Beth Jacob Synagogue
Congregant carrying torahParticipate in Services

Do you wish you knew how to chant a haftarah, leyn Torah or lead services? We can help!

Learn to Lead Services!

If you’d like to learn how to lead a service: weekday or Shabbat, shacharit, mincha, or ma’ariv, please contact Rabbi Hillel at

Learn to Chant a Haftarah!

If you’d like to learn how to chant a haftara, please contact Fay Schmerling at 905- 627-4324,

Torah Reading Questions:

How can I sign up to leyn (read an aliyah or part of an aliyah from the Torah)? Contact Philip Price at 905-523-8067 or email Philip at We will work with you to arrange an aliyah or part of an aliyah that is a comfortable length for you.

Learn to Chant Torah!

On-line leyning lessons are available from ORT at their web site. ( This site has a page with the ta-ah-mim (notes) or trop (notes) and how to chant them. The singing/trop is Ashkenazi in style, though, the Hebrew words are read in a Sephardic (Israeli) accent, consitant with the practice at Beth Jacob and many other synagouges.

Another site, Ellie's Trop Tutor, has the ta’a’mim for special occasions, and rare trop, as well as the Shabbat trop.

Temple Bethel of Sudbury Massachusetts has the trop organized into 12 groups of lessons as taught by Cantor Lorel Zar-Kessler.

The Kol Kore - Bar Mitzvah Tutor CD is especially helpful. Choose the standard version which is intended for self-study use when learning the Askenazi, Yerusalmi and Morrocan trop. The program includes full recordings of all five chumashim and haftarot by experienced Torah readers.

There are two exceptionally good CDs and study guides: The Art of Cantillation, by Cantors Marshall Portnoy and Josee Wolff, and published by URJ (UAHC) Press. They are available in bookstores and on-line. They are useful for leyning and chanting of haftorah on Shabbatot, holidays and festivals. Volume 1 is A Step-by-Step Guide to Chanting Torah and Volume 2 is A Step-by-Step Guide to Chanting Haftorah and M'gillot.