Hebrew Bible (The Academy exclusive course)

  • Grades10-12
  • DatesSession 1: June 17-July 17, 2024 & Session 2: July 9-August 2, 2024
  • Credits.333 credits
  • Price$750

Hebrew Bible is an exclusive offering with The Academy that fulfills the 10th grade religious studies graduation requirement for Parish.

The course will guide students in becoming more familiar with reading the ancient texts in the Hebrew Bible and welcome them to explore some of their own interests in the Bible as a living cultural conversation. Together, we will read and discuss passages from the collection of Hebrew scriptures (including the Torah, the Nevi’im, and the Ketuvim) called the Hebrew Bible or Tanakh.

The principal goals of our course are two-fold: (1) to become familiar with some of the core concepts and principles, histories and theologies of the biblical text and to learn to interpret these religious texts in light of modern scholarship. And (2), to welcome you to explore some of your own interests in the Bible as a living contemporary cultural conversation (Bible in art; Bible in law; architecture of the Bible; Bible and gender; Bible and justice; Bible in television and film; etc.) We will use multiple methodologies of biblical criticism to explore concepts of: G-d, sacrifice, monotheism, idolatry, law, the Temple, love, mercy, justice, evil, and the messianic figure in their original social and historical contexts. We will also discuss how these biblical concepts impact our cultural lives to this day. The Hebrew Bible is ancient but modern, Western but Eastern, ours but not. I will encourage you to not assume you know or remember what is in the text, and to explore it in all its strange complexity.

To meet the religious studies graduation requirement, either Hebrew Bible or New Testament History and Literature must be completed in addition to World Religions and Contemporary Religious Issues during a student’s tenure in Upper School.

Instructors: Mtr. Alina Williams (Session 1), Dr. Courtney O’Dell-Chaib (Session 2)

Attendance Expectations & Requirements

Classes require in-person attendance at the Midway campus. Instructors encourage students to attend all scheduled classes to ensure success, but students are required to attend FIVE of seven face-to-face sessions to receive credit for the course. Additionally, students must attend one of the scheduled orientation sessions in May.

Students must complete and turn in an attendance plan to the instructors showing how they plan to meet the minimum attendance requirements.

Required Orientation for all students: Week of May 28 (specific days & times TBD)

Session 1 with Mtr. Alina Williams: June 17-July 17, 2024 (Must attend FIVE sessions)

  • Monday, June 17 (10:30-12:00 pm)
  • Thursday, June 20 (10:30-12:00 pm)
  • Monday, June 24 (10:30-12:00 pm)
  • Thursday, June 27 (10:30-12:00 pm)
  • Monday, July 1 (10:30-12:00 pm)
  • Monday, July 8 (10:30-12:00 pm)
  • Thursday, July 11 (10:30-12:00 pm)

Final date for all Coursework – Wednesday, July 17 at midnight

Session 2 with Dr. O’Dell-Chaib: July 9-August 2, 2024 (Must attend FIVE sessions)

  • Tuesday, July 9 (10:30-12:00 pm)
  • Thursday, July 11 (10:30-12:00 pm)
  • Monday, July 15 (10:30-12:00 pm)
  • Thursday, July 18 (10:30-12:00 pm)
  • Monday, July 22 (10:30-12:00 pm)
  • Wednesday, July 24 (10:30-12:00 pm)
  • Monday, July 29 (10:30-12:00 pm)

Final date for all Coursework – Friday, August 2 at midnight

“These classes are so helpful in allowing me to do required electives over the summer so that I can take the electives I really want to take during the year and stay ahead of the curve.”

“I benefited from the class because of my instructors who were very clear with instructions and great with communication.”

Student Testimonials

Program Instructor, Session 1

Rev. Alina Williams

Email Mtr. Alina

Program Instructor, Session 2

Courtney O’Dell-Chaib

Email Dr. O’Dell-Chaib