If you're looking for Yiddish language classes in Boston, you've come to the right place. Our instructors are passionate about Yiddish and are experienced educators. Whether you are a complete beginner or grew up speaking the language, we have a class that will accommodate you. Students cover a wide age range, from young adults to seniors. We offer classes in the fall and spring at four levels -- Beginners, Advanced Beginners, Intermediate, and Advanced. Students in doubt about their course level may contact an instructor to discuss.
Fall 2013 Schedule
Beginners, Advanced Beginners and Intermediate Classes: 10 Tuesday evenings, 7:30 – 9:00pm, starting October 1
Advanced Reading Group: 10 Wednesday evenings, 7:30 - 9:00pm, starting October 2
Tuition Rates: BWC Members - $165; Non-members - $220; Young adult* BWC members - $99; Young adult non-members - $150 *Young Adult = under 30
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or you can register by sending a check indicating it is for a Yiddish registration, along with your name
, preferred phone AND email contact
, and class preference
Boston Workmen's Circle
1762 Beacon St.
Brookline, MA 02445
Beginner (Tues nights): Learn Yiddish reading, conversation skills and elementary grammar. This course will suit you whether you’re totally new to Yiddish or if you already know a few basics. Familiarity with the Hebrew alphabet recommended; students who don't yet know the alphabet will be asked to come to class a half hour early for the first few sessions. A textbook, songs, games, films and other multi-media materials will be used. Instructor: David Schlitt.
Advanced Beginner (Tues nights): Designed for students who already have some experience reading, writing and speaking Yiddish, this course will help you build conversational vocabulary, strengthen your grammar and develop reading skills. In addition to use of a textbook, students will also read simple short stories and poems; watch short film clips; practice speaking; and sing Yiddish songs. Instructor: Ri Turner.
Intermediate Reading Group Part II (Tues nights): Students will read short stories, in Yiddish, by a variety of Yiddish authors. English translations and/or glossaries will be available. Students should be familiar with Yiddish language, somewhat fluent in reading, and comfortable using Yiddish dictionaries. Grammatical constructions and idiomatic expressions will be explored as they occur in readings. Instructor: Lillian Leavitt
Advanced Reading Group: Introduction to the writings of Chaim Grade (Wed. nights): The advanced reading group will read, with the aid of an unpublished translation, Grade’s short story “Shifrele”. We will look at use of Yiddish idiom, cultural description, and religious reference. Discussion will be conducted in both Yiddish and English. Students must have Yiddish reading fluency, and must plan on committing time for class preparation. Instructor: Lillian Leavitt
Lillian Shporer Leavitt, a daughter of Shoah survivors, grew up speaking Yiddish and was graduated from the Boston Workmen's Circle Yiddish shule. A former computer software trainer, she is an experienced Yiddish teacher and translator, having taught at the Workmen's Circle, Gann Academy of Greater Boston, Boston University, and Brandeis University, as well as subtitled Yiddish films restored by the National Center for Jewish Film.
David Schlitt is a Ph.D. candidate in history at the University of Michigan and is beginning rabbinical training at Hebrew College in Newton. He served as a Graduate Fellow at the Yiddish Book Center in 2010-2011, and majored in Yiddish Studies as an undergraduate at Columbia University. He has taught at the Midtown-and Upper West Side Workmen's Circle shuln and is excited to return as a teacher to the Boston Arbeter Ring community in which he grew up!
Ri Turner is a rabbinical student at Hebrew College in Newton, with a special concentration in sacred music. She is a graduate of the advanced track of the Uriel Weinreich YIVO Advanced Zumer-Program in New York City and is continuing her studies with Yiddish literature classes at Harvard University. Ri took her first-ever Yiddish class right here at the Boston Workmen's Circle, and is thrilled to be returning as a teacher.