The JTS-LHTI Tanakh Standards and Benchmarks’ goals are to evaluate students’ milestones in the study of Tanakh. Their goals of reading and understanding the TaNaKH in its original Hebrew allows its reader to experience the religious power of the text, its poetic beauty and its literary nuances. As the great Hebrew poet, Hayim Nachman Bialik, said, “Reading a text in translation is like kissing a bride with the veil still on.”
The goal of this standard is to help students develop strategies for reading the text in Hebrew. This standard lays out many of the linguistic and grammatical areas that students should master, and it delineates access skills that students will need to read the text closely. It teaches students how to do more than just read: it teaches students how to read closely, and with sensitivity to the text’s subtleties – in short, how to be a literarily astute reader. Acquiring these strategies and access skills will help students become independent and sensitive readers of the biblical text; that is, Jews who are able to pick up a TaNaKH and read, understand and interpret on their own. The ultimate goal of comprehending the text is to allow for creation of meaning. Comprehension is a means to an end, and the end is a relationship with the TaNaKH that needs no intermediaries, no go-betweens, just the Jewish reader, the Hebrew book and no veil.
This 91 page document outlines standards and benchmarks for grades 1-12 that includes resources, Biblical references, analyses of text and student levels of thinking, learning activities, and samples. Click here to review.