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Learn from the community; with the community

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Hebrew is not only the key to living in Israel and to its culture but also to feeling part of a community. Do you speak Hebrew after finishing Ulpan? Most of the Olim we spoke to say that they do not use Hebrew in their everyday life. Olim work and socialize in their native tongue and don’t feeling comfortable speaking Hebrew outside the ‘safe’ environment of Ulpan. We believe living in Hebrew is a way to create community and a sense of belonging.

Join our new program called Alter.native– a program that fills the gap between Ulpan and everyday life. It’s an alternative Hebrew course where you will be given the tools to not only speak in Hebrew but to really live in Hebrew. Alter.native is an eight-week evening course with two different tracks taught by Sabras.

Alter.Native has been designed to provide a Hebrew learning experience bringing ‘students’ together with Sabras, native Israelis. We believe that boosting participants’ self-confidence and creating a community that they learn with and from are the route (nativ) to immersion.

The teachers in this program are members of Jerusalem Village community wanting to help the new internationals with Hebrew. The Teachers will go through special training emphasizing the difficulties Olim have after their Aliyah, the difference between Olim from various origin countries and the importance of empathy when teaching and learning a new language. TAs will help the teacher during sessions, not only with logistics but also as other representatives of the community.

The content of the program is being developed with the help of an external expert consultant, along with our focus groups results, the Ministry of Immigrant Absorption’s surveys and other data collected.

What is the Program

This is not a program in which basic Hebrew is acquired but a program of expertise and self-confidence boosting in speaking, reading and writing in Hebrew as a key to a more fulfilling meaning full life in Israel: Living in Hebrew and not just living in Israel.

 

 

 

1. Break down the barrier of one-on-one communication between native Hebrew speakers and ‘newcomers’ to the Hebrew language.

Personal relationships require strong communication and developing ‘social Hebrew’ is a key element for entry into deeper connections between native Israelis and those from abroad thereby leading to deeper friendships.

2. Give students of Hebrew an affordable way to a boost their self-confidence in speaking, reading and writing.

While the current methodologies of classroom learning of Hebrew work for grammar and vocabulary building, peer-to-peer community communication is a key link to providing a feeling of being able to succeed in self-expression.

3. Encourage the use of Hebrew as a path towards bridging gaps between native Israelis and the global Jewish community thereby making an impact on shared society.

When individuals from diverse communities come together a shared language is a crucial element of understanding each other and developing Hebrew-speaking skills can open new doors for engagement and shared futures.

4. Creating a community.

Research states that the most important thing in acquiring a new language is motivating the student. We believe that the way to do that is by creating a tight knit, helpful supportive community. We offer two kinds of community to our students. First, the group of participants who all have in common their goal of living in Hebrew. The second, unlike in other Hebrew courses, is comprised not only of Olim but also of Sabras, for whom Hebrew is their mother tongue. This combination is our unique alternative to ulpan. Our students: Learn from the community, with the community.

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The first track is called Yom.yom and is for those who have completed A+ level of Hebrew ulpan.

Yom.yom is an eight-week program, meeting once a week for an hour and a half and then followed by 30 minutes of mingling and office hours with the teacher (19 hours total).
The program seeks to provide practical tools for fitting in socially with better Hebrew communication, language, and social savvy.  

‬The curriculum includes solving Hebrew word puzzles and crosswords, board games, recipes, and everyday situation simulations- all in Hebrew to empower and boost confidence: because when you don’t try you can’t succeed. ‬‬‬

  • Starting February 8 – March 28 (Mondays)
  • 19:30-21:30
  • Beit Avi Chai: 44 King George St., Jerusalem
  • 300 NIS (Subsidized price)
*It is important to state that even though these programs are designed before the course, the groups’ character, wants and needs may change adapting the course to the specific needs of the participants and/or the success of curriculum elements. For example, if the group will express the need to focus more on bureaucracy or Israeli popular culture, the program will change accordingly.
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The second is called Ma.kore and is for those with level C+ of Hebrew ulpan.

The participants in this track will read an Israeli novel together, both at home alone and together out loud, and discuss the content with their peers.

In this track participants will be exposed to modern Israeli culture in which Hebrew is the primary component. Difficult idioms will be explained and new words will be taught.

Ma.kore is program held during the evening in order to allow students and full-time professionals to participate.

  • Starting February 10th-March 30th (Wednesdays)
  • 19:30-21:30
  • Beit Avi Chai: 44 King George St., Jerusalem
  • 300 NIS (Subsidized price)
*It is important to state that even though these programs are designed before the course, the groups’ character, wants and needs may change adapting the course to the specific needs of the participants and/or the success of curriculum elements. For example, if the group will express the need to focus more on bureaucracy or Israeli popular culture, the program will change accordingly.
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How do we do it?

Using Social Media:

A fundamental tool in this day and age, a tool that is often ignored in language courses. We use social media in a few ways- the teachers help the students share their lives and all enjoy.

  • A Facebook group for each track- here students can share their stories, pictures, and experiences. This is where the teacher also shares his or her tips and input, and the TAs contribute by advertising different events.
  • A WhatsApp group– allows immediate responses from the teacher and a forum that is open to all participants.
  • Jerusalem Village blog– we don’t keep things to ourselves, the larger community will also benefit from this course. Reading students’ essays and book reviews, sharing their stories as they live in Hebrew, learning Hebrew and enjoying our community.

During Class:

  • Olim– will rely on each other during lessons, will listen to others, will read out loud and will present short presentations.
  • Teacher– our teachers are also certified group leaders, knowing and understanding the difficulties facing olim. When creating the lessons and when teaching Teachers will help ensure a stable, supportive, learning environment.
  • TA’s– are a strong component in our program, participating in some activities and dialogue during class, making sure that our students are ready for transition to speak Hebrew in the real world.
  • Mingling– after every lesson, 30 minutes are devoted to pure mingling time. It’s the time to talk to your peers, reviewing material or just talking about your day.

After Class:

  • Boosters– once a month we offer a group of Sabras and a group of Olim an event emphasizing Hebrew, as a language and as a culture. The boosters are a confidence boost, speaking Hebrew, listening to lectures and asking questions, watching movies and plays, cooking and crafting- all in Hebrew. Different crowd every time, different options to speak Hebrew to different people and creating new connections.
  • Joint tasks– homework could be writing an essay, interviewing people or creating a short video. It’s all done in pairs or groups and includes the TAs and the teacher.

Looking for volunteers @Alter.native

We are looking for teacher’s assistants (TAs) to join the Jerusalem Village community!

This is a great opportunity to share your knowledge and passion for Israel and Hebrew with Olim 

The TA will help the teacher during sessions, a bit of organization but mainly teaching and assisting the participants with their Hebrew

The TA needs to be empathetic and patient, a great listener and mainly willing to speak Hebrew with the participants. 

The programs goal is to help Olim speak Hebrew without fear

We offer the TAs a stipend and free entrance to several Jerusalem Village events.

Feel like you’re up for the challenge? You’re the person we are looking for?

Contact us at: programs@jerusalemvillage.org

Upcoming

 

Questions?