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Adult Education

During the pandemic, all programs are held via Zoom technology.  If you are a member, you can access our secure webpage for direct links.  If you are not a member, but wish to join any of our programs, contact Nancy Holab Nevins, our Executive Director for link information.

If you are a member, click here to access the secure Zoom links.

-The World of Jewish Learning taught by David Lerner - Sundays
NO CLASS April 11 due to Yom Hashoah
Havdalah at 10:10
World of Jewish Learning at 10:15 a.m.

-Intermediate Prayer Book Hebrew taught by David Lerner
Sundays, 11:30 a.m.  until noon, beginning November 8

For more information, contact David Lerner at or 312-208-3283.

-Yom HaShoah Commemoration
The Legacy of Holocaust Survivors: Featuring Philip Markowicz, Grandfather of Congregant Nina Friedman 
Sunday, April 11 starting at 10:15 a.m.

featuring Dr. Elliot Lefkovitz, presentation by our students, and Nina Friedman discussing her grandfather and showing a video in which he appears.

-New Approaches to Countering Terror: Countering Violent Extremism
Instructor: Bill Braniff, Director, START
Facilitated by Howard Schickler
Tuesdays, April 13, 20, 27 at 7:00 p.m.

Each session will include several short videos, totaling about 50 minutes, plus some cases to be discussed, which means each session will last between 1-1/2 to two hours, including time for discussion.  In addition there are some short reading materials which will be sent by email to all those who let Howard know they will be participating. Click here to contact Howard directly.

Over the past fifteen years, “Countering Violent Extremism” (CVE) has emerged as an important but hotly debated global security paradigm. CVE is comprised of policies and programs designed to minimize the number of individuals supporting or engaging in illegal violence associated with radical political, social, cultural, and religious ideologies and groups. Unlike traditional counterterrorism programs focused on disrupting terrorist plots or organizations that pose an imminent violent threat, CVE efforts can be broader in conception, ranging from efforts to minimize the enabling factors that generate grievances and opportunities for terrorist recruitment, to narrative campaigns that raise community awareness and blunt the effectiveness of violent extremist propaganda, to individual-level interventions for those flirting with participation in violent extremism, to the rehabilitation and reintegration of violent extremist perpetrators. CVE aims to address violent extremism conducted by individuals acting alone or in coordination with an extremist group or movement, and across violent ideologies.

-"When Did Hebrew Begin: On the Origins of the Alphabet and the Earliest Hebrew Writing"
Sunday April 25 10:15am (during normal Adult Ed zoom session)
Joseph Lam, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Department of Religious Studies
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

This talk considers the origins of Hebrew writing in the earliest West Semitic alphabet known from ancient texts in the Sinai peninsula and Egypt in the 2nd millennium BCE, through the subsequent development of this form of writing into the Old Hebrew script known from inscriptions in the 1st millennium BCE before the Babylonian exile. Through this talk, audience members learn why the Hebrew letters are named as they are (aleph, bet,…) and gain an appreciation of how early Hebrew writing fits into the broader history of writing in the ancient Near East.

-The Joys of Jewish Preserving - Emily Paster
Sun. May 2 at 7:15 p.m.

We're coming out of winter and looking forward to savoring summer's bounty again!  Local cookbook author and home food preservation expert Emily Paster will demonstrate the ins and outs of water-bath canning, a safe and easy method of preserving fruits and vegetables at home. Learn how to make jam, pickles, chutneys and more for your own enjoyment or to give as gifts. Emily will demonstrate the entire process as well as address your questions and concerns about safety and equipment needs.
A lawyer turned food writer, Emily Paster is the author of three cookbooks: Food Swap: Specialty Recipes for Bartering, Sharing & Giving, The Joys of Jewish Preserving and the Epic Air Fryer Cookbook. She is also the writer and photographer behind the website West of the Loop, which has been called “a family food blog to savor.”  Emily teaches cooking classes at the Chicago Botanic Garden and is a popular speaker nationwide on food-related topics.

-The Rosenberg Case - Neil Adelman
Wed. May 5 at 7:30 p.m.

The trial of Julius and Ethel Rosenberg is the sum of many stories: a spy story, a story of a family torn apart and a story of government overreaching.  It is also a story of the early 1950s, the Cold War and the Korean War.  Neil will explore these stories including what we knew then and have learned subsequently about the only case of American citizens executed for espionage.  Neil’s talk will also consider the Jewish aspects of the case.

Erev Shavuot Services and Program featuring Joe Buchanan
Sun. May 16 at 7:00 p.m.

Shavuot Morning Services including Yizkor
Mon. May 17 at 9:30 a.m

A Texas native, Joe Buchanan makes Jewish Americana music. Grounded in the idea that there is always room at the table, Joe's music highlights the values, Torah, and history of the Jewish people to deliver stories steeped in the struggle and triumph of the human spirit, all while praising Gd for the goodness in life.
One day, about 13 years into his marriage, Joe found out that his wife was Jewish.  With the discovery of his wife's heritage, their family started down a path that would change everything. From the first class and a million questions, to the mikvah and beyond, Judaism answered every spiritual question and brought an incredible amount of healing.
In the five years since his conversion, Joe has truly found his voice in the history, Torah, and values of the Jewish people. He has toured the United States, leading an original Shabbat service, playing concerts, and giving a workshop called "Choosing to be Chosen" which is all around his conversion to Judaism and the reasons why so many are coming home. Combining elements of country, roots-rock, and folk, Joe’s music reaches deep to tell personal stories of struggle and triumph. This is feel-good, toe-tapping, Americana with a Jewish Soul.

Join us as Joe shares his unique and fascinating story on Erev Shavuot.

-Rabbi's Study Class - Tuesdays at 1:00 p.m.

-Cantor's Current Events Class - Thursdays at noon 
Cantor Simon offers his weekly Current Events Class to the entire congregation.  Traditionally, this group has enjoyed a little bit of adult beverage while solving the world's problems.  During the quarantine, it's BYO, but by all means, feel free to grab your favorite beverage and join this lively group.

-Women's Network Book Group - Fridays at 10:00 a.m. 
The book is "My Russian Grandmother and Her American Vacuum Cleaner: A Family Memoir" by Meir Shalev.   There is no "homework" -- we read the book together out loud at each meeting and there's no need to read anything ahead of time.  The book is a collection of short stories, so it's no problem if someone misses some of the book group meetings.

-Dr. Larry Layfer's Talmud Class
Mondays, once a month at 7:30 p.m.
Contact Bobbie Barry for more information.

Sun, April 11 2021 29 Nisan 5781