Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Heblish: Bagrut Edition

For Heblish aficionados (I’ve always wanted to have an excuse to use that word) like myself, the bagruyot (Israel’s high school matriculation exams) are an excellent source of material.

Indeed, even veteran English teachers have been overheard using classics such as "points" and "unseens".

But this year, when at least three of the seven tests which comprise the math bagrut were reportedly leaked less than two days before the exam, the Heblishism-meter was off the charts.

For instance, consider the following bagrut-themed entries from the Official Our Shiputzim Heblish-English Dictionary:

The server fell:  Hebrew source – השרת נפל. English definition – The server crashed. Sample usage – “As a result of the leak, schools across the country had to download the new exams just before the tests were originally scheduled to begin. As a result, the Education Ministry’s server kept falling.”

To practice for a test: Hebrew source - לתרגל למבחן. English definition – To do sample problems. Sample usage – “Israeli teenagers spent the past week practicing for the math test.”

To jump a class: Hebrew source לקפוץ כיתה. English definition – To skip a grade. Sample usage – “He’s younger than the other kids, because he jumped a class.”

Yud-bet in Sivan: Hebrew source י”ב בסיון. English definition – 12 Sivan. Sample usage –“Today’s date is yud-bet in Sivan.” smile_teeth

!בהצלחה לכל הנבחנים

Good luck to this blog’s teenaged readers and all their friends and classmates!


Previous Heblish editions are available here: Heblish I, Heblish II, Heblish III, Heblish IV, Heblish V, Heblish VI, Heblish VII, Heblish VIII, and Heblish IX.


  1. Thanks for yet another enlightening Heblish post!

  2. You're welcome, Ilana-Davita. I'm glad you enjoyed it.

  3. How do you say to "skip a class"?
    לקפוץ כיתה-I thought that might be skip.

  4. Leora - Interesting question. I checked with two of my favorite Israeli teenagers, who agreed that the correct term is להבריז (lehavriz). Not that either of them know from personal experience... ;-)

    On a related note, I told a certain 12th grader of my acquaintance about a tradition which was known as "Senior Skip Day" back when I was in high school.

    The 12th grader laughed, because for all intents and purposes, since Rosh Chodesh Adar, he and his classmates have been enjoying "Senior Skip Semester"...


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