In grades 4–12, Science and Mathematics are separate courses.
- Mathematics in the Bridge, Intermediate, and High School Years
In the BASIS Curriculum Schools K–12 Program, students begin to take math as a separate course starting in grade 4, during which they complete the Saxon Course 1 textbook. In grades 5–8 all BASIS Curriculum students study algebra and geometry topics in courses from Math 8/7 and Pre-Algebra to Algebra 2. During grades 9–11, students move from Pre-Calculus through AP Calculus, mastering applications of functions, differentiation, integration, and topics that extend past those required for the AP Calculus exams. Following Calculus, students take a variety of rigorous Post-AP courses that are equivalent to University level math classes.
The BASIS Curriculum Mathematics sequence in grades 4/5–12 is designed to facilitate success in the BASIS Curriculum Science sequence, and to prepare students for success at the University level.
- Science in the Bridge Years
The grade 4 "Introduction to Science" courses at BASIS Curriculum Schools are focused on building the fundamental skills necessary for being successful in the rigorous science curriculum that follows. Specific attention is given to understanding and properly using the scientific method and developing individual scientific inquiry. Because the course includes study of the basic principles of Biology, Chemistry, and Physics, students that succeed in the "Introduction to Science" course are well prepared for success in those three sciences, which are taught as separate courses as the program progresses. Skills practiced throughout the course include: critical thinking, data collection, data analysis, collaboration, and communication.
Students continue on to "Intermediate Science" in grade 5. The "Intermediate Science" course deepens students' knowledge and understanding of foundational concepts in Chemistry, Physics and Biology, and introduces concepts from the content of grade 6 courses in these subjects offered in the Concise Program.
Physical Geography is taught in grade 5. In this course, students both apply the skills learned in their Introduction to Science or Intermediate Science courses and learn the processes of the Earth system and of the interactions between humans and the Earth in order to build a greater understanding of the world around them. Included are studies of the four spheres of Earth—geosphere, hydrosphere, atmosphere, and biosphere—as well as studies of maps and the people, places, and cultures embodied on the map.
Science in the Intermediate and High School Years
BASIS Curriculum students begin taking Biology, Chemistry, and Physics as separate courses in the Intermediate years. Instructors who specialize in these specific fields teach these courses. Students are prepared to enroll in an AP science course in grade 9.
Once in High School, all BASIS Curriculum Science courses are College Board-approved Advanced Placement Courses or post-AP courses. All students graduating from BASIS Curriculum Schools must take and pass all three Sciences at the Honors (or Pre-AP) level, and, in addition, must take at least one Science to the AP Level. The most advanced students are given the option of completing one of those Honors science requirements in grade 8.
BASIS Curriculum Biology courses focus on the overarching themes of evolution, maintenance of homeostasis and interactions of organisms in order to make sense of the living world. We emphasize the most basic unit of life, the cell, and progress to the level of organismal processes, structures and interactions. Throughout the sequence of courses, students gain an understanding of the principles of evolution that have ultimately led to the diversity of organisms that populate the earth today. To reach these objectives and to ultimately prepare students for the AP biology exam and beyond, each course communicates foundational knowledge, encouraging application and conceptual synthesis, with the goal of promoting critical thinking, experimental design and data analysis.
The ultimate goal is, of course, to move beyond the AP curriculum into coursework that explores subtopics within the field of Biology.
Post-AP Biology classes focus on a variety of topics within the larger discipline, including, but not limited to Marine Biology, Anatomy & Physiology, Genetic, and Bio-Ethics.
The purpose of the study of Chemistry at BASIS Curriculum Schools is to teach students that the work of the chemist has an impact on every aspect of contemporary life and is fundamental to the understanding of matter. In Chemistry, students study the nature of atoms and molecules and the way they react together to produce useful products. They will also study both organic and inorganic materials, looking at their properties, synthesis, reactions, analysis and uses.
Students learn, experiment and develop an in-depth knowledge of the discipline through hands-on work in the laboratory, focused in particular in the areas of matter, stoichiometry, types of reactions, gas laws, bonding, kinetics, equilibrium and nuclear chemistry.
Students who continue on to Post-AP Chemistry classes encounter such topics as Organic Chemistry, Inorganic Chemistry, and Catalase.
Physics courses at BASIS Curriculum Schools are designed to bring students an understanding of the physical world around them. Our coursework introduces students to conceptual ideas surrounding mechanics, energy and electromagnetism. As students progress through the program, these conceptual ideas are tied to the mathematical language of physics and students are taught to communicate and share these ideas. By the time students reach AP coursework, they are prepared to independently apply these conceptual ideas and learn to ask questions in a guided inquiry laboratory environment.