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Non-Departmental Electives

Though dissimilar in content, the following courses are grouped together in order to clarify their place in a student’s overall
curricular plan. These classes do not fulfill any department’s graduation requirements. Additionally, not all of these courses are offered every year.

Introduction to Computer Science - Python, Part I

This course is designed to offer an introduction to computer science. Students will learn the basics of computer programming along with the basics of computer science. The material emphasizes computational thinking, helps develop the ability to solve complex problems, and covers the basic building blocks of programming along with other
central elements of computer science. It gives a foundation in the tools used in computer science and prepares
students for further study in computer science. Topics include: 1) number calculations and data, 2) making decisions, 3) repetition and loops, and 4) graphics.

Introduction to Computer Science - Python, Part II

This course is designed to offer an introduction to computer science. Students will learn the basics of computer
programming along with the basics of computer science. The material emphasizes computational thinking, helps
develop the ability to solve complex problems, and covers the basic building blocks of programming along with other central elements of computer science. It gives a foundation in the tools used in computer science and prepares students for further study in computer science. Topics include: 1) for loops, 2) text and string Processing, 3) functions, 4) arrays and 2D arrays, and 5) Internet. Prerequisite: Introduction to Computer Science, Part I

Computer Science Principles Advanced

This full-year course introduces students to the foundational concepts of computer science and explores the impact computing and technology have on our society. The course covers a broad range of foundational topics including
programming, algorithms, the Internet, big data, digital privacy and security, and the societal impacts of computing. Students will explore the coding process through the context of two different programming environments—Scratch and Processing. Each of these platforms has been designed to provide beginning students with a simplified and novice-friendly interface with which to write their first dynamic and highly engaging programs. The course content includes 20% focus on coding and 80% focus on computer science applications through project-based, inquiry-based, and collaborative learning. Students will be encouraged to explore the advantages and societal impact of computational
technology while developing their own programming and computational thinking skills. (Open to students in grades 10-12).

Sexuality and Society

Building on past studies at Friends’ Central, this one-semester course takes an interdisciplinary approach to examining important topics in human sexuality. Using the lenses of biology, history, sociology, and psychology, students explore the impact of human sexuality on the individual, community, and larger society. Grounded in the belief that our sexuality is a force for good, the course explores how healthy sexuality can be used to make the world more just, free, loving, and whole. Practical skills emphasized in this class include: keeping one’s body healthy, establishing and maintaining relationships, and making deliberate, informed choices about engaging in sexual activity. This is a one-semester course open to students in grades 11 and 12.

Wellness Courses & Additional Required Courses

All students in grades 9 and 10 will be assigned to the following semester-long courses.

Quaker School Life - Grade 9

Part of Quaker School Life, Quakerism focuses on the basics of Quaker theology (including the principles behind Meeting for Worship) and the testimonies of truth, peace, simplicity, and equality. These concepts are tied to discussions of what it means to be a Friends school community.

Part of Quaker School Life, Human Sexuality explores the basic concepts in human sexuality essential to healthy adolescent development. Sexuality education in the Upper School is taught through the lens of social justice education. As such, the values of equity, integrity, stewardship, and respect guide decisions about course procedures and content. Major topics studied include: defining and developing healthy sexuality throughout the lifespan; sexual anatomy and physiology, body image, and care of the sexual systems; gender and sexual orientation as biological and sociological constructs; developing and maintaining healthy relationships; and the key role of deliberate, values-based decision making in healthy sexuality. 

Health - Grade 10

This required semester-long course focuses on many of the social issues facing students today. Designed to provide factual information on topics which include mental health, human sexuality, drug awareness, nutrition, and physical fitness, this course also helps students explore how each of these issues affects his or her own personal development and decision-making. Additionally, students will be trained in CPR/AED in either the Professional Rescuer or First Aid Course with the objective of earning their certification through the American Red Cross.