The capital's greater metropolitan area is home to over 217,000 Jews, thus there's a fine mix of organizations, congregations, cultural and social options, day schools and more. But of course the desire to learn Hebrew is not only within the Jewish community. As a notable example, 2013 saw the advent of a wonderful new twist in the Hebrew education scene: the Sela Public Charter School, a secular immersion-style dual English and Hebrew school– the first of its kind in the area. As Israelis and language professionals, with deep love for both Hebrew's ancient roots and its modern vitality, we view this as a marvelous development and hope the trend spreads.

In the adult sphere, perhaps you wish to learn Hebrew to help with the children's Hebrew studies or Bar Mitzvah preparations (or your own!). Or maybe you're starting out with a desire to read Hebrew prayers, or with greater fluency, so as to feel more comfortable at services. Maybe you wish to pick up some conversational Hebrew for touring in Israel, when visiting relatives or talking with them via Skype. In this case, being able to understand and speak Hebrew- even some basic phrases at first- will be an especially rewarding experience.

One option for local Hebrew lessons is any of the three area JCC's: In the city itself, the Washington DC Jewish Community Center  offers Hebrew classes via its Open University. In Rockville, the Jewish Community Center of Greater Washington  runs Hebrew courses in its Jewish Family and Living division. The Jewish Community Center of Northern Virginia  provides a Hebrew class through its Jewish Life & Learning program. Interestingly, in this increasing internet age- we also noticed that in the DC area, online Hebrew programs are starting to be utilized in a few places as part of Hebrew school instruction.

Be sure to check area congregations as well. For example, in DC itself, Adas Israel Congregation is teaching "Hebrew Literacy" in its Lifelong Learning program, while over in Rockville, you can find options at Bnai Israel Congregation to study Hebrew. The more formal education route is another alternative, such as through the Judaic Studies Program at George Washington University, The World Languages and Cultures department at the American University, etc. It is worth checking reviews, announcements and ads in the "Washington Jewish Week" as well.

Learn Hebrew Pod provides another alternative to consider, especially for affordability and portability- with your mobile you can take us with you anywhere, learning Hebrew at your own pace and on your own schedule. We offer comprehensive, enjoyable online programs which you can tailor to your needs in modern spoken Hebrew, Jewish Prayers, and Hebrew reading skills. Our programs also dovetail well with class instruction, providing further immersion and better reinforcement. We offer package rates in such cases, even for small groups of students. We invite you to check out samples on our site of Hebrew audio lessons plus transcripts. Please also play our multimedia games. You too can learn to speak Hebrew like an Israeli, read Hebrew prayers with comprehension and enter another door to so much of our rich background.