Middle School


LANGUAGE ARTS/SOCIAL STUDIES SEMINARS

United States History. Texts include selections from: Declaration of Independence; U.S. Constitution; Federalist Papers; Presidential Inaugural Addresses; The Red Pony; Thoreau, “Walking Westward”; Lincoln/Douglas debates; Dred Scott Decision. Alaska History. Texts include: Steller, Journal of a Voyage with Bering; Alaska Native tales and myths; John Veniaminov, “Notes on the Aleuts”; Jack London “To Build a Fire”; John Muir “Village of the Dead”; Alaska State Constitution. World History--Origins of Civilization. Texts include: Code of Hammurabi; Lucretius, De Rerum Natura; Gilgamesh; Pre-Classical Civilization handout; Confucius, The Great Digest. Second Semester: World History--Greek & Roman Civilizations. Texts include: Herodotus, History; Thucydides, History of the Pelopennesian War; Marcus Aurelius, Meditations; Seneca, Letters.

MATH SEMINARS

Geometry: Definitions, axioms and proofs in linear and plane geometry; principles of trigonometry. Texts include: Euclid’s Elements; Abbott, Flatland; Lobachevski, Theory of Parallels; Eratosthenes, “Measuring the earth.”

SCIENCE SEMINARS

FIRST YEAR: Matter, Motion, and Change. Students investigate science as a way of reasoning that produces certain knowledge about the natural world. They study the methods of observation, experimentation, and mathematics as ways of exploring natural properties, causes, forces, and motion. Biology: Dissection, observation of wildlife, anatomy, cellular theory Texts: William Harvey, On the Motion of the Heart and Blood; Fabre, Wonderbook of Plant Life Physics: Laws of motion, buoyancy and pressure, laws of change Texts: Galileo, Two New Sciences; Archimedes, Equilibrium of Planes; Presocratics, “Fragments” Chemistry: Periodic table, fundamental laws of chemical reactions Texts: Pascal, “On the Weight of Air”; Lavoisier, Elements of Chemistry SECOND YEAR: Mathematics in Science. Second Year focuses on the power of mathematics in scientific inquiry. The students will examine how math defines what science states about the natural world, both animate and inanimate objects. Biology: Natural selection, entomology, field and microscopic observations Texts include: Darwin, Origins of the Species; Fabre, from Souvenirs Entologymique; Thomas, “On Embryology”; Hooke, “Texture of Cork”; Boeke, “Cosmic View” Physics: Laws of motion and collision, Momentum, Force Texts include: Huygens, “Colliding Bodies”; Newton, from Principia Chemistry: Freezing and burning, oxidation Texts include: selected experiments from Black, Rumford, and Lavoisier.
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