The mission of the science department is to provide students with the scientific knowledge and skills that will lead them to a greater understanding of themselves, the physical world around them, and their interrelationships with this world. The college preparatory curriculum of biology, chemistry and physics is enriched and expanded through an honors program and a variety of electives.
 
Technology and science have each contributed to the advancement of our world throughout the course of history. Better instruments and ways to collect and analyze data have led to significant achievements in the last century. Where desirable and feasible the tools provided by today’s technology are integrated into the science courses.
 
Two science courses are required in grades 7 and 8, and three science credits are required for graduation from the Upper School. For students who intend to major in science-related fields in college, four credits are recommended in the Upper School. In selecting courses, students should note that many colleges prefer a broad spectrum of courses to a concentration in one science area.


List of 19 items.

  • Grade 7 - Earth Science (611)

    The Earth Science classes are designed to promote an awareness/interest in the four major areas of the subject: astronomy, geology, oceanography, and  meteorology. Besides local application, regional studies from North America and current topics are included. Non-Lab class.
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  • Grade 8 - Physical Science (631)

    Physical Science combines an introduction to chemistry and an introduction to physics, with a stro ng emphasis on the scientific method. The chemistry section explores the nature of matter, the physical and chemical changes that matter can undergo, and the structure of the atom. The course also studies the use, abuse, and means of conserving natural resources (water, fuels, minerals, land). The physics section looks at the concepts of force, work, power, motion, and forms of energy. Non-Lab class. (Prerequisite: Earth Science or Department recommendation.)
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  • Physical Science Honors (630)

    Combines an introduction to chemistry and an introduction to physics, with an emphasis on the scientific method. The chemistry section explores the nature of matter, the physical and chemical changes that matter can undergo, and the structure of the atom. The physics section looks at the concepts of force, work, power, motion, and forms of energy. Scientific research is practiced with the preparation and presentation of a science project. Non-Lab class. (Prerequisites: A- in Earth Science or Department Recommendation.) (1credit)
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  • Chemistry College Prep (651)

    College Prep. Chemistry is designed to present a modern view of Chemistry.  Topics include physical and chemical properties of matter, forms of energy, atomic and molecular structure, the periodic table, stoichiometry, kinetics and equilibrium, acids and bases, oxidation and reduction, solutions and solubility, quantitative and qualitative analysis. The laboratory experiments accompany the class theory with the investigation of concepts with a hands-on approach. (Prerequisite: Physical Science, Biology and Algebra 1) (1credit)
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  • Chemistry Honors (650)

    Honors Chemistry is designed to present a modern view of Chemistry. Topics include the physical and chemical properties of matter, forms of energy, atomic and molecular structure, the periodic table, stoichiometry, kinetics and equilibrium, acids and bases, oxidation and reduction, solutions and solubility, quantitative and qualitative analysis.  The laboratory environment allows investigations of class theory with adaptations to the technology of probes, calculators and computers. A long-term project with original research is required. (Science Fair Project) 
     
    (Prerequisites: A- in Physical Science, B in Biology Honors or A- in College Prep Biology and Department Recommendation). (1credit)
     
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  • AP Chemistry

    Description to come.
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  • Biology College prep (641)

    Biology surveys living organisms and stresses their basic similarities and differences. The cell as the basic unit of structure and function in all living organisms is studied in depth. Topics such as genetics, classification, human body systems, and ecology are all studied from an evolutionary viewpoint. Lab work is an integral part of the course.
    (Prerequisite: Physical Science). (1 credit)
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  • Biology Honors (640)

    Honors Biology is a study of life from the molecular to the global level. It explores the cell as the basic unit of life, and the repository of genetic information. The roles of photosynthesis and respiration as energy sources that sustain life, and the role of evolution in biodiversity are covered in depth. Organ systems are focused on with particular attention to human systems. The culmination of the course integrates these concepts to enhance an understanding of ecology. Lab work and scientific research are stressed. A long-term project with original research is required (Science Fair Project).
     
    (Prerequisite: B in Physical Science Honors or A- in Physical Science and Department Recommendation.) (1 credit)
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  • AP Biology (670)

    AP Biology is a course designed to be the equivalent of a college introductory biology course. It aims to provide students with the conceptual framework, factual knowledge, and analytical skills necessary to deal critically with the rapidly changing science of biology. Concepts studied in depth include organic molecules, cells as the basic units of structure and function, the molecular basis of inheritance and gene expression, evolution, and the levels of organization from atoms to populations. Laboratory work is extensive and a significant component of the course. (Students are expected to take the AP exam in May.) 
     
    (Prerequisite: A- in Biology and B+ in Chemistry, Pass the Course Entrance  Exam  and Department Recommendation). (1 credit)
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  • Physics College Prep (661)

    College Prep. Physics includes the study of kinematics, projectile motion, Newtonian mechanics, dynamics, thermal physics, optics, vibrations, waves, electrostatics, current electricity, magnetism and Faraday’s law. Through demonstrations and lab experiments the student comes to understand the mathematical relationships that govern the way the physical universe works. There are opportunities for independent student projects.
     
    (Prerequisite: Chemistry and Algebra II or Department Recommendation) (1 credit)

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  • Physics Honors (660)

    Honors Physics covers Newtonian mechanics, dynamics, wave mechanics, optics, modern physics, and electricity with more attention to problem solving and laboratory experiments. Students are required to plan and carry out an individual research project. (Prerequisite: B in Chemistry Honors or A- in Chemistry, an A- in Algebra II and  Department Recommendation). (1 credit)
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  • AP Physics 1 (662)

    AP Physics is designed as an introductory college-level physics course. Through inquiry-based learning, students will develop critical thinking and reasoning skills, as they explore the following topics: Kinematics, Dynamics (Newton’s Laws), Circular motion and the universal law of gravitation, Simple harmonic motion (simple pendulum and mass-spring systems), Impulse, linear momentum, and conservation of linear momentum (collisions), Work, energy, and conservation of energy, Rotational motion (torque, rotational kinematics and energy, rotational dynamics, and conservation of angular momentum), Electrostatics (electric charge and electric force), DC circuits (resistors only), Mechanical waves and sound. (Students are expected to take the AP exam in May.)
     
    (Prerequisite – Department recommendation )
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  • Anatomy and Physiology College Prep (643)

    College Prep. Anatomy and Physiology is a second-level biology course, examines major systems of the human body as to their structures and the ways in which these structures relate to function. Each of the major human body systems, anatomical orientation and language, and fluid and electrolyte balance in the body are studied in detail. There will be a laboratory component to this course that integrates dissections and other lab investigations to illustrate concepts.

    (Prerequisite: B+ in Biology and Chemistry and Department Recommendation). (1credit)
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  • Anatomy and Physiology Honors (644)

    Honors Anatomy and Physiology is a second-level biology course, examines major systems of the human body with a focus on structure-function relationships. Each of the major human body systems, anatomical orientation and language, and homeostatic imbalances in the body are studied in detail. There will be a laboratory component to this course that integrates dissections and other inquiry-based lab investigations to explore concepts. Students are required to plan and carry out an original research project. 

    (Prerequisite: B in Biology Honors and Chemistry Honors or an A- in Biology and Chemistry and Department Recommendation). (1credit)
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  • Environmental Science College Prep (642)

    explores the interrelationships of humans and animals with their environment. Issues such as energy- our needs and its sources; waste and its disposal; and forms of pollution are among the topics addressed. The basic scientific concepts for each topic are first studied and then used as a foundation for exploring the historical, sociological, financial, and legal aspects. Non-Lab class.
     
    (Prerequisites: Physical Science and Biology). (1credit)
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  • Environmental Science Honors (647)

    This course explores the interrelationships of humans and animals with their environment. Issues such as energy-our needs and its sources; waste and its disposal; and forms of pollution are among the topics addressed. The basic scientific concepts for each topic are first studied and then used as a foundation for exploring the historical, sociological, financial, and legal aspects. Case studies of real restoration projects will be used throughout the course to contextualize the content and allow students to analyze and problem solve. Lab class. (Prerequisites: A- in Biology and Chemistry or Department Recommendation). (1 credit) 
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  • Marine Science College Prep (638)

    students enrolled in this course will develop an understanding and appreciation of the major topics in Oceanography. This course will cover major  ocean basins, motions of the water, Tidal zonation patterns, physical properties of water, and a survey  of biological oceanography. Special  topics include: Harbors, Maritime law, Lighthouses, and Aboriginal Whaling or other project of student interest. Non-Lab class (Prerequisites: Physical Science and Biology (1 credit)
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  • National Parks (625) (Grades 9-12)

    National Parks is a multidisciplinary approach to viewing National Parks and related topics. The  geological processes involved in the  park’s  formation, the historical and civic background for the establishment of the parks, and the wildlife of the parks will be the major topics. The conservation movements that helped in the evolution of the National Park System, policies and programs will be covered. The main thrust will be for an audiovisual presentation centered on the PBS series by Ken Burns: National Parks: America’s Best Idea and other related series. Students will spend time on computers participating in on-line activities devised by the National Park Service and posted on their Webrangers site. Activities pertaining to the PBS on-line site will also be conducted. Comparisons  and contrasts with National Parks in other countries will also be viewed. (1/2 credit)
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  • New Frontiers (627) (Grades 9-12)

    The concepts associated with frontier expansion will be reviewed with a summary study of the Lewis and Clark expedition. The application of these concepts to the academic subjects will be by viewing documentaries produced by educational channels. Segments from Hollywood productions related to the documentaries will be included to show how science fiction can approach and even become science fact. Students considering enrollment should have a genuine interest in astronomy and oceanography. Class activities will include video segments, notes, discussions, quizzes, and student research presentations. (1/2 credit)
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Science Faculty

List of 6 members.

Sacred Heart School

 
High School: 781-585-7511
Elementary School: 781-585-2114 
Early Childhood Center: 781-585-2290
Sacred Heart School is a landmark educational institution on the South Shore. Providing students in preschool to grade 12 a top-tier, private, Catholic education for the last 70 years.