Adult Education

Adult Education

Classes, events, and programs are open to Temple members and the community at large. It is Temple Emanu-El policy to make it possible for anyone to attend, regardless of financial situation. Call the Temple Office to make arrangements; your privacy will be respected.

Look for fliers, Ha-Sofer bulletin articles, and on the website for announcements with updated information about our programs.

New people bring new and interesting ideas. If you have suggestions or Jewish-related instructional talents you’d like to share, or if you would like to join the committee, which meets once a month, contact Adult Ed Co-Chairs, Madelynn Micon or Laurie Baron at

Some of our learning opportunities include….

Coffee with the Rabbi

Join us for our Coffee with the Rabbi series. These sessions will be an open forum to discuss topics of interest to the group and the rabbis. No preparation is necessary, just an interest in Jewish learning and a chance to pick Rabbi Devorah and Rabbi Benj’s brains.
Cost is free. No RSVP required.
Every Wednesday, 11 am — 12:00 pm (during Covid-19 shutdown)

Zoom Lecture: Dr. Jeff Demsky
Ahchoo! Ahchoo! Let’s Blame the Jews:
Disease Tropes in Covid-19 Cartoons and Memes

Saturday, January 9 @ 7 pm

Pandemics breed more than disease. Viruses provoke scapegoating and Jews are common targets. Seven hundred years ago, Bubonic Plague lore cast them as social toxins. Martin Luther’s writings, Protocols’ claims, Nazi discourses, and, currently, “alt right” websites have maintained this negative branding. During the Covid-19 outbreak, slurs of “Jew Flu” and “Holocoughs” reveal an old wisdom: namely that Jews living in majority Christian nations face increased negative scrutiny during trying times. This talk assembles and analyzes dozens of these current images, situated alongside earlier historical examples.

In this talk, Dr. Demsky will focus on American cartoonist Ben Garrison, whose drawings disseminate Covid-19 antisemitism and which are occasionally retweeted by President Trump. Garrison rehashes familiar anti-Rothschild and anti-Soros smears. Notably, he implicates Christians, namely Anthony Fauci, into his anti-Jewish critiques. He also reassigns Nazi and Holocaust imagery to “Jewish” scientists, depicting them as trying to enslave Christendom via their mask-wearing mandates and inoculations.

Jeffrey Demsky is an Associate Professor of Political Science and History at San Bernardino Valley College. The University of Florida awarded his doctorate in US History. He completed his Master’s Degree in modern European History at the American University in Washington D.C., and his doctorate in U.S. History at the University of Florida.

Dr. Demsky’s scholarship exists at the intersection of western popular culture and Holocaust representation. His work analyzes its portrayal in Anglo-American theatre, film, music, television programs and Internet sites. He has presented his work at many global conference and his articles and essays have appeared in American, British, Canadian, Dutch, French and German publications.

His forthcoming book, Irreverent Remembrance: Nazi and Holocaust Representations in Anglo-American Popular Culture, 1945-2020 explores how cheeky representations of this history, while violating expectations for solemnity in depicting the Holocaust, can promote awareness of it, especially among uninitiated twenty-first century learners.

Please watch the Temple weekly emails for information on signing up for the Zoom link.

Biblical Hebrew Class

This class, taught by Rabbi Benj Fried, is for people who have completed a Hebrew course before and are interested in going into more depth with their Hebrew learning.  The ability to decode and read Hebrew is a prerequisite.  This class will be focused on grammar and translation of Biblical passages.

Time: Sundays, 2 – 3 pm

Dates: October 18 and 25, November 1, 8 and 15, December 6 and 13, January 10 and 24, February 7, 21 and 28, March 7, 14 and 21, April 11, 18 and 25, May 2 and 16.

Cost $125

Registration for this class is closed.

Adult Ed Website Streaming Resources

Jewish institutions, organizations, and synagogues have been streaming Jewish classes, concerts, films, lectures, museum tours, and podcasts ever since the pandemic began. You can find calendars for much of this programming at:

• My Jewish Learning (daily):

• Laurie Baron (weekly posted on Thursdays), “Streaming Jewish Programming,” San Diego Jewish World,

Sources of Recorded and/or Streaming Jewish Programming:
• Alan Leve Center for Jewish Studies, UCLA: and

• American Jewish University,

• Association for Jewish Studies,

• Breman Museum of Atlanta,

• Center for Jewish History:

• Contemporary Jewish Museum,

• Dallas Holocaust and Human Rights Museum,

• Hadassah Brandeis Institute,

• Hebrew Union College,

• Holocaust and Humanity Center,

• Holocaust Museum of Houston,

• Illinois Holocaust Museum and Education Center,

• Jewish Museum,

• Jewish Music Institute,

• Jewish Theological Seminary,

• Jewish Women’s Archive,

• Los Angeles Museum of the Holocaust,–events/events/

• Melton, Hebrew University,

• Museum of Jewish Heritage:

• Near Eastern and Jewish Studies, Brandeis University,

• 92nd Street Y,

• Orange County Community Scholar Program:

• Pardes Institute of Jewish Studies,

• Program in Jewish Studies, University of Colorado,

• San Diego Center for Jewish Culture,

• Shalom Hartman Institute,

• Sousa Mendes Foundation,

• Spertus Institute for Jewish Learning and Leadership,

• Tam Institute for Jewish Studies, Emory University,

• Taube Center for Jewish Studies, Stanford University,

• Temple Emanu-El Streicker Center:

• Tikvah Fund,

• United States Holocaust Memorial Museum:

• Vilna Shul,