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Lifelong Learning

BestSeattle2015WinnerWebSquareVoted "Best Adult Education" program in Seattle by the readers of the magazine Jewish in Seattle in 2016, Temple Beth Am promotes lifelong learning and is committed to being a center of Jewish life for people of all ages. Our classes, discussions, and lectures offer many opportunities for our adult community to learn at a variety of levels. The program listings below are updated frequently with a wide variety of offerings.

For our additional selection of Torah Study classes, including Introduction to Judaism and Adult B'nai Mitzvah, visit our Torah Study page.

Please contact our Director of Community Engagement, Alexis Kort, or call 206-525-0915 x 210 with any questions.

Beth Am Book Clubs

From October through May, Temple Beth Am holds monthly book clubs on different topics - like the Jewish Feminist Book Club and Immigrant/Refugee Stories Book Club - every year. All discussions are moderated by members of Beth Am. If you are interested in leading a book discussion or have suggestions for a topic/books for next year, please be in touch with Temple Beth Am Director of Community Engagement Alexis Kort.

*Check back for our next book club theme as well as books and dates, starting in October 2018.

Union for Reform Judaism: Introduction to Judaism

Temple Beth Am is excited to offer again the revamped and upgraded Introduction to Judaism class in partnership with the Union of Reform Judaism (URJ). This course is used across North America and is recognized universally by Reform synagogues, using URJ curriculum and resources for adults interested in exploring Judaism. Taught by Rabbi Jason R. Levine, class time will be double that of previous years and includes a Shabbaton designed specifically for this class. Topics include Jewish rituals, Jewish theology, history, texts and prayer, life cycle, holidays, and comparative Judaism.

Registration for URJ: Introduction to Judaism is through the Union of Reform Judaism. Go to their website to sign-up or contact Rabbi Sabine Meyer.

Intro to Judaism Class Shabbaton: To be announced

Cost for 18 classes: $200 Temple Beth Am members / $280 non-members / $50 - $100 additional for textbooks

The tuition fee allows for either one or two people to attend, couples are encouraged to attend together, and singles may invite an interested friend. Reading list can be found here. Used copies and e-readers are encouraged. 

To register for this course, please visit the Union for Reform Judaism website. Please contact Rabbi Jason R. Levine (206-525-0915 ext. 215) to inquire about the scholarships offered by Temple Beth Am.

*Check back later in the summer for updates on new classes, registration, dates, and times.

Scholar-in-Residence and University Lecture Series

Temple Beth Am is committed to bringing the Seattle community important and informative topics that impact the Jewish people both historically and in modern times. Our Scholar-in-Residence and University Lecture Series presents engaging presenters and scholars who speak on their areas of expertise.

Past presenters and scholars include URJ Vice President of Audacious Hospitality April Baskin; Prof. Hamza Zafer on "The Judeo-Islamic Experience," Former U.S. Ambassador at Large for International Freedom Rabbi David Saperstein; Rabbi Deborah Waxman; Noam Pianko on "Justifying Judaism in the Modern World"; Devin Naar on "The Sephardic Jewish Experience"; and 2017's University Lecture Series' scholar, Kathie Friedman, on "Immigrants and Refugees: We Were Once Strangers, Too."


Become a Patron Sponsor for $100

Help ensure this annual learning series continues, while keeping ticket costs low for everyone. Patron sponsorship includes tickets to all lectures, attendance at an intimate private reception with our speaker prior to the final lecture, and acknowledgement of your sponsorship in the lecture program.


Adult Hebrew

Professional Hebrew instructor Debbie Massarano offers intimate, fun lessons in a supportive group environment. Whether you're just beginning to understand temple prayers, refreshing your memory of this beloved language, or seeking to strengthen your everyday fluency, our Hebrew classes are a great place to start. In addition to meeting others who are passionate about Hebrew, you'll learn the meaning and melody of familiar and lesser-known prayers as we read along in Prayerbook Hebrew the Easy Way

Register for classes here. Please contact Debbie Massarano with any questions about our Hebrew classes.

Cost: $250 members / $300 non-members (books and materials included)

*Debbie Massarano has been a Jewish educator since she was in her teens. She began with teaching religious school Hebrew to 4th graders; moved on to teaching in Jewish day schools; worked as a regional educator for the Union for Reform Judaism; served two congregations as director of lifelong learning; and, most recently, served as the executive director of Livnot Chai.

Debbie has dedicated her career to building relationships – with people, between people and Torah, and between people and the Jewish community. She lives in Mountlake Terrace with her daughter, Abby, and granddog, Muzi. She has a great story about how she and her adult children all made their way to the Seattle area. Ask her about it!!

Beginning Prayerbook Hebrew
Sundays, 11:15 - 12:15 PM
Temple Beth Am K'hilah Rm. 228

Designed for those with little to no previous Hebrew, this introductory course focuses on developing the foundation for reading comprehension and a basic Hebrew vocabulary.

Intermediate Prayerbook Hebrew for Adult B'nai Mitzvah
Sundays, 10:00 - 11:00 AM
Temple Beth Am K'hilah Rm. 228

This course is designed for anyone who can read basic Hebrew. We will continue to develop reading comprehension and basic Hebrew vocabulary, while practicing reading and singing along for Shabbat services.

All-Ages Yiddish

Wendy Marcus

Yiddish resources and programming at Temple Beth Am is made possible in part by grant funding from the Alfred and Tillie Shemanski Trust Fund and support from the Bernard and Reva Broder Fund for Yiddish CultureFor more information on Yiddish at Temple Beth Am, contact Wendy Marcus.

Go to these links for samples of Temple Beth Am Yiddish class songs from 2017: 

Our self-led Intermediate and Advanced Yiddish groups meet at 12:00 PM and 1:00 PM on Wednesdays.

See our members putting their Yiddish to the test with Wendy Marcus on YouTube:


A Mol iz Geven
Der Alter Mendel Hot A Farm
Patshe Kikhelekh
Oy Meyn Kepele