In the High School program, 10th grade can be seen as a “bridge” between the supported environment of the 9th grade and the independent environment of the 11th and 12th grades. Teachers ask students to demonstrate consistency and to continue to refine the academic skills they developed the previous year, while the curriculum challenges students to think more abstractly and analytically. Tenth graders have increased independence as well as responsibility. Whereas with younger students a parent may have contacted a teacher directly to ask a question on behalf of a student, in 10th grade we expect students to take this initiative themselves. Teachers encourage students to do their own problem-solving, to seek out teachers when they need help and to plan ahead and make their own choices. As adolescents become young adults, they focus less on fitting in with the “group” and begin to see themselves as individuals with their own unique interests. In the Community for Learning we support students in their search for their individuality by giving them opportunities to express their opinions and search for their own answers to questions.
The 9th – 12th Grade math program features interwoven strands of algebra and functions, statistics and probability, geometry and trigonometry, and discrete mathematics. In the 10th Grade program we extend the student’s ability to use matrices and matrix operations to represent and solve problems from a variety of real-world settings while connecting important mathematical ideas from several strands. Students develop an understanding of coordinate methods for representing and analyzing relations among geometric shapes, and for describing geometric change. We also develop the student’s understanding of the strength of association between two variables, how to measure the degree of the relation, and how to use this measure as a tool to create and interpret prediction lines for paired data. Students develop their ability to recognize data patterns that involve direct or inverse power variation, to construct and analyze those models and combinations such as quadratic models, and to apply those models to a variety of problems. They also extend their ability to use vertex-edge graphs to represent and analyze real-world situations involving network optimization, including optimal spanning networks and shortest routes. We develop students’ ability to model and analyze physical phenomena with triangles, quadrilaterals, and circles and to use these shapes to investigate trigonometric functions, angular velocity, and periodic change as well as to understand and visualize situations involving chance byusing simulation and mathematical analysis to construct probability distributions.
As students approach young adulthood, language arts teachers attempt to meet their unique needs through a curriculum that connects academic learning to real-life situations, focusing on interdisciplinary efforts. The yearlong them in 10th grade language arts is “social justice”. All the novels to be read this year deal with some form of stereotyping or prejudice. Students can explore the effects of society’s beliefs on the individual. Are we able to uphold our morals and values when people around us don’t share those values or do people tend to follow the crowd? As students read the various novels, they are encouraged to explore their own feelings and beliefs. At the tenth grade level, we focus on vocabulary instruction that evaluates connotation in text and compares and identifies word meanings using analogy and antonym context clues. Reading instruction focuses on electronic text, using explicit and implicit information to evaluate informational text; on the ways in which character development and connections to politics, history, and culture contribute to great literature; and on more complex figurative language, including extended metaphor, hyperbole, and symbolism. Writing focuses on analysis and interpretation of multiple ideas and perspectives to extend thinking through writing. Inquiry skills are focused on synthesizing information in preparation for presenting research results.
The 10th Grade Chemistry class is organized around major concepts of matter, structure, energy, and change. The “Benchmarks” in our chemistry class emphasize the characteristics and properties of the elements, the periodic table, the subatomic structure of atoms, and changes in the the properties of compounds or atoms due to chemical and nuclear reactions.
The purpose of the Chemistry curriculum is to provide the minimum standards for all students to achieve basic scientific literacy in chemistry. The curriculum is written with the understanding that individual teachers may choose additional content and activities to meet the needs and interests of their own students.
The 10th Grade World History and Economics program begins with a study of how the agricultural revolution in England lead to the Industrial Revolution. They will research the major inventors of the industrial revolution and what the direct and indirect impacts of their inventions were. They will also discuss how working conditions have changed since the industrial revolution. Next the students study the major causes that led to the American Civil War. They will discuss the status of black people in the U.S. from its inception through the end of the civil war and they will researchthe major challenges the U.S. faced during the post-war reconstruction. The final unit is Imperialism and Nationalism, in which students will discover how unbridled nationalism typically leads to imperialism in states with the ability to project their power. They will look at the dangers of nationalism and how this contributed to the causes of World War I. Students will culminate the unit with a study of the affect that imperialism had on lesser-developed countries’ cultures, values and natural resources.
In Geography students will recognize various empires that existed in the world and they will trace the spread of the agricultural and industrial revolutions. They will identify the states that were involved in the Civil War and they will plot the areas of major battles.
In Economics students will study the basic changes that came with the commercial revolution. They will explain the three factors of production and how they relate to each other (land, labor, capital). Students will research the emergence of the factory system, and how it differed from the domestic system (wage and supervision versus unsupervised commission based compensation).
They will explain division of labor, assembly line, mass production (Ford), monopoly, corporation and the concept of free enterprise.
Finally in Civics students will do an in depth study of the difference between capitalism, socialism and communism. They will also develop a strong understanding of what nationalism and imperialism are.
The main theme of our tenth grade sociales program, is the development of North and South America. We begin studying the first settlers, the different theories about who settled the continent, and a comparison and contrast of the main cultures and civilizations that were once established there. The study of the Americas is linked to Africa as we briefly analyze its cultural contributions and the reasons why Africans were brought as slaves to America. Then we continue studying the European expansion focusing on the economic, religious, and political purposes of the conquest. We also study the process of how the first colonies were established. Throughout this process, we constantly make connections between these historical facts and the present reality of Latin America. After the expansion, we move on to the independence movements through to current times. The year culminates with a project in which students choose one of the historical events studied and analyzes its impact on the present reality of Latin-American countries.
In geography, students will analyze the resources and natural conditions of the different regions before the European expansion. The students will also pay close attention to the influence of geography on history, especially, in the settling of new countries. They will also analyze geography’s key role in modern Latin-American development.
In Economics, students will analyze the economic activities during the time periods studied, The economic purposes of the conquest of America, and the struggle between different potencies with regards to us and how they have disputed the control over our colonies and then the countries in America. And in economics the students will have a broader vision of the Latin-American economy and its Basic Platforms from the conquest up to the present time.
In civics, the students will see the electoral process, the Dominican electoral system, the historic evolution of the political parties, and its present distribution.