Lifelong Learning & Discussion

Join us for various weekly programs including discussion groups, workshops and lectures, led by experts in their field or university professors, about arts and culture, history, current events, religion, travel, and more.

For more details, please contact Sharon Chodirker at 416-225-2112, ext. 124 or


Join us every Tuesday from 10:00 am to 11:30 am for a weekly lecture on various topics including arts, culture, history, religion, current events and more. Admission is $4.25 for members and $8.50 for non-members.

The Many Faces of Itzhak Perlman
Tuesday, March 19
Virtuoso violinist Itzhak Perlman is one of the most versatile artists of our times; this talk will give you a peak behind the concert hall and the musician’s practice studio.
Speaker: Joseph Sharon, General Manager, Circles Enrichment

Jewish Superstitions – Bubbe Meises
Tuesday, March 26
Jewish superstitions have been passed down through the generations. Learn about the reasons behind both the well-known and unusual customs we still practice today.
Speaker: Ruth Cohen, Lecturer, Humourist and Motivational Speaker

In Celebration of World Festivals
Tuesday, April 2
A Photographic Journey of Festivals and Celebrations Around the World
Speaker: Susan Brown, Travel Lecturer

Errors and Varieties of Canadian Coins
Tuesday, April 9
Canadian coins contain many errors and varieties which sometimes increases the value of the coins. These errors and varieties are caused by several factors during the production process. Speaker: Jerry and Lynda Lasky, Lecturers, Coin and JFK Memorabilia Collectors

Christian Dior
Tuesday, April 16
This presentation focuses on Christian Dior’s designs from 1947 to 1957, a pivotal point in 20th century fashion. His collections show a complete departure from wartime repression, a return to femininity and a taste of glamour after years of drab.
Speaker: Royal Ontario Museum, Department of Museum Volunteers

Passover: The Musical Highlights of the Haggadah
Tuesday, April 23
Learn the highlights of the Haggadah and sing along at times with Cantor Ben Silverberg.
Speaker: Ben Silverberg, Cantor and B’nai Mitzvah Concierge, Beth Torah Synagogue

European Odyssey
Tuesday, April 30
Explore the intriguing islands, diverse people, culinary delights, gorgeous landscapes, history and culture.
Speaker: Robert Shechter, Travel Photographer and Lecturer, Digital Photography Instructor

Mel Brooks and Carl Reiner: Two Comedy Giants of the 20th Century – Part 1
Tuesday, May 7
Enjoy an entertaining two-part lecture series on the legacies, cultural impact and friendship of these two comedy legends.
Speaker: Rosalin Krieger, Jewish Pop Culture Commentator

Mel Brooks and Carl Reiner: Two Comedy Giants of the 20th Century – Part 2
Tuesday, May 14
Enjoy an entertaining two-part lecture series on the legacies, cultural impact and friendship of these two comedy legends.
Speaker: Rosalin Krieger, Jewish Pop Culture Commentator

Jewish Pirates of the Caribbean
Tuesday, May 21
Was conversion the only way to survive when Spanish monarchs ordered the expulsion of the Jews in 1492? Some of the Jews found another way, to inhabit the new world.
Speaker: Victor Rodos, History Buff

Jewish Saloniere
Tuesday, May 28
Learn more about salons, the purpose they served in the 17th and 18th centuries up to as recently as the 1940s, and the prominent roles they played in the lives of Jewish women.
Speaker: Rachel Levin, Art Lecturer, Volunteer Docent, McMichael Canadian Art Gallery

What is the Mysterious Holiday Seven Weeks After Passover?
Tuesday, June 4
The historical background of the holiday Shavuot, its meaning and significance, and its major customs and observances.
Speaker: Rabbi Skobac, Education Director and Senior Counselor, Jews for Judaism

ASA, The Magnificent Minstrel
Tuesday, June 11
Learn the true story of the great Jewish entertainer, Al Jolson, who’s Yiddish name was Asa Yolson, in this wonderful documentary. Speaker: Larry Gaum, Documentary Filmmaker

Neil Simon: The Broadway Master of Comedy
Tuesday, June 18
Learn about and celebrate the late playwright’s influential body of work.
Speaker: Rosalin Krieger, Jewish Pop Culture Com- mentator

Upstairs Downstairs
Tuesday, June 25
During the Victorian era, domestic service was a huge source of employment in the United Kingdom and status was important in the servant hierarchy; divided into “upper” and “under” ranks. See how this is shown in the art of the times.
Speaker: Rachel Levin, Art Lecturer, Volunteer Docent; McMichael Art Museum


Archaeology Course
The History of the Ancient Israel and Judah: From Abraham to the Roman Era
Through the use of archaeology and other historical data, this course will reconstruct the history of the Israelites, Judahites and Judeans from the stories of the legendary Patriarchs and in other ways.
Instructor: David R. Lipovitch, Ph.D.
Thursday, April 25 – June 27
No class on May 30
1:00 pm – 3:00 pm • 9 weeks
$76.50 members $153 non-members

Philosophy Course
The Philosophy of Love and Happiness
In this exciting new course, we will study the research literature and philosophy of love and happiness. The new field of emotional psychology has provided us with many tools for understanding what makes us act.
Instructor: David Chandross, Ph.D.
Tuesday, April 30 – June 18
12:30 pm – 2:30 pm • 8 weeks
$68 members $138 non-members

Understanding the Middle East – New!
Future peace and prosperity will largely depend on what happens in the Middle East. Understanding the Middle East offers a much better understanding of the key issues and conflicts, filters media sensationalism and partisanship and facilitates interpretation of current events from a deeper cultural and political perspective.
Instructor: Amnon Zohar, Speaker and Lecturer specializing in Middle East and Global Affairs
Thursday, April 4 – June 6
No class on May 23 and 30
10:15 am – 12:15 pm • 8 weeks
$68 members $138 non-members


Men’s Discussion Group
Discussion on topics of interest to men including sports, food, relationships and health. Facilitator: Charles Goldenberg
Wednesday, April 3
Wednesday, May 1
Wednesday, June 5
4:00 pm – 5:30 pm

Women’s Discussion Group
Talking together about food, fashion, relationships, health and more. Facilitator: Miriam Meiri
Thursday, April 4 and 18
Thursday, May 9 and 23
Thursday, June 6 and 20
2:45 pm – 4:30 pm

Course Registration Policy