Biology (offered every year)
Why Study biology?
Biology, the study of life, is a hands-on, inquiry-based, lab focused course. At New Hope, the Biology classroom is a place for students to learn about the fascinating, biological world in an environment that encourages them to explore and ask questions. Students are tasked with learning to how to read scientific texts, perfect note-taking techniques, hone microscope skills, and practice a variety of lab techniques specific to each area of study. With a small classroom size, students have the opportunity for rich classroom discussion, small group work with peers as well as performing simulations of complex processes that occur at the sub-microscopic level. From observing enzymatic reactions, to extracting DNA, to sampling bacteria, the goal for all students is to develop a deep appreciation for both the unity and diversity of life.
In this course, 9th and 10th grade students will study the fundamentals of living things and their processes. Through the exploration of the natural world, from the microscopic to the macroscopic, students will gain an understanding of the diversity of life as well as how life is interconnected. Students will explore biological concepts through reading, assignments, class discussion, demonstration and experimentation.
LABS: High school science classes at New Hope include labs and one Friday “skills day,” all of which contribute to the whole experience and qualify the class on transcripts as a full HS lab science course. We are contracted with Gordon College to use their excellent facilities for Friday lab days. We believe the lab experience is a vital component of the overall course. As such, we consider the science Friday skills day at New Hope and the corresponding Friday labs at Gordon College to be mandatory. Please plan for these extra dates on your calendar (TBA by instructor by late summer).
Major Topics covered
Science of Biology, Chemistry of Life, Biosphere, Ecosystems & Communities, Structure & Function of the Cell, Photosynthesis & Cellular Respiration, Cell Growth & Division, Genetics (DNA, Protein Synthesis, Heredity, Genetic Engineering), Evolution, Classification, & Microorganisms.
Major Skills developed
Writing formal lab reports
Developing organizational, study and critical thinking skills
Observing, predicting, measuring, calculating, designing, graphing, analyzing, inferring and drawing conclusions
Proper use of laboratory techniques
Scientific inquiry and investigation skills as used with the scientific method
Biology by Miller & Levine