students must possess an advanced level of critical thinking skills. In addition, students learn to identify patterns of commentators and to relate them to pshat and/or drash.

Texts:  Devarim
Homework requirement: 2-3 hours per week

Chumash 4C – Regular: 1 Credit

In this course students learn to classify various forms of kesha-im (textual difficulties) and to propose solutions as they are raised. Independent research of sacred commentators is conducted through cooperative study (chavruta), to find answers to questions raised in class. Emphasis is placed on reading comprehension of Rashi, Rashbam and Ramban. Students learn how to use Sefer HaChinuch as a theoretic Halachic tool, as well as the Biblical Concordance and Biblical Dictionary. Students are introduced to Midrashei Aggada and Midrashei Halacha, their content, authorship and approximate age of their formulation. In addition, students begin to explore Midrash as a primary source.

Texts:  Bereishit
Homework requirement: 2-3 hours per week

Chumash 4B – Regular: 1 Credit

In this course students are expected to prepare Biblical passages on their own and to identify nuances that prompt kesha-im (textual difficulties.) Students engage in the independent study of Chumash and Parshanut. Emphasis is placed on students generating textual and logical support for the commentators’ positions under study. Midrash is studied as primary source material. In the comparative analysis of commentators including Rashi, Ramban, Rashban, Seforno, and Abravanel, students must possess an advanced level of critical thinking skills.   In addition, students learn to identify patterns of commentators and to relate them to pshat and/or drash.

Texts:  Bereishit
Homework requirement: 2-3 hours per week

Chumash 4A – Honors: 1 Credit

The pace and depth of this course is quite demanding.  The primary focus is an in-depth understanding of the Book of Breishit from the perspective of both pshat and drash. Material is gathered from the classical commentaries of Rishonim and Acharonim. Students explore the ethical lessons and righteous conduct of the ancestors in meeting the challenges that these ancestors encountered. Great emphasis is placed on careful textual reading and learning to extract primary ideas and concepts from the words of sacred commentators.

Text:  Breishit
Homework requirement: 2-3 hours per week