Each one of us is a student of physics from the moment of birth. Early on we learn to "conquer" gravity as we support our heads and then our entire bodies. Our eyes learn to focus and we find that we can recognize objects because of the patterns of light reflected from them. Through their time at the Upper School, students will take the knowledge they have already acquired and will be able to place it in a more formal context using the language of mathematics. Students will understand physics by recognizing cause and effect relationships between objects and collect, analyze, and communicate experimental data to support their observations. As students dive deep into Newton's three laws of motion, they will be able to recognize the role physics plays in different aspects of their lives.
Genetics and Biotechnology
The study of genetics provides us with the understanding of how DNA we inherit affect the traits we have. Students will study and explore the inheritance and variation of traits and assess the role that the environment plays in heredity. Through labs where they will extract and analyze DNA, students will have the opportunity to study diseases such as Sickle Cell Anemia, cancer, and Tay Sachs. In addition to learning about the foundation of classical genetics, students will explore the cutting edge field of biotechnology and the various tools available, such as 3D printers, to help improve the lives of organisms and the overall wellbeing of our planet.
One formal definition of chemistry is "the study of matter and energy." Learning chemistry involves a leap of faith since its most fundamental tenet is that matter is composed of invisible particles, whose existence we intuit from laboratory results and mathematical models. Learning chemistry is a vital part of being an informed citizen in the 21st century. Many political decisions involving the environment and the allocation of resources demand an electorate with a basic knowledge of chemical principles. With this knowledge, students are prepared to follow the precepts of K'dushah and Tikkun Olam, as outlined in the school's mission statement.
Anatomy and Physiology
Anatomy and Physiology provides students with the opportunity to explore the correlation between the structure of the major systems of the mammalian body and their functions. When doing so, students will examine the relationship between organs of the same system and different systems. Comparative studies of mammalian skeletons and hominid skulls are also part of the course. Students will perform labs that include examining skeletal bones and sheep hearts, as well as dissecting a rabbit. Through these labs and other activities, students will have a better understanding of how our bodies work and what should be done to keep them healthy as we grow older.