Learn to Leyn

Chant for Life

What will you learn?

This course takes you step by step so that

you will know the following:
  • the name of each trope mark, its tune(s) and its relationship to other trope marks
  • how the trope signs tend to be grouped together
you will be able to do the following:
  • apply each trope sign to the Hebrew words of Torah
  • make slight adjustments to the tunes for shorter or longer words
  • move from the Hebrew with vowels and trope signs to an actual Torah scroll
  • begin to be able to anticipate what trope signs tend to appear in what kinds of order
  • identify your strengths and use them to your advantage
  • develop strategies for working through any potential obstacles
  • be able to articulate and reflect on how this ritual activity impacts on your life and in your community.

So what is the method?

In each lesson,

  1. I introduce a trope clause and you work through as many exercises as you need to be able to identify the symbol and its name;
  2. I introduce the musical notes for that trope clause and you work through as many exercises as you need to develop an easy association between symbol and tune. (Think: Twinkle Twinkle Little Star – as you just read those words, a tune came into your head!) That’s where we’ll get you with the trope clauses.
  3. You will begin to connect the symbols and tunes with actual words from Torah, and again, you work through lots of examples until you develop an intuition for it.
  4. In each subsequent lesson, I introduce a new clause and repeat all the steps. Slowly the exercises have you integrating different trope clauses until you find yourself chanting an entire verse.
  5. After absorbing the main clauses, you will find that shifting from the text with vowels to the way it appears in the Torah scroll is the easiest part.

What Nusach Will You Learn? Actually, You Choose Between Two Ashkenazi Styles!


For each lesson, you can choose whether you want to work with musical notation, or with the “listen and repeat” method, or with color-coding – whatever works best for you as a learner.

In addition to the recordings, the resources and the exercises, I’m providing you with videos where you can hear me going through every exercise. This way you can check your own progress!

Every lesson includes tips that I’ve found are useful for learners based on my experience with hundreds of students. Most of the tips are silly and playful, but they work!

Every lesson has a section where you can post your questions, your suggestions for other learners, your achievements! (And if you are an introvert like me, you may prefer to just send me an e-mail with your question and we’ll keep it between the two of us).

And because I really want you to become a regular torah reader and not just learn something that you’ll forget in a couple of months, if you let me know when you have chanted Torah three times within a community, I’ll send you a 20% discount coupon that you can use for any other KBM course or gift to a friend.

Your Instructor

Tamar Kamionkowski
Tamar Kamionkowski

Tamar Kamionkowski is professor of Bible at the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College, where she has been training rabbinical students for over 20 years. She holds a B.A from Oberlin College, an M.T.S from Harvard Divinity School and a Ph.D in Near Eastern and Judaic studies from Brandeis University.

Tamar is the author of Leviticus: A Wisdom Commentary (Liturgical Press, 2018), Gender Reversal and Cosmic Chaos: Studies in the Book of Ezekiel (Sheffield Academic Press, 2003) and co-editor of Bodies, Embodiment and Theology of the Hebrew Scriptures (T&T Clark, 2010

Tamar loves scifi, DIY projects, both Marvel and DC, and most of all, Tamar loves her partner, her two daughters and her dogs!

For over 25 years, Tamar has been committed to making Jewish literacy accessible to all kinds of learners.

Frequently Asked Questions

When does the course start and finish?
The course starts as soon as you enroll and never ends! It is a completely self-paced online course - you decide when you start and when you finish.
How long do I have access to the course?
How does lifetime access sound? After enrolling, you have unlimited access to this course for as long as you like - across any and all devices you own.
What if I am unhappy with the course?
I would never want you to be unhappy! If you are unsatisfied with your purchase, contact me in the first 30 days and I'll give you a full refund.

Why learn with Tamar?

When I became a Bat Mitzvah, girls in my synagogue were not allowed to chant Torah, so I had to wait another six years until the policy changed and my youngest brother became a Bar Mitzvah. I was given an aliyah to chant at my brother’s Bar Mitzvah service. The experience was one of the most profound spiritual moments of my life!

I love studying Torah and I love going to services (especially when there is a lot of singing), but I feel something unique flowing through my body when I chant – even now, 38 years later!

In my twenties I trained B’nai Mitzvah students for almost ten years at a large Conservative synagogue in Boston. I saw about twelve students a week. Most of them didn’t want to be there at first – some struggled with Hebrew pronunciation, some were terrified of exposing themselves publicly, some had never worked with music before, and they were all struggling with the things that young teenagers go through. But every one of those young adults learned to chant without just memorizing from a recording on a cassette tape (yes, we were pre-digital then).

It was a natural move to begin working with adults who had never experienced a B'nai Mitzvah ceremony, or who had just memorized what they needed to know but never really learned the trope. I’ve worked with all sorts of learners with different motivations for learning.

So, after almost 40 years, I’ve learned a thing or two

Get started now!