Yosl Kurland teaches an adult education Yiddish class at Temple Israel of Greenfield, MA. Classes focus on the relationship between the Yiddish language and Jewish religion, culture and philosophy, and make use of songs, poetry, idiomatic expressions and vocabulary building games. Although we are studying texts from Yiddish song, poetry and prose literature in depth, the classes are designed to accomodate students with some, little, or no familiarity with the languge. Interested teenagers are welcome in Yosl's adult ed. Yiddish classes.
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Special Teen Program
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Sunday, March 3 12:30-2:30 pm
How Did Young People Lead the Drive for Workers' Rights?
Music: Arbeter Froyen
Dear Yiddish lovers,
Learn about Jewish ways of living and thinking through Yiddish.
Yosl's spring season of Yiddish classes will begin March 3rd with some changes in format: mostly expansion. There's some interest among the students to practice singing songs (those who like can perform them at services or an oneg) and some are interested in having more grammar, Hebrew letters, humor, labor songs, ... Rhonda would also like me to teach some Yiddish songs to the children in her class.
APPROXIMATE CLASS TIMETABLE:
9:30 am - Singing Yiddish songs for children of the Hebrew School
9:45 am -- Tutorial for those who want to learn to read Yiddish with Hebrew letters for beginners. (If you aren't a beginner, you can help the beginners or practice reading more advanced texts.)
10:00 am - Singing Yiddish songs for adults
10:20 am - Yiddish grammar practice
10:40 am - Yiddish literary study - songs, poems, stories as we've been doing
12:00 n - finish
The first class would be for Sunday, March 3rd. I'll be in Indiana the following weekend performing and teaching, so the second class would be Sunday March 17th. The following two weeks I may be away for Peysakh, so classes would start up again in April. We'll fix the dates more firmly as we go along.
Possible make-up dates or additional classes on
I'd like students who've been in the class before to suggest songs from among the ones we studied that you'd like to practice during the singing part of class. Practicing the songs will help cement Yiddish phrases, pronunciation and grammatical construction in your minds.
During the first couple of Yiddish literary studies, which will fall between Purim and Peysakh, I'd like to do a comic Purim song by Itisk Manger about King Ahasveresh and a poem I wrote (no melody for it yet) relating to Peysakh: Moyshes Breyre (Moses choice).
I plan to schedule at least 6 classes. If enough people sign up for the whole series, then any additional classes will be covered by the initial tuition. For ease of temple bookkeeping, tuition checks should be made out to me, and I will give 20% of the income to the temple.
Temple Members: $75 for the series or $15 per session.
Non-members: $100 for the series or $20 per session
If you would like to take the class and can not afford to pay the full amount, please contact me to make alternate arrangements. I don't earn more money if you stay away.
Make checks payable to Joe Kurland, with Yiddish Class on the memo line. I give the temple 20% of the income from the class.
A minimum of 6 students is needed for this class to cover the preparation time I put into it. If at least 8 people sign up for the series, I will extend it to 8 sessions for the same series tuition. Please tell your friends. Please note that class sessions will be longer than they used to be in order to have time for singing and grammar. If you want to sing with the children, come at 9:30. If you want to learn to read Yiddish with the Hebrew alphabet, come at 9:45. The regular class will begin at 10 and run until 12. We never were able to stop at 11:30 anyway.
If you are interested, please contact Yosl (Joe) Kurland 413-624-3204 email: firstname.lastname@example.org
I look forward to seeing you.
Last Spring we continued our series of Yiddish classes with an introduction to songs and poems by great Yiddish poets which I called Advanced Yiddish Literature for Beginning Yiddish Speakers. This Fall, I would like to continue with more delving into Yiddish literature, songs, idiomatic expressions and sayings, vocabulary, and just enough grammar to further explore how Yiddish is a key to understanding Jewish culture, thinking, and way of life.
No prior study of Yiddish language or attendance at the previous Yiddish classes is required, but we will be working on new material, so it won't be repetitious for those who have already attended. Adults and teenagers, beginners and experienced Yiddish speakers are all welcome. Something for everyone! Class topics will reflect the interests expressed by the participants.
This 6 session Yiddish Class will meet at Temple Israel of Greenfield on Sunday mornings from 10 a.m.-11:30 a.m. starting October 21. See below for tentative schedule.
Members: $60 for the series if paid before or at the first session- $15 per individual session after that.
Non-members: $100 for the series if paid before or by the first session- $20 per individual session after that.
Make checks payable to Joe Kurland, with Yiddish Class on the memo line.
If you would like to take the class and can not afford to pay the full amount, please contact me to make alternate arrangements.
Revised schedule for Fall Yiddish classes:
Sunday, October 21, 2012 from 10:00 AM to 11:30 AM
Sunday, November 4, 2012 from 10:00 AM to 11:30 AM
Sunday, November 18, 2012 from 10:00 AM to 11:30 AM
Sunday, December 2, 2012 from 10:00 AM to 11:30 AM
Sunday, December 9, 2012 from 10:00 AM to 11:30 AM
Sunday, January 6, 2013 from 10:00 AM to 11:30 AM
EXTRA SESSION: Sunday, January 13, 2013 from 10:00 AM to 11:30 AM
No additional tuition for students who have paid for the full Fall series of classes
at Beth Jacob Synagogue. For details, see: http://bethjacobvt.org/content/programs
You are welcome to attend individual classes even if you are not signed up for the whole series.
We do work a little on grammar and vocabulary, using examples from the songs to reinforce grammatical constructions. However, to do a comprehensive class on Yiddish grammar requires an ongoing comitment to more hours of class and homework than most students are able to make. (If there is a group of comitted students, Yosl will teach such a class.)
Yosl is available to teach classes and workshops on "What Yiddish Tells Us about Being Jewish" and "Advanced Yiddish Literature for Beginning Yiddish Students" in your community. Depending on the distance from Western Massachusetts, he can present an ongoing weekly class, or a single two-hour, day-long, weekend or week-long workshop. Yosl and his wife, Khaye (Peggy) Davis also teach nusakh (traditional prayer chant) and zmires (Hebrew and Yiddish table songs for Shabbos and festivals), traditional dance and customs for Jewish weddings. Yosl gives concerts of Yiddish song including many of his own compositions, both solo and with members of the Wholesale Klezmer Band.
Yosl studied Yiddish at Columbia University/YIVO and at the University of Massachusetts. Besides classes at Temple Israel, he has taught Yiddish at the Conference on Judaism in Rural New England, the Klezmerquerque Festival, and in the children's program at KlezKamp. Two of his Yiddish songs have been selected for the Shalshelet Festival of New Jewish Liturgical Music.
I really enjoyed the Yiddish class and Yosl's teaching style.---Jess C.
I thought the Yiddush class was fabulous. Joe is an incredible teacher. He teaches a very practical and usable type of Yiddish -- not to mention a lot of fun idiomatic expressions and the music, which brings it alive. ---Alicia W.
Yosl is brilliant, of course--wise, and of the utmost kindness and patience. Of course I would take another class with him! I missed the first two classes because of conflicts, so in some way I missed the premise of the class...but I went to all the rest of the classes. It was an impossible task in one way--people with smatterings of Yiddish and little ability to read Hebrew wanting to know more, but where to start? Where is the beginning if we are not at the beginning? I enjoyed learning the songs, and the literary, historical, religious, social, cultural, spiritual, human meanings in them. And we learned a little grammar through the songs and in basic instruction, which was also good. ... Yosl enlightened me on some of the ways that cultural Judaism does refer to religious Judaism, but he also fed my appetite for Jewish learning where it is centered, or located (i.e. secularly). ---Ann F.
Yosl- In a nutshell - you were the perfect guest artist for our event; you are incredibly knowledgeable yet humble and patient with all levels of students. You are very organized, print nice-looking and legible materials. As a performer you were professional, relaxed and you were having fun and included the audience in on the fun. I can tell that you have also been a professional teacher, because you included everyone, you were patient and thorough - and you made sure that everyone understood materials before we moved on to something new. And as a person, you are truly a mentsh and I am so happy that I got to know you and work with you and I hope that we get to meet Peggy and the rest of The Wholesale Klezmer band in the near future.
Thank you for sharing your talents and joy with our family and our community!
Beth, Randy, Jamie and the Nahalat Shalom "shtetl"