I aim to help them think logically and empathically about people and problems.

I am providing our students with opportunities to develop skills and permission to have and share opinions. I aim to help them think logically and empathically about people and problems.  Students can google science facts. I’m here for their psyche -- for their souls. I’m an adult who recognizes their worth and helps them see their God-given gifts. I want to be a safe place where they can take a risk, fail, and risk again.  They see my passion for science and that gives them permission to have passion as well.

Science Department Chair, Susan Berrend

Course Catalog

Humanities

Christian Studies

The Pentateuch

2 semesters
5 credits per semester, Required

The Pentateuch explores the literary and historical context of Genesis through Esther. Emphasis is placed upon developing interpretive skills to navigate the rich complexities of God’s self-revelation. Students will read individual stories of the Bible within the context of the larger story of God’s redemptive, restorative, and relational purposes brought about through the seed of Abraham.

Wisdom, Literature and the Prophets

2 semesters
5 credits per semester, Required

Wisdom, Literature and the Prophets explores selections from the Prophetic and Wisdom traditions. Students study numerous themes, such as covenant fidelity, judgment and restoration, wisdom, doubt/faith, and promise/fulfillment. Students also study parallel themes such as ethics, social responsibility, service, true worship of YHWH, the dangers of rebellion and idolatry, and the practice of justice and love. Students learn how to interpret and apply the Old Testament through the lens of the Christ event.

The Gospels & Acts

2 semesters
5 credits per semester, Required

The Gospels & Acts begins by considering the question of worldview through the book of Ecclesiastes. Students then study the books of John, Luke, and Acts. The course includes an in-depth look at Jesus through the eyes of John, “the Beloved Disciple,” Luke, the physician, and the ministry of the leaders and common people of the early church as they brought the gospel from Jerusalem to Rome. Assignments include daily devotion sheets, discussion of specific Bible passages, memory verses, and short papers.

Senior Bible Seminar

2 semesters
5 credits per semester, Required

“Senior Seminar: Justice” is our culminating course in Christian Studies. Students are challenged to scrutinize the foundational principles that guide their moral decision-making. They further evaluate the Christian claim that some moral principles are universal, and that these principles are grounded in theistic metaphysics. After considering three popular ethical systems, students are presented with a system of Christian virtue ethics which incorporates the strengths of secular ethical systems and at the same time is grounded in the biblical theological virtues of faith, hope, and love. Parallel to these studies, students read and meditate upon the New Testament epistles of Paul. These studies become the foundation for a culminating thesis. This thesis articulates the intersection of justice and that particular part of the world that is of special interest to each student. Thesis are defended to the class and then to the broader community.

International Bible

2 semesters
5 credits per semester, Required

International Bible is a one-year course for international students in their first year of attendance. It is an introductory class utilizing ELD teaching methods. Students will receive an overview of the Bible, including the study of the creation, the fall, and God’s plan for redemption. The purpose of the course is to help students gain basic background knowledge of the Bible, to deepen students’ understanding of who Jesus is and what he came to do.

Electives

Broadcast Journalism

2 semesters
5 credits per semester, Elective

In this course students create original news segments using digital photography and video, conduct interviews, create backgrounds, logos and titles, and use video editing software. By the end of year students should have a variety of skills that can be used to work in video production and public relations.

Caritas Social Entrepreneurship

2 semesters
5 credits per semester, Elective

The Caritas Scholars Program and Social Entrepreneurship Lab is a year-long innovative, “think and do” curriculum that connects a student’s unique skills, talents, and passions with the goal of creating a project that will help make a difference in the lives of others. Students will develop critical thinking and problem solving abilities, while developing communication, team-building, and leadership skills as they design their own service-learning projects.

College, Career, and Personal Skills

2 semesters
5 credits per semester, Elective

This year-long course covers topics important to teens as they transition from youth to young adulthood: the ability to think, make good choices, regulate their emotions, handle social conflict, consolidate their identities, and learn enough about the world to move into adulthood with dignity and grace. Second semester topics include developing financial literacy through career development opportunities including job seeking, resume writing, business letters, budgets, tax preparation, insurance and credit cards.

ELD: Intermediate English Language Development

2 semesters
5 credits per semester, Elective

Intermediate ELD is a one-year course for international students in the high school, who have scored at the Intermediate Level of English Language Development (ELD) on the Milestones ELD Placement Test. It is designed to boost students’ listening, speaking, reading, and writing skills in the English language.

ELD: Advanced English Language Development

2 semesters
5 credits per semester, Elective

ELD: Advanced English Language Development (ELD) is a one-year course for international high school students who have successfully completed the course, Intermediate English Language Development (ELD) and/or scored at the Advanced Level of English Language Development (ELD) on the Milestones ELD Placement Test. This course is designed to provide ongoing English language support in reading, writing, listening, and speaking that international students need in order to successfully mainstream into high school courses. Upon successful completion of Advanced ELD, students will continue taking grade-level English and other mainstream courses without an ELD support class.

Filmmaking

2 semesters
5 credits per semester, Elective

In this course students create, record and edit original live-action films. They learn the skills of storytelling, storyboarding, creating props and costumes, practical effects, acting, and filmmaking. They will use video-editing software in post-production to add music, audio and visual effects.

History of Film

2 semesters
5 credits per semester, Elective

History of Film surveys film from its birth as a new art form in the late nineteenth century all the way to its current expressions. The class combines an historical survey with analysis of actual films. While students study both American and foreign film, the emphasis is on Hollywood and film in America. Students also learn about basic film theory and technique.

Hollywood Worldviews

2 semesters
5 credits per semester, Elective

Students learn how to identify the worldviews and basic ideas that are promoted by various films. Some of these ideas are hostile to the Christian faith and some of them are sympathetic. While the class does not view R-rated films, it nevertheless assumes that it is healthy and wholesome for Christians to be prepared to evaluate both Christian and non-Christian film.

Ministry Class

2 semesters
5 credits per semester, Elective

Students have the opportunity to serve God by serving others in different areas of ministry. This includes serving in the worship band, tech team, prayer and ministry team. Practical skills will also be taught, such as leadership methods, vocal and instrumental techniques, sound and computer technology, and music theory.

Philosophy in Film

2 semesters
5 credits per semester, Elective

Philosophy in Film evaluates philosophical concepts through the medium of contemporary film. At the end of the course, students will be able to think and speak intelligently about metaphysics, epistemology, worldview, virtue theory, utilitarianism, duty-based ethics, counterfactuals, goodness and truth, the possibility of time travel, and a host of other topics. These topics are discussed in the context of how they arise in film.

English

World Literature

2 semesters
5 credits per semester, Required

This course offers a survey of world literature across genres from classical to contemporary. It develops narrative and expository writing, sharpens analytical thinking, and introduces critical approaches to texts and techniques of literary interpretation and progressively sophisticated research. Students complete a foundational set of writing assignments: creative, narrative, argumentative, and literary analysis. Students also hone discussion and collaboration skills. They review correct grammatical usage, sentence structure, and paragraph coherency as needed.

(Prerequisite for World Literature Honors: 8th grade English teacher’s recommendation, 3.5 GPA in 8th grade English.)

Western Literature

2 semesters
5 credits per semester, Required

This course explores literary works of poets, authors, and essayists from Western Literature. Students learn close reading and analysis of literary genres and styles. They practice advanced discussion skills and learn to articulate effectively and listen critically to others. They develop and corroborate hypotheses and collaborate to achieve complex objectives. Coursework can include different writing techniques such as journals, persuasive essays, research papers, and personal narratives. They learn new vocabulary and review correct grammatical usage, sentence structure, and paragraph coherency.

Western Literature, Honors

2 semesters
5 credits per semester, Required

This course requires students to read critically Western Literature - from Homer to Shakespeare - conduct research, and write analytically. Students move from a solid general understanding of English grammar to reflective examination of their own writing and the rhetorical excellence of texts they read. The course reinforces foundational literary terms and their explication in narrative, lyric, dramatic, and expository texts. Students should expect more rigorous requirements, more inherently difficult reading, and heavier workloads

(Prerequisite: Teacher recommendation, B or better in previous English course, superior MAP scores)

American Literature

2 semesters
5 credits per semester, Required

This course explores literary works of American poets, authors, playwrights, orators, and essayists. This course encourages students to appreciate various literary styles and techniques. Students discuss important literary schools of thought and how they reflect the national mood. They improve their writing in essays, poetry, and research papers. Students also practice personal essays in anticipation of college applications. Preparation for the SAT includes critical reading, writing, and vocabulary development. Students hone discussion and collaboration skills. They review correct grammatical usage, sentence structure, and paragraph coherency as needed.

(Prerequisite: Western Literature)

American Literature and Language, Honors

2 semesters
5 credits per semester, Required

This course substitutes for AP® English Language and Composition in the school's college-level curriculum and requires superior reading and writing skills. It uses important works in American literature to teach critical thinking, rhetorical analysis, and expository writing. Readings emphasize sophisticated nonfiction works (speeches, essays, correspondence) and are arranged to complement students' concurrent study of United States history. Students should expect to write at least 30 minutes every day. A 10-12 page researched term paper will be due near the end of the second semester.

(Prerequisites: Western Literature, teacher recommendation)

English Literature

2 semesters
5 credits per semester, Required

This course offers a survey of English literature from A.D. 600 to the present. It encourages students to approach texts in English from diverse critical and cultural perspectives and leads them in careful and technically sophisticated reading across genres. It explores a variety of literary, colloquial, and historical forms through the historical periods of Literature in English. Students complete a 15-page research paper and defend it before a faculty panel.

(Prerequisite: American Literature)

AP Literature and Composition

2 semesters
5 credits per semester, Required

This year-long college-level AP Literature and Composition course accepts students prepared for intensive analysis of sophisticated literary texts in English from Beowulf to Heaney. It expects students to hone analytical writing skills, critical thinking skills, and incisive techniques of interpretation in Socratic seminar style. It insists on close reading, analytical writing, scholarly research, and literary criticism. Expect to read and write twice the number of pages as in English 4.

(Prerequisites: 3.5 GPA in American Literature and Language, teacher recommendation, and superior standardized test scores)

Journalism/Yearbook

2 semesters
5 credits per semester, Elective

This course develops and enhances skills necessary for the production of a quality high school yearbook including interviewing, journalistic writing, photography, computer layout and print design, short and long-term goal setting, photography, advertising sales, and promotion. Students are encouraged to take this course multiple years as leadership positions generally go to those with experience.

(Prerequisites: instructor approval, an acceptable writing or graphic design sample or concurrent enrollment in Honors English)

Speech and Debate

2 semesters
5 credits per semester, Elective

This course provides students with the confidence and experience they need to perform well in the public speaking situations they will face in college and beyond. It emphasizes skill development in four speech types: informative, persuasive, group presentation, and special occasion. Students sharpen their skills with the aid of videotape, texts of famous speeches, and interactive group activities.

History

Modern World History

2 semesters
5 credits per semester, Required

This course explores the major events between people and nations that have shaped our world. Students will gain recognition of patterns in our modern, global society. By developing study skills and methods of independent learning, this course will prepare students for further study in social studies subjects. Students will utilize writing, presentation, and discussion skills to communicate knowledge while emphasizing the application of historical lessons and Christianity to authentic situations.

Modern United States History

2 semesters
5 credits per semester, Required

Modern United States History provides students with a comprehensive understanding of America’s rich history, with an emphasis on the time period beginning with the post-Civil War Reconstruction and concluding with recent events. The curriculum is designed to teach basic factual content along with philosophical, social, technological, cultural, religious, and political perspectives of United States history. Students will be able to use this knowledge to understand and appreciate important movements and ideas as they have impacted the United States and the world.

AP United States History

2 semesters
5 credits per semester, Required

AP United States History is an intensive, fast-paced survey of U.S. history from pre-Columbian civilization to the present. There is a strong emphasis upon developing historians' skills such as research, interpreting primary source documents, and recognizing historical bias. The goal of this course is for students to write clear, convincing historical arguments based upon a wide range of texts.

(Prerequisites: Modern World History and consent of the instructor)

American Government

1 semesters
5 credits per semester, Required

This course prepares students to be active, knowledgeable citizens, or, potential citizens, by teaching the background and structure of American Government. Students analyze, discuss, and evaluate historical documents, including the U.S. Constitution. Students also develop the skills of a successful political scientist by investigating current events, as they relate to coursework.

Economics

1 semesters
5 credits per semester, Required

This course helps students master fundamental economic concepts, applying tools (graphs, statistics, equations) from other subject areas to the understanding of operations and institutions of economic systems. Studied in a historic context are the basic economic principles of micro- and macroeconomics, international economics, comparative economic systems, measurement, and methods.

Logic

2 semesters
5 credits per semester, Required

In the first part of the class, called “Introductory Logic,” students will discover some of the principles of good, fair argumentation, and will learn names for many of the mistakes people make when they put together a bad argument. In the second part of the course, called “Semiotics,” students will apply their understanding of good and bad argument as they learn to “read” the non-linguistic world in such things as movies and TV shows.

Visual & Performing Arts

Advanced Choir

2 semesters
5 credits per semester, Elective

Advanced Choir addresses concepts of music theory, music history, and vocal techniques. Topics include ear training, sight singing, solo and ensemble singing, and vocal health. This course explores how to pursue excellence by applying these skills to a variety of genres and styles. Additionally, this course discusses ministry applications. This course is a performance based elective. Most of the course is spent in rehearsal.

Art Foundations

2 semesters
5 credits per semester, Required/Elective

The visual arts program offers students comprehensive art experiences with detailed explorations in the classics such as drawing, painting, printmaking, ceramics, sculpting, and graphic design. Students will learn about the history, analysis, and interpretation of art. Students will also be introduced to career opportunities that utilize art skills and will learn to appreciate the importance of the arts in relation to cultures.

Advanced Art

2 semesters
5 credits per semester, Required/Elective

This course reviews Art Foundations with an increased emphasis on the development of the student's body of work, understanding of Art History, analysis and critique of art, and mastery of a variety of visual media. The course gives in-depth instruction and develops mastery of skills such as drawing, printmaking, painting, collage and sculpture. Upon completion of the course, students will curate their work into a individual art show containing pieces with a cohesive theme. (Prerequisites: Art Foundations)

Calligraphy

2 semesters
5 credits per semester, Required/Elective

Calligraphy exposes students to the history of Western typography through two or three letter hands: italic, uncial and blackletter. The terminology involved with investigating letterforms as well as the design theories involved in creating visually pleasing layouts will be practiced as students produce one finished project per letter style.

Choir

2 semesters
5 credits per semester, Required/Elective

This introductory music course offers fundamental concepts in music theory, music history, vocal technique, and choral singing. Choir offers training in sight singing, ear training, and vocal production. Much of the course time is dedicated to rehearsal and lab. Applications include performances in concert and ministry settings.

Digital Media

2 semesters
5 credits per semester, Elective

In this course students develop their perception and application of the principles of design. Students learn to use Adobe Products such as Adobe Photoshop, InDesign, and Illustrator to create logos, edit graphics, compile collages and build resumes. By the end of the class students should have a portfolio of graphic designs that can be used to apply for jobs in public relations, marketing and graphic design.

Photography

2 semesters
5 credits per semester, Elective

This course gives students hands-on experience with digital cameras and lenses. There will be photo based homework and projects that will be assigned to each student and the student's work will be displayed at a local art show at the end of the semester.

Theatre Arts

2 semesters
5 credits per semester, Required/Elective

This course explores stage performance and technical theatre. It is a hands-on, project driven class. It applies acting skills of improvisation, movement, vocal skills, ensemble work, character analysis and development. Instruction in technical theatre includes playwriting, set design, lighting, sound, costume, makeup, props, and directing. Historical aspects are integrated throughout.

World Languages

Spanish 1

2 semesters
5 credits per semester, Required

This course introduces students to Spanish culture and language around the world. Students learn grammatical structures and vocabulary while they practice listening, speaking, reading, and writing.

Spanish 2

2 semesters
5 credits per semester, Required

This course builds on the vocabulary and grammatical foundations established in Spanish 1. New verb tenses are practiced to increase the students’ ability to listen, peak, read and write more complex thoughts.

(Prerequisite: Spanish 1 or teacher approval)

Spanish 3

2 semesters
5 credits per semester, Elective

This course builds on Spanish 2 with an emphasis on improving grammatical skills, expanding vocabulary, and continuing the students’ historical and cultural knowledge of the Spanish-speaking world. (Prerequisite: Spanish 2 or teacher approval)

STEM

Mathematics

Algebra 1

2 semesters
5 credits per semester, Required

This course strengthens the student’s understanding of arithmetic and develops his/her skills of translating verbal expressions into mathematical symbols, numerical expressions, and open sentences. Topics of emphasis include solving equations, inequalities, multiplying and factoring polynomials, graphing linear equations, and solving radical expressions.

Geometry

2 semesters
5 credits per semester, Required

This course in plane and solid geometry emphasizes inductive and deductive reasoning and their applications to geometric figures. Topics covered include reasoning, congruent and similar polygons, circles, and area and volume measurements. Proofs and algebra will be heavily integrated throughout the course.

(Prerequisite: Algebra 1; 9th graders must have a B or better in Algebra 1, teacher recommendation, and passing score on placement exam)

Algebra 2

2 semesters
5 credits per semester, Required

This course reviews Algebra 1 with increased emphasis on equations and inequalities, the real number system, functions, relations, graphs of polynomial functions and conic sections, polynomials and algebraic expressions, exponents and numerical computation, and quadratic relations. The content includes systems of equations in two variables, introduction to complex number systems, data analysis, and study of trigonometric and circular functions.

(Prerequisites: Algebra 1 and Geometry).

Pre-Calculus

2 semesters
5 credits per semester, Required/Elective

This course is designed for advanced math students, providing an in-depth study of topics necessary to study Calculus at the college level. Topics of emphasis include functions and their graphs, trigonometry, exponents, logarithms, vectors, polar coordinates, matrices, and an introduction to limits and calculus.

(Prerequisites: B in Algebra 2, passing of placement exam, and teacher recommendation.)

AP Calculus AB

2 semesters
5 credits per semester, Elective

This course is designed for advanced math students who have shown high achievement in previous math courses and desire further training in mathematics. This course will focus both on differential and integral calculus, preparing students for the Advanced Placement Calculus AB exam, equivalent to a first semester college calculus course. (Prerequisites: B in Pre-Calculus, passing of placement exam, and teacher recommendation.)

Science

Biology

2 semesters
5 credits per semester, Required

This introductory science course provides a foundational study of a wide range of biological concepts. The first semester is primarily focused on cellular biology, genetics and taxonomy. The second semester focuses on zoology and ecology. Weekly labs support student understanding and develop their skills in observation.

Chemistry

2 semesters
5 credits per semester, Required

This lab-based course addresses the composition, structure, and reactions of matter. Real world applications of chemical concepts are used to connect students to the chemistry that is all around them. Frequent labs support concepts and provide data for analysis. (Prerequisite: Algebra 1)

Prerequisite for Honors Chemistry: B in Algebra 1, math teacher recommendation.

Forensic Science I

1 semesters
2.5 credits per semester, Elective

This course explores how science is used in understanding court evidence. Topics to be investigated include blood evidence, fiber and hair analysis, fingerprints, chromatography, and forging. The course is activity-based with all class members creating and analyzing evidence.

(Prerequisite: 1 semester of high school science)

Forensic Science II

1 semester
2.5 credits per semester, Elective

This course expands on the material in Forensics I. This involves more depth as well as new topics: impressions, forensic anthropology. Specific court cases are used to learn how forensic evidence is used in court. The course is activity-based with all class members creating and analyzing evidence.

(Prerequisite: Forensics I)

Human Biology

2 semesters
5 credits per semester, Elective

This course focuses on the science of human systems. The first semester moves from cellular biology to skeletal/muscular, integumentary and circulatory systems. The second semester investigates the digestive, endocrine and nervous systems. Frequent labs focus on analyzing and applying collected data.

(Prerequisite: Passing grade in Biology)

Physics

2 semesters
5 credits per semester, Elective

This course studies force and motion, work and energy, electricity and magnetism, wave motions, sound and light, and electronics. The course is very hands-on with minimal lecture. Concepts are experienced in labs that range from playing with toys, to using probes to record data, to designing and building your own machines and devices.

(Prerequisites: Algebra I and Geometry)

AP Biology

2 semesters
7.5 credits per semester, Elective

AP Biology is designed on a curriculum framework that focuses on four big ideas in biology and their connections: evolution, energy processes, information and interactions. This expands on freshman biology to study biochemical processes, modern genetic technologies and ecology in greater depth. Students develop strong conceptual understanding and integrate that knowledge through inquiry-based activities and laboratory investigations.

(Prerequisites: Biology, Chemistry, Algebra 1 and consent of the instructor)

AP Chemistry

2 semesters
5 credits per semester, Elective

This course meets all the depth and rigor of freshman chemistry at the college level. Topics expand on sophomore chemistry with thermochemistry, quantum theory, bonding liquids and solids, kinetics, equilibrium, acids-base and solubility equilibrium, entropy, electrochemistry, and nuclear and organic chemistry. Students will further their skills and enhance understanding by work with corresponding labs and computer simulations.

(Prerequisites: B or better in Chemistry and Algebra II, and consent of the instructor)

AP Environmental Science

2 semesters
5 credits per semester, Elective

This course is based on understanding the structure of the biosphere and the processes that govern its workings. Special attention is paid to how man's economic choices shape and change the earth, both positively and negatively: how can Christians be responsible stewards of our planet? Many labs are open-ended, with field and class studies of community dynamics.

(Prerequisites: Biology, Chemistry recommended, B in Algebra 1, consent of the instructor)

Other Required Courses

PHYSICAL EDUCATION

PE

2 semesters
5 credits per semester, Required

The goal of this course is to provide all students the basis for an understanding of a healthy lifestyle through physical education. The overall objective is to instill upon all students the knowledge necessary and desire to maintain physical fitness for a lifetime.

Strength & Conditioning

2 semesters
5 credits per semester, Required

This course focuses on strength development in the context of an individual's physical limitations. Topics will include equipment use, etiquette, safety, nutrition, and techniques related to strength training for the individual. Student athletes are encouraged to take this class, but those students not participating in sports are also welcome.

Sports Teams

1 season
5 credits per season, Required/Elective

PE credit is granted for participation in an official team sport. Each full season of participation gains 5 credits towards the PE graduation requirement. 20 credits are needed to meet the PE requirement.


ATHLETIC INTERNSHIPS

Sports Broadcasting

2 semesters
3-5 credits per year, Elective

This internship involves videotaping home varsity sporting events which are streamed live to the community. Attendance at a minimum of 8 games is needed per semester for meeting the intern program’s requirements for credit. Note: credit for this course counts as an elective. It does not count towards meeting the PE graduation requirement.

Sports Medicine

2 semesters
3-5 credits per year, Elective

The Sports Medicine curriculum is designed to educate students interested in fields such as athletic training, physical therapy, medicine, fitness, physiology of exercise, kinesiology, nutrition and other sports medicine fields. The main focus of this internship is to introduce students to the science of human anatomy and physiology, various injuries of the body, and ways to care for these injuries. Attendance at a minimum of 8 games is needed per semester for meeting the sports medicine’s program’s requirements for credit. Note: credit for this course counts as an elective. It does not count towards meeting the PE graduation requirement.

Sports Journalism

2 semesters
3-5 credits per year, Elective

The sports journalism internship provides an opportunity to become a published author. Students report on sporting events, retell the story, discuss game stats, and describe the excitement of the competition. Articles must be submitted 24 hours after each event. Attendance at a minimum of 8 games is needed per semester for meeting the sports journalism requirements for credit. Note: credit for this course counts as an elective. It does not count towards meeting the PE graduation requirement.

Team Manager

1 season
5 credits per sport, Elective

The Team Manager assists the coaches in each sport. Duties are assigned by the coach. Team Managers are expected to be present at all of the practices and home and away games. Note: credit for this course counts as an elective. It does not count towards meeting the PE graduation requirement.