A three-year program in science is required, and includes one year each of biology, chemistry, and physics. The Science Department Faculty recommends that all students take an elective course in the fourth year. These requirements are in accordance with National Science Education Standards and the 2006 Science and Technology/Engineering Curriculum Frameworks for the State of Massachusetts. The three required courses provide the skills and concepts necessary for a graduate of a college preparatory high school. Since mathematics is the language of science, the science faculty closely monitors students’ progress in mathematics courses. Student performance in mathematics is an integral part of the decision making process that determines course and level placement in the science curriculum. Due to the differing nature of life science and physical science courses, it is not uncommon for students to change level placement each year in their science courses, depending on the content delivered in prior math courses, as well as their mastery of that content.
The recommended course of study in science is determined by a student’s analytical (mathematical and data interpretation) skills.
Students who have strong analytical abilities pursue the following course of study:
Freshman Year: Biology
Sophomore Year: Chemistry
Junior or Senior Year: Physics
* In this sequence of courses, the student may take a science elective in his/her junior or senior year.
Students who need additional support with their analytical (mathematical and data interpretation) skills are advised to pursue the following course of study:
Freshman Year: Biology
Sophomore Year: Conceptual Physics
Junior Year: Chemistry
* In this sequence of courses, the student may take a science elective in his/her senior year.
The second sequence of courses also allows students who need additional time and support in mathematics to take the more math-intensive Chemistry course concurrently with Algebra II, thus offering more congruence between required analytical skills.
SCIENCE FAIR: Participation in the BFHS Science Fair is mandatory for students enrolled in designated courses. Participation in the fair is part of the grade for these courses. The individual teacher determines the weighting of this grade in their course. Students who are interested in the science fair, but are not enrolled in these courses, are encouraged to speak with their science teacher about participation so that the appropriate forms can be completed. Winners at the local fair are expected to participate in subsequent regional and state fairs.