CORE INTERDISCIPLINARY STUDIES ELECTIVES
SCHOLASTIC APTITUDE TEST [SAT] REVIEW: 10, 11 2.5 credits
An intensive review course, the SAT preparation course will provide students with nine weeks of English preparation and nine weeks of mathematics. Students will learn test-taking strategies and take practice tests. In the English section of the course, students will focus on techniques for improving reading comprehension, vocabulary, and writing. In the mathematics section, students will analyze and practice sample SAT questions in algebra and geometry. Basic mathematical concepts will be reviewed. Students will be requested to take the SAT test closest to the conclusion of the course.
AP SEMINAR: 10, 11, 12 5 credits
AP Seminar is a foundational course that engages students in cross-curricular conversations that explore the complexities of academic and real-world topics and issues by analyzing divergent perspectives. Using an inquiry framework, students practice reading and analyzing articles, research studies, and foundational literary and philosophical texts; listening to and viewing speeches, broadcasts, and personal accounts; and experiencing artistic works and performances. Students learn to synthesize information from multiple sources, develop their own perspectives in research-based written essays, and design and deliver oral and visual presentations, both individually and as part of a team. Ultimately, the course aims to equip students with the power to analyze and evaluate information with accuracy and precision in order to craft and communicate evidence-based arguments.
AP RESEARCH: 11, 12 5 Credits
PREPARATION: Successful completion of AP Seminar
AP Research allows students to deeply explore an academic topic, problem, or issue of individual interest. Through this exploration, students design, plan, and conduct a year-long research-based investigation to address a research question. In the AP Research course, students further their skills acquired in the AP Seminar course by understanding research methodology; employing ethical research practices; and accessing, analyzing, and synthesizing information as they address a research question. Students explore their skill development, document their processes, and curate the artifacts of the development of their scholarly work in a portfolio. The course culminates in an academic paper of 4000–5000 words (accompanied by a performance or exhibition of product where applicable) and a presentation with an oral defense.
ASIAN AMERICAN AND PACIFIC ISLANDER STUDIES: 9, 10, 11, 12 2.5 credits
This course exists to explore the diverse histories and experiences of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders in the United States. Students will examine the formation of “Asian American Pacific Islander” (AAPI) identity in the United States, those who are included in the category, who and what decides, and how those understandings have shifted over history. Students will also research and examine contributions of the AAPI community and how the community has evolved over time. This interdisciplinary course will expose students to key scholarly works, literature, theories, and frameworks that inform the field of Asian American Studies.
ROBOTICS: 9,10,11,12 2.5 credits
Robotics is a heavily lab-based course that primarily uses a hands-on approach to introduce the basic concepts of robotics, using the VEX Robotic Design System as the robotics platform. The course focuses on the design, construction, and programming of mobile robots, along with documentation of student work and progress. The course requires students to use problem-solving strategies to design and build a task-specific robot. Robots will be controlled either by a driver or autonomously. Both driver control and autonomous operation require students to learn coding to program the brain of the robot, which controls smart motors and sensors. Students will work in groups to build and test increasingly more complex mobile robots and complete a variety of robot construction and programming activities within the confines of those groups. The course will culminate in an end-of-the-course robot contest.
STUDENT LEADERSHIP I: 9, 10, 11, 12 2.5 Credits
This course is designed to enable students to use the skills and knowledge cultivated in class and carry into a variety of areas where they can continue to hone them through leadership opportunities, whether it be through classroom activities or extracurricular opportunities. The course curriculum will focus on building leadership through student voice and aspirations. Most importantly, this course would provide a framework for students to carefully craft the skills necessary to begin to emerge as school leaders in a variety of capacities. This course is designed as two components to serve the varied needs of our student population. Student Leadership I is designed for any student interested in learning about the elements and types of leadership and becoming a leader at the high school. This course is designed to be one semester in length, followed by Leadership II which is designed as the application of leadership into leadership roles. Students should be able to take level II multiple times if they have a continued interest in practicing and reflecting on their own commitment to leadership.
STUDENT LEADERSHIP II: 9, 10, 11, 12 2.5 Credits
PREPARATION: Successful completion of Student Leadership I
The Leadership II course is designed to serve the varied needs of our student population. As a companion course to Student Leadership I where students learned conceptually about leadership, Student Leadership II is designed as a place for practical application and reflection on these skills and best serves students who are already or about to serve leadership roles in their school and/or community. This is a semester course and students should be able to take level II multiple times if they have a continued interest in practicing and reflecting on their own commitment to leadership.
TOMORROW’S TEACHERS: 12 5 Credits
Tomorrow’s Teachers, an elective course for high school seniors who aspire to become teachers, was developed by the Center for Education, Recruitment, Retention and Advancement (CERRA) in South Carolina. Tomorrow’s teachers is taught for a minimum of one class period a day for a year, or the equivalent of that amount of time in contact hours. The course includes four themes: Experiencing Learning; Experiencing the Profession; Experiencing the Classroom; and Experiencing Education. A variety of hands-on activities and a strong emphasis is also placed on teaching in critical shortage subject areas.
Students will apply, interview and be selected for the program. In order to qualify they will need to have at least 100 credits going into their senior year to take the early dismissal senior option. Students can take their 4 classes in the morning during A, B, C and D blocks. (i.e.: ELA 12, H/PE12, Tomorrow teachers’ course and one other elective) Second half of the day will be open to schedule “intern-like” student teaching practicum work in our schools. Students will need their own form of transportation.
SOCIAL JUSTICE: 10, 11, 12 2.5 credits
The Fight for Social Justice: Past and Present will focus on examining the historical, philosophical, and sociological aspects of wealth and poverty, racial justice, educational opportunity, and gender justice issues in literature, media, and popular culture. Students will learn about the historical and long-term roots of modern social justice issues as well as an awareness of how socioeconomic status, race, gender, and educational achievement have been used to create social barriers and injustice. Positive literary examples of tolerance, citizenship, kindness, fairness, and equality in literature, media, art, and popular culture will promote these same values in our students. Understanding the role and power of youth, media, texts, art, film, and popular culture in causing, changing, and ameliorating social justice issues will be paramount of importance. Furthermore, the Fight for Social Justice: Past and Present will provide a much-needed outlet for Cherry Hill High School students to discuss social justice issues in a safe environment and to identify meaningful ways to unite towards social justice.
UNIQUE ELECTIVE AT WEST
COMMUNITY SERVICE AND AWARENESS PROGRAM: 9, 10, 11, 12 2.5 credits
The purpose of this course is to increase student involvement in community affairs and awareness of community service opportunities and public issues, and to give students an opportunity to reflect on their service-related experiences. Students must complete a minimum of fifty-three (53) hours of community service at a Board-approved service agency, Habitat for Humanity, nursing homes, hospitals, schools, etc. maintain a journal of service-related experiences, and attend four (4) hour-and-a-half public affairs discussions. Students taking this course will work independently as the course does not meet during the academic day.