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Jewish Family Names

Home Page >  Programs >  Jewish Family Names


Israel Seminars’ interactive program takes a look at the fascinating realm of Jewish names, and examines how we can use our own names as a personal guide to Jewish culture and history.

Learn about the sources of Jewish family names. We can plan the session together with you, and base the activity on examples using the names of participants in the workshop.

See how names can teach us about the geography of the Jewish people.

Discover the trades and professions in Jewish communities around the world, the communal functions and Jewish dynasties.

Find out how migrations and Aliyah to Israel affected names, and some of the tricks to guessing how changes happened.

Understand how legislation affected Jewish names and provided a source of income for the civil authorities.

Find out about the unique repertoire of "insult names" given to Jews in the past and why they agreed to use them.

Look at the unique way the Jewish people honored women in family names.

Decipher some names, break them down to their components and use the "Jewish Names Generator" to make up some names.

A fascinating, creative, interactive workshop using participants' names to spark a journey of discovery into our personal and national history.

This program is suitable for:
Synagogue and community-wide audiences, JCC’s, JCRC’s, Israel action committees, Hillel and college student groups, 11-12th grade students at high schools or supplementary schools (religious schools etc.). Professional development sessions for lay leadership, Federation staff, teachers, educators & clergy. Men's clubs, Sisterhood and Hadassah groups, golden ager groups. No prior knowledge required.

Duration: 60 - 90 minutes

Program fees:
North America: $900 for single program or $1500 per day of programming (according to your schedule, this could be three, four or more engagements in one locality) plus local transportation and accommodation where applicable.
The presentation is also available as part of a Scholar-in-Residence Shabbat ($2000). Contact us for itinerary suggestions.
UK: £450 for single program, £750 for a full day of activities, £950 for Scholar-in-residence Shabbat plus local transport and accommodation where applicable.

Contact us now to book:
Using the contact form or email us at
Ensure the best dates for your group!