By Rabbi Sharon Litwin
Summer is a great time for swimming, playing, lazying around and tuning out. Its a wonderful time for family and friends, for BBQs and baseball games. Its the time we spend at the beach and on roller coasters and reading the kind of books we love. It is not, usually, when we remember to study the Hebrew we learned at religious school.
But, it could be! And here’s why… tons of studies show that language acquisition and retention is best kept up with consistent review and practice. Tons of other studies show that confidence is built or bulldozed in the first weeks of school, depending on how much students feel they know when they walk into the classroom again after summer break. And Hebrew learning doesn’t have to be from books…our kids love to be on their devices, tablets, phones, laptops, etc. So, instead of giving “summer homework,” as my own daughter gets on paper from her teachers every year, here are a few suggestions for apps and games that you might download for your Hebrew students at home to use and play on during a drive to the beach, a flight to visit grandma and grandpa, a long wait on line at Great Adventure or while lounging around in your backyard.
For younger students who are just learning letters and sounds, try Alef-Bet School House:
The best decoding Hebrew reading app is Alef-Bet Bullseye:
For those who want to increase their Hebrew vocabulary, try Touch of Hebrew with games, videos and audio (iPad only):
For reading and prayer review try Behrman House Click and Pray on line:
And, for tutorials give Shalom Hebrew a try:
Or, come see Rabbi Sharon a few times and keep me company in the quiet BBRS school wing for a 20 minute review or refresher or whatever Hebrew help you’d like.
Adults, you too can study Hebrew online. A great resource is http://www.hebrew-language.
Have a קיץ נעים — pleasant and wonderful summer!