Science

Minnesota state graduation standards and district policy both require that students successfully complete three full years of science, including one year of Biology, in order to graduate from South High School.

Biology 1/Physics 1

Open to: All 9th grade students
Length: Year-long(one semester of Biology 1, one semester of Physics 1)

 

Biology 2/Physics 2

Open to: All 11-12th grade students
Length: Year-long(one semester of Biology 2, one semester of Physics 2)

This is the second half of each for the Biology and Physics course.

 
CIS Physics: Physics by Inquiry

Open to: 11th, and 12th grade students

Length: Year-long.

It focuses on students learning physics by participating in the process of scientific discovery and applying that content to solving qualitative problems, rather than on the quantitative problem solving found in a traditional physics course. In addition, the content (ranging from properties of magnets, to light and color and optics, to astronomy and others) differs from that found in a traditional physics course. Students collaborate with their peers to conduct experiments, generate theories of how things work based on their observations, and refine their theories by further experimentation. Emphasis in the course is placed on knowing the evidence that supports a theory.

Earth Science and Environmental Issues
Open to: All 10th,11th and 12th grade students
Length: Year-long
The goal of this course is to provide students with a knowledge base in understanding the working processes of the earth‘s internal and external functions, in relation to the living beings residing upon it. This course fulfills State requirements for Earth Science for upper classmen who need to fulfill the Earth Science requirement for graduation.

AP Biology
Open to: All 10th,11th and 12th grade students
Prerequisite: Chemistry is required, Biology and Physics are recommended
Length: Year-long
This is a rigorous yearlong course that follows the curriculum of an introductory college course. The class materials draw extensively on current materials from scientific journals and research. The course covers selected topics in biochemistry, cell biology, energy, heredity, ecology, molecular genetics, biotechnology, evolutions, systematics and homeostasis. Students will learn through the use of periodicals, text, clas discussion, laboratories, guest speakers, demonstration and independent investigations. The course will prepare students to take the College Board AP Biology Test in May.

AP Physics 1: Algebra-Based

Open: 10-12th grade students

Length: Year long

This course is the equivalent to a first-semester college course in algebra-based physics. The course covers Newtonian mechanics (including rotational dynamics and angular momentum); work, energy, and power; mechanical waves and sound. It will also introduce electric circuits.

AP Physics 2: Algebra-Based (this will be offered in the 2015-16 school year)

 Open: 10-12th grade students

Length: Year long

This course is the equivalent to a second-semester college course in algebra-based physics. The course covers fluid mechanics; thermodynamics; electricity and magnetism; optics; atomic and nuclear physics.

 Chemistry
Open to: All 10th,11th and 12th grade students
Prerequisite: Algebra 1
Length: Year-long
This is a two semester sequential course that uses ChemCom, a text written by the American Chemical Society. This text approaches chemical topics from an environmental point of view. The course explores matter, measurement, chemical notation, atomic structure, chemical periodicity, chemical bonds, kinetic theory, gases, chemical reactions, mole concept, stoichiometry, acids and bases, solutions, organic chemistry, nuclear chemistry, oxidation-reduction reactions, electrochemistry, and chemical/ environmental issues. Lectures, demonstrations, group problem solving and laboratory investigations are an integral part of this course. Keep in mind that the entrance requirements of many colleges now include one year of high school chemistry.

Honors Chemistry
Open to: All 10th,11th and 12th grade students
Length: Year-long
This is a two semester sequential course. This accelerated course is taught from the 2005 edition of Chemistry (Prentice Hall) and this traditional text will include lecture, demonstrations, laboratories, and group problem solving. This course approaches chemistry from a mathematical, problem solving perspective and it is ideal for students who are considering an engineering or science major in college.

AP Chemistry
Open to: All 10th,11th and 12th grade students
Length: Year-long
This course is designed to provide a solid, first-year college chemistry experience, both conceptually and in the laboratory. The labs serve to supplement learning in the lecture discussion section of the course. Problem solving skills, both on paper and in the lab, are emphasized to discover more about how chemistry works. Topics include reaction stoichiometry, bonding, equilibrium, thermodynamics and electrochemistry. This is a rigorous fast paced course. Students are expected to take the College Board AP Chemistry Test.

AP Environmental Science
Open to: All 11th & 12th grade students
Length: Year-long
The goal of this course is to provide students with the scientific principles, concepts, and methodologies required to understand the interrelationships of the natural world, to identify and analyze environmental problems both natural and human-made, to evaluate the relative risks associated with these problems, and to examine alternative solutions for resolving and/or preventing them.