A primary focus of the Judaic Studies is to enable students to acquire a solid foundation in learning traditional Jewish texts.
The school’s Judaic Studies are taught from the Modern Orthodox perspective, where all students learn Talmudic Literature, Chumash (Bible), Navi (Prophets), Halacha (Jewish Law), Jewish history, and Hebrew language. Yavneh offers courses at various levels, enabling students to learn at a level and pace appropriate to their prior exposure to Jewish texts. As a result, students with minimal background in Jewish texts can enter Yavneh Academy and ultimately reach a high level of proficiency and understanding.
Yavneh offers a special introductory track, the Mechina Program, for students with limited prior exposure to Jewish texts and observance. This program consists of one year of study in Hebrew language, Essentials (study and discussion of the Jewish prayer-book), Chumash, and Jewish Ethics. The Judaic Studies at Yavneh helps students gain the skills necessary for lifelong Torah learning and emphasizes and embeds a special love for the State of Israel.
The Judaic Studies for both young men and women consists of:
4 years of Hebrew Language
at least 2 years of Chumash (Bible)
at least 2 years of Oral Law
4 years of Jewish Thought and Law
up to 4 Elective courses
Hebrew Language — The goal of the Hebrew language sequence is to provide students with proficiency in modern Hebrew. This means, at a minimum, that students are able to proficiently read, write, and converse in modern Hebrew. Advanced students are provided the opportunity to study Hebrew literature.
Chumash (Bible) — Through our Chumash program, we provide students with a thorough understanding of Torah content. In addition, students engage in textual analysis that grows more sophisticated as they progress through the grade levels. By the time they graduate from Yavneh, students have the skills necessary to continue their study of Torah at the finest Yeshivot and seminaries in the world. The program’s primary goal is to have students view the Torah as a living document — a guidebook to a way of living that is relevant to their daily lives.
Oral Law (Mishnah and Talmud) — Students are engaged in the study of Talmudic literature throughout their time at Yavneh. Although content mastery is a goal of the program, we strive to encourage students to form a lifelong love of Talmud and a commitment to learning it. Students not only learn the broad strokes of content, but also the subtleties and nuances of Talmudic analysis and come to understand the Talmud’s role at the core of Jewish faith.
Jewish Thought and Law — Yavneh Academy's four-year sequence in Jewish Thought and Law provides students with a solid grounding in the philosophy of Judaism. Here, students are able to discuss Jewish approaches to daily issues and explore the implications of Jewish texts on contemporary issues. Students are able to ask the “real” questions they have about Judaism and discuss their faith with teachers in a safe and comfortable setting.
Electives — Judaic electives are given in a variety of areas designed to broaden the scope of the curriculum and give students agency in choosing the areas of Judaism they learn in a more in depth manner. Numerous electives are offered each year for juniors and seniors. Some electives which have been offered in the past include: Jewish History, Advanced Jewish Philosophy, Jewish Ethics, Zionism, Parsha (the weekly Torah reading) and Navi (prophets and scriptures).