Adult Education

The 2019-20 year features a wide range of classes designed to deepen congregants' knowledge of Judaism and/or Jewish culture, provide opportunities to make and enhance connections with one another, and have fun. 

Please also check the What's Happening page and the Calendar, for additional programs and activities of interest to adults!

Registration: For activities requiring RSVP and/or payment, CBE Members please complete the online registration form, or contact the office if you prefer.  Non-members are welcomecontact the office with any questions or to register.

Books: Most books for CBE adult classes can be purchased from Amazon. CBE receives a small advertising fee if you use the links on the CBE Amazon Page to make your purchase.

Ten Paths to God - The Final Three Paths

Taught by Rabbi Michelle “Mina” Goldsmith
Sundays, 10:30 AM to 12:00 PM - Oct 27, Nov 3 & 17

Last year we began this course on Judaism and Jewish values based on traditional Biblical and rabbinic sources combined with the teachings of Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks. This fall join us for the final three sessions on Kiddush Ha-Shem (sanctification of God’s name), responsibility, and Why I am a Jew. Each session includes a brief video followed by text study as individuals, in hevruta (with one partner), and as a group. No prerequisites; each session stands on its own.

Fee: Members FREE, $18 Non-Members (for the series) ; CBE Members please complete the online registration form, or contact the office if you prefer. Non-members are welcome; contact the office with any questions or to register.

People of the Book Read the Book – The Writing

Taught by Rabbi Michelle “Mina” Goldsmith
Wednesdays 12:00 PM-1:30 PM
Begins October 30, through May (Check the online calendar for exceptions)

For over a thousand years, Jews have been referred to as The People of the Book. Although in modern times part of our Jewish identity is based on our historic commitment to study as evidenced by this name, too often we have not really read “the Book,” the Tanakh (the Five Books of Moses and the fascinating books of Writings and Prophets). Join us as we study the section of the Tanakh called Ketuvim, or Writings, beginning with the Book of Psalms, continuing with Proverbs, and onwards through the rest of the writings. We will use multiple translations and commentaries to enhance our learning. Note: The 3-volume set of The Hebrew Bible: A Translation with Commentary, by Robert Alter, is very expensive; the ebook is $15.99 at (We will only be using the first volume in this class.)

Fee: $54 Members, $72 Non-Members (for the series) ; CBE Members please complete the online registration form, or contact the office if you prefer. Non-members are welcome; contact the office with any questions or to register.

National Jewish Outreach Program Crash Course in Hebrew Reading

Taught by Rabbi Michelle “Mina” Goldsmith
Thursdays, 6:00-7:30 PM – November 7, 14 & 21, December 12 & 19

Participants in the free Hebrew Reading Crash Course will learn to read Hebrew in five sessions. Designed for those with little or no background in Hebrew, it concentrates on teaching the Hebrew alphabet and reading skills. Each participant in this free class will receive a free copy of NJOP’s Reishith Binah Hebrew primer.

CBE Members please complete the online registration form, or contact the office if you prefer. Non-members are welcome; contact the office with any questions or to register.

Beyond Dispute – Debates That Have Shaped and Still Shape Jewish Life – Part 1

Taught by Rabbi Michelle “Mina” Goldsmith

Select Sundays in winter/spring, 10:30-noon – January 19, 2020, February 16, March 8 & 22, April 12, May 17

Debates—philosophical, spiritual, ethical, and cultural—are at the heart of Judaism and Jewish life. Are religion and reason compatible? Can Jewish law change based on context? How do we teach and talk about the Holocaust and the State of Israel? Should we prioritize Jewish causes or universal causes in our giving? Is Jewish tradition intrinsically patriarchal and ableist? Is our relationship with God defined by human obligation or divine compassion?

Each session includes a short video lecture featuring a Jewish Theological Seminary faculty member, text study, and guided group discussion. We will explore how these debates have been manifested over the course of Jewish history, and discuss their continued resonance today.

Fee: $36 CBE Members / $54 Non-Members (for the series) + $5 materials fee ; CBE Members please complete the online registration form, or contact the office if you prefer. Non-members are welcome; contact the office with any questions or to register.

Introduction to Judaism: Personalized Studies

Designated Sundays; Contact [email protected]

Judaism is the dynamic and inspirational religion of the Jewish people, going back over 3,500 years. In this introductory course, those who are seeking to enhance their Jewish knowledge of Judaism and Jewish practices can learn about the wisdom and beauty of this wonderful tradition and oldest of the monotheistic faiths.

Through an intensive study of the holidays and life cycle including readings from the Hebrew Bible, rabbinic literature, the prayer book, and philosophy texts, students will enhance their understanding of Jewish history, culture, and tradition.


Fee: $54 Members, $108 Non-members (for the series including all materials and books); please contact Rabbi Mina for more information and to register.

Pirkei Avot Shabbat Study Session

Taught by Rabbi Michelle “Mina” Goldsmith
Following services on the 1st and 3rd Shabbat of every month (see calendar for exceptions).

Pirkei Avot, also known as Ethics of the Fathers, is the only the only tractate from the Mishnah that does not contain commentary in the Gemara as part of the Talmud. Rather, this five-chapter book stands on its own as one of the greatest collections of rabbinic teachings on ethics, spirituality, morality, Jewish history, and Torah study. Utilizing Pirkei Avot Lev Shalem, which contains commentaries from Rabbi Gordon Tucker and Rabbi Tamar Elad-Appelbaum, two leaders of the Conservative/Masorti movement, we engage in lively analysis and discussion of these ancient yet eternally relevant teachings.

No fee, no RSVP required. No charge, no registration required. Come when you can!

Photo of the torah and yad on the bema

Torah Trope for Adults

Instructor: David Cerny
Fall/Winter 2019

Have you always wanted to learn how to chant from a Torah scroll? Would you like to participate in your child's upcoming Bar/Bat Mitzvah? Adult Torah trope class forming to start this fall/winter. Learn to chant from the Torah in 7 easy lessons. Ability to read Hebrew is the only requirement.

Fee: $90 (for the series). This 7-session course will start after a minimum of four students express interest. Contact David Cerny for more information and/or to express your interest in taking this class.

Better Balance and Mobility

CBE is again partnering with Sequoia Health & Fitness, Inc. to help members improve balance and reduce the number of falls and related injuries. Being able to balance without the fear of falling keeps you mobile and independent allowing you to travel, play with the grandkids, shop and live your life to the fullest. 

This program uses physical therapy based exercises to strengthen  key muscles and improve balance. Our classes are appropriate for all ages and abilities. Comfy clothing and a good pair of non-slip shoes are all that is needed. Canes, walkers and wheelchairs welcome. Classes meet at CBE Wednesdays from 12:30-1:30 PM and Thursdays from 6:30-7:30 PM. 

Cost and schedule vary; for more information or to sign up please call the CBE office at 703-860-4515 ext 101.

Beth Emeth Adult Classes on Request

These classes are scheduled after a minimum number of people have expressed interest:

  • Learn to be a bimah gabbai
  • Mashgiach class - get certified to supervise (or cook alone) in our kosher kitchens
  • Become a certified hagbah (Torah lifter)
  • Learn to lead part of the service
  • Consider taking part in the next Adult B'nai Mitzvah Class

Let us know you’re interested! Email [email protected].

Registration for Adult Education Classes

CBE Members may use the online registration form, or contact the office if you prefer.  Non-members are welcomecontact the office via email or call (703)860-4515 x101 with any questions and to register.