ACADEMICS
Ninth Grade

ENGLISH 9 – LITERATURE & COMPOSITION/HONORS ENGLISH 9*

English 9 continues the preparatory emphasis begun at the eighth grade level. It is built around the study of American and world literature, expository and creative writing skills, and the fine-tuning of mechanics, usage, and style. Students gain critical thinking skills and develop an understanding of abstract thought as they discuss and write about what they have read. Through working with literature, students become exposed to new perspectives and learn to communicate their own thoughts and values orally and with the written word.

GEOMETRY or ALGEBRA 2/TRIGONOMETRY

This course meets the California Content Standards for Geometry. In addition to the essentials of Geometry, the class also engages in reasoning and proof. Specific topics include: writing geometric proofs, congruent triangles and their relationships, similarity, Trigonometry, quadrilaterals, properties of circles, and solids, to name a few. Students will be versed in all aspects of Geometry. The development of reason and how to solve a wide range of problems are key goals of the class. Qualified students may be enrolled in Algebra 2/Trigonometry.

HONORS CONCEPTUAL PHYSICS*

Physics is about the nature of things such as motion, force, energy, matter, heat, sound, light, and the composition of matter. Students will explore these topics while solving a wide range of problems using the principles of physics and mathematics. The class also covers Astronomy and Robotics. The Astronomy section explores the planets, star life cycles, galaxies, black holes, and cosmic evolution. The Robotics section allows students the opportunity to build and program a wide array of robotic devices. Labs are included in the course.

SPANISH 3/4: LANGUAGE, CULTURE & GRAMMAR

The Spanish 3/4 course follows national standards and is offered to ninth grade students who have successfully completed Spanish 1/2. Upon completion of Spanish 3/4, students receive credit for second year Spanish and are able to enter into Spanish 5/6. In a communicative and welcoming environment, students develop conversational use of complex grammar and writing skills.

WORLD HISTORY*

World History begins by going back to study our human origins and comparing the theories of our evolution with different cultural beliefs of creation. We study ancient civilizations of India and China to examine the oldest continually practiced spiritual traditions still in existence. After our study of both ancient and modern India, we travel to Tibet and then China to learn about this superpower and its relationship to the U.S. and the world. Then, it’s off to the Middle East to gain a better understanding of cultures, chaos, and conflict in the region. To have a better understanding of our world, students build a general working knowledge of the main events, ideas, characters, and relationships that have shaped world history. Throughout this course, students develop skills in critical thinking, reading, writing, note-taking, and public speaking.

LIFE SKILLS

By providing students with detailed information and exploring current social issues, this course helps students develop and discover their personal values while navigating a healthy transition to adulthood. Through guest speakers, videos, individual exercises, and role plays, students become more knowledgeable about community resources and are better able to make educated and responsible choices for the future. Students earn high school credit for Family Health.

*All ninth grade students take Honors Physics and may elect to enroll in Honors English. Also, ninth grade World History satisfies the World History requirement for most high schools.