French-American Program in Grades 9 & 10
Throughout the first two years of high school (as in our middle school), students follow a composite of French and American coursework based on the traditional French curriculum, to which the necessary elements of the American program are added in English, social studies, art, and current events, as well as optionally in mathematics.
- In 9th grade, students prepare for and take the Brevet, a compulsory French examination covering math, French language and literature, history/geography, and civics. There is also a cross-curricular oral examination component in art history.
- In 10th grade, students have the opportunity to explore a number of special electives (economics and social science, experimental laboratory science, literature and society, public speaking, etc.) designed to help them better understand academic interests and strengths.
Projects assigned in the ninth grade build upon the skills developed in the sixth, seventh, and eighth grade art curricula; the principles of art are reviewed as students are introduced to more materials and techniques. Some assignments provide students with only a few rules pertaining to theme, size, and attention to detail or three-dimensional appearance, thereby fostering the students’ artistic license and requiring them to pursue their own vision. Other projects, such as a large still-life, are a culmination of the study of composition, light and shading, perspective, and the rendering of three-dimensional forms. This course is taught in English and mandatory for all ninth graders.
Art Option 9 (Elective)
This elective course builds upon skills taught in the required art curriculum, while allowing students greater creative freedom than in the required art classes. Projects often draw inspiration from diverse cultures and artists, exposing students to a variety of creative expressions. These range from mask-making to designing shoes, but all—whether in form-making, patterning, color theory, or abstraction—reinforce the core required art curriculum of that grade. This course is taught in English.
The program is organized around four core topics. In the Human Diversity and Unity topic, students study the origin of an individual’s characteristics, the origin of human diversity, chromosomes, and genetic information (DNA). Human Evolution and History of the Earth focuses on the early formulation of the theory of evolution of living things through geologic time (genetic explanations, natural selection, mass extinctions, and classification of living things). The Infectious Disease and Protection of the Organism component of the course leads students to understand the way the body reacts to contamination (immune system, AIDS, and allergies). Finally, the course includes a study in Human Responsibilities in Health and Environmental Issues. This course is taught in French.
This advanced chorale course continues to develop skills introduced in previous chorale courses. In addition to proper vocal technique, further emphasis is placed on singing expressively, producing good choral tone, and sight-singing independently. Music is age-appropriate and chosen to challenge and inspire students, while encompassing a variety of styles. Students may elect to take Chorus 9 or Music 9. This course is taught in English.
Starting in 2018-19, FASNY students will be introduced to Code.org’s Computer Science Discoveries (CSD) course, which has been designed with middle and high school students in mind and is fully aligned with CSTA and ISTE standards. Three important modules of the CSD curriculum are:
1. Web Design: Students learn the basics of HTML and CSS. They start to see themselves as programmers and are encouraged to think deeply about sharing and using content. At the conclusion of this module, students will be publishing their personal webpages.
3. App Lab: Students learn how to use the power of their programming skills to create apps to solve personal and broader social problems.
Students work on a different module in seventh, eighth, and ninth grades. Skills learned as part of the Computer Science Discoveries course pave the way for Computer Science Principles courses.
English 9 Honors
This will be a challenging high school literature course. Students will study a wide range of texts and genres within American literature from the 17th century to the present, covering fiction, poetry, drama, nonfiction, and film. Students will have many opportunities to improve their writing through diverse expository and narrative formats. They will also practice their oral presentation skills through a variety of assignments, ranging from debates to dramatic monologues! Moreover, there will be a wide range of creative assignments. Finally, students will engage in early preparation for the PSAT exam through the use of vocabulary development (Wordly Wise) and regular attention to grammar through frequent writing practice. The texts and authors covered include, but are not limited to, Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut, “Of Plymouth Plantation” by William Bradford, “Young Goodman Brown” by Nathaniel Hawthorne, The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger, “The Declaration of Independence” by Thomas Jefferson, The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald, essays by Emerson and Thoreau, “Song of Myself” by Walt Whitman, Into the Wild by Jon Krakauer, poetry of the Harlem Renaissance, A Raisin in the Sun by Lorraine Hansberry, and A Confederacy of Dunces by John Kennedy Toole. This course is taught at a native level.
English 9 - Advanced English Language Learners
This is a flexible class taught in English because its goal is twofold: to act as a transition for students recently in ELL and to serve as a bridge to prepare them for regular English as soon as possible. The curriculum begins with direct vocabulary instruction, as provided through their Wordly Wise 3000, Book 9, to further their understanding of new words and concepts. Pronunciation is also a focus, as the course hopes to develop confidence in the students’ spoken English. Intermediate English 9 mainly promotes reading comprehension and the skills of writing about American literature critically using the following works: The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, A Raisin in the Sun, and Fahrenheit 451. Film versions of novels/plays studied will help students with understanding the role of adaptation of artistic works. American contemporary short stories begin the year as students start to feel comfortable with reading critically and closely. For the same reason, a unit looking at the poetry of Naomi Shihab Nye and Langston Hughes will be presented in the early days of the course. Nonfiction works are utilized as students’ research and technology skills are developed.
English 9 - English Language Learners
As most students arrive in grade 9 ELL with prior English instruction, they have a beginning basis of grammar. The curriculum is therefore designed to build upon these skills of grammar, writing, and reading. As with other ELL classes, students are continually taught correct word usage, grammar, pronunciation, writing skills, and higher-level vocabulary. Texts used in this course include graphic novels such as March by John Lewis as well as versions of Mark Twain’s Huckleberry Finn and Charles Dickens’ Great Expectations and the novel War Horse by Michael Morpurgo. Azar’s Understanding and Using English Grammar is used to improve sentence structure and usage. Poetry by Langston Hughes is analyzed, as are Emily Dickinson’s very short poems. Short stories by Gary Soto and Ray Bradbury also help to develop reading comprehension. This course is taught in English.
European History and World Geography I
This history course covers the period from 1914 to the present day. The geography portion of the course focuses on France and the European Union. Students are asked to think critically when analyzing documents. They are expected to write a page-long essay using their personal knowledge as well as information presented in a variety of documents. The civics education portion of the course exposes students to questions related to citizenship as they study current events in today’s world. This course is taught in French.
French 9 Literature and Composition Honors
The ninth-grade French course completes the program of the fourth cycle by developing four main themes:
- Knowing Yourself (autobiography)
- Being an Active Member of Society: Individuals and Power (theater)
- Developing a Creative Outlook (poetry)
- Changing the World (science fiction)
This is also the final year for students to prepare for the oral and written French national exam, le Brevet National des Collèges. Students reinforce and deepen their language skills. The course covers a variety of literary genres and different texts, emphasizing self-expression, the ability to argue, science fiction, and media literacy. The course allows students to make connections with other subjects through artistic, historical, and philosophical questioning. This French course is taught at a native level.
Students in this course are expected to expand their grammar, including verbs in the indicative and subjunctive forms, passive and active voice, and complex sentences, to gain a better understanding of the language. They also learn the history of Germany from 1933 to 1990.
Latin II (Elective)
Students expand their learning of the Latin language and culture. At the end of ninth grade, students will have mastered enough essential grammatical skills (morphologic and syntactic) to understand and translate a short and accessible Latin text. They also will be able to put a literary text into its historical and cultural context. Four themes are being studied: From the Republic to the Principate; The Roman Empire; Familial, Social, and Intellectual Life; and the Mediterranean World (especially the relationship between Rome and Greece). This course also includes notions of ancient Greek culture and language. This elective course is taught in French.
Integrated Mathematics 9
As in previous grades, this course has three objectives: to reinforce and extend the knowledge acquired in previous grades, to enable students to use specific mathematical methods and ways of thinking, and to develop the ability to use mathematics in everyday life and in other disciplines.
Topics covered include an introduction to functions (generalities and graphs), the linear and affine functions, and the slope formula; mean, median, and quartiles in statistics; an introduction to probability; computations with square roots; algebra (factoring and distributing); linear equations and inequalities; and systems of two linear equations. Topics in geometry include trigonometry in a right triangle, the Thales theorem, dilation and reduction, inscribed angles, regular polygons, sections of solids (prisms, cylinders, cones, and spheres), and areas and volumes. This course is taught in French.
American Math: Geometry
This course is equivalent to an American grade 10 course. Topics covered include essentials of geometry, logic, proving statements in geometry, congruence of line segments, angles and triangles, transformations and the coordinate plane, geometric inequalities, slopes and equations of lines, parallel lines, quadrilaterals, the geometry of three dimensions, similarity, geometry of the circle, locus, and construction. This course is taught in English. Except in rare cases, Algebra I is a prerequisite.
American Math: Algebra IB
This is the second year of the Algebra IA/IB course. It is designed for students who took Algebra IA in grade 8.
Students continue their studies of Western music and begin learning about the Romantic era through the 20th century. They also study modern classical music, jazz, and popular forms such as rock-and-roll using listening examples, sound recordings, and research of notable figures and compositions. Students may elect to take Chorus 9 or General Music. This course is taught in English.
Students begin to understand the importance of physical skills improvement relevant to a chosen sport. They learn good practice habits and are encouraged to engage in as many activities as possible. Sports include aerobics, street hockey, gymnastics, badminton, golf, and indoor tennis. This course is taught in English.
Physics and Chemistry 9
In the ninth grade, the physics and chemistry courses follow precisely the curriculum of the French Department of Education. The curriculum is divided into four components:
- Energy and Conversion: Use of mathematical relation of kinetic and gravitational potential energy, use of mathematical relation of power, law of conservation of energy, Ohm’s law, residence energy consumption calculation
- Structure and Transformation of Matter: Deepening of balancing chemical equations, acid-base character of substance, notion of ionic compound, pH measurement (hydrogen ions), chemical reaction between acid solution and metals, order of magnitude of the universe, universality of scientific laws in the universe
- Motion and Interaction: Newton’s gravitational law, weight, gravity
- Signals of Communication and Observation: Acoustic signal, propagation of sound properties, notion of frequency, infrasound and ultrasound, use of light or sound for information transmission
In grade 9, students review the material covered in the previous year, such as the present tense and the different types of verbs (reflexive, stem-changing, irregular conjugations). Linguistically, they enrich their vocabulary as well as their verb tenses (the subjunctive mode, the past and future tenses) in order to describe their plans, give commands, express a possibility or a doubt, and make hypothetical statements. Through a variety of oral exercises (dialogues, role-play, presentations), students work on their speaking and conversation skills. They also improve their reading and writing abilities through topics ranging from their family and friends to their preferences and habits. Students continue to explore the culture of different Spanish-speaking countries, notably through artistic masterpieces. The course meets three times a week.
Spanish 9 for Native Speakers
This course is intended for native and near-native speakers of Spanish and taught only in Spanish. Students are exposed to an array of Spanish and Latin American readings by writers such as Gabriel García Márquez. The students study the culture of Spanish-speaking countries—including aspects of geography, politics, gastronomy, traditions, music, and cinema. This course meets three times a week.
United States History I (Native Level)
This course covers United States history from the pre-Civil War era to the Great Depression. The first third of the course is an in-depth study of the issues that resulted in the Civil War, the Civil War, and the Reconstruction Era that followed. The middle third of the course explores the changing world due to the Industrial Revolution and the immigration policies that developed in the United States as a result. The final third of the course builds on the earlier themes as the nation moves into the 20th century and becomes a major player on the world stage. Students are expected to master note-taking during classes taught in a primarily discussion format. Students will also develop their research and analytical skills through a research paper. This course is taught in English at the native level.
United States History I (AELL and ELL)
Students gain an understanding of the changes that took place in the United States from the eve of the Civil War to the eve of World War II and learn to identify the key individuals and events that were agents of those changes. They work to develop writing, research, and critical-thinking skills as tools to analyze the transformations that took place during this period in the nation’s history. Students also practice public speaking by participating in class discussions and giving oral presentations, and will develop their research and analytical skills through a research paper. This course is taught in English at an AELL-to-ELL level, as needed.
Art I (Elective)
Using a problem-solving approach, students will improve their drawing skills, gain a deeper understanding of color, and learn to organize more meaningful compositions. Students will create drawings, collages, prints, paintings, and sculptures in order to communicate personal ideas and solve visual problems. One important area of focus involves the depiction of pictorial space. Overlapping, linear, and atmospheric perspective and the rendering of volumes will be explored—to equip students with the tools they need to construct pictorial space with clarity and confidence. Students will undertake both in-class and out-of-class projects. They will benefit by discussing their works during class critiques. In addition, they will begin to build a portfolio that shows the range, depth, and quality of their artistic knowledge. This course is taught in English.
Biology / Earth Science
The program aims to build common scientific knowledge and develop critical thinking and social awareness. It is structured around three major themes: The Earth in the Universe, Life, and the Evolution of Living Things; Contemporary Global Issues (Energy and Soil); and The Human Body and Health. The course is taught in French.
Chorale 10 (Elective)
This advanced Chorale course continues to develop skills introduced in previous chorale courses. In addition to proper vocal technique, further emphasis is placed on singing expressively, producing good choral tone, and sight-singing independently. Music is age-appropriate and chosen to challenge and inspire students, while encompassing a variety of styles. This course is taught in English.
Economics and Social Sciences
This course has an exploratory curriculum that seeks to expose high school students to the knowledge of new disciplines they have not encountered in their prior studies. The course aims to provide all students with the principles of economic and sociological knowledge essential to the education of all citizens who seek to understand the workings of the economy and society in which they live; to enable students to discover a new academic discipline and help them make enlightened decisions regarding their 11th- and 12th-grade education; and to provide students with some essential concepts and ways of thinking about economics and sociology that will facilitate their studies as high school juniors and seniors and, later on, at the university level. This course is taught in French.
English 10 Honors
This course is a survey of world literature and philosophy. It begins with a study of the epic, including Gilgamesh, Homer’s Iliad, and Virgil’s Aeneid. The concentration on ancient Greek literature also includes a close reading of Oedipus Rex and an examination of tragedy. The year continues with excerpts from Dante’s Inferno and a close reading of Shakespeare’s Macbeth and Milton’s Paradise Lost. The course concludes with a reading of contemporary works, including selected stories from Phil Klay’s Redeployment and Ta-Nehisi Coates’s Between the World and Me. Throughout the year, the works are examined in light of key philosophers of the Western world, such as Plato, Aristotle, Descartes, and many others, using Kolak’s Lovers of Wisdom as a basic text. This English course is taught at a native level.
English 10 for Non-Native Speakers (Advanced English Language Learners)
This is a flexible class taught in English because its goal is twofold: to act as a transition for students recently in ELL and to serve as a bridge to prepare them for regular English as soon as possible. The curriculum begins with direct vocabulary instruction, as provided through their Wordly Wise 3000, Book 10, to further their understanding of new words and concepts. Pronunciation is also a focus, as the course hopes to develop confidence in the students’ spoken English. Intermediate 10 mainly promotes reading comprehension and the skills of writing about world literature critically using the fictional works Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck, The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini, The Fifth Child by Doris Lessing, and Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet. Film versions of novels/plays studied will help students with understanding the role of adaptation of artistic works. Global and contemporary short stories begin the year as students start to feel comfortable with reading critically and closely. For the same reason, a unit looking at the poetry of Naomi Shihab Nye will be presented in the early days of the course. Nonfiction works are utilized as students’ research and technology skills are developed. A unit co-taught with FASNY’s librarian helps students to work with various books, journals, and historical articles on the American Great Depression and Afghanistan. This course is taught in English.
English 10 ELL (English Language Learners)
As most students arrive in grade 10 ELL with prior English instruction, they have a beginning basis of grammar. The curriculum is therefore designed to build upon these skills of grammar, writing, and reading. As with other ELL classes, students are continually taught correct word usage, grammar, pronunciation, writing skills, and higher-level vocabulary. Texts used in this course include graphic novels such as Gulliver’s Travels by Jonathan Swift and the adapted novel (Peter Kuper), as well as The Metamorphosis by Franz Kafka. Azar’s Understanding and Using English Grammar is used to improve sentence structure and usage. Poetry by Mary Oliver is analyzed, and for dramatic literature we read an abridged version of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet. Short stories by Hemingway and Bradbury also help to develop reading comprehension. This course is taught in English.
European History and World Geography II
In the history portion of the course, students study several key moments in history, including citizenship in Athens and Rome, medieval European societies (11th-13th centuries), the Renaissance, the French Revolution, and the revolutionary movements in Europe in the first half of the 19th century. The geography portion focuses on the study of sustainable development. Several themes are used to provoke a deeper conversation about the subject, including how humans can share the wealth of the earth, the plausibility of feeding the entire planet, how we should manage our water resources, and, finally, urban life and sustainable development. This course is taught in French.
French 10 Literature and Composition Honors
This course is the first in a two-year sequence focused on the content and exercises required for the oral and written Baccalaureate exam in French, which students take at the end of 11th grade. Theater, the novel, and persuasive essays are some of the main themes studied in the context of selected classics of French literature, with a focus on the 17th century. Students are trained in analytical reading and writing, the crafting of literary commentaries, creative writing, and essay writing. This French course is taught at a native level.
Students study literary texts (both poetry and prose) and are asked to explain the grammatical structures of the texts, as well as initiate discussions. Another key theme of this course is music, which covers Bach through current rap. This course is taught in German with some grammatical explanations in French.
Integrated Mathematics 10
Topics covered in this course include number sets and their properties, as well as variations and graphing of the following functions: linear, reciprocal, quadratic, homographic, and trigonometric. Also, algebraic and rational expressions, factoring, and algebraic and graphic resolution of nonlinear equations and inequalities. Statistics and probability: measuring central tendency and dispersion, frequencies distribution, simulation, and sampling and range of fluctuations. Sample space, events, equiprobable spaces, finite probability spaces, intersection, and union of events. In Euclidean geometry, emphasis is placed on training in logical reasoning with plane and space properties: plane configurations, straight lines and planes in 3D, parallelism, intersection of solids by a plane, areas, and volumes. In analytic and vector geometry: equation of a line, vectors (coordinates, sum, difference, multiplication by a real number), and systems of linear equations. Algorithms: basic (variables, input, output, expressions, functions), conditional statements, iterative loops, pseudo-code. Application: programming with the TI 84 or using a language like Python or Scilab. Set-mathematical notation and logical reasoning (connectors, negation, truth tables, propositions, logical implication). Graphing calculator, geometry software. This course is taught in French.
American Math 10 Advanced / Algebra II (Elective)
Algebraic Methods: fractional exponents, operations with algebraic fractions, fractional and radical equations. Functions: composing two functions, inverse of a function and its graph.
Circles: inscribed angles, measuring angles, finding chord, tangent and secant-segment lengths.
Transformations: line symmetry, rotation, translation, dilation, composing transformations, reflecting and rotating using coordinates.
Trigonometry: functions, identities, equations, formulas, solving triangles. This elective course is taught in English.
Latin III (Elective)
Students study the Roman world through three central themes: The Roman Citizen, the Roman World; Mare Nostrum; and Mythological and Heroic Figures. Texts highlight the essential aspects of the political, historic, moral, literary, and artistic cultures of the times. Syntax and morphology are strengthened in this course, and students are expected to expand their vocabularies using a Latin-French dictionary as a resource. Connections with other texts from the French and English curricula are made as often as possible. This course also includes notions of ancient Greek culture and language. This elective course is taught in French.
Literature and Society (Elective)
The purpose of this research-oriented course is to showcase the benefits of a humanities-based education by focusing on themes prevalent in literature and social studies. Students explore two or three themes taken from the following six: Writing to Change the World: The Role of Writers in the Major Social Issues; From Clay Tablets to Digital Screens: The Saga of the Book and the Written World; Image and Language: Showing and Being Heard; Stakes and Outlook for Media, Information, and Communication; Public Speaking: From the Agora to the Online Forum; and Perspectives on Others and on Other Places. This French elective course is taught at a native level.
Students are introduced to the French physical education program. This program requires a proficiency in at least two team sports and one individual sport. Students are made aware of the physical requirements for good evaluations and given the instruction necessary to improve skills and techniques to achieve maximum results. Sports offered may include, but are not limited to, endurance running, volleyball, basketball, badminton, dance, running relay, soccer, orienteering, rock-climbing, and lifeguard-training. This course is taught in English.
Physics and Chemistry 10
The physics and chemistry course in 10th grade is organized around three themes: Health, Practicing Sports, and The Universe. Health covers the fundamentals of medical diagnosis and medication. Observation of results builds notions of concentration and chemical types, as well as reflections on the constitution and structure of matter. The unit on Practicing Sports deals with the study of movement, the concept of pressure, materials, and molecules involved in the practice of a sport, and the needs and responses of the body. The Universe unit spans large cosmic structures to the structure of matter, including stars, planets, and the solar system; this approach provides a coherent general overview of the subject matter. This course is taught in French.
Public Speaking (Elective)
This bilingual course prepares students to speak publicly before a variety of audiences and on a broad range of topics, as they will need to do during their adult and professional lives. Topics include “Why do we laugh?”; “Should people have the right to smoke in public?”; “Someone I admire”; “My future career”; and free subjects. Students give speeches once a fortnight, on average, alternating between English and French.
Spanish I (Elective)
Students in grade 10 can choose to start Spanish as a third language (LV3). The course meets three days a week and follows the beginner’s program of Spanish in accordance with the French Ministry of Education. Through thematic topics of daily life (presenting oneself, describing one’s family, one’s friends, one’s activities), the students follow a progression that combines pragmatic goals (asking questions, getting and giving directions), linguistic objectives (the present tense, the subjunctive mode, the past and future tenses, the use of pronouns and prepositions), and cultural awareness (discovering the Hispanic world, its music, art, holidays, traditions, recipes). In order to be able to communicate fully, students learn to listen, understand, speak, converse, read, and write in the target language.
In grade 10, students are given ample opportunities to review and solidify grammar and vocabulary basics. They are also asked to deepen their mastery of the language through the study of various authentic documents: visual texts (literature, cartoons, advertisements) and audio-visual materials that expose students to the different accents of the Spanish-speaking world as well as the diverse cultures within it.
Students are challenged to enrich their expression as they continue to communicate through comprehension, speaking, reading, and writing when grappling with more mature, complex world topics. The course meets three days a week.
Spanish 10 for Native Speakers
This course is intended for native and near-native speakers of Spanish and taught only in Spanish. Students delve into different texts from Spanish and Latin American writers such as Arturo Pérez Reverte and Juan Rulfo. Students read and discuss several books. They also watch and analyze films relating to the literature, culture, and history of Spanish-speaking countries. Some students may choose to take the Spanish Language AP (Advanced Placement) exam. The course meets three times a week.
Science and Methodology (Elective)
This hands-on course gives students an opportunity to discover different fields of physics, chemistry, biology, and Earth science. In this project-based course, students choose two or three themes to investigate, either on their own or as part of a team. They develop scientific protocols to confront real-world problems and then develop a means of effective scientific communication to convey findings (research reports, posters, slideshows, etc.). Two or three of the following themes will be studied throughout the year: science and food, science and cosmetology, science and works of art, science and the prevention of risks of human origin, science and worldview, and forensics. This course is taught in French.
United States History II (All Levels)
This course covers United States history from the Great Depression through the beginning of the 21st century. The first third of the course is an in-depth study of the emergence of the United States as a global hegemon. The middle third of the course explores the economic and social issues and challenges that the United States faced during the 1960s and 1970s. The final third of the course deals with the rise of the conservative movement, the end of the Cold War, and the United States’ place in the New World Order. Throughout the course, students will continue to develop their familiarity with historical data and geopolitical terminology. Students will also hone their research and analytical skills through a research project. Texts include American Odyssey: The United States in the 20th Century; When the Emperor Was Divine by Julie Otsuka; Nickel and Dimed, On (Not) Getting by in America by Barbara Ehrenreich; documentaries; and primary sources. This course is taught in English at the native level.
Academics at FASNY are complemented by a rich co-curricular program. Discover our: