Welcome to 9TH Grade


ENGLISH This is a course designed to transition students from middle school into high school English. In this course, the students are taught the value of critical thinking as we begin with Socrates and Plato and traverse a labyrinth filled with coming-of-age stories. In the opening weeks of the course, the students are introduced to Joseph Campbell's Monomyth literary theory, and this becomes a lens through which we view future reading through. The intent here is to establish a parallel that runs between art/literature and real life. This allows the students to begin to answer the essential question "who am I" as they believe that they are the heroes in their own stories.  


ELEMENTARY ALGEBRA (9): A classic 9th grade algebra course which includes signed numbers, operations with monomials and polynomials, first degree equations and inequalities, special products and factoring, the coordinate plane including the equations of lines and graphing inequalities, systems of linear equations, quadratic equations, and topics in probability and statistics.


THE GEOMETRY OF ART AND ARCHITECTURE (9-12): This is an interdisciplinary course, which traverses the interplay of art and architecture with mathematics from the ancient world through modern times. This journey takes us from the pyramids of Egypt to Plato to Rome and onto the art of M. C. Escher and the computer art of fractals. The students hear traditional lectures, but much of the year is devoted to guided hands-on projects in art and architecture and how mathematics influenced those works

SCIENCE: (9-11) An upper division course, which explores molecular biology, pathophysiology, anatomy and physiology. Students learn about various types of cells, tissues, organ systems as well as cellular mechanisms such as neural transmission and DNA replication. This course features hands-on learning including experiments and the use of microscopes.


HISTORY: Skyrise (9-11) is a history of high-rise construction from the legendary Tower of Babel to Burj Khalif. I cover distinct phases: the beginning of iron and steel frame construction and the First Chicago School ("The  Rage for the Cage"), Beaux art style ("Counterforce"), the Jazz Age and Depression ("Decorama"), the  International Style ("Less is More") and the post-modern reaction ("Less is Less").


ITALIAN AMERICAN HISTORY (9-12): Italian immigration in the context of American History. The course began with a quick survey of Italians in early American history thru the Civil War. Then we study Italian society after the Unification to find out why so many people emigrated between 1880 and 1920. We study American history during this era and descriptions of Italian life and society in America. We end the unit with a look at how Italian-Americans integrated in America and the changing society the integrated into.


CULINARY ART (9-12): Students go from theoretical knowledge to practical appreciation of the cuisine related to our thematic education. Students spend 2 of the 5 periods per week preparing, in school, international dishes.


PHOTOGRAPHY (9-12): Using a DSLR, students learn the art of framing a shot, to tell a story with one photo, the various lighting techniques and how to produce excellent photos.


FRENCH I or II: This level of high school French is open to 9 to 12 grades depending on their ability. It focuses on conversational vocabulary and basic grammar. This course integrates culture, geography of French speaking countries as well as art, and poetry.


ITALIAN I or II (8-10 depending on ability): The students improve their comprehension of the language.  They also continue improving in grammar, reading, writing, and speaking skills.  


RUSSIAN: This class is open to 6 through 12 grades depending on their ability.  This course, taught by a Russian native speaker, is designed for beginners and for students who have already learned the fundamentals of Russian language. 


SPANISH I or II (8-12 depending on ability): students develop a basic pronunciation of the Spanish Language (express ideas, feelings, and exchange opinions). They are expose to new vocabulary words, learn the correct usage of grammar (present and future tenses) and the culture of the Spanish speaking countries around the world.


Latin I or II (9-12) is a nuts-and-bolts course in Latin as it existed during the Classical period. I teach the restored pronunciation and offer participants a chance to compete in the Latin recitation contest sponsored by the New York City Classics club. The medium for instruction is a compendium of Greek myths based on Ovid's Metamorphoses


TECHNOLOGY: Students are taught introduction to computer hardware & software.  This includes the following: Hardware components necessary to understand and build a computer - Major Operating Systems such as Windows, Mac OS and Linux - Google Application Suite such as Docs, Sheets, etc. - Introduction to Cloud Technology - IP addressing, Binary & Hexadecimal numbers - Different type of hackers such as Ethical, Black-Hat & Gray-Hat - Introduction to the World Wide Web.


MUSIC: Students develop an appreciation and awareness of culture through music. This involves digging into the region's history, as well as listening, learning, and performing on instruments from the thematic region. Each year new play lists are created, new sounds are discovered, and students develop a deeper understanding of music as a universal language.


ART: Learning and mastering new drawing/painting techniques including geometric pattern, pointillism, dry brush, glazing, impasto, chiaroscuro shadowing, watercolor double wash and water technique. Materials used include marker, watercolor, acrylic, charcoal and pencil Mural technique, relief sculpting in clay