English 9: Power and Reading to Witness

Throughout both the Power and Reading to Witness trimesters, students read, write, act, create, listen, watch, wonder, debate, and present; they work independently and collaboratively, use their questions as starting points for their work, and employ technology to deepen their learning. Ultimately, they find ways to connect the characters and themes to their own lived experiences and to the world today. Readings can include fiction, non-fiction, memoir, poetry, and drama, and we read some as a full class and others in small groups; students reflect on and question the texts in a range of writing assignments, anything from scripts for podcasts to analysis of themes to creation of a missing chapter or a PSA. The work  stretches their imagination as well as their analytical skills, writing styles, and ability to craft meaningful products. 

In this trimester course, we question the nature of power and reflect on the ways we ourselves use our power and respond to power. In our readings, we look at the intersection of power and our characters’ gender, age, race, political beliefs, socio-economic reality, or experience; we wonder about the relationship between power and fate; and we ask why some characters let power compromise their beliefs while others use their power for good.

Reading to Witness 
This course is designed to introduce students to the complex nature of perspective and bearing witness in literature. Through the examination of various texts, students will engage in close reading and critical analysis. They will explore the ways in which different characters and narrators shape the story  and influence reader engagement. Students will also learn to examine the relationship between form and content, exploring how different writing techniques can influence our understanding of characters and events. In addition to close analysis of texts, students will also engage in discussions, writing assignments, and projects that encourage them to reflect on their own perspectives and experiences. Through these activities, students will explore how perspective is shaped by cultural, historical, and personal factors and understand the importance of witnessing and engaging with these perspectives as they understand their world. By the end of the course, students will have a deeper understanding of the role of perspective in shaping meaning in literature, and will be equipped with the skills necessary to analyze and engage with texts in a critical and thoughtful manner.


Foundations for Algebraic Reasoning

This course is designed for students who have not completed Algebra 1 through quadratics in middle school. Students will build a strong foundation in algebraic reasoning and grapple with real-world applications. Work will focus on solving linear equations and systems and the exploration of exponential and quadratic relationships.
Not offered at the Honors level.

Integrated Math 2: Algebra, Geometry, and Data Science

Integrated Math 2 students expand their algebraic reasoning and understanding of mathematical models including quadratic equations and exponential functions. Students also explore probability and build upon their knowledge of transformations, congruence, and similarity while developing logic skills through conjecture, argument, and proof. Investigations in this course build connections between all topics covered. 

Prerequisites: Integrated Math 1, Algebra 1, or Foundations for Algebraic Reasoning. Offered at the Honors and Standard levels. Honors level requires departmental recommendation.


Global History I: U.S. History

Nation and Nationalism 
If you could build your own nation, what would it be like? In this class, you will have the opportunity to understand how nations are built, how they expand, and how national identity is shaped and cemented through culture, politics, conflict, and division. You will also evaluate the goals of the U.S. as a new nation, its decisions to embrace democracy,  and examine how citizens have shaped its course toward these goals since its founding amidst ever-evolving global challenges and opportunities.

The Age of Reforms
From Sectionalism, including Reconstruction, through the suffrage movement, this course examines the root causes of the political, social, economic, and cultural reform movements that have existed in the United States. How successful were those reformers, and how did some of their objectives become part of mainstream political discourse? 
Can a true democracy adequately respond to the will of the majority while protecting the rights and interests of all citizens? Using multiple perspectives and sources, you will learn about the people and movements that helped shape the United States and then assess the effectiveness of those movements.  


Physics Foundations - Motion

The Physics Foundations course serves as a student’s first introduction to science in the upper school. This initial term of 9th-grade physics familiarizes students with essential scientific skills and concepts through collaborative investigations and design tasks. Emphasizing problem-solving, teamwork, experimental methods, data analysis, and clear communication, students engage in hands-on activities to understand core principles of kinematics and energy.

Prerequisites: None. Open to 9th graders only.

Physics Applications - Engineering

This course is the second term of 9th-grade science following the Physics Foundations course. It offers students an opportunity to further their understanding of physics principles through engineering. Throughout this course, students will delve into the practical application of physics, specifically focusing on engineering principles such as design, fabrication, and iteration. Students will engage in hands-on exploration and experimentation, applying data analysis and feedback to inform their engineering designs. Topics covered include forces, electricity, and circuitry, providing a foundation for understanding how these concepts drive engineering innovation.

Prerequisites: Physics Foundations. Open to 9th graders only. Honors level offered only with departmental permission.

Modern Languages
Students are not placed in a specific level based on year, but rather by proficiency, meaning students from several different grades may be in the same class. Click here to see all our Modern Language offerings.

Students are not placed in a specific level based on year, but rather by interest, meaning students from several different grades may be in the same class. Students can choose to take classes in either or both of the Performing Arts and Visual Arts departments.
Click here to see the Performing Arts offerings.
Click here to see the Visual Arts offerings.