Continuing Education

Beth Sholom B’nai Israel has always prided itself in offering a Continuing Education program of great depth and diversity. A wide variety of mini-courses and lecture series highlight our program each year. All individuals whether members of BSBI or not, whether Jewish or not, are welcome to participate in our courses, lectures, and programs.

To register online, scroll down to the form on the bottom of this page. To pay by check, mail this form along with a check made out to BSBI to the office at 400 East Middle Turnpike, Manchester, CT 06040. You can also bring your registration form and payment with you to classes that meet on days other than Shabbat. 

2017-2018 Continuing Education Schedule

Shabbat Programs:

  • 1st Saturday of the month: Learner’s Minyan
    • Learn the structure and choreography of the Saturday service in a relaxed setting. Bring your questions. 10:00-11:00 AM, Led by Michelle Konigsburg
  • 2nd Saturday of the month: Shirat HaLev
    • Awaken your soul with a musical contemplative interpretation of the Shabbat Morning Service. 10:00-11:00 AM, Led by Cantor Bolts
  • 3rd Saturday of the month: Meditation Service
    • Prepare for prayer with chanting of prayers and mindful meditation. 9:30 -10:30 AM, Led by Rabbi Konigsburg
  • 4th Saturday of the month: Life, the Universe, and Judaism
    • Come learn what science has to say about our universe and life as we know it, then discuss Judaism’s views on the same subjects. 10:00 –11:00 AM, Led by Michael Chernicoff


Lunch and Learn: Exploring the Many Facets of the Bible

Weekly classes on Tuesdays, Noon-1:30pm. Beginning Nov. 7, 2017. Led by Rabbi Konigsburg

Starting with Genesis, a weekly chance to explore the plain and hidden lessons of the Bible. Bring your own kosher dairy lunch

BSBI Academy – Mini-courses in Judaica

Weekly classes on Tuesday evenings, 7:30-8:30 pm. Led by Rabbi Konigsburg. 

  • Living as a Conservative Jew: Nov. 7, 14, and 21, 2017
    • Understanding what it really means to practice Judaism as a member of a Conservative Synagogue.
  • Responsa of the RA Law Committee: Dec. 5, 12, 2017
    • Examples of how Conservative Rabbis approach Jewish Law. 
  • If Not Now, When?: Jan. 2, 9, 16. 2018
    • A guide to bringing Jewish values and practices into your life.
  • Why You Can’t Pray and What You Can Do About It: Jan. 30, Feb, 6, 13, 20, 2018
    • Making prayer personal and meaningful. Creating your own spiritual experience.  


Workshops in Synagogue Music 

Led by Cantor Bolts. These courses will cover both the “why” and the “how” of traditional synagogue chant.

  • Nusach: Chanting Liturgy: Tuesdays at 6pm. Begins December 5th. See calendar at the bottom of this page for complete list of dates.
    • The history and practice of nusach, the traditional chanted melodies of the prayer service. This class will cover the basics of nusach for weekdays and Shabbat morning. Open to all levels! Whether you’ve been leading services for years or are wondering what exactly nusach means, there will be something here for you to learn. This class will be cumulative, so please attend the first session!
  • Cantillation: Chanting Sacred Text: Feb. 4, 11, & 25, 2018; March 4, 11, & 18, 2018
    • The theory and practice of cantillation, the chanted melodies for Torah, Haftarah, and megillot. This class will cover the basics of Torah cantillation. All levels are welcome to attend.

Adult Bar/Bat Mitzvah

Led by Cantor Bolts and Rabbi Konigsburg

Never had the chance to lead a service or chant and Haftarah? If you can read Hebrew then this will open the service to you as you prepare with your class to take on the spiritual responsibilities of Judaism. We will work together to find the time and location for learning. To register for the Adult Bar/Bat Mitzvah, contact Rabbi Konigsburg at or Cantor Bolts at



Wisdom in the Winter: A BSBI Lecture Series with Professor Andrew Pessin

Monday nights, 7:30 pm

Jan. 22, 2018: Puzzles and Paradoxes, Reason and Faith

Jan. 29, 2018: Maimonides: Religious Philosopher or Philosopher of Religion?

Feb. 5, 2018: The Idea(s) of Zionism

Snow date: Feb. 12  

Click here to register today!


Sandals Lecture: featuring Dr. Barry W. Holtz, Theodore and Florence Baumritter Professor of Jewish Education, Jewish Theological Seminary

March 20, 2018, 7:30 PM

Dr. Holtz will discuss his new book, Rabbi Akiva: Sage of the Talmud. Books will be available for purchase and can be signed by the author.


Torah Study Shabbat:

Two Worlds of America’s Jewish Women with Dr. Pamela Nadell Professor and Patrick Clendenen Chair in Women’s & Gender History, American University; President, Association for Jewish Studies

April 20 & 21, 2017

Living in New York, and in cities like Hartford, CT. two groups of Jewish women who proudly called themselves American Jewesses and their distant cousins from Poland and Russia lived parallel lives. Making homes just miles apart, they inhabit two different worlds. Why their worlds diverged and where they met are the themes for this Torah Study Shabbat.

Registration forms for our Spring 2018 Lectures will be sent in upcoming bulletins & available online.


Institute of Basic Judaism

Begins October 20, 2017 and continues through April 27, 2018. Meets Thursday nights, 7:35 – 9:15 PM at BSBI and other local synagogues. Led by Rabbi Richard Plavin and other Hartford areas Conservative rabbis

This course is an overview of Jewish culture, religion, values, and rituals. It will be appropriate for Jews who want to supplement their knowledge and for non-Jews who want to better understand Judaism. This course will fulfill the academic learning portion of a process for conversion to Judaism. There is also a connected but separate Beginners Hebrew class associated with this series beginning in December.

Fee: $295 per participant. Significant Others, Full time students and BSBI members will receive a 50% discount. For more information and to register, go to