SCIENCE


Biology 1,2 - Grade 9 - 12

This introductory course is designed to meet college entrance requirements and prepare students for the worlds of school, work, and citizenship. The course is aligned to NGSS, integrating Disciplinary Core Ideas from Life Science and Earth and Space Science, Crosscutting Concepts and Science and Engineering Processes. It builds on physical science concepts, and emphasizes mechanisms for the functioning and continuity of the biosphere and examines it interacts with each of the other Earth systems. Unifying themes of biology are stressed (evolution, homeostasis, energy, matter and organization, continuity, development, and ecology) and the application and relevance of biology to students’ lives and to society. Inquiry and the nature of science are important content elements

 

Laboratory activities have clearly labeled safety precautions and hazardous waste disposal procedures.

 

Physics 1,2 Advanced   – Grade 9

 

This two-semester laboratory science course is more rigorous and mathematically demanding than the basic physics course. It is designed to provide an introductory experience to the processes of investigating the physical world and the understandings derived from those processes. The emphasis is on developing a qualitative conceptual understanding of general principles and models and of the nature of scientific inquiry. The core content addresses the topics of motion and forces, the conservation of energy and momentum, heat and thermodynamics, waves and electric and magnetic phenomena. The course is aligned to NGSS, integrating Disciplinary Core Ideas from Physical Science and Earth and Space Science, Crosscutting Concepts and Science and Engineering Processes.

 

Physics 1, 2 – Grade 10 - 12

 

Prerequisites: Integrated Math I A-B (P) or equivalent

 

This two-semester, algebra-based physics course is designed to provide an introductory experience with the processes of investigating the physical world and the understandings derived from that process. The emphasis is on developing a qualitative conceptual understanding of general principals and models and on the nature of inquiry. This course concentrates on conceptual development and provides an enriching laboratory experience; it can be taken by students in grades 9 and 10 as a first course in physics that prepares them for the more mathematically rigorous Advanced Placement physics courses. The core content addressed in this course includes the topics of motion and forces, the conservation of energy and momentum, heat and thermodynamics, waves and electric and magnetic phenomena. Students also engage in studying the physics of space while using the science and engineering practices.

 

Chemistry 1,2 Honors  - Grades 10,11,12

 

Prerequisites: Above-average achievement in previous science course(s) and in Integrated Math I A-B (P) or equivalent; Physics 1,2 (P) and Chemistry 1,2 (P) recommended; concurrent enrollment in Integrated Math II A-B (P) or equivalent recommended as well as a desire to succeed in a rigorous college-level course environment. This course is designed to proceed at a more rapid pace and is more mathematically demanding than the basic Chemistry course.

The course is aligned to NGSS, integrating Disciplinary Core Ideas from Physical Science and Earth and Space Science, Crosscutting Concepts and Science and Engineering Processes. Students who complete this course successfully will gain an in-depth understanding of chemical concepts and processes. They will also develop their critical thinking and analytical skills. The class includes experimental laboratory activities, class discussions, reading, and critical analysis leading to a deeper understanding, and it emphasizes human inquiry and the nature of science.

Successful completion of this course earns recognition of honors (i.e., weighted) credit by the University of California. Courses meeting UC criteria for honors designation must be comparable in workload and emphasis to Advanced Placement, International Baccalaureate, or introductory college courses. A course syllabus, with laboratory activities, and a district-prepared, comprehensive end-of-course examination are required.

 

Chemistry 1,2 AP - Grades 10 - 12

 

Prerequisites – Completion of first-year Chemistry or teacher recommendation AND completion of Integrated Math 2.

The course is designed for students to pursue college-level studies in Chemistry while still in secondary school. As such, the instruction will assume that the student has a solid understanding of algebraic and arithmetic skills. The course is organized around nine units that are dictated by the College Board and are meant to prepare the student for taking the AP Chemistry exam as a culminating event. The pacing of the course is swift, and the coverage of material is extensive. Thus, it will be necessary for each student to budget their study time accordingly to keep pace with the subject matter. Students should expect 45 minutes of independent work (homework) each day.

 

Chemistry 1, 2 – Grades 11, 12

 

Prerequisites: Integrated Math I A-B (P) or equivalent

This introductory course is designed to meet college entrance requirements and prepare students for the worlds of school, work and citizenship. Students learn the fundamental concepts and knowledge of chemistry through thematic units that develop thinking and analytical skills as well as traditional chemistry subject matter and problem-solving. Students study the relationship of chemistry to atmospheric (climate) science and ocean acidification. They use the science and engineering practices to deepen their understanding of science. Inquiry and the nature of science are emphasized, and all student activities have clearly defined goals for both the content material and thinking skills involved. Laboratory activities have clearly labeled safety precautions and hazardous waste disposal procedures

 

Biology 1,2 Advanced  - Grade 11 - 12

 

Prerequisites: “A” or “B” in Honors Chemistry or AP Chemistry and approval of Chemistry teacher.

 

This is a first-year course intended for students with the interest and ability to extend their study of biology beyond the basic course, and/or who are contemplating a science-related career but are not prepared to take Advanced Placement Biology as their first biology course. It covers all the elements of the regular course, including the same inquiry and cooperative strategies, but its pace will be faster, it will go into greater depth in selected areas, and it will be more quantitative. The course is aligned to NGSS, integrating Disciplinary Core Ideas from Life Science and Earth and Space Science, Crosscutting Concepts and Science and Engineering Processes.

 

 

Biology 1, 2 AP – Grades 11, 12

Prerequisites: Integrated Math II A-B (P) or equivalent; an “A” or “B” in AP Chemistry; an “A” in Honors Chemistry and teacher approval

Advanced Placement (AP ®) Biology is equivalent to a two-semester college introductory biology course for biology majors. Students cultivate their understanding of biology through inquiry-based investigations as they explore the following big ideas: evolution, energetics, information storage and transfer, and system interactions. This approach enables students to spend less time on factual recall and more time on developing reasoning skills necessary to engage with cross-cutting concepts. One-quarter of the instructional time will be spent in hands-on laboratory work, with an emphasis on inquiry-based investigations that provide students with opportunities to apply the science practices. Laboratory activities have clearly labeled safety precautions and hazardous waste disposal procedures.

Success in this course requires 1-3 hours of work daily outside the classroom.

This course satisfies the life science graduation requirement. AP Biology is an approved D course for the University of California (UC) A-G subject-matter requirements.

 

Marine Science 1, 2 (P) - Grades 12

 

Prerequisites: Successful completion of Biology 1,2 (P), Physics and Chemistry or equivalents; interest in marine science

 

This course builds on the physical science and life science concepts learned in previous science courses and applies that knowledge to the exploration of the living and nonliving environments of our bays and oceans. Students will participate in a variety of learning experiences, including laboratory experiments, discussions, field trips, projects, independent research, and appropriate use of community resources. Ethical and social issues related to the marine environment may be addressed.

 

Physics C 1,2 AP - Grade 12

 

Prerequisites: Successful completion of Precalculus 1-2 (P), Precalculus 1-2 Honors (HP), or concurrent enrollment in calculus or another higher-level mathematics course

 

This course is the equivalent of a college-level physics course that provides a foundation for college students who will major in the physical sciences or engineering. Methods of calculus are used wherever appropriate in formulating physical principles and in applying them to physical problems. The course is more intensive and analytic than AP Physics I. The subject matter of the Physics C course is mechanics and electricity and magnetism, with approximately equal emphasis in the two areas.

 

Environmental Science 1,2 AP - Grade 12

 

Prerequisites: Successful completion of Chemistry 1,2 (P), Biology 1,2 (P), and Physics or equivalents

 

This advanced-level course is designed as the equivalent of a one-semester college-level course in environmental science. It provides students with the scientific principles, concepts, and methodologies required to understand the interrelationships of the natural world, to identify and analyze environmental problems, to evaluate the relative risks associated with these problems, and to examine solutions for resolving or preventing them.

 

Environmental Science 1,2 Advanced Placement will provide students with an additional laboratory science option at the advanced-placement level, as well as an opportunity to explore their local environments and global environmental issues. Students who normally do not enroll in Advanced Placement courses may select this course as a result of their interest in environmental issues.

Click here for more information regarding AP Environmental workload and a sample of student work.