The study of STEM subjects in the BCHA Upper School is not merely to transmit content knowledge or develop math or science skills. Rather, we believe that these subjects spark curiosity about how the world works and help students develop soft skills like communication, problem solving, and creativity.

 Our science department is committed to providing a broad foundation in the sciences, developing critical and creative thinking, stressing competence in quantitative operations and oral and written communication, and stimulating intellectual curiosity. The purposeful use of critical thinking skills and the explicit teaching of problem solving techniques in our course offerings produce students with sharpened research and analytical skills, the ability to integrate and create new ideas, and the confidence to explore a broad realm of possibilities in the exploration of science and its applications. The goal of intellectual growth for our students is achieved through the use of classroom and laboratory instruction, student advising, and student research.

Physics First

Bi-Cultural Hebrew Academy utilizes the “Physics First” model spearheaded by Leon M. Lederman, winner of the 1988 Nobel Prize in Physics. While the traditional biology-first sequence was set in 1894, the newer “Physics First” model offers 21st century learners the opportunity to pursue a wider range of engineering and science courses earlier in their high school careers. Additionally, it fosters student STEM engagement by introducing concrete and visible science experiences in the ninth grade and teaches concepts that then enhance the study of chemistry and biology.

Regular, Honors, ECE, and AP

Courses offered include physical science, physics, chemistry and biology, offered at various levels, including regular, honors, ECE, and AP. STEM electives include environmental science (ECE and AP), anatomy and physiology (ECE and AP), astronomy, and computer science. Additionally, our high school participates in Center for Initiatives in Jewish Education (CIJE)—a multi-year engineering program that culminates in a capstone project. Modules include robotics, electricity, coding, programming microprocessors, and project management.

Core Science Courses

Subject Level Grade(s)
Physical Science* Regular 9
Physics* Regular 9-10
Physics* Honors 9
Chemistry* Regular 10-11
Chemistry* Honors 10-11
AP Chemistry* AP 12
Biology* Regular 10–11
Biology* Honors 10–11
Biology* ECE 10–11
AP Biology*/td> AP 11-12

Additional Offerings

Subject Level Grade(s)
Astronomy* Honors 11-12
Computer Science I: Javascript* Regular 9–12
Computer Science I: Javascript* Honors 9–12
AP Computer Science Principles* AP 9–12
Environmental Science Regular 11–12
Environmental Science Honors 11–12
Environmental Science ECE 11-12
AP Environmental Science AP 11–12
Engineering I* Honors 9-11
Engineering II* Honors 10–12
Engineering III Honors 12
Organic Chemistry Regular 11–12
Computer Science II: Java* Honors 9–12

Core Math Courses

Our Mathematics Department provides a broad and solid foundation in mathematics and develops critical and creative thinking, competence in quantitative operations, and intellectual curiosity. The explicit teaching of problem solving techniques in our course offerings produces students with sharpened analytical and computational skills. Students develop the ability to integrate and apply novel mathematical concepts and the confidence to tackle a range of possibilities in the exploration of mathematics and its application.

Our Integrated Math sequence (as well as our advanced math track) is specifically designed to prepare our students for the standardized tests they will be taking in junior and senior years.

Subject Level Grade(s)
Integrated Math 1** Regular 9
Integrated Math 2* Regular 9
Geometry* Honors 9-10
Integrated Math 3* Regular 10-11
Algebra 2* Honors 10-11
Pre-Calculus* Regular 11–12
Pre-Calculus* Honors 11-12
Calculus* Regular 11–12
Calculus* Honors 11-12
AP Calculus AB* AP 11–12
AP Calculus BC* AP 12
Statistics Regular 12
AP Statistics AP 12

Additional Offerings

Subject Level Grade(s)
Business Math* Regular 11-12
Calculus 3 Honors 12
* Courses offered during the current school year
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