How to Learn Hebrew: 6 Easy Ways to Learn Hebrew Effectively
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There are many reasons to learn Hebrew, but finding the right way to study can be difficult. There are many options available, but some are better than others. To help you easily find a way to learn that fits your language goals, we’ve compiled some of the best ways to learn Hebrew. You’re sure to find something that fits your study style and budget in the list below.
Best Hebrew App
Best Hebrew Course
Best Hebrew Tutors
Hebrew has a unique and fascinating history. It’s one of the only languages that has made a comeback from a nearly nonexistent status. For over 2,000 years, nobody spoke Hebrew as a native language, but it has been revived to a thriving language spoken by more than 9 million people.
Because of this time gap, there are different types of Hebrew. Modern Hebrew is the official language of Israel, adapted from Ancient Hebrew to fit the needs of the present day. When Israel became an independent nation, there was a need to teach Hebrew to a large wave of immigrants entering the country.
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Ancient Hebrew, also known as Biblical Hebrew or Classical Hebrew, is the language of the Bible and is spoken in large Jewish and Samaritan communities around the world. However, they might speak dialects that differ based on geographical location. There are specific resources you can use if you’re interested in Biblical Hebrew rather than modern Hebrew.
Another reason to learn Hebrew is the increasing importance of Israel on the world stage. In terms of tourism, foreign visitors to this country have increased exponentially in the past decade. Many young Jewish adults take a birthright trip to Israel to learn more about Jewish history and culture. Israel is also an important country in the fields of technology and medical research. Not to mention the history and location puts Israel at a place of great diplomatic importance.
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Study with High-Quality Hebrew Books
How to Learn Hebrew: Follow These Steps to Become Fluent Fast!
It’s important to find a study method that works well for you. Not everyone learns the same way, so identifying your study habits, schedule, and availability can help you choose a way that’s best for you.
It’s also a good idea to use a few different ways to study. One language resource is usually not comprehensive enough to help you develop all language skills. For example, a language app can help you learn basic Hebrew vocabulary and grammar, but watching YouTube videos or listening to podcasts will help you hear how Hebrew is spoken. Below you’ll find some of the best ways to learn Hebrew. Check out a couple to see what’s right for you.
Use the Best Hebrew Apps
A language app is one of the most popular ways to learn Hebrew. They are convenient because you can learn anywhere you can bring your phone or tablet. The lessons are usually broken down into bite-sized pieces so you don’t have to dedicate a lot of time each day to studying. Pimsleur, Mondly, and Drops are effective options to help you master the basics of Hebrew quickly.
Pimsleur is the most effective language app to learn Hebrew because it focuses on conversation and speaking. All the lessons are audio-based so you can hear correct pronunciation and practice along with the teacher. Each lesson has a conversation between two native Hebrew speakers, and then they break down the conversation to explain important grammar and vocabulary. You can try Pimsleur with a 7-day free trial or read more about the app in this Pimsleur review.
Mondly is a great app for beginner Hebrew learners because it covers the basics without getting into detailed grammar topics. The lessons are short and interactive and help you learn the most important topics to become conversational quickly. Plus, Mondly has interesting technology and features to keep you engaged. You can try Mondly with a 7-day free trial or read more about the app in this Mondly review.
Drops is the best app for learning a ton of Hebrew vocabulary quickly. There are hundreds of word lists for you to choose from. They start with basic topics like introductions, food, and travel. But if you’re more advanced, you can learn words related to emergencies, politics, and natural disasters. Each word has a unique illustration and you are quizzed on the word using a variety of activities. You can use Drops for free for 5 minutes a day or read more about it in this Drops review.
Take an Online Hebrew Course
An online Hebrew course is a comprehensive option to learn all aspects of the language. While they offer a set lesson plan to follow, they are also flexible because you can choose to take a self-paced course or one with live classes. Udemy, Rosen School of Hebrew, and the FSI Hebrew Course are comprehensive options that will help you practice all language-learning skills.
Udemy is a massive online learning platform that teaches every subject imaginable. It's an excellent place to find an online Hebrew course. You can search the hundreds of options available to find a course that’s right for you. Some courses are for beginners and teach the basics of grammar and vocabulary. But other courses are more specialized and teach topics like Biblical Hebrew or studying the Hebrew alphabet. You can check out the Udemy website to find the course that’s right for you or read more about the platform in this Udemy review.
Rosen School of Hebrew
The Rosen School of Hebrew teaches modern Hebrew with online classes. It’s fully accredited through The Hebrew University of Jerusalem. You take live classes taught by a qualified teacher and practice all of the skills necessary to be conversational in Hebrew. In addition to the 8 levels of Modern Hebrew, there are also specialized courses for children and Biblical studies. You can see if there’s a course that’s righ for you on the Rosen School website.
FSI Hebrew Course
The Foreign Service Institute Hebrew course is a no-nonsense way to learn the language. It consists of a downloadable pdf textbook and a series of audios. It’s the course that’s used by employees of the US government that need to learn Hebrew. While it may not be the most interesting course available, it’s proven to be effective. Check out the course on this website.
Find an Online Hebrew Tutor
While it is possible to reach a decent level of Hebrew on your own, taking online classes with a Hebrew tutor will help you reach a more advanced level in a shorter amount of time. The 1-on-1 classes provide an excellent opportunity to practice your speaking and listening skills while receiving immediate feedback from a qualified tutor. italki, Preply, and Superprof are well-known platforms that are safe and secure.
italki is a popular language-learning platform that can help you find an online Hebrew tutor. Taking live classes with a native Hebrew speaker is one of the best ways to practice speaking and conversation. There are over 70 tutors available, and you can choose someone who’s right for you based on their profile, availability, and price. Most teachers offer a discounted trial lesson. You can also learn more about the platform in this italki review.
Preply is a platform that's similar to italki. There are 90+ Hebrew tutors available. You can search for a tutor based on their availability, languages they speak, and price. Each tutor has a bio and a short video so you can get to know them before booking a lesson. Most teachers also offer a free trial class to see if they're a good fit. You can also read more about the platform in this Preply review.
Superprof is a platform that has tutors that each every subject imaginable, including languages like Hebrew. There are currently over 130 tutors available to take online classes with. In their profiles, you can read what each tutor teaches and their previous experience. You can also read past student reviews and see their hourly price. Most tutors offer a free trial class so you can see if they are a good fit for you.
Study with High-Quality Hebrew Books
Books are one of the oldest, yet most effective, ways to study a language. Books can provide detailed explanations and examples that aren’t possible on other learning platforms. And since Hebrew is a language that uses a different alphabet, using a book is an excellent way to learn to read and write the language while studying vocabulary and grammar. Learn to Read Hebrew in 6 Weeks, Hebrew for Beginners, and The First Hebrew Primer are 3 popular and highly-rated books available on Amazon.
Learn to Read Hebrew in 6 Weeks
Learn to Read Hebrew in 6 Weeks is an excellent book for any learner whose goal is to read and write in Hebrew quickly. The focus is on understanding biblical Hebrew. The book is divided into 12 lessons, and you take 2 per week for 6 weeks. Each lesson has detailed descriptions of certain letters or words with unique designs. This book makes learning Hebrew fun and interesting. With a 4.7/5.0 star rating, it’s a favorite choice amongst Hebrew learners.
Hebrew for Beginners
Hebrew for Beginners follows David and Malka while they get to know the language and people of Israel. Each of the 10 chapters focuses on a useful topic for getting around in everyday life, such as visiting friends, travel, and checking in at a hotel. In every chapter, you’ll learn important grammar and vocabulary topics to help you become conversational. For new vocabulary and phrases, you are given the original written Hebrew form, English Transliteration, and English translation. Learn more about the book here.
The First Hebrew Primer
If you’re looking for an in-depth way to learn Hebrew, The First Hebrew Primer is the best choice. It’s meant for a serious learner who wants to learn biblical Hebrew. The book contains 30 lessons that cover grammar, vocabulary, spelling charts, practice exercises, stories, and more. People that purchased this book agreed that the content was excellent, but is not a good choice for complete beginners. Read what others had to say about the book here.
Watch Hebrew YouTube Videos
Watching YouTube videos is an effective way to learn Hebrew, and it's also one of the most fun! Some channels make videos that are similar to learning in a classroom, and others produce content that's entirely in Hebrew and help you hear how the language is authentically spoken. The YouTube channels below have tons of videos that will get you speaking Hebrew in no time.
Piece of Hebrew
The videos on the Piece of Hebrew channel are hosted by Doron and Elsa. The videos are entirely in Hebrew so they are more useful for intermediate or advanced speakers, but they do have subtitles in English so anyone can follow along. While most of their videos are centered around language topics, they don’t have beginner lessons that will help you if you’re starting from zero. It's an excellent channel if you’re looking to learn Hebrew in a natural context and learn about Israeli culture. You can check out all the videos here.
Hebrew With Ben
Ben is a native Hebrew speaker that uploads lessons that teach vocabulary, grammar, and how-to-say lessons. While his channel doesn’t have an ordered list of lessons that will take you from beginner to fluent, there are useful videos to learn expressions and words about common topics. His channel does offer quite a few lessons on how to read Hebrew, which is useful for beginners. Watch all of his videos on the Hebrew With Ben YouTube channel.
The Hebrew Today YouTube channel has a hodgepodge of videos. There are lessons that are in English and Hebrew, but there are also popular videos with Hebrew subtitles. Whatever you’re looking for, there’s something for you, from the entertaining to the informative. You can check out all of the videos available on the Hebrew Today YouTube channel.
Listen to Hebrew Podcasts
Podcasts are a more modern way to learn Hebrew. Because they are audio-based, you can listen on the go or while completing other tasks. They also allow you to hear how Hebrew is spoken in an everyday context, and many provide supplemental materials such as transcripts and practice questions to ensure that you understood what you heard. HebrewPod101, Streetwise Hebrew, and Hebrew Podcasts are excellent choices with hundreds of lessons to help you learn Hebrew.
HebrewPod101 has an extensive library of podcast-style lessons that focus on conversations between native speakers. Each lesson breaks down a conversation to teach important vocabulary and grammar topics with detailed explanations. One of the best features is that they talk about culture and how it affects the language. In addition to the podcast lessons, there are vocabulary lists, video lessons, and a grammar bank. HebrewPod101 constantly adds new lessons so there’s always something new to learn. You can try it for free with a 7-day trial on the HebrewPod101 website or read more in this HebrewPod101 review.
The Streetwise Hebrew podcasts are part of the larger TLV1 network of podcasts and shows. Streetwise Hebrew has short lessons, usually under 10 minutes, that are hosted by Guy Sharett. He talks about many modern topics related to Israeli culture and the Hebrew language. The episodes are in a mix of Hebrew and English so it’s easier to follow along. You can listen to all of the episodes on the Streetwise Hebrew website.
Hebrew Podcasts is a website that teaches biblical Hebrew. The lessons are arranged in 4 levels: easy, beginner, intermediate, and advanced. It’s an excellent resource for intermediate and advanced learners because there are more lessons dedicated to these levels. You can listen to the first few lessons of the podcast for free, but to access all of the lessons and additional practice material, you need to subscribe to the Hebrew Podcasts page.
How to Learn Hebrew: Final Thoughts
I hope this article has given you different ideas and inspirations of how to learn Hebrew. While it’s not one of the most spoken languages in the world, there’s no denying that the language has a large impact in many different countries. No matter if you want to learn modern or classical Hebrew, finding the right resource will help you reach your langauge goals faster.
How to Learn Hebrew: FAQ
According to the US Department of State, it takes 1,100 class hours to reach a proficient level of Hebrew. This number is only an estimate and depends on a variety of factors such as your natural ability to acquire languages and if you speak a language that shares similarities with Hebrew.
To see how long it will take you learn Hebrew, check out this Fluency Calculator.
One of the most effective ways to learn Hebrew quickly is by using a language app. Now, there are many high-quality options available that will teach you important grammar and vocabulary without ever hanging to leave your home. Pimsleur, Mondly, and Drops are excellent choices to consider.
There are many ways to learn Hebrew from home, but two of the most effective ways are to learn with a language app, or take online classes with a native tutor. Both ways will help increase your level of communication.
The US Department of State considers Hebrew to be a hard language for English speakers to learn. This is because the two languages have significant differences. For example. Hebrew has a unique alphabet and is written from right to left. There are also very few vocabulary words that the two languages share.
if you want to speak Hebrew fluently, you’ll need to practice speaking the language. You can practice speaking with a qualified language teacher on a platform like italki, or find a language exchange partner on an app like HelloTalk. You can also listen to podcasts, read news articles, or follow social media channels in Hebrew to hear how the language sounds.
There are many ways to learn Hebrew for free. One of the most popular choices is to learn Hebrew with an app like Duolingo that offers its entire Hebrew course for free. You can also use other resources like watching YouTube videos or listening to podcasts in Hebrew.