Modern Hebrew 101


Shannon Dion                                                                                     Fall 2018                                                                                 Dewing 212F



Office hours: Mondays and Wednesdays, 8:30 to 9:20, or by appointment.

Required Texts: Brandeis Modern Hebrew by Ringvald, Porath, Peleg, Shorr and Hascal is required, as well as the CD-ROM that comes with it.

Recommended if you plan to continue Hebrew all year: A Hebrew/English dictionary, Barron’s 501 Hebrew Verbs by Shmuel Bolozky, and Modern Hebrew, an Essential Grammar -Fourth Edition, by Lewis Glinert, 2016, Routledge.


Course objective: The goal of this course is for students to learn the Aleph-Bet, fundamental structures of the language and its basic forms. The focus of the course will be the acquisition of the necessary vocabulary for everyday conversations, reading and writing on a limited scale.

Course Description: Students will learn to read in both block and script letters, Students will be introduced to writing in block, but will learn to write in script for the course. Basic morphology, grammar and syntax will be introduced as well. The text book as well as additional resources such as music, games, short stories, movies and art will be used to provide different learning opportunities.

Course requirements: A serious interest in learning Hebrew is the only requirement for 101. As with learning any new language, the more you use Hebrew in your daily life outside the classroom the more proficient you will become.

Attendance: Daily attendance is required to progress in any foreign language. Two unexcused absences will be allowed, a third or more will result in a deduction in your final grade.  Missing the Oral Presentation will also result in a reduction in your grade, because you may be working with another person, and this will affect their grade as well.

Preparation and Participation: You are expected to be prepared for class each day, with the homework done at the beginning of each class on which it is due. Participation in the class is vital for improvement of pronunciation and reading skills. Homework that is assigned will help with reading and writing skills. Late homework will not be accepted without proof of illness.

Supplies: Along with your textbook, you will need a notebook for keeping notes and doing homework as well as a folder or binder to keep things organized.

Language Lab: Using previously learned vocabulary, games and on-line resources, lab will give students the opportunity to put the things they have learned to work.

Exams and quizzes: There will be a mid-term exam and a final exam. The mid-term will cover knowledge of the alpha-bet, as well as beginning reading, vocabulary and grammar skills. The Final exam will cover the entire course. Time will be spent before the mid-term and final exam reviewing covered material. After the introduction of the alphabet, quizzes will be given bi-weekly to assess progress.

Oral Exams: along with the mid-term there will be a brief oral exam covering learned vocabulary. Before the final exam, there will be one oral presentation in the form of a two or three person dialog. Each group will be required to have a 2-4 minute discussion covering basic conversation skills. The topics will be chosen several weeks before the presentation.

Honor Code: As with all Kalamazoo College courses, it is assumed that all work will be your own and that you will follow the school’s Honor Code. It is also assumed that you are in this class to actually learn the language. To this end, any plagiarism or coping of other student’s work will result in a failing grade.


Grades will be based on the following factors:

Class participation   30%                                Homework (including lab work)   10 %

Quizzes   10%                                                 mid-term   15%

Oral presentation   10%                                  Final exam   25%



Week #           Monday                      Wednesday                Thursday                   Friday

1.  9/10            No Class                      Introduction                Lab                              Alef-bet

2.  9/17            Alef-bet                       No Class                      Lab                              Alef-bet

3.  9/24            Ch. 1                           Ch. 1                           Lab                              Ch. 1

4.  10/1            Ch. 1                           Ch. 1                           Lab                              Review           

5.  10/8            mid-term                     Oral mid-term             Lab                              Break

6.  10/15          Ch. 2                           Ch. 2                           Lab                              Ch. 2

7.  10/22          Ch. 2                           Ch. 2                               Lab                              Ch. 2

8.  10/29          Ch. 2                           Ch. 2/3                        Lab                              Ch. 3  

9.  11/5            Ch. 3                           Ch. 3                          Lab                              Ch. 3

10.  11/12        Ch. 3                  Ch. 3/Orals prep                   Orals                            Review


There will be no class on Monday, September 10th or Wednesday, September 19 for Jewish Holidays.

Mid semester break will be Friday, October 12th.

The Final exam will be Monday, November 19th, 6:30pm – 9pm.