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Choose Your 2019 Jewish Learning Journey!

Published on:

Shevat 5779

Chodesh Tov & Happy 2019!

Yesod was established to support the dedicated and hard-working professionals and educators of the Jewish communities of Europe. As such, one of Yesod’s core principles is that to be a Jewish community professional or educator means engaging with Jewish ideas, learning and exploring the richness of Jewish tradition, culture, religion, history and more. As you think about what 2019 will bring for you and your communities – and as we enter the month of Shevat, and prepare to celebrate Tu B’shevat (the New Year of the Trees) – consider what you can do to keep learning and enriching your own Jewish knowledge and confidence.

If you need ideas, we have lots of suggestions and ways to help you, starting with an online learning course in Jewish Approaches to Contemporary Ethics on 30 January! Participants are encouraged to register by Tuesday 22 January to receive reading materials in advance of the first class.

Online Learning Course Register Now!

Jewish Approaches to Contemporary Ethics

Join Yesod’s new Jewish learning opportunity, Jewish Approaches to Contemporary Ethics, a six-part online course, taught by Rabbi Johnny Solomon of the Melton School of Adult Jewish Learning. In our lively virtual Beit Midrash there will be discussion and debate and the chance to engage with classical texts and contemporary issues.The topics to be explored will include:

  • Artificial Intelligence
  • Social Media Ethics
  • Gender Fluidity
  • Environmental Ethics
  • Six Approaches to Making Ethical Decisions
  • Jewish Universalism and the Seven Noahide Laws

No previous experience necessary. This online course will take place in six 75-minute sessions every 2 weeks from 30 January – 10 April 2019 at 13:00 Central European Time. The course costs 60 Euros. For more information and to register, click here.

More Jewish Learning Suggestions 

1. Don’t study alone – find a chavruta! Chavruta study is the traditional way that Jews have studied for generations – with a partner. Read a text together (ancient or modern, video or written, or anything else you can find) and discuss it. Challenge each other to find new ideas and extract the most meaning from the text. There are lots of great chavruta resources available; no experience needed. Think about bringing the chavruta experience to your staff meeting, or find a partner from your team or family and set a time every week to learn. Here are some good chavruta resources:
Limmud Chavruta Resources on the topics of Unity, Shelter, Food and more. Many of them are also available in Hebrew, French, Spanish and Russian.

Project Zug is an international chavruta project. Bring your own chavruta or they will match you with someone, and sign up for a 6-10 week self-guided course. A huge range of topics includes philosophy, art and culture, social justice, rabbinic literature and more. Contact for a special code to cover the cost of registration.

The annual Global Day of Jewish Learning focuses on a different theme each year and provides fantastic resources for chavruta and group learning for all ages. Last year’s theme focused on Journeys. Materials are also available in French, Spanish, Hebrew and Russian, and include videos. Usually takes place in November, but previous materials are online all year round.

If you can’t find a chavruta (yet) and want to learn on your own, these resources will help you:

  • 929 is an incredible project; the daily study of a chapter of Tanach, which takes 929 days to complete. Start anywhere in the cycle and join tens of thousands of Jews around the world who are following along. 929 has a daily podcast – try listening on your way to work – as well as short articles, translations and related sourcesheets. Available in English and Hebrew.
  • Follow the weekly Torah portion (parshat hashavua) with relevant and accessible interpretations. Check out Rabbi Jonathan Sacks’ weekly teachings “Covenant and Conversation”, in audio or written versions. Also check out the Family Edition. 
  • Also on the weekly Torah portion and festivals, check out the excellent animated videos from AlephBeta.
  • Choose something from the library of Elmad – the online learning collection of the Pardes Institute of Jewish Studies. There is a huge range of topics to learn about; holidays, life cycles, critical issues, hassidut and much more. All available free and perfect for listening to in the gym or on the bus to work.
  • Yesod also has a bank of great resources including materials for Tu B’shevat and other holidays and interesting podcasts on various topics.

And last but not least, Yesod offers Jewish Learning Scholarships to support Jewish community professionals and educators who want to strengthen their Jewish knowledge. If you want to study – in Israel, online or in your home community, be in touch with us and let’s see if we can help! For more information, contact

View Resource of the Month Archive for resources posted in previous months.