2020-2021 Curriculum

The Jewish Studies curriculum includes two hours of study per semester and is offered on Wednesday evenings. Two Midrasha credits are earned for each successfully completed class. Students must attend two-thirds of their Jewish Studies classes each semester to receive credit. Students will be required to make-up work to receive credit for their classes if they miss more than two-thirds of their semester. Students will be required to complete make-up work for any Hebrew classes they miss.



8th Grade Core: Jewish History

“Know from where you come, and where you are going” (Pirkei Avot 3:1)
As a people we feel a strong connection to our past and our traditions. In order to take our place in the chain of Jewish tradition, we must understand the other links in the chain.


9th Grade Core: Holocaust Studies

Students will study the historical conditions which surrounded WWII and the Holocaust, along with stories of heroism and survival, and the American and global responses. They will consider what aspects are unique to the Holocaust and what elements we see repeated throughout history. 


10th Grade Core: Evolving Liberal Judaism

A historical overview of the development of liberal Judaism and the development of progressive movements.


11th Grade Core: Social Issues in Contemporary Israeli Society

Students will examine the social issues facing Israeli society today, including: poverty, racism, asylum seekers, LGBTQ equality, religious pluralism and much more.


12th Grade Core: Jewish Social Justice

What is the Jewish response to the social issues of our day? Students will learn how to apply Jewish values as we navigate the challenges of our world.



8th Grade Core: Halacha

An exploration of Halacha (Jewish law based on Talmud). This class will explore the way this traditional Jewish practice can add structure and meaning to our lives.


9th Grade Core: Moral Dilemmas

Students will examine moral dilemmas presented in our biblical texts and discuss their modern implications.


10th Grade Core: Comparative Judaism

Students will learn about the major Jewish movements as a means of deepening their understanding of where they fit on the spectrum of religious beliefs. Students will have a Q&A session with representatives of each movement.


11th Grade Core: Understanding the Conflict: The Lasting Impact of 48 & 67

The Arab-Palestinian-Israeli conflict is complex. By examining key moments of impact, students will gain a deeper understanding of how we arrived at the current situation.


12th Grade Core: Jewish Cooking

Food is often at the center of Jewish tradition. In addition to learning recipes and kitchen skills, students will discuss the historical context for each recipe as well as the role of Kashrut in Jewish life.



The electives offered vary each semester. Content is based on the expertise of available teachers and student feedback. Examples of electives that maybe offered are:

  • Ask Big Questions
  • Israeli Film & TV
  • Intro to Yiddish
  • O.M.G. (An exploration of the God concept)
  • Jews in Sports
  • Jewish Humor
  • Drama
  • Intro to Arabic
  • Jewish Life After High School


HEBREW (Elective)

This year, we are again offering optional Hebrew classes at different levels. Advancement from one class to another is expected and encouraged. Students can begin taking Hebrew in the fall at any time during their Midrasha career. Hebrew classes meet twice a week on Sundays and Wednesdays.


Hebrew for Credit

Madison, Middleton, Verona, Mt. Horeb, Waunakee, Edgewood, Wisconsin Heights, Columbus and Albany School District 9th - 12th grade students studying Hebrew at Midrasha may choose to receive high school credit from the district for this study. Midrasha has private school status for the purpose of transferring Hebrew language credit to public schools. Students receive up to one-half credit per school year. Students will be required to complete make-up work for any Hebrew classes they miss. At the end of each school year, the Midrasha Director notifies the high schools with the names of students who have earned Hebrew credit. If you are interested in obtaining credit in a school district which is not listed above, please contact the Director.

Email Kendra Sager, Director, at midrasha@jewishmadison.org