SPRING 2016

Israeli Dance Class

Caitlyn Swyer

Want to have some fun?? In this Israeli Dance Class, we will learn modern and popular Israeli dances. This class incorporates modern Hebrew music and movement which will immerse you in Israeli culture, expose you to Israeli music, and get you moving! Whether you are an experienced dancer or just enthusiastic about the chance to learn, this class is for you.

With "Friends" Like These... : The Ethical Dilemmas of Facebook/Social Media

Stephanie Fisher

Does being Jewish affect how you use Facebook? Have you ever found yourself in an awkward position on Facebook?  Have you ever been "friended" by your teacher?  Been tagged in an embarrassing photo? Found out that that someone got dumped in a status update? In this class we'll be discussing some of the ethical dilemmas that Facebook and other social media raises and see if we can find guidance from Jewish sources.

 

Judaism in American Law

D. Weinstein

The purpose of the class is to provide students with a general understanding of issues in American Law that impact the Jewish community. It focuses, in particular, on Supreme Court cases addressing Church-State relations, but also touches on other cases relating to American Jewry.

How to Win an Argument: Jewish Teenagers Edition

Daniel Bernstein

Whether you are sparring over politics, debating about Israel, or simply recreationally arguing with friends, this course offers logical reasoning tools every Jewish teenager needs to successfully engage in - and win - an argument. Students will learn the art of persuasion and develop an ability to spot errors in others' arguments, and will emerge from this class with the razor-sharp skills to confidently defend their positions.

The Animals in Halacha (Jewish Law) and Aggadah (Jewish stories)

Sandy Johnston and Gabriella Spitzer

The Animals in Halacha (Jewish Law) and Aggadah (Jewish stories) course will cover biblical stories such as Bilam's donkey, Talmudic stories such as the one about Yoseph Mochir Shabbat and the fish, and more modern Chassidic stories. We'll also discuss vegetarianism, kashrut, and various items in Jewish law related to animals (like whether it is acceptable to build a sukkah with elephants as your walls). The educational goals of the course will be getting students involved in and familiar with Jewish text study of various genres and from various times, and looking at the roles of animals in Jewish life and storytelling throughout history. 

Creating “Queerkeyt”: LGBTQ Jewish History, Ritual, Identity, and Practice

Sandy Johnston and Gabriella Spitzer

The Jewish community often asks whether we should be including LGBTQ members of the community,

or what the best ways are to do so. This course starts with the assumption that there are LGBTQ members of the Jewish community, and explores such questions as: Are there any recognizably LGBT figures in the Bible? Among the Rabbis of the Talmud? What does an authentic Jewish LGBTQ ritual look like? What can the Jewish community learn from the LGBTQ community, and vice versa?

 

No assumptions will be made about anyone’s identity, and the course is open to students of all genders, sexualities, and levels of knowledge.

What's Nu

Arnon Adler

A lively and provocative discussion-based analysis of current events and significant topics of concern to us as Jewish high school students living in an ever-evolving national and international political, cultural and social scene. While experience has demonstrated that it is next to impossible to predict exactly what events and situations will arise in the United States, Israel and the world in the next few months that will merit our attention and review, a few topics are likely as we approach the Fall 2015 semester. For instance, we will be discussing the 2016 US Presidential campaign, its implications for Israel, the continuing conflicts in the Middle East including the status of the Israeli-Palestinian “relationship” and battle against violent Islamic fundamentalism, and the tricky balance for us as Jews negotiating between religious/social freedom and the acceptance of diversity (such as the controversy over the Confederate Battle flag) in our society. 

Junior/Senior Seminar

Arnon Adler

A seminar reserved for Mifgash juniors and seniors who wish to explore, discuss and debate some of the most serious, complicated and controversial issues facing Jews both here in the United States and in Israel. This class will select one or two topics each week, including subjects suggested by the students (and parents!), and consider the background and history of the issue, its ramifications and how to approach resolution. Current discussion topics under consideration include: The Relationship between the Jewish and African American Communities; The Response to the Boycott Divestment Sanctions movement; Israel and the United Nations; Do Jews Have a Future in Europe?; Israel and ISIS; The Connection between Israel and American Jews - Frayed or Enduring? Suggestions are appreciated; the willingness to participate and share perspectives is mandatory! 

Cooking from the Soul

Rivi Bahir

A gastronomic experience that will not only fill your stomach, but also your soul!  Learn to prepare (and eat!) delicious and nourishing foods related to all things Jewish - from holiday foods to traditional Israeli foods and many other culinary delights!

 

 

Tikkun Olam (Community Service)

Stephanie Fisher

In this course, students will make repairing the world, Tikkun Olam,  an integral part of their lives, as an expression of Jewish values.  The students will give back to the Senior Community at the Massry Center every other week with an activity or program created and designed by the students (in the alternate weeks) for the residents.  This class will include learning about the values of volunteerism and respecting the elderly through our Torah, the needs of the elderly, and how to foster relationships with the most valuable members of our society.  Community Service hours will be acknowledged.  

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