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FIRST HOUR CLASSES

BETTER TOGETHER Continuing Course open to students who participated first semester
Rabbi Judy Spicehandler (Grade 9-12) 6:30-7:25/MERCAZ nights
Ethics or Torah and Text
Cedar Sessions meet in lobby at 3:55PM
Meet at Cedar Village January 21, February 11, March 4. April 15, and May 6 – Final Party
MERCAZ students and Cedar Village Seniors continue to work together to create ethical wills and deepen their relationships with each other. This class is a joint program between MERCAZ Hebrew High School and Cedar Village with the Support of Better Together.

MOOT BEIT DIN COMPETITION: MAKING THE CASE IN A COURT OF JEWISH LAW
Lowell Lustig (Grades 9-12) 6:30-7:25
Ethics or Torah & Text
Do you have aspirations to dazzle a panel of judges or mesmerize a jury? A select group of students will train to participate in the RAVSAK moot court competition in Jewish Law and compete against each other. You will: Learn how to: Identify the legal issues in a case invoking Jewish Law following the study of Jewish texts (in English) on the issue. Build a legal argument and anticipate questions from the judges. Think on your feet while serving as a member of the Beit Din – a court of Jewish Law.

LANGUAGE LOUNGE I
Chaverim m’Israel, Stav and Liat (Grades 8-11) 6:30-7:25
***Students who took this class last semester may not sign up for this class.
Israel or Hebrew
Join the Chaverim from Israel and learn Hebrew in a fun and interactive way. This is a mostly Hebrew class designed for Americans who may not speak Hebrew but are willing to jump right in and give it a try. You will be immersed in a different discussion in Hebrew with your friends each week. Have fun in an informative way and use your Hebrew right away!


JEWISH FUNDRAISING
Brian Freedman (Grade 8-11) 6:30 – 7:25
Conservative Judaism
Have you ever wanted to buy something but couldn't afford it? Or help someone out but didn’t have the money to do it? Are you in a leadership position in an organization? Have you ever wondered how we fund our future? As you progress in leadership positions throughout your life, one thing will remain constant: the monetary needs of running an organization and leading a community. Join Brian in learning the basics of fundraising, discussing fundraising techniques with experts around Cincinnati, and design a fundraiser to fund the future of Mercaz. We will learn about grant writing, face to face solicitation, letter writing, and how to keep fundraising fun.

RETURN OF THE JewDi
Mitch Cohen (Grades 8 – 10) 6:30-7:25
Ethics or Torah and Texts or Theology
Learn all about Judaism by watching Star Wars, Dr. Who and Star Trek! It’s amazing how many sci fi stories share the same themes that Rabbis use to teach Jewish ethics and theology. What can the Borg teach us about Jewish rules about war? What can Dr. Who teach us about the Jewish ritual of Yartzheit and remembering our loved ones? What challenges would you face following the commandment to honor your father if your dad was Darth Vader? These and many other topics will be discussed after watching sci fi clips. Students who have taken my Star Trek course in the past can still take this class. We will cover additional episodes as well as other sci fi clips from TV and movies.

SOCIAL JUSTICE
Will Hall (Grades 9-11) 6:30- 7:25
Ethics or Holocaust
Does it bother you to hear things like over 45% of children in the Cincinnati area live below the poverty line? Does it make you want to get involved? Beyond it being a human desire to help, social justice work is deeply ingrained in Judaism and historically, Jews have been on the forefront of America’s social justice movements. We will be exploring and learning about the history of Jewish social justice, its evolution, how the Holocaust has evolved our sense of social justice, and what it looks like today. We will hear from professionals from the Cincinnati area, see how American Jewish social justice movements have responded to crises in America and around the world, and will do our own part by creating our own social justice program.



SECOND HOUR CLASSES

SENIOR SEMINAR
Rabbi Daniel Bogard (Grade 12) 7:35 – 8:30
Senior Seminar
The main goal of this course is for the students to take charge of their Judaism. This will be done by exploring Judaism in three ways: (1) A role model project, where individuals from the community will visit and speak about how Judaism plays out in their personal and professional lives. A core values project in which our group will be exposed to stories on the This I Believe website in order to write an essay about what each senior believes. (2) Class members will be involved in a hands-on mitzvah/tzedakah project of their own design as a way to bring to life the Jewish values that touch their hearts.


BE A JEWISH DETECTIVE: JEWISH HISTORY THROUGH OBJECTS
Rabbi Judy Spicehandler (Grades 8-11) 7:35-8:30
Jewish History
Come be a Jewish detective and explore the history of Jews and Judaism through an exploration of objects that Jews have used or created over the centuries. We will see what can be learned about Jewish life by looking at every-day objects and how they were made and used. How does the form of an object teach us about the people who used it and the values they held? As a final project you will have a chance to research your own object and report on what you find. We will examine ritual objects and every-day objects, as well as the architecture of key Jewish buildings and some primary documents in order to unpack their secrets. Time permitting we will visit the Skirball Museum and the American Jewish Archives. You will be required to bring a laptop or electronic tablet to class each week.

MADRICHIM WORKSHOP: TEACHING ASSISTANT PROGRAM
Stephanie Kogan (Grades 8 - 10) 7:35 – 8:30
Torah and Text
Explore what it means to be an effective Jewish educator by taking this exciting, interactive course! Participants in “Madrichim Workshop” will discover what’s involved in working in a Religious School setting. Use your knowledge about the Jewish holidays as the basis for discovering how content material can be informally and indirectly learned and/or reinforced through regular classroom activities. You will learn about the characteristics of effective teachers and have the opportunity to visit classrooms serving different age groups and discuss the physical layout, bulletin boards and learning materials in the room. Students will collect copies of our class activities, my lesson plans, the book projects and Jigsaw summaries, and distributed materials in order to build a resource file that they will be able to use for years to come. Come and explore how you too could make a positive contribution to a Religious School. This class will be taught using the theme of Jewish Holidays.


THE 70 FACE(T)S OF ISRAEL
Chaverim m’Israel, Stav Barkai and Liat Falah (Grades 8-11)
Israel
Come and explore the many facets of Israel as we explore Israel in its 70th year. Each week we will learn, discuss, explore, and go deeper into a facet of life in Israel- our lives as Israeli teens. Join us. We want to talk together!!


SRUGIM and SOCIETY: ISRAEL THROUGH TV, MEDIA, and CULTURE
Will Hall (Grades 9-11) 7:35-8:30
Israel or Ethics
Ever wondered what it is like to live in Israel? Ever watched an Israeli television series? In this class we will travel to Israel through the lens of media, literature and the award winning Israeli TV series Srugim. Srugim literally means “knitted,” and refers to the type of kippah worn by many Modern Orthodox Jews while also being a play-on-words regarding how the characters integrate into Israeli society. Srugim has been called the “Israeli Friends,” but this is more than a sitcom with a laugh track, it is a peak into the lives of Jewish women and men exploring their Judaism and finding themselves amongst the chaos.

THE JEWISH LENS: EXPLORING VALUES AND COMMUNITY THROUGH PHOTOGRAPHY
(Grades 9-10) 7:35-8:30
Ethics
This class will show you that you are indeed a photographer. We will explore Jewish ethical concepts and challenge ourselves to portray them through photographs. We will use the work of contemporary photographers to discover the art of photography and how it connects us to the local and global communities. Along the lines of connecting with a global community, we will utilize contemporary methods of photo sharing. We will learn about the basics of capturing a photo and explore various methods of photo editing. Students will have the opportunity to exhibit their work in Cincinnati, and some photos may be chosen to be part of a national exhibition of NAACCHHS schools. Students also have the opportunity to have their photos considered as part of an international exhibition at Beit Hatfutsot in Tel Aviv, Israel. This class will rely heavily on smartphone technology as well as using classic digital cameras provided by Mercaz.

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MERCAZ
3201 E. Galbraith Road
Cincinnati, OH 45236

Mercaz is a product of the Conservative Synagogues in Cincinnati and the USCJ.
Mercaz Director - Ari Finkelstein, 792 5082 ext. 123
, ari@mercazhs.org