Prospective Hebrew Student,
language, welcome to culture, welcome to community. Welcome to a unique
experience, welcome to achievement, welcome to fun.
I was once
in your shoes, choosing what language to learn in high school. It’s kind of
overwhelming, having all the booths at a language fair yelling out why you
should take this language or that one. I won’t yell, I promise.
I feel like
Hebrew is different from the rest of the languages. Whenever I hear someone
speaking Hebrew out in the real world, I feel an instant connection to them, like
we’re partial to some united community and not just two individuals who happen
to know the same language. And that language is beautiful, spoken like a song.
When you sign up to take Hebrew, you aren’t just signing up for any old
know that the magic word “Abracadabra”, actually originates from the Hebrew
words ( אברא כדברא ebrah kedevrah) which
means “I create as I have spoken”? Hebrew can be found almost anywhere you
look, if only you know how. Beyond popping up in the strangest places, the
culture behind the Hebrew language is fascinating, and oftentimes, delicious in
the case of schwarma, hummus, and falafel, to name a few. Knowing Hebrew also
gives you access to numerous ancient documents relevant to history and
different religions. When you sign up to take Hebrew, you aren’t just signing
up for a language, you’re signing up for culture.
the end of 7th period, I’m tired. I’m
dragging my feet. I’m watching the clock. When I walk through the door of my 8th
period Hebrew class that feeling goes away. As soon as I walk in, I see my
friends. Friends I’ve been with in Hebrew class since freshman year. Friends
I’ve gotten to know really well and look forward to seeing every day. I can say
with absolute certainty that many of the people in my Hebrew class will remain
close friends after high school and beyond, because when you sign up to take
Hebrew, you aren’t just signing up for a language, you’re signing up for a
people do you know who take Hebrew? I’d bet you could count the number on one
hand. Hebrew is a distinct class, partly because it’s a relatively small
program, but also because Hebrew is just so different from other languages.
Hebrew has its own alphabet that has both print and script versions. When
writing in Hebrew, you write right to left and you write the vowels under the
word or don’t even write them at all. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg.
Because when you sign up to take Hebrew, you aren’t just signing up for a
language, you’re signing up for a unique experience.
and Hebrew go hand in hand. I don’t know one person who doesn’t take Hebrew for
honors credit. And whether due to highly skilled teachers or the natural intuitiveness
of the language, many people in the Hebrew program have said Hebrew is one of
the easiest and most fun honors classes. Beyond that, colleges like students
that are different, and Hebrew is definitely a way to stand out. Furthermore,
many high schools have Hebrew Honors Societies, which give students the
opportunity to take the STAMP assessment, a test of biliteracy, and if you’re
up for an extreme challenge, the Hebrew SAT. All of these opportunities are
great additions to college applications, as well as being invaluable skills
after high school. When you sign up for Hebrew, you aren’t just signing up for
a language, you’re signing up for achievement.
most important of all, Hebrew is just plain fun. From having cookies every Friday
to taking a trip down to the kitchen to bake challah, something exciting is
always going on. And during class, we don’t just listen to lectures and wait
for class to be over. We write skits, play bingo and other games, learn about
things we are actually interested in and talk to each other- all in Hebrew. When
you sign up for Hebrew, you aren’t just signing up for a language, you’re
signing up for fun.
ahead, highlight your courses, plan out your schedule, hope you’re in the same
gym class as your best friend. But let’s make your course selection a little
less stressful. Because the questions isn’t should I take Hebrew, it’s why
Bloom, student in Hebrew 5: Advanced Hebrew Language and Literature