Courses by Department

English Course Descriptions

ENG71 English 7
Grade 7
Two semesters, one credit

Inspired by the thematic topic of self-discovery, this course prompts the student to apply an inward-looking lens, to ask, “Who am I? Why is self-reflection important? Who do I want to be?” While reading literature, such as Animal Farm, The Miracle Worker, A Midsummer Night's Dream, and The Secret Life of Bees, the student receives a firm foundation in literature, composition writing, grammar, and vocabulary. Use of a Greek and Latin etymological approach enhances the building of reading skills, and literary genre studies include the novel, short stories, plays, and poetry. The course also covers the principles of grammar, mechanics, and punctuation. In writing, students refine their composition skills through literary analysis and creative pieces that are individually conferenced with the teacher.

 

ENG81 English 8
Grade 8
Two semesters, one credit

English 8 expands on the foundational work of the seventh-grade course. Students continue to add to their working knowledge of reading techniques for short stories, plays, poetry, and novels; they employ grade-level vocabulary and apply etymological decoding to new vocabulary; solidify a basic understanding of grammar; and practice the skills to produce a clear, unified, and coherent essay on a literary topic. The literary thematic focus for eighth-grade English continues the student’s self-discovery investigation, but applies an outward looking lens. The course encourages a greater understanding of the causes, results, and possible methods of preventing prejudice, while simultaneously empowering the student to discover her own responsibilities and place in the greater world. Reading selections include A Raisin in the Sun, To Kill a Mockingbird, and Of Mice and Men.

 

ENG101 Foundations of Literature and Composition
Grade 9
Two semesters, one credit

After delving into Greek and Roman mythology, Foundations of Literature and Composition immerses students in translated selections from Homer, Aristotle, Sophocles, and Dante, while then entering modern English with Shakespeare. Following the brief introduction to the western canon, students investigate the role of storytelling in modern society through works such as Wiesel’s Night, Salinger’s The Catcher in the Rye, and Kingston’s The Woman Warrior: A Memoir of a Girlhood Among Ghosts. The student and teacher conference expository writing and the student revises each essay afterwards to help her appreciate her efforts and learn from her mistakes. In class as well as during the writing conference, student and teacher focus on building vocabulary, improving grammar, and learning Modern Language Association (MLA) documentation and format. Leisure reading and the importance of reading as a life-long skill are also major components of the course work incorporated into this class.

 

ENG102 Honors Foundations in Literature and Composition
Grade 9
Two semesters, one credit

HONORS Foundations of Literature and Composition explores a canonical selection of novels, myths, plays, and poems, focusing on the complex motif of the heroic journey. Formal literature study begins with the Greek and Roman myths, and continues with the study of Homer’s Odyssey, Sophocles’ Oedipus Rex and Antigone, Seneca’s letters, Ovid’s Metamorphoses, Shake­speare’s Romeo & Juliet and Julius Ceasar, concluding with Wiesel’s Night, Salinger’s The Catcher in the Rye, and Kingston’s The Woman Warrior: A Memoir of a Girlhood Among Ghosts. Students work on their writing skills in a range of modes—creative, reflective, and analytical—and especially through constructing formal academic essays. The student and teacher conference each major writing assignment and the student revises the essay after each conference to help her appreciate her efforts and learn from her mistakes. In class as well as during the writing conference, student and teacher focus on building vocabulary, improving grammar, and learning Modern Language Association (MLA) documentation and format. Leisure reading and the importance of reading as a life-long skill are also major components of the course work. 

(Prerequisite: A- in English 8; 90% on standardized reading and language arts/English tests; and a required writing sample provided at the same time as the math placement exam for new students or during English class for returning Villa Duchesne students.)

 

ENG201 English Literature 
Grade 10
Two semesters, one credit

Using a chronological approach, this course surveys major selections of English literature, both classic and contemporary. We study the words and ideas of the brilliant, the creative, the confident—a thriving literary tradition ignited by the glory and charisma of Queen Elizabeth I and fueled over the next four hundred years by the ideals of an ambitious island empire that would grow so large as to brag that the “sun never set” on its shores. Of course, the empire’s dark underbelly is as fascinating and vital as its golden veneer, so we also study the words of the powerless and the marginalized. Students have the opportunity to study several genres such as novels, memoir, short stories, plays, poems, essays, and films, and to apply a variety of approaches to analyzing them. They also write a number of short and long expository, analytical, argumentative, and research essays while focusing on the development of sophistication, clarity, and coherence in their writing. Students continue their vocabulary studies and individualized writing program through regularly scheduled meetings with the teacher and revising her works after each conference.

 

ENG202 Honors English Literature
Grade 10
Two semesters, one credit

English Literature focuses on the development of the English language across time and continents. From Beowulf to today, British literature spans more than a millennium, its “infinite variety” still delighting and surprising us, still teaching us what it is to read, what it is to be human. Students engage in extensive study of poetry and prose from a variety of genres such as ballads, sonnets, essays, and novels, as well as canonical authors such as Shakespeare, Wordsworth, Austen, and newcomers such as Adichie. In addition to the literature, students write analytical essays, thoughtful reflections, and creative interpretations about particular literature selections. Students also learn how to craft literary criticism and persuasive arguments while they acquire a working knowledge of literary terms and techniques. Students continue their vocabulary studies and individualized writing program through regularly scheduled meetings with the teacher and revising her works after each conference. This course prepares the student for continuing into the Advanced Placement English Language & Composition course in her junior year.

(Prerequisite: B+ in English 9, recommendation from English 9 instructor, and approval of the student’s writing portfolio. A love of reading is a given for entering this course.)

 

ENG301 American Literature
Grade 11
Two semesters, one credit

American Literature is a college preparatory course devoted to a chronological study of important selected writers, diverse voices, and genres from the 17th through the 21st centuries. Major texts include selections from Native American and Puritan writers, the Transcendentalists, Hawthorne’s The Scarlet Letter, Twain’s Huckleberry Finn, Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby, Williams’ The Glass Menagerie, and a selection of memoirs, short stories, poetry, and essays. Readings from signifi­cant American women writers include Charlotte Perkins Gilman, Kate Chopin, Zora Neale Hurston, Flannery O’Connor, Alice Walker, and Amy Tan. The focus of the course is on close reading, critical thinking, cooperative inquiry, academic discourse, and argument. Students read deeply, analyze a text carefully, look for and summarize ideological differences, locate points of controversy and causal relationships, form an opinion, develop a thesis, find evidence to support it, systematically construct an argument, and draw conclusions. Compositions are conferenced individually with the teacher and revised by the student, along with an ongoing study of vocabulary and grammar. 

 

ENG302 Advanced Placement English Language and Composition
Grade 11
Two semesters, one credit

The Advanced Placement English Language and Composition course is designed to prepare students with the skills they need to navigate the multitude of messages they receive every day. Students read and analyze a variety of text from different genres, including speeches, personal narratives, short stories, essays, novels, editorials, films, advertisements (both print and film), and political cartoons. Furthermore, students are required to write across these various genres and employ the rhetorical strategies and techniques they have learned throughout the course. Advanced Placement English Language and Composition is also an American literature course. Therefore, the reading selections are written by American authors and are studied in chronological order to further enhance students’ understanding of literary movements within history. Authors include Hawthorne, Thoreau, Twain, Chopin, Fitzgerald, Walker, O’Connor, Didion, and many others. All literature in this course serves as a foundation for further discussions on current trends in American society as we seek to draw comparisons and contrasts between voices of the past and present. These discussions nurture a learning environment in which students form their own viewpoints on issues through exploration, analysis, research, and questioning. Students in this course are required to take the Advanced Placement exam in May. This course may also be taken for dual credit through Saint Louis University’s 1818 Advanced College Credit Program.

(Prerequisite: A- in English 10 or B+ in Honors English 10, recommendation of English 10 teacher, and portfolio of student’s writing. A love of reading and writing is essential for success in this class.)

 

ENG380 Literary Art Magazine
ENG382 Honors Literary Art Magazine (editors)
Grade 9, 10, 11, 12

Two semesters, .50 credit for ENG380; one credit for ENG382

In this multi-grade course, students explore the creative process and deepen their understanding of creative expression. Students learn about magazine publishing from every angle: the role of advertising and how to effectively solicit material, how to build relationships between artists and across disciplines, how to manage budgets and balance business decisions with creative decisions, how to prepare a layout using Adobe InDesign , how to evaluate and critique written and visual art, how to assemble a collection of work thematically, how to help writers revise creative pieces, and how to express their own artistic inclinations. The course offers a collaborative setting that acknowledges important connections between form and function, genre and subject, and tradition and innovation. Students read and assess the best work of our community and use it to further their own craft, all while providing feedback to each other and the Villa Duchesne community as a whole. Meeting times are established each semester as a reflection of the needs of the staff. This class does not fulfill the English requirement for graduation.


ENG401 British Literature
Grade 12
Two semesters, one credit 

British Literature is rigorous in scope, encompassing 1,500 years of British literary accomplishment. Students engage in extensive study of poetry and prose from a variety of genres such as ballads, sonnets, essays, and novels, as well as canonical authors such as Shakespeare, Wordsworth, Austen, and others. In addition to the literature, students write analytical essays, thoughtful reflections, and creative interpretations about particular literature selections. Students also learn how to craft literary criticism and persuasive arguments while they acquire a working knowledge of literary terms and techniques. Students continue their vocabulary studies and individualized writing program through regularly scheduled meetings with the teacher and revising her works after each conference.

 

ENG402 Advanced Placement English Literature and Composition
Grade 12
Two semesters, one credit 

Advanced Placement English Literature and Composition is a specialized course for students who demonstrate an exceptional interest in and commitment to the study of literature. In this course, students are engaged in the careful and close reading of imaginative prose and poetry to sharpen their awareness of literature and language, as well as their understanding of the writer's craft. To achieve these goals, students study British literary works in relationship to the historical, cultural, and literary movements that influenced them, as well as their relationship to the contemporary experience. Reading selections include Beowulf, Hamlet, Pride & Prejudice, Frankenstein, and Pygmalion. Core material is supplemented with readings and exercises designed to prepare students for the Advanced Placement English Literature and Composition exam in May. Taking the Advanced Placement exam is a required element of the course. This course may also be taken for dual credit through St. Louis University’s 1818 Advanced College Credit Program.

(Prerequisite: B+ in Advanced Placement English Language and Composition, recommendation of English 11 teacher, and portfolio of student writing.)

 

ENG501 Newspaper
ENG503 Honors Newspaper (editors)
Grade 10, 11, 12
Two semesters, .50 credit for ENG501; one credit for ENG503 

Newspaper offers talented writers and designers a chance to make their voices heard throughout the school. As part of the Tower Talk staff, Villa Duchesne’s student journalists spend their class time examining and analyzing world events as they apply to Villa Duchesne and the surrounding community. Pitched, written, and packaged by students, stories range from news of the world and St. Louis to opinions regarding contemporary issues to reviews and details of the latest music, art, and entertainment catching the students’ attention. Students who show promise in organization, exemplary attendance, and efficiency in the work produced, have the opportunity to be named editor at the end of each school year. Students progress as they try their hands at various aspects of the paper including reporting and writing, editing, and design. They sharpen their skills using the latest photo editing and design software as well as up-to-date photography equipment. Students examine the journalistic happenings of the industry today as they analyze and study ethics, law, and more.

All new Newspaper students are required to attend a weeklong camp prior to the start of school to prepare them for the task ahead. This class does not fulfill the English requirement for graduation.

 

ENG502 Yearbook
ENG504 Honors Yearbook (editors)
Grade 9, 10, 11, 12
Two semesters, .50 credit for ENG502; one credit for ENG504

Yearbook staff members gain skills in page design, advanced publishing techniques, copy writing, editing, and photography while producing a creative, innovative yearbook. Each year’s school memories and events are visually recorded in a volume of Entre Nous. Students build useful, real world skills in time management, teamwork, and design principles. Students who show promise in organization, exemplary attendance, and efficiency in the work produced, have the opportunity to be name editor at the end of each school year.

All new Yearbook students are required to attend a weeklong camp prior to the start of school to prepare them for the task ahead. This class does not fulfill the English requirement for graduation.

 

ENG505 Creative Writing
Grade 11, 12
One semester, .50 credit

Creative Writing instructs students in the elementary approaches to the process of creating original prose, poetry, and/or dramatic format works for the purpose of publication. Students read current quality writing examples and then practice their own craft. Teachers guide students by focusing them on their manuscripts and on the creative acts of revision and self-editing, both during class and in individual conferences. The program provides students with a framework as well as sustained blocks of time to focus extensively on their own writing. Meeting times are established each semester as a reflection of the needs of the staff. Course is a single semester experience, but may be repeated as many semesters as it is available. This creative writing opportunity does not fulfill the English requirement for graduation. 

(Prerequisite: approval by Grade 11/12 instructor)

Fine Arts Course Descriptions

FNA71    Art 7
Grade 7
One quarter, .25 credit

This introductory art course expands the student's understanding of the elements and principles of design. Each project emphasizes development of creative problem-solving abilities, technical skills for individual expression, and attention to detail and craftsmanship. The students work with a variety of materials and tools including clay, paper, and drawing.

 

FNA81   Art 8
Grade 8
One quarter, .25 credit

This course is designed to stimulate the student’s creative thinking and ability to express visual ideas with a variety of materials. Students work with clay, paper, cardboard, colored pencils, paint, fiber materials, and whatever other materials they express interest in.  As a choice-based course, once students demonstrate proficiency in various techniques, they may choose what their focus will be. Art 8 students continue to develop excellent craftsmanship skills, personal and community responsibility in the studio, and the ability to think creatively and thoroughly engage in the creative process.

              

FNA101   Studio Art
Grade 9, 10, 11, 12
Two semesters, one credit

Studio Art is a foundations course divided into two separate semesters. One semester focuses on two-dimensional techniques and one on three-dimensional techniques. This course is [TL1] team taught, with students switching instructors after the first semester. The 2-D semester teaches drawing skills. Students study perspective, measuring, and shading to show form. Color theory and painting techniques are also introduced. Students learn to “draw what you see” and compositional skills. Materials include pencil, acrylic paint, and charcoal.

The 3-D semester of Studio Art focuses on the manipulation of form in space as well as the use of appropriate materials. Special consideration is given to developing craftsmanship as students tackle the challenges presented by different media, including paper, clay, wood, wire, and foam. As a choice-based course, once students demonstrate proficiency in a variety of techniques, they may choose what their focus will be. This course fulfills one of the fine arts requirements for graduation and serves as a prerequisite and a solid foundation for advanced study in art.

 

FNA201   Painting/Drawing I
Grade 10, 11, 12
Two semesters, one credit

This Fine Arts course introduces students to acrylic paints, color mixing, stretcher construction, and various drawing mediums. Most assignments are based on representational subject matter which is used as a basis for learning more about composition and perspective. Assignments include still life paintings of various size and subject matter which gain complexity as the class progresses and charcoal drawings.  Students visit the St. Louis Art Museum to experience paintings that relate to their classroom experience.

(Prerequisite:  Studio Art)  

 

FNA202   Printmaking
Grade 10, 11, 12
Two semesters, one credit                                                                                                                                                  

This studio course introduces several methods of making multiple prints of original compositions. The course begins with the relief print process with a focus on craftsmanship and introduction to the roller press. As additional printmaking techniques are introduced, students are encouraged to use their imagery and compositions as a means of creative expression. Students work on individual design problems and participate in self-assessment and critique exercises. The following materials and techniques are taught: relief printing using linoleum, printing with water and oil based inks, stamping, silk screening, and experimentation using different papers. In addition, students learn to manipulate their design images using Photoshop and participate in field trips to the St. Louis Art Museum’s Print Study Room.

(Prerequisite: Studio Art)

 

FNA203   Sculpture
Grade 10, 11, 12
Two semesters, one credit

This course explores the three-dimensional construction of objects in clay, wood, wire, foam, fibers, and other materials. Students work on developing problem-solving skills to construct outdoor sculptures and other projects with a variety of materials.  As a choice-based course, once students demonstrate proficiency in various techniques, they may choose what their focus will be, though there is a constant focus on communication and critical thinking.

(Prerequisite:  Studio Art)

 

FNA204   Ceramics
Grade 10, 11, 12
Two semesters, one credit        

This course introduces students to the sculptural and functional aspects of clay.  Students gain more in-depth knowledge of handbuilding techniques and also learn the basics of the potter’s wheel.  Students also explore a wide range of surface treatments including glaze and colored slip.  As a choice-based course, once students demonstrate proficiency in various techniques, they may choose what their focus will be, though there is a constant focus on communication and critical thinking.

(Prerequisite: Studio Art) 

 

FNA210   Digital Arts
Grade 10, 11, 12
Two Semesters, one credit

Digital Arts introduces students to the basics of digital graphic design. Students learn how to use various Adobe softwares including Photoshop and Illustrator, and how to use a Wacom tablet.  These tools allow students to draw digitally and manipulate photography.  They also learn how to create work for a client and how to navigate the world of professional graphic design.   As a choice-based course, once students demonstrate proficiency in various techniques, they may choose what their focus will be, though there is a constant focus on communication and critical thinking.

(Prerequisite: Studio Art)  

 

FNA301 - Painting/Drawing II
Grades 11, 12
Two Semesters, one credit

This course continues to build on the skills presented in Painting and Drawing I and serves as an introduction to oil paints.  Students are introduced to the history and techniques of oil paints while exploring representational subject matter.  Interspersed throughout the class are drawing assignments in various materials familiar to the students.  This class visits the St. Louis Art Museum, typically in the spring semester.

(Prerequisite:  Painting/Drawing I and approval of the instructor)

Foreign Language Course Descriptions

FRENCH

FLG71    French 7
Grade 7
Two semesters, one credit

Students with minimal or no prior instruction begin the formal study of French. This course presents basic vocabulary and grammatical structures in an integrated program aimed at developing listening, speaking, reading, and writing skills, with special emphasis on oral communication. Students are also introduced to the geography, culture, traditions, and customs of French-speaking countries. Class is conducted in French as much as possible.

 

FLG81    French 8
Grade 8
Two semesters, one credit

Students build upon the listening, reading, writing, and speaking skills acquired in Grade 7 and expand their knowledge of vocabulary and grammatical structures in a culturally authentic context. The further study of Francophone culture is an integral part of the course. Class is conducted primarily in French. Students complete the equivalent of the first year of French at the high school level.

 

FLG101 French I
Grade 9, 10, 11
Two semesters, one credit

This course is designed for high school students with little or no prior knowledge of French. It presents basic vocabulary and grammatical structures in an active, flexible, manner. The program aims at developing listening, speaking, reading and writing skills, with special emphasis on oral communication in a culturally authentic context. The study of Francophone culture is integral to the course. Class is conducted in French as much as possible.

 

FLG201 French II
Grade 9, 10, 11, 12
Two semesters, one credit 

This course is designed for students who have successfully completed level I in French. Students expand upon their knowledge of French speaking cultures, vocabulary and grammatical structures. The program continues to develop listening, speaking, reading and writing skills, with special emphasis on more creative oral and written communication. Class is conducted primarily in French.

(Prerequisite: Successful completion of French I or a B in French 8 and teacher recommendation.)

 

FLG301 French III
Grade 10, 11, 12
Two semesters, one credit

Designed for students who have successfully completed French II, this course reviews and expands upon the material presented at previous levels and completes the study of most major grammatical concepts while expanding vocabulary in an authentic cultural context. More emphasis is placed on reading comprehension, oral communication, and the development of more advanced written compositions. The study of Francophone culture is integral to the course. Class is conducted in French.

(Prerequisite: Successful completion of French II and current teacher recommendation.)

 

FLG401 Honors French IV
Grade 11, 12
Two semesters, one credit

This course is a culture and civilization course. It is a college level course and may be taken for dual credit through Saint Louis University's 1818 Advanced College Credit Program (3 credit hours). Upon completion of Honors French IV, students should be able to communicate effectively with native speakers of French in the three basic modes: interpretive, presentational, and interpersonal. Authentic media sources and literary and cultural readings form the basis for classroom discussions, presentations, and written work. Proficiency in all four language skills allow students to thoroughly explore the culture and history of French speaking countries. Classes are conducted exclusively in French.

(Prerequisite: B in French III and current teacher recommendation.)

 

FLG501 French V: Advanced Placement French Language
Grade 12
Two semesters, one credit

French V is an Advanced Placement Course which prepares students to take the Advanced Placement French Culture and Language examination. This course may also be taken for dual credit through Saint Louis University's 1818 Advanced College Credit Program (6 credit hours). In this course students learn to express themselves creatively, coherently, fluently, and accurately in all three modes of communication: interpretive, presentational, and interpersonal. Authentic newspaper articles, cultural and literary texts, films, newscasts, and websites allow students to explore the French speaking worlds past and present. Classes are conducted exclusively in French.

(Prerequisite: Honors French IV and current teacher recommendation.)

 

SPANISH

FLG72    Spanish 7
Grade 7
Two semesters, one semester

Students with minimal or no prior instruction begin a formal study of Spanish. This course presents basic grammatical structures in an integrated program aimed at developing listening, speaking, reading, and writing skills, with special emphasis on oral communication. Students are also introduced to geography, culture, traditions, and customs in Spanish speaking countries. Class is conducted in Spanish as much as possible.

 

FLG82    Spanish 8
Grade 8
Two semesters, one semester

Students build upon the listening, reading, writing, and speaking skills acquired in Grade 7 and expand their knowledge of vocabulary and grammatical structures in a culturally authentic context. The further study of Hispanic culture is an integral part of the course. Class is conducted primarily in Spanish. Students complete the equivalent of the first year of Spanish at the high school level.

 

FLG111 Spanish I
Grade 9, 10, 11
Two semesters, one semester

This course is designed for high school students with little or no prior knowledge of Spanish. It presents basic vocabulary and grammatical structures in an active, flexible, and meaningful manner. The program aims at developing listening, speaking, reading, and writing skills, with special emphasis on oral communication in a culturally authentic context. The study of Hispanic culture is integral to the course. Class is conducted in Spanish as much as possible.

 

FLG211 Spanish II
Grades 9, 10, 11, 12
Two semesters, one credit

This course is designed for students who have successfully completed level I in Spanish. Students expand upon their knowledge of Spanish speaking cultures, vocabulary and grammatical structures. The program continues to develop listening, speaking, reading, and writing skills, with special emphasis on more creative oral and written communication. Class is conducted primarily in Spanish.

(Prerequisite: Successful completion of Spanish I or a B in Spanish 8   and teacher recommendation.)

 

FLG311 Spanish III
Grade 10, 11, 12
Two semesters, one credit

Designed for students who have successfully completed Spanish II, this course reviews and expands upon the material presented at previous levels and completes the study of most major grammatical concepts while expanding vocabulary in an authentic cultural context. More emphasis is placed on reading comprehension, oral communication, and the development of more advanced written compositions. The study of Hispanic culture is integral to the course. Class is conducted in Spanish.

(Prerequisite: Successful completion of Spanish II and current teacher recommendation)

 

FLG411 Honors Spanish IV
Grade 11, 12
Two semesters, one credit

This course is a culture and civilization course. It is a college level course and may be taken for dual credit through Saint Louis University's 1818 Advanced College Credit Program (3 credit hours). Upon completion of Honors Spanish IV, students should be able to understand and communicate effectively with native speakers of Spanish in the three basic modes: interpretive, presentational, and interpersonal. Authentic media sources and literary and cultural readings form the basis for classroom discussions, presentations, and written work. Proficiency in all four language skills allows students to thoroughly explore the culture and history of Spanish speaking countries. Classes are conducted exclusively in Spanish. 

(Prerequisite: B in Spanish III and current teacher recommendation)

 

FLG511 Spanish V: Advanced Placement Spanish Language
Grade 12
Two semesters, one credit

Spanish V is an Advanced Placement Course which prepares students to take the Advanced Placement Spanish Culture and Language examination. This course may also be taken for dual credit through Saint Louis University's 1818 Advanced College Credit Program (6 credit hours). In this course, students learn to express themselves creatively, coherently, fluently, and accurately in all three modes of communication: interpretive, presentational, and interpersonal. Authentic newspaper articles, cultural and literary texts, films, newscasts, and websites allow students to explore the Spanish speaking worlds past and present. Classes are conducted exclusively in Spanish.

(Prerequisite: Honors Spanish IV and current teacher recommendation)

Mathematics Course Descriptions

MTH70 Algebra: Basics                   
Grade 7
Two semesters; one credit

This course surveys mathematical topics from numeracy and arithmetic to fundamental concepts of algebra and geometry. Particular attention is given to developing positive academic habits inside and outside the classroom.

 

MTH72 Algebra: Foundations                         
Grades 7, 8
Two semesters, one credit

This course reinforces on a conceptual basis the arithmetic and problem-solving skills acquired previously. Students gain insight into when to apply these skills and why they are significant, which helps lead them to a fundamental understanding of rational numbers and the different ways of expressing and using them. Exponents, ratio, and proportion are explored in depth, and students are introduced to expressions, equations, and functions. The abstraction of algebraic thinking is used throughout the course to create a strong foundation for future mathematics courses.

 

MTH82 Algebra: Applications                         
Grade 8
Two semesters, one credit

This course completes the study of the real number system. Students model linear and quadratic functions using symbolic, graphical, and numerical representations. Techniques for manipulating polynomials and systems of equations are explored. Connections are made to geometry, probability, and statistics through real-world applications.

 

MTH99 Algebra 1A
Grade 9
Two semesters, one credit

Students enrolled in Algebra 1A study the patterns, relations, and functions of Algebra. Emphasis is placed on skill building, numeracy, and connections between arithmetic and algebra. A thorough investigation of functions, especially linear functions, is explored. 

 

MTH101 Algebra I
Grade 9
Two semesters, one credit                               

The language of algebra is developed through the study of variables, properties, and operations. Students explore linear, quadratic, and polynomial functions through multiple representations with an emphasis on graphing in the coordinate plane. They enhance their problem-solving and critical-thinking skills through connections to science and other disciplines.

 

MTH201 Geometry
Grades 9, 10
Two semesters, one credit                            

This course introduces students to the systematic development of the logical structure of mathematics. Students discover the properties of two-and three-dimensional figures using both traditional drawing, measuring tools and computer software. Skills in logic and deductive reasoning mature as students progress from verbal explanations to formal proofs. Algebra is integrated through the exploration of relationships among plane figures.

 

MTH205 Honors Geometry
Grades 9, 10
Two semesters, one credit                            

In Honors Geometry, students study the same fundamental Euclidean geometry topics covered in the standard Geometry course, but the content is explored with greater intensity and with an emphasis on geometric proof, coordinate proof, and three-dimensional applications. Students also explore transformations, non-Euclidean geometry, and graph theory. Students employ the compass, straightedge, and computer software to discover and investigate relationships among figures.

(Prerequisite: B+ in Algebra I or Algebra Applications and teacher recommendation)

 

MTH305 Algebra II
Grades 10, 11
Two semesters, one credit                            

This course focuses on analysis and application of linear, quadratic, polynomial, exponential, logarithmic, and trigonometric functions. Students concentrate on simplifying expressions, solving equations, and graphing and analyzing functions. Elements of probability and statistics are also included. Students expand their understanding of algebraic concepts through essential questions.

 

MTH310 Honors Algebra II and Trigonometry 
Grades 10, 11
Two semesters, one credit                            

This course, designed for the Advanced Placement Calculus-bound student, emphasizes the analysis and application of polynomial, exponential, logarithmic, and trigonometric functions. Algebraic, graphical, and numerical approaches are all utilized to develop full understanding of concepts. Students enhance their understanding of these concepts through essential questions. 

(Prerequisite: B+ in second semester of both Algebra I and Geometry and teacher recommendation)

 

MTH400 Pre-calculus 
Grades 11, 12
Two semesters, one credit                                            

Students continue their exploration of algebraic and transcendental functions. Emphasis is placed on the connection between equations, graphs, tables, and applications. A thorough study of trigonometry is included. The use of transformations and parent graphs are key features throughout. Students use an investigative approach to develop mathematical concepts.

(Prerequisite: B in Algebra II or completion of Finite Math)

 

MTH401 Finite Mathematics
Grades 11, 12 
Two semesters, one credit                                            

This course serves as both an introduction to fields in finite math and a continuation of the development of algebraic and geometric reasoning. Students engage in creative problem-solving techniques using inductive and deductive reasoning. Major topics of study include triangle trigonometry, set theory, symbolic logic, counting and probability theory, graph theory, and statistics.

(Prerequisite: Completion of Algebra II or Pre-calculus)

 

MTH405 Honors Pre-calculus
Grades 11, 12
Two semesters, one credit                                            

This course is designed to prepare students for Advanced Placement Calculus. The analysis of polynomial, rational, exponential, logarithmic, and trigonometric functions emphasizes the study of parent graphs, properties, and applications. Students practice techniques for graphing transformations and solving equations for each function. The course culminates with an introduction to calculus and limits.

(Prerequisite: B+ in Honors Algebra II and teacher recommendation)

 

MTH450 Advanced Placement Statistics
Grades 11, 12
Two semesters, one credit                                            

The Advanced Placement Statistics course is the equivalent to a one-semester, introductory, non-calculus-based college course in statistics. Advanced Placement Statistics introduces students to the major concepts and tools for collecting, analyzing, and drawing conclusions from data. Students are exposed to four broad themes: exploring data, planning a study, anticipating patterns by producing probability models, and confirming models through statistical inference. Students use graphing calculators and computers as computational aids in analysis, simulations and generation of sampling distributions. Students are required to take the Advanced Placement Statistics exam upon completion of this course.

(Prerequisite: B in Honors Pre-calculus, B+ in Pre-calculus or Honors Algebra II/Trigonometry, or A- in Finite Math)

 

MTH505  Advanced Placement Calculus
Grade 12
Two semesters, one credit                                                                             

Advanced Placement Calculus is roughly equivalent to a first semester college calculus course and is focused on providing students with an understanding of differential and integral calculus, as well as its methods and applications. A multi-representational approach is used as concepts are investigated graphically, numerically, and analytically. Students are prepared for and are required to take the Advanced Placement Calculus AB exam upon completion of this course.

(Prerequisite: B+ in Honors Pre-Calculus and teacher recommendation)

Performing Arts Course Descriptions

PFA72  Music 7
Grade 7
One quarter, .25 credit

Music 7 is all about making music! The quarter is split into two focuses. The first is African drumming, which uses the power of rhythm to promote individual, organizational, and community wellness. Group drumming provides a vehicle for positive interpersonal interactions and creates abundant learning opportunities for students to explore group dynamics or improve teamwork and communication. Students discover the diverse history and rich culture behind African drumming. The second focus is the ukulele. Students learn to play basic chords and read chord charts, as well as to play many songs.

 

PFA73  Theatre 7
Grade 7
One quarter, .25 credit

Students explore the world of theatre through performance and study of its origins in history. Emphasis is placed on building confidence and ensemble acting skills through pantomime, improvisation, and beginning acting techniques, in addition to daily acting exercises and theatre games. The entire class works on a Readers Theatre performance, a performance of a duet or small group acting scene and a presentation of a demonstration speech.

 

PFA82  Music 8
Grade 8
One quarter, .25 credit

This course is an introduction to the guitar and an introspection on one’s musical tastes. Students explore why they like the kind of music they listen to and how it relates to their everyday life. Students learn how to tune the guitar, play basic chords, play different strum patterns, and, ultimately, play the songs they love to hear on the radio.

 

PFA83  Theatre 8
Grade 8
One quarter, .25 credit 

Theatre 8 is a continuation and a deepening of the Theatre 7 curriculum. Students further their study of theatre history, and continue to develop performance skills through more advanced theatre games and acting techniques. Students perform one monologue and one duet or small group acting scene during the quarter, and are introduced to basic playwriting concepts. Emphasis is placed on developing a lifelong appreciation for the theatre, as well as on encouraging individual growth in performance skills.

 

PFA100  Concert Choir
Grade 9, 10, 11, 12
Two semesters, one credit 

Concert Choir is open to any student in grades 9-12 and offers a foundation in singing with an emphasis on vocal technique, including placement, breath control, part singing, sight reading, and more. Students work in a variety of musical genres and perform in the Christmas Concert and Spring Spectacular, as well as serve as the liturgy choir. This course serves as a prerequisite for eligibility for Chorus 1.

 

PFA101  Chorus I
Grade 10, 11, 12
Two semesters, one credit 

Chorus I is the course title for Villa Duchesne’s show choir, a performing ensemble available by audition only. Show choir performs at two major events each year—our Christmas Concert and our Spring Spectacular—as well as community events and a show choir competition. Students learn the proper use of the singing voice, to develop ease in public performance, and to become familiar with a wide variety of styles in music. The class receives instruction in part singing, breath control, and vocal techniques. 

(Prerequisite: Concert Choir)

 

PFA102  Concert Choir II
Grade 10, 11, 12
Two semesters, one credit

Concert Choir II is a continuation of Concert Choir. Students work in a variety of musical genres and perform in the Christmas Concert and Spring Spectacular, as well as serve as the liturgy choir.

(Prerequisite: Concert Choir)

 

PFA201  Chorus II
Grade 11, 12
Two semesters, one credit

Chorus II meets with Chorus I and is designed for students interested in continuing choral performance. Students are admitted by vocal auditions.

(Prerequisite: Chorus I and teacher approval)

 

PFA301  Advanced Chorus
Grade 10, 11, 12
Two semesters, .50 credit 

Madrijazz (Advanced Chorus) was formed to challenge students who are particularly gifted and interested in singing. The opportunity to perform more challenging music in a smaller ensemble is offered to those who qualify. Madrijazz performs at the same school functions and participates in the same festivals and competitions as the Show Choir. This class functions more as a chamber choir, but still has the opportunity to perform some show choir material. This class meets for 1 ½ hours a week after school. Students are admitted by vocal auditions.

(Requirements: Concurrently enrolled in Chorus I or Chorus II, and private audition)

 

PFA105  Guitar Class
Grade 10, 11, 12
Two semesters, one credit

Guitar class reviews concepts learned in middle school Music 8, though completion of that course is not a prerequisite. Students learn structure of the guitar, individual notes on all six strings, basic first position chords, finger-style and picking techniques, barre-chords, and guitar-related music theory as well as music styles and genres. Students demonstrate concepts learned in solo and ensemble performances in class and for larger audiences. Music studied is from the Guitar Essentials text which focuses on folk and popular styles. Assessment is in the form of peer evaluation and performance and theory tests. Students must provide their own guitar. Teacher has information for guitar from area stores. Class size is limited to 14.

(Prerequisite: Teacher approval)

 

PFA111  An Invitation to Theatre
Grade 9
Two semesters, one credit

Not just an acting class, this course allows students to explore all aspects of theater: backstage, on stage, and on the page. Performance areas include improvisation, pantomime, monologue, duet acting scenes, and ensemble performances, including a one-act play. On the production side, students explore set, lighting, sound, make-up, and costume design, as well as stage management and directing.

 

PFA200  Communication Arts
Grade 10
One semester, .50 credit

This course is required for all sophomores. Basic communication skills learned in this class equip students to be more articulate in all areas, including formal speeches, class discussion, presentations, and interviews. Students are given tools to overcome stage fright and to be more confident in various communication situations. Basic research skills and the use of technology are also stressed.

 

PFA211  Advanced Theatre (Acting for the Stage)
Grade 10, 11, 12
One semester, .50 credit or Two semesters, 1 credit            

Developing the skills to successfully act in a play, in a musical, or even on film or television, brings deep satisfaction and pleasure to anyone interested in performing. Whether a student is an experienced performer or a newcomer to this powerful experience, this course will emphasize all performance skills, including method and technical approaches to acting. The course can benefit singers, dancers, and speakers as well. Performance work is set in a context of theatre history, critical evaluation, and general appreciation of the theatre as a living art form.

(Prerequisite: Teacher approval)

 

PFA212  Advanced Communication Arts/Public Speaking
Grade 11, 12
One semester, .50 credit

Delivering a powerful campaign speech for student council, emerging as the most persuasive member of a debate or mock trial team, or making an original and an impressive oral presentation in any class are only three reasons to take this course in public speaking. Destroying the myth that making a speech is one of the greatest fears that all people share, this course deepens a student’s solid and strong communication skill. Formal speeches include speeches to inform, to persuade, to entertain, and to commemorate. Oral interpretation, extemporaneous speeches, discussion and debate, media communication, and the use of technology is also explored.

 

PFA215  Media
Grade 10, 11, 12
Two semesters, one credit

Exploring the power of mass media—television, radio, print, Internet—is the focus of this course. Students will discover what it takes to be a successful broadcaster and learn about the greats of broadcast history. Each student will have the opportunity to write, edit, film, and perform news stories that cover local and national issues. Students learn by doing – reporting, writing, and performing in front of a camera. Observing the great broadcasters of our times and modeling the skills of present-day broadcasters will enhance student performance. As various formats are introduced, students will explore and constantly experiment with those formats. Interested students will also learn the technology involved in presenting news to a larger audience. 

(Prerequisite: Teacher approval)

 

Theatre Internships
Grade 11, 12
One semester, .50 credit or two semesters, 1 credit 

Options for Theatre Internships include:

PFA226  Technical Theatre: Lighting or Sound

Students taking advantage of this internship operate light or sound boards for numerous productions throughout the school year; work with professional designers; maintain and service equipment; and offer technical support to all directors.

PFA227  Stage Management

For successful completion of this internship, students must fulfill the responsibilities of a stage manager for one of three productions during the school year, including attending all rehearsals and performances, creating a stage manager’s book, and managing all technical areas of the production.

PFA240  Acting or Directing

This internship is designed to meet the specific needs of any student who demonstrates a special talent and interest in and who is willing to explore the demands of advanced acting or directing.

(Requirements for all Theatre Internships: Concurrently enrolled in PFA211 Advanced Theatre and have teacher approval)

Physical Education Course Descriptions

PED71 Physical Education 7
Grade 7
Two semesters, one credit

The physical education program for grade 7 introduces/re-enforces fundamental skills for sports including volleyball, field hockey, floor/pillow hockey, tennis, basketball, lacrosse, wiffle ball, kickball, soccer and track and field.  Individual fitness is highlighted continually throughout the year as the students learn to embrace lifelong fitness activities.  Aerobic, resistance, and abdominal/core strength activities are incorporated throughout the year to promote individual fitness and well-being.  Students choose different types of fitness skill development activities based on their interests and comfort level. They are assessed for individual improvement throughout the year and are expected to set personal goals to strive toward.

 

PED81 Physical Education 8
Grade 8
Two semesters, one credit

The physical education program for grade 8 continues to re-enforce basic skills and components from PE Grade 7. In addition to the fundamental skills and reinforcement of skill sets pertaining to each activity, the students begin to learn and incorporate strategy into the units. In all activities and sports, students are expected to engage with their peers, develop and promote sportsmanship, and work together to problem solve as many activities begin to become more competitive. Intramural games such as tchoukball, pickle ball, bowling, and Frisbee golf are also introduced to allow students to explore new activities. Individual fitness continues to be a weekly component and students are encouraged to improve in fitness categories throughout the year. Categories include Cardiovascular fitness, resistance activities, and abdominal/core exercises. Students are assessed quarterly and have the opportunity to reflect on their individual fitness performance and successes. Each class typically begins with a fitness component and warm-up activity that not only gets the blood circulating but also allows students to learn and embrace different types of fitness activities that they can then utilize throughout their lives.

 

PED101 Physical Education 9
Grade 9
Two semesters, one credit

The physical education program for grade 9 continues with popular team and individual sports such as but not limited to volleyball, soccer, basketball and tennis. An emphasis is placed on sportsmanship, teamwork, cooperation, participation, and individual skill development. In ninth grade, the fitness component emphasizes specific muscle development and biomechanics. Students begin to learn which muscle groups are targeted through specific exercises and about the different forms of cardiovascular development. Additionally, guest speakers present topics and activities pertaining to self-defense as well as healthy/unhealthy relationships. This class focuses on continuing to maintain a healthy lifestyle while also making positive choices outside of the classroom. Healthy relationships and communication with their peers becomes an integral part of high school and this class allows students to build upon their peer relationships while working together to accomplish a common goal. (Ex: winning a game, team building, etc.).


PED211 Physical Education 10-12
Grades 10-12
One semester, 0.5 credit

The physical education program for grades 10-12 focuses on the development and integration of group and individual fitness activities. Students play an active role in assessing their own current fitness levels and are given the tools that allow them to choose the direction for their personal fitness maintenance and/or improvement. Students prior knowledge of basic resistance and cardiovascular activities allow the instructors to teach appropriate biomechanics and techniques to ensure that exercises and fitness activities are conducted properly ensuring long term fitness success and injury prevention. Students are encouraged to rationalize why they choose an activity and what benefits will be gained.  Lifetime sports and recreation activities are incorporated throughout the semester  allowing students to participate in common collegiate intramural activities.

 

PED307 Physical Education Athletics 1
Grades 10-12
Semester 1, 0.5 credits

Students who participate for a full season in a school-sponsored fall sport qualify for physical education credit for Semester 1. Students who wish to become a manager for a fall sport team can also qualify for credit. To be eligible for the half credit, a manager must attend all practices and games throughout the season, while performing different tasks assigned by the coach of the sport. This individual will be an integral part of the team and tasks can include tracking statistics, filming games, running the score clock, and helping track practice activities.

 

PED308 Physical Education Athletics 2
Grades 10-12
Semester 2, 0.5 credits 

Students who participate for a full season in a school-sponsored winter or spring sport qualify for physical education credit for Semester 2. Students who wish to become a manager for a winter or spring sport team can also qualify for credit. To be eligible for the half credit, a manager must attend all practices and games throughout the season, while performing different tasks assigned by the coach of the sport. This individual will be an integral part of the team and tasks can include tracking statistics, filming games, running the score clock, and helping track practice activities.

 

PED330 Physical Education Independent Activity 1
Grades 10-12
Semester 1, 0.5 credits 

Students who participate in an outside school activity such as but not limited to dance, equestrian, skating, rowing, and club sports, may apply for an independent activity. The application must be approved by the Physical Education Department Chair and the Athletic Director. Upon acceptance of the application, the student must then document 60 hours of activity, signed by their instructor/coach. Students will submit documentation to the appropriate physical education representative quarterly to earn credit. The signature of the instructor/coach as well as his/her contact information is required on the quarterly documentation. The school may choose to verify the program independently, if needed. All completed, hourly log sheets must be submitted by the last day of class before first semester finals.

 

PED331 Physical Education Independent Activity 2
Grades 10-12
Semester 2, 0.5 credits.

Students who participate in an outside school activity such as but not limited to dance, equestrian, skating, rowing and club sports, may apply for an independent activity. The application must be approved by the Physical Education Department Chair and the Athletic Director. Upon acceptance of the application, the student must then document 60 hours of activity, signed by their instructor/coach. Students will submit documentation to the appropriate physical education representative quarterly to earn credit. The signature of the instructor/coach as well as his/her contact information is required on quarterly documentation. The school may choose to verify the program independently, if needed. All completed, hourly log sheets must be submitted by the last day of class before second semester finals. 

Science Course Descriptions

SCI71  Science 7               
Grade 7
Two semesters, one credit

The Middle School Science Program is designed to allow students to explore key areas of science (Life, Physical, Earth, and Chemistry) through a thematic approach. The seventh grade's theme for the year is the major cycles that occur on our planet: The Life Cycle, the Geological Cycle, and the Atmospheric Cycle. Some of the topics covered during the year are evolution, classification of life, energy in an ecosystem, geology and weather. This course of study emphasizes hands-on examination of the world with the scientific method serving as the basis for inquiry. This method leads to the reinforcement of the following skills: classification, observation, hypothesizing, analyzing, graphing, interpreting, concluding, contrasting, and comparing. Students investigate science using a variety of tools including written lab reports, simulations and models, problem solving, and dissections. Research and class presentation projects on relevant science issues enhance computer skills as well as deepen science knowledge.

 

SCI81  Science 8
Grade 8
Two semesters, one credit

The Middle School Science Program is designed to allow students to explore key areas of science (Life, Physical, Earth, and Chemistry) through a thematic approach. The eighth grade's theme is physical science. Some of the topics covered during the year are properties of matter, atomic structure, motion, energy, and forces. This course of study emphasizes hands-on examination of the world with the scientific method serving as the basis for inquiry. This method leads to the reinforcement of the following skills: classification, observation, hypothesizing, analyzing, graphing, interpreting, concluding, contrasting, and comparing. Students investigate science using a variety of tools including written lab reports, simulations and models, problem solving, and dissections. Research and class presentation projects on relevant science issues enhance computer skills as well as deepen science knowledge.

 

SCI101  Biology I
Grade 9
Two semesters, one credit

What properties do all living things share in common? Why are forms of life so diverse? How do we learn about the living world? Biology lays the foundation for exploring these and other questions. The course begins with the atoms and molecules that make up living things, then moves on to a study of cells. Students delve into energy relationships and metabolism, explore the realm of DNA and inheritance, and examine the diversity and evolution of life from microorganisms to mammals. The relationships that weave living things together and connect them with planet Earth are investigated. Students learn through a variety of laboratory investigations designed to hone their basic exploratory skills, provide opportunities to explore technologies important to the field of biology, and prepare them for future scientific studies.

 

SCI201  Chemistry
Grade 10
Two semesters, one credit

This introductory college preparatory course is presented by means of an integrated computer and print curriculum and includes the following major concepts: classification of matter, reaction types, stoichiometry, thermodynamics, atomic structure, periodic table and periodic properties, bonding, states of matter, solutions, kinetics, equilibrium, and acids and bases. Nuclear chemistry, organic chemistry, and oxidation-reduction reactions are introduced as time permits. The laboratory exercises, accompanied by written reports, are designed to relate specifically to each module's concepts and to develop skills in the safe and proper use of laboratory equipment.

 

SCI202  Honors Chemistry
Grade 10
Two semesters, one credit                               

Chemistry is the study of composition, structure, and properties of matter and the processes that matter undergoes, including the energy changes that accompany these processes. The study of chemistry within a Sacred Heart School is also an opportunity to deepen one's faith through the study and appreciation of God's creation, which is the foundation of all science.

Honors Chemistry is designed to provide students with a college preparatory introduction to general chemistry and is based on the syllabus and format created by the College Board. Topics covered in this course include classification of matter, reaction types, stoichiometry, thermodynamics, atomic structure, bonding, states of matter, solutions, gas laws, kinetics, equilibrium, and acids and bases. Nuclear chemistry, organic chemistry, and oxidation-reduction reactions are introduced as time permits. In order to cover this wide range of topics, the course is taught at an accelerated pace, with an emphasis on problem-solving skills to augment the lecture material, laboratory work, and in-class activities. Each student should have an excellent background in mathematics. Students who successfully complete this course are prepared for the College Board SAT subject test in chemistry at the end of the academic year.

(Prerequisite: B average in mathematics courses, B+ average in Biology)

 

SCI280  Introduction to Engineering
Grade 10, 11, 12
One semester, .50 credit               

This course provides students with an overview of the history of engineering and an introduction to basic engineering concepts and practices through project-based learning. The curriculum takes students through the engineering process: problem identification, engineering design, model building, and testing. Model building incorporates the use of SketchUp and/or CAD software and possibly 3-D printing. Projects integrate technology with the use of microprocessors such as Raspberry Pi. Guest speakers, including women engineers, give students the opportunity to explore STEM careers.

 

SCI303  Anatomy and Physiology 
Grade 10, 11, 12
Two semesters, one credit                             

How does your body work? What are functional units of the body and how do they interrelate? How does the body maintain its delicate balance, both within and with the outside world, and what happens when this balance is disturbed? How does the body develop? Anatomy and Physiology uses an inquiry-based approach to learning with emphasis on two major conceptual themes: the relationship between structure and function and homeostatic mechanisms within the body. Health issues and diseases are researched and discussed throughout the course. Dissections are also an integral part of the course.

(Prerequisite: B- in Biology or permission from instructor)

 

SCI304  Physics
Grade 11, 12
Two semesters, one credit

Physics is a laboratory based science course that examines the relationship between matter and energy and how they interact. Using the process of scientific inquiry, engineering design, and critical thinking, students discover and apply knowledge in topics such as motion, energy, momentum, forces, and electricity. An important aim of the course is to develop and build problem-solving skills, scientific literacy, and graphical analysis. The foundation for future science courses is laid through lectures, problem solving, inquiry-based labs, simulations, demonstrations, and hands-on activities.  

(Prerequisite: Completion of Algebra II)

 

SCI310  ECO-ACT
Grade 11, 12
Two semesters, one credit 

ECO-ACT is offered in conjunction with the Missouri Botanical Garden. Students participate in an intensive, three-week summer program taught by Missouri Botanical Garden staff that focuses on a variety of topics relating to the environment and human stewardship of our planet. This training, along with monthly meetings during the school year, prepares the high school student for taking on the role of instructor in ecology and environment for fourth grade students on a regular basis throughout the school year. Villa Duchesne teachers supervise the high school students. Enrollment in this course requires commitment to the training and to the instruction of the younger students. Students pay a fee of $500 for the summer training program (scholarship available). Enrollment is limited to 12 students.              

 

SCI315  Forensics
Grade 10, 11, 12
Two semesters, one credit 

Forensic science involves all areas of science including biology, anatomy, chemistry, physics, and earth science. It also requires skills in observation, reasoning, and critical thinking. Students use, discuss, and interpret current technology available in the field of forensics as well as examine its impact on and use within the legal system. Students explore how scientists collect, analyze, and store evidence. They discover the chemical and physical tests used in analyzing trace evidence. Topics will include crime scene investigation, handling such evidence as hair, fibers, pollen, glass, fingerprints, DNA and blood.

(Prerequisite: B- in Biology)

 

SCI380  Advanced Placement Physics 1
Grade 11, 12
Two semesters, one credit

Advanced Placement Physics 1 is 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; and mechanical waves and sound. It also introduces electric circuits. The lab portion of Advanced Placement Physics 1 is an integral part of the course, which includes inquiry investigations that enable students to research practical applications of the topics presented. This course, along with independent work by the individual student, prepares students for the Advanced Placement Physics 1 exam administered each spring.

(Prerequisite: B average in Honors Algebra II and Trigonometry, B or higher in previous science course, and teacher recommendation)

 

SCI401  Advanced Placement Biology
Grade 11, 12
Two semesters, one credit

Advanced Placement Biology is the equivalent of an introductory college-level biology course and designed around the College Board’s Advanced Placement Biology curriculum framework that focuses on four major concepts (Big Ideas) in biology and their corresponding enduring understandings. The four Big Ideas are:

  1. The process of evolution drives the diversity and unity of life.
  2. Biological systems utilize free energy and molecular building blocks to grow, to reproduce and to maintain dynamic homeostasis.
  3. Living systems store, retrieve, transmit, and respond to information essential to life processes.
  4. Biological systems interact, and these systems and their interactions possess complex properties.

The course provides a basis for students to develop a deep conceptual understanding of biology and the opportunity to integrate biological knowledge and the science practices through inquiry-based activities and laboratory investigations. In the process students have the opportunity to develop advanced inquiry and reasoning skills, such as designing their own investigations, analyzing data collected, and connecting within and across domains. Laboratory investigations comprise a minimum of 25% of instructional time. Formal laboratory reports are part of the laboratory experience. The course is also designed to prepare students to take the Advanced Placement Biology exam.

(Prerequisite: B+ in Biology I, B in Chemistry or Honors Chemistry, and teacher recommendation)

 

SCI402  Advanced Placement Chemistry
Grade 11, 12
Two semesters, one credit 

The Advanced Placement Chemistry course covers the equivalent of one full year of college level General Chemistry. The course is designed around the Advanced Placement Chemistry syllabus provided by the College Board. It is a rigorous math-based course with a significant laboratory component. Advanced Placement Chemistry revisits a number of topics from first year chemistry but at a deeper level, delving further into kinetics, equilibrium, acid-bases, thermodynamics, and electrochemistry and redox reactions. Students perform more sophisticated lab work. The purpose of the labs is to apply concepts, practice problem-solving techniques, improve critical-thinking skills, analyze results, and collaborate in small groups. This course is excellent preparation for students considering the study of science, engineering, or pre-health in college. The course culminates with the option of taking the Advanced Placement exam; students may earn up to 12 hours of college credit depending upon their Advanced Placement exam score and the university.

(Prerequisite: Junior (recommended) or Senior with a B average in mathematics courses, B in Honors Chemistry or A- in Chemistry.)           

Social Studies Course Descriptions

SOC71 - World Geography 7
Grade 7
One year     

What would it be like to travel along the Nile River? Why do so many Australians celebrate Christmas at the beach? Why do most Brazilians speak Portuguese? The answers to these questions and many more can be found in World Geography. In the course, students learn to understand spatial relationships among places, similarities and differences among people living in different cultures, and the relationship between human beings and the environment. Through careful study of physical and human geography of Latin America, the Middle East, East Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa, students develop a greater appreciation of the world and their place in it.

 

SOC81 – American Civics 8    
Grade 8  
One year

American Civics (8) promotes an understanding of and appreciation for American citizenship. Through careful study of the federal, state, and local levels of government, students learn about government and economics as foundations for active and informed civic participation. A full one-third of the year is dedicated to economics, coordinated though the engaging educational programs offered by the Mississippi Valley chapter of Junior Achievement.

 

SOC101 – World Civilization I: History, Identity, and Meaning
Grade 9
Two semesters, one credit

World Civilization I establishes major themes and questions that will drive the social studies curriculum from grades nine through twelve. Beginning with the civilizations of the ancient world and continuing to the Enlightenment, the course takes a broad view of human history in order to consider a number of important questions: Is human nature selfish, empathetic, cooperative? What constitutes just government? How do we define progress and have we progressed? The course encourages students to evaluate the merits of their own Western civilization in the context of the histories of other traditions and cultures around the world.

The course lays the foundation for a rigorous social studies curriculum by asking students to read primary and secondary sources, to research topics in history, and to write argument-driven essays.

 

SOC201 World Civilization II: History, Identity, and Meaning
Grade 10
Two semesters, one credit

This course builds on the themes and questions established in World Civilization I, focusing on the emergence of the modern era, and continues to explore the major questions raised in the ninth grade, with emphasis on the increasing interaction among world civilizations in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Through both historical and cultural appreciation of various civilizations, the two-year course helps students clarify their own values and beliefs.

Students continue to develop skills in research, argument-driven writing, and critical reading.

 

SOC301 – United States History
Grade 11
Two semesters, one credit

Can history be dangerous? Yes, it can if it perpetuates commonly assumed, but false and harmful, myths and stereotypes. United States History helps students avoid this danger by exploring such concepts as “American exceptionalism” and changing interpretations of the American past. The course covers American history from the pre-Columbian era through the late twentieth century and explores such controversial topics as race and racism and the relationship between self-interest and idealism in American foreign policy. Students also consider the forces of unity and diversity in American society, and what it means to be an American. Furthermore, students learn how historians write history by exploring the use of the raw materials of the past (documents, artifacts, etc) before they are turned into history.

 

SOC302 - Advanced Placement United States History
Grade 11
Two semesters, one credit

It is true that ‘One who does not know the past of her country can have no meaningful sense of its future.’? The problem, though, is that today historians are in deep disagreement over every major issue in the American past. Is the American past the story of freedom and democracy or is it rather dominated by oppression and injustice? Are we, as a society, one nation or many? In terms of foreign policy, is what is good for the United States good for the world? Much of AP United States History is designed to allow students to consider such explosive issues from varied perspectives. By exploring American history, the course is designed in particular for students who want to grow intellectually rather than simply build a resume for college admission. Through rigorous reading and writing experiences, students prepare for the AP American History exam. Graduates of the course can earn college credit through the St. Louis University 1‑8‑1‑8 Program and/or the Advanced Placement Program.

(Prerequisite: Permission of the current Social Studies teacher and the AP instructor)                      

 

SOC402 – American Government & Economics
Grades 11 and 12
Two semesters, one credit

As students prepare to enter society as voting citizens, how can they navigate the complex and contentious world of American politics and economics? In the fall semester, students learn to grapple with controversial current issues as they relate to the Constitution, the role of state and federal government, civil rights and liberties, the electoral process, political parties, interest groups, and the three branches of federal government.  

In the spring semester, the course introduces students to basic principles of micro- and macroeconomics. The course concentrates on the laws of supply and demand; efficient production of goods and services; unemployment, inflation and economic growth; fiscal and monetary policy, the Federal Reserve, and the financial markets.

 

SOC403 - Psychology
Grades 11 and 12 
One semester, 1/2 credit

Psychology introduces students to some of the major areas of psychological theory and application. Students use the scientific method to investigate personality, the brain, human development, learning, and social and abnormal psychology. Students use theoretical principles to explain and predict human behavior. This course also raises key questions about human nature, such as: To what extent are we shaped by our genes? By our environment? Is the brain fixed after adolescence, or does it change over time?

 

SOC404 – Women’s Studies
Grade 12
One semester, 1/2 credit

This course examines women’s issues through a variety of lenses.  Using literature, legal documents, films, music and other media, students analyze women’s lives in modern history and culture. Students are encouraged to use their understanding of women’s experiences to put their own lives in context. The course allows students to focus on topics of individual interest. It also incorporates experiential learning and integration of concepts from different disciplines, including politics, economics, and sociology.

 

SOC405 - Advanced Placement European History
Grade 12
Two semesters, one credit

Why study the European past when many of the world’s headlines seem to relate more to the world outside of Europe? The answer is that European ideas and institutions have, for better or worse, shaped the world today more than those of any other region. Ideas like nationalism, capitalism, socialism, progress, and liberal democracy all have their origin in Europe. AP European History gives each student the opportunity to explore these exciting ideas and their history. They also explore their broader values and beliefs as they relate to the European heritage. Students prepare to take the AP European History exam. This course may be taken for Advance College Credit through St. Louis University’s 1-8-1-8 program.

(Prerequisite: Permission of the current Social Studies teacher and the AP instructor)           

 

SOC 408 AP US Government & Politics/Honors Economics
Grade 12
Two semesters, one credit

As students prepare to enter society as voting citizens, how can they navigate the complex and contentious world of American politics and economics? In the fall semester, students learn to grapple with controversial current issues as they relate to the Constitution, the role of state and federal government, civil rights and liberties, the electoral process, political parties, interest groups, and the three branches of federal government.  

In the spring semester, the course introduces students to basic principles of micro- and macroeconomics. The course concentrates on the laws of supply and demand; efficient production of goods and services; unemployment, inflation, and economic growth; fiscal and monetary policy, the Federal Reserve, and the financial markets. Over the course of the year, students explore the major question of the role of government in a just society. As an Advanced Placement and Honors course, students read college-level texts and write argument-driven essays. Additionally, students prepare for the AP US Government & Politics exam.

 

SOC421 History of the Middle East
Grades 11, 12
One semester, .05 credit

What are the origins of many of the great challenges faced in the Middle East? Why is there an ongoing conflict between Israelis and Palestinians? What role has the United States played in Middle Eastern history? Why has there been a rise in radical Islamic groups like ISIS? This course answers these and other questions by providing a general overview of basic themes and issues in Middle Eastern history. Drawing from previous knowledge acquired from World Civilizations I and II and from theology classes, the course focuses on Judaism, Islam, and the encounters and exchanges between the Middle East and the West.

 

SOC422 Trial and Advocacy
Grades 9, 10, 11, 12
November-April, .25 credit

This course prepares students to participate in the Missouri High School Mock Trial Competition. Working with their teachers and practicing attorneys, students explore issues relating to the judicial system. In preparation for competition, students use critical thinking skills to analyze physical evidence and witness affidavits. They construct sound arguments supporting and attacking both sides of a hypothetical legal conflict. Students write opening and closing statements, as well direct and cross examination questions. They participate in the competition as either witnesses or attorneys. Through the preparation and trials, they become familiar with trial procedure, rules of evidence and legal theories. Students also develop public speaking skills. This class meets outside of regular school hours from November to April.

Technology Course Descriptions

TEC71  Computing 7
Grade 7
One quarter

In Computing 7, students focus on active, hands-on learning experiences using technology. In this course, students:

  • develop keyboarding and file management skills,
  • plan strategies to locate information,
  • evaluate and ethically use web-based research,
  • compile, analyze and illustrate numerical data using the Excel program, and
  • transfer technology skills to new situations.

The goal of the course is for students to master a set of skills applicable to all their classes. 

 

TEC81  Computing 8
Grade 8
One quarter

This class is a continuation of the study of common computer applications. New topics are:

  • Research skills (traditional as well as electronic),
  • Proficiency in word processing and spreadsheets,
  • Computers in society, and
  • Presentation skills including various presentation software.


COS280 Advanced Placement Computer Science Principles
Grades 10-12
Two semesters, one credit

This online course introduces students to concepts and practices central to the study of computer science. Working individually and collaboratively, students will use technology and programming to solve problems, create computational artifacts, investigate technological innovations that are personally meaningful, and discuss the impacts of computing technologies to their community, society, and the world. The curriculum centers around seven big ideas:

  • Computing is a creative activity
  • Abstraction reduces information and detail to facilitate focus on relevant concepts
  • Data and information facilitate creation of knowledge
  • Algorithms are used to develop and express solutions to computational problems
  • Programming enables problem solving
  • The Internet pervades modern computing
  • Computing has global impact 

Students are required to take the Advanced Placement Computer Science Principles exam at the end of the course. They will also submit digital artifacts for two through-course performance assessments. This course provides excellent preparation for the existing Advanced Placement Computer Science A course, which focuses more intensely on computer programming. 

(Pre-requisite: Algebra 1. No prior programming experience is expected or required)

 

COS460 Advanced Placement Computer Science A

Grades 11-12
Two semesters, one credit                              

This online course is equivalent to an introductory college-level course in computer science.  Students will learn object-oriented programming methodology using Alice and Java with a concentration on problem solving and algorithm development.  Topics of study include data structures, programming design, abstraction, computer system components, and computer science history.  Students will work collaboratively on pair programming projects and engage in group discussions of the ethical and social implications of computer use.  Students are required to take the Advanced Placement Science A exam after completing the course.

 (Pre-requisite:  Algebra II)  

Theology Course Descriptions

THE71  Religion 7
Grade 7
Two semesters, one credit 

This course enables students to know Christ through the study of His words and examples as given in the Christian Scriptures. This focus helps the students deepen their understanding of how to live as Jesus’ disciples today, supported by the Church, Sacraments and daily prayer. The Five Goals of Sacred Heart Schools and the need to grow in respect, responsibility, and reflection are emphasized.

 

THE81  Religion 8
Grade 8
Two semesters, one credit

In the first semester, students explore the principles of Catholic Morality to learn what it really means to live a life in Christ. Students learn how the Beatitudes and Ten Commandments provide foundations for successful moral living. Students come to recognize that love of God and neighbor are vital in a life that balances prayer and action. 

In the second semester, students become familiar with some of the people and events that have helped shape the Catholic Church. By examining the past, students recognize the purpose of the Church and see how they can play a role in its future. Rather than just memorize facts, students are encouraged to consistently make connections between the topics studied and their daily life. 

Throughout the year, students are introduced to various prayer practices to establish a personal relationship with God and an active prayer life. Students have the opportunity to examine their own values and practice the process of making good decisions.

 

THE101  Patterns of Revelation, Christology
Grade 9
Two semesters, one credit

Patterns of Revelation is a launching point for the high school study of Theology. Students learn about the rich history and tradition of the Religious of the Sacred Heart, followed by a focus on Scripture reading, particularly the great stories of Hebrew Scripture.

In the second semester, students study the person of Jesus of Nazareth in Christology and first get a sense of the Christian story arc in Scripture. Students then read a contemporary novel that imagines Jesus as a person in the twenty-first century and compare it to the stories of Jesus found in the Gospels. The course emphasizes play with scriptural metaphors and recurring themes that are essential to understanding the heart of Jesus and how it can be demonstrated in the world today. By the end of the course, students know the person of Jesus well enough to imagine how He might respond to contemporary issues and situations that we face in our lives and in our world today.

 

THE201  Paschal Mystery, Ecclesiology
Grade 10 
Two semesters, one credit

Students begin their sophomore year with the study of the death and resurrection of Jesus and how this mystery is reflected in our own lives. In addition, students learn the skills to study Scripture independently. The class culminates in a public gospel reflection speech just before the Winter Break.

In the second semester, Ecclesiology  leads the students toward a deeper understanding of the Church as the means to encountering the living Jesus. The course explores the origin, the human and divine elements, and the ongoing mission of the Church. Students reflect on their role in the Church and Christ’s invitation to actively participate in and contribute to the life of the Church.

 

THE301  Social Justice, Morality
Grade 11
Two semesters, one credit

Social Justice, taken in the first semester,  allows students to reflect on how to become their own social ethicists in the context of learning the basic principles of Catholic Social Teaching as well as reflecting on the signs of the times/current issues and the big question “Who is God?” The class also allows students to investigate their own passions with social action opportunities. 

Morality, taken in the second semester, enables students to engage fundamental questions of the moral life. Students explore Catholic ideas of human freedom, conscience, sin, virtues, and use of Scripture as a moral guide. To augment the Catholic teaching, secular responses to moral dilemmas are presented. Students exercise ways to translate philosophical ideas into concrete action to shape themselves as moral agents. They are pushed to scrutinize their own behavior so as to deepen their moral conviction. 

 

THE401  Comparative Religions, Faith and Spirituality
Grade 12 
Two semesters, one credit

The first semester course, Comparative Religions, takes a survey approach to the study of the religions of our world. For each religion presented, students explore its beginnings, traditions, and beliefs, and how it compares with others. This introductory course acts as a springboard for further study at the collegiate level.

The second semester course, Faith and Spirituality, focuses on religious faith: the personal experience, development, content, and expression of our spirituality. The course is designed to assist the students in broadening and deepening their understanding and faith commitment, and in preparing them to take personal responsibility for the living out of their faith in the future. The theology capstone project in which students reflect upon, articulate, and present to the Villa community what they theologically claim from their Sacred Heart education is completed during this course.

Online Courses

COS280   Online Computer Science Principles

One Semester, one-half credit


Computer Science Principles is a one-semester introductory computer science course centered around seven Big Ideas:

  • Computing is a creative activity.

  • Abstraction reduces information and detail to facilitate focus on relevant concepts.

  • Data and information facilitate creation of knowledge.

  • Algorithms are used to develop and express solutions to computational problems.

  • Programming enables problem solving.

  • The Internet pervades modern computing.

  • Computing has global impact.

     This course is modeled on the new AP Computer Science Principles course currently being piloted by the College Board for release in the 2016-2017 school year. Developed to broaden participation in computer science and STEM courses, CS Principles fosters creativity and highlights the impact of computing on people and society. It provides excellent preparation for the existing AP Computer Science A course, which focuses more intensely on computer programming

Prerequisites: Algebra I. No prior programming experience is expected or required.

 


COS460 – Advanced Placement Computer Science
Two semesters, one credit
 

The online AP Computer Science course is equivalent to an introductory college-level course in computer science. Students will learn object-oriented programming methodology using Alice and Java with a concentration on problem solving and algorithm development. Topics of study include data structures, programming design, abstraction, computer system components, computer science history, and the ethical and social implications of computer use. Students are required to take the AP exam after completing the course.

Prerequisite: B+ in Analytic Geometry or Trigonometry or B in Honors Algebra II, Teacher Recommendation

  • Villa Duchesne and Oak Hill School
  • 801 South Spoede Road
  • Saint Louis, MO 63131-2699
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