Team-taught, Integrated Science I & II is a two-year accelerated program in physics, chemistry, and biology, extending the National Research Council's Framework for Science Education to emphasize cross-cutting concepts, like materials and engineered systems, that unify science and engineering. Grade 9 familiarizes students with the quantitative aspects of physics and chemistry, and grade 10 expands their knowledge of the principles of both physical sciences as these apply to biological systems. Grade 11 and grade 12 students may take the Earth Systems Capstone course or opt for Advanced Independent Research Internships and/or Advanced Courses and Electives, including: Marine Science; Advanced Mechanics; Advanced Electricity & Magnetism; Advanced Chemistry; Astrophysics; Biotechnology; Physics with Calculus, Thermodynamics, and Sound, Light & Optics.
Students explore the practice of science today as it intersects with other fields in Science & Society, critically reviewing the development of scientific thought through history and applying their learning to explore topics making headlines, such as the risks and benefits of GMO foods and organisms. This signature interdisciplinary course introduces all aspects of scientific literacy in the 21st century, including history and ethics of science, computational thinking, data analysis and statistical methods, and scientific communication.
Technology & Design Engineering
A design innovation class, Design Thinking, Engineering & Entrepreneurship empowers students to further build upon their skills developed in Middle School to be change-makers in the world, helping them prepare for a future where resilience is key and translating ideas into reality, essential. Identifying needs and testing them, students generate ideas and create quick prototypes to get feedback, inventing business models to leverage their ideas in the world. Use of woodworking tools, CAD software, and digital fabrication equipment, such as the laser cutter and the 3-D printer, helps them bring their ideas to fruition. Students continue their coursework in The Nueva Quest and with electives such as fabrication, robotics, and electrical engineering.
Taught at "stage, not age" and by ability and interest to maximize motivation, students learn both to take pleasure in the beauty of pure mathematics and to see the importance of the application of math to real- world problems. Foundational and Advanced Topics courses such as Algebra & Geometry, The Elegant Logic of Computer Science, and Discrete Mathematics and Calculus and others are structured as challenges for every skill and knowledge level. Beginning in grade 9, students grapple with age-old proofs, unlocking the power of computational programming on today's most robust platform to compile a digital portfolio demonstrating levels of mastery. Using Mathematica, they create programs that find the area under a curve (typically a calculus topic), using both probability models and "infinite" area summation. All courses emphasize intellectual risk-taking, computational thinking, proof and heuristics, and integrated use of information technology.