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Plus Portals

Science Department


Overview

Two of the major tenets within the school’s mission statement are the preparation of our young men for success in college while emphasizing Christian values in the classroom.  The Science Department strives to develop the knowledge base and the creative skills required by demanding college laboratory courses while being active proponents of Catholic teachings.  This is demonstrated by challenging students to consider contemporary moral issues that concern the study of science, such as:  climate change, embryonic stem cell research and the moral boundaries of scientific exploration.  The teachers of science are aware that students are individual learners and therefore use different methods of presentation.

Teachers work with the Guidance Department and the Administration to assist their students in developing good work habits and time management skills to support the philosophy of the school concerning teaching and learning.  The school’s mission statement is the driving force within the classroom on a daily basis in lessons, prayer, and social interactions.  The students perform experiments, present and analyze data, produce conclusions and submit lab reports.  Courses are developed to meet the needs of students who have different learning styles, abilities and needs.  AP, Honors, Accelerated, CP1 and CP courses are carefully designed to provide continuity.  As a student progresses through each year of the curriculum, the material presented reinforces skills learned and challenges the student with opportunities to develop problem-solving and critical thinking skills.  To enhance student learning and to make the material in each curriculum more meaningful and enjoyable, teachers use the following methods of presentation:  lecture, computer technology, demonstrations and field trips.  As a result of his overall experience in the Science Program, each student should find that skills and knowledge acquired have prepared him to be successful in future endeavors as a well-rounded Christian young man.  This is and should be the ultimate goal of the school and of the students themselves.

8th Grade SELECT Honors Institute

Integrated Science & Engineering
This course includes a study of scientific topics which will prepare students for a challenging, dynamic high school science curriculum. The approach to these topics is investigative with an emphasis on experimentation in a lab setting. The goal is for students to learn the scientific method, proper laboratory procedure, and best practices for lab report presentation.

Topics covered include:

  • Mechanics and the study of motion, including kinematics and dynamics,
  • Buoyancy, density, and fluid principles,
  • The structure and states of matter, and the Periodic Table,
  • Chemical reactions and the chemistry of living systems, and
  • The Earth in the solar system

Freshman Year

Biology –  Honors
This course provides the student with a basic understanding of general biological principles that are common to all living things both at the cellular and organism levels.  This course will also provide a general overview of scientific procedures and experimentation.  Biology Honors is designed to prepare the student for more advanced science courses (including Chemistry and Advanced Placement Biology) at Bishop Hendricken High School.

Biology –  CP1
This course provides the student with a basic understanding of general biological principles that are common to all living things. This course will also provide a general overview of the domains of life with concentrations on areas that reflect the individual teacher’s strengths and student interest. Biology CP1 will prepare the student for more advanced science courses at Bishop Hendricken High School and beyond.

Physical Science
The course has been designed specifically for students with limited mathematical ability. This is an introductory course which covers the topics of motion, sound, electricity and basic chemistry.  Lab work is required and students work collaboratively to create lab reports.

Sophomore Year

Chemistry  – Honors
This course is designed to provide the students with a firm foundation in chemical concepts and principles. Since it is a mathematical science, it requires a proficiency in algebraic skills. Concept mastery, rather than memorization is encouraged. A basic goal for this course is to have students develop critical-thinking and problem-solving skills. Labs meet every two weeks and lab reports are typed and submitted in a timely fashion. Most students will take the SAT Subject Test in June. Those students who excel in this course will have the option of electing AP Chemistry as their next science course.

Chemistry –  CP1
This course presents a comprehensive foundation on the principles of chemistry. Students will apply mathematical skills learned in earlier years. The chemical concepts are often abstract and require higher cognitive skills. Students develop these skills through the use of symbolic language, the formulation of models and the development of word diagrams.  Labs meet every two (2) weeks and lab reports are typed and submitted three (3) days after completion of lab.

Physiology  – CP 1
This full year lab science course provides the basic information a student needs to have a general understanding of the structure and function of the human body. This course will follow the format of Human Organization, Support and Movement, Integration and Coordination, Maintenance of the Body, and Reproduction and Development. A series of dissections including the chicken leg, sheep eye, frog, fetal pig, and various other lab activities will be included. This course will implement a variety of teaching methods to enable students the ability to think critically. Reading comprehension and independent study are necessary skills for this course.

Physiology  – CP
This is the same course that is offered at the CP1 level including dissections.  Class size is smaller and language (vocabulary) is less complex.

Biology –  CP
This course provides the student with a basic understanding of general biological principles that are common to all living things. This course will also provide a general overview of the kingdoms of life with concentrations on areas that reflect the individual teacher’s strengths and student interest. Biology CP proceeds at a somewhat less rigorous pace than that of Biology CP1.

Junior Year

AP Biology
This second year Biology course is designed for highly motivated students and follows the prescribed syllabus set forth by the College Board.  Topics include:  Biochemistry, Genetics, Ecology, Comparative Anatomy and Physiology, Evolution and Botany.  Inquiry based labs are an integral part of the course.  Students enrolled are expected to take the AP Biology exam and the SAT II exam in Biology.

AP Chemistry
The purpose of this course is to provide students with the necessary background to be successful at the next level of chemistry. It affords them the opportunity to further develop time management and problem-solving skills as well as communication skills as they create and work in study groups. All students taking this course are juniors/seniors and have taken Honors Chemistry as sophomores and are taking AP statistics or AP Calculus along with AP Chemistry. Students selecting this course must have an A/A- in Honors Chemistry and receive a 650 (or better) on the SAT II.

Students are required to keep a notebook for class work and a separate notebook for assigned questions and problems. All odd-numbered questions/problems at the end of the chapter are assigned. Students are expected to do the even numbered problems (on their own) prior to tests. They may choose to use TI 83+ or TI 84+ calculators. Guided inquiry based labs are performed which follow the College Board mandates.  Grades are determined solely on the basis of tests and lab reports. Typed reports are due three days after the completion of the lab. Students work with a partner, but the report must be their own. Periodically, a take-home problem-solving test is given and graded. Tests are given approximately every two weeks and a comprehensive exam testing their theory and problem-solving techniques is given at the end of the second and fourth quarters.

Chemistry –  CP1
This course presents a comprehensive foundation on the principles of chemistry. Students will apply mathematical skills learned in earlier years. The chemical concepts are often abstract and require higher cognitive skills. Labs meet every two (2) weeks.  Lab reports are required.  Students develop these skills through the use of symbolic language, the formulation of models and the development of word diagrams.

Chemistry  – CP
This course has been designed specifically for students with limited mathematical ability. The major topics of a first year course are covered without an emphasis on the more difficult math problems. Labs meet every two weeks and lab reports are turned in at the next class session.

Senior Year

AP Physics C: Mechanics
This course provides students with a background in Mechanics equivalent to a calculus-based, first semester college course for a Physics major. Students taking this course are also required to take AP Calculus which meets the period before. A number of the examples and problems in the Calculus class are designed to support the Physics class. The same instructor teaches both classes. This course is a calculus-based Physics course.

Physics – Honors
This course provides the student with an in-depth foundation of the principles of physics in order to prepare him for further course work in college. As a minimum, the course will focus on the following areas: Mechanics, Wave Phenomena, Phases of Matter, Heat Transfer, Optics, Electricity, and Magnetism. A minimum of eighteen (18) laboratory experiments will be performed.

Physics – CP1
This course provides the student with a foundation of the principles of physics in order to prepare him for further course work in college. As a minimum, the course will focus on the following areas: Mechanics, Wave Phenomena, Optics, and Electricity. A minimum of nineteen (19) laboratory experiments will be performed.

Physics – CP
In this course the nature of science as it applies to the physics of everyday things is explored. This course focuses on the physics knowledge and math skills necessary for students to have an understanding of the world around them. Topics include laws of motion, mechanics, fluids, thermodynamics, nuclear physics, waves, sound, optics, electricity, electronics, magnetism, light and modern physics. This class incorporates activities, labs, projects, computer simulations, computer data analysis, and many technologies. The program is a high school version of a famous course offered at UVA by Louis Bloomfield by the name “How Things Work.” The focus is on practical application of physics concepts. This course emphasizes the need for measurement and quantitative analyses in order to develop models of the natural world.