The MNjcc Hebrew Institute employs dynamic, engaging Hebrew instructors to make Modern Hebrew come alive! Meet the current faculty.
Hebrew Institute Coordinator
Adi Sugarman-Maidany has been with the MNjcc Hebrew Institute since 2011, first as a teacher and currently as the Coordinator. Adi is a native Israeli who came to Toronto from Kibbutz Gal-on. She has a Master’s degree in Education, specializing in Special Education, from York University, and is a certified and experienced special education language teacher and educator. Her experience in teaching Hebrew as a foreign language and Bible studies started in 2000 at United Synagogue Day School (RHA), where she had taught for 12 years. Adi taught students with different needs for 10 years in Isreal, prior to coming to Toronto. Today, Adi works as a mediator supporting companies and individuals who choose to save time and money by using alternative dispute resolution services instead of going to court. She offers private lessons in Torah reading for Bar/Bat Mitzvah and Hebrew as a foreign language to children and adults, and also teaches in Oraynu Children’s School, part of the Congregation for Humanistic Judaism.
Kobi (Yaacov) Hass
Kobi Hass is a native Israeli who relocated from Tel-Aviv to Toronto. Kobi has a master’s degree from Tel Aviv University, and is a certified and experienced teacher and educator. His first experience in teaching Hebrew as a foreign language was during his studies in Boston, where he had taught in the Community Hebrew School Kesher in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Prior to his relocating to Toronto from Tel Aviv in 2010 with his family, Kobi had served for 15 years as Department Head, teacher and educator at Blich High School, one of the top schools in Israel. He also served for 14 years as an educator for adult programs at the Hed College of Contemporary Music in Tel Aviv (affiliated with Oklahoma City University). Since relocating to Toronto, Kobi has been an active instructor in the MNjcc Hebrew Institute.
Michal Hass is a native Israeli who relocated from Tel-Aviv to Toronto in 2011. Michal has university degrees in music and psychology and has extensive experience as a college teacher in various subjects, including Hebrew as a foreign language, music, and computers. In addition to teaching at the MNjcc Hebrew Institute, she is a Modern Hebrew teacher at Makom: Creative Downtown Judaism. Michal offers private lessons in Hebrew as a foreign language to children and adults, as well as translation services. She has translated dozens of professional and scholarly articles in the fields of music and the sciences between English and Hebrew for various universities and private organizations. Michal is fluent in Hebrew, English, and German and conversant in French. Her family (husband and children) are all musicians.
Nirit comes to us straight from Israel where she was born and raised. She did her Masters in psychology at Ben-Gurion University. Nirit’s main interest was cognitive development and learning disabilities. She worked as an Educational Psychologist in Kiryat Gat. Her work in the field was very diverse and included psychological, behavioral and cognitive psychological diagnosis of children. Nirit did Individual treatment and group therapy in children. She was also involved in systemic diagnosis of schools and kindergartens. She provided counseling for educational staff, as well as guidance and counseling for parents. She is passionate about Israeli culture and the Hebrew language and is excited to share her knowledge on these topics with her students.
Omer grew up in Jerusalem, where he studied in Yeshivah during his high-school years. Upon finishing his military service, he volunteered with “Friends of Dad”, the IDF Paratroopers Orphans Camp. At Hebrew University, Omer studied Political Science and Middle Eastern Studies, where he also got a chance to help research children’s textbooks and their compliance to UNESCO standards. Omer moved to Canada in 2014, joined the MNjcc in 2015 and now he also teaches at Makom.
Paul was born in Ireland and moved by himself to Israel at age 18. He lived in a kibbutz on the Carmel Mountains, where he met and married his wife. He left Israel 15 years later and moved with his wife and three children to Toronto. He has worked in the Jewish educational sector, mainly shadowing children who need extra help. Paul is excited to help adults learn the Hebrew language.
Sharon has been teaching Yiddish in Toronto since 2008, and has studied Yiddish Language and Literature at Columbia University. She is also an experienced translator of Yiddish newspapers and personal letters. Her teaching goal is to foster in her students an appreciation of the rich literary and cultural heritage of Yiddish-speaking Jewry. She enjoys finding ways to make learning Yiddish fun and relevant, and being inspired by her wonderful students of all ages and backgrounds.