Xavier's School

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Purpose

Located outside Salem Center in Westchester County, New York, Xavier's School for Gifted Youngsters is publicly known as a prestigious boarding school, founded in 1992 and providing an outstanding college preparatory education to middle- and high-school students. With a rigorous academic curriculum and a low student-to-teacher ratio, Xavier's sends its students on to the best colleges in the country.

The school's true purpose is much more secretive -- Founded by its current headmaster, Charles Xavier, in his family's ancestral home, the school serves as a safe haven and training ground for young mutants to learn to cope with and control their powers. Alongside more typical high school classes, Xavier's students receive instruction and guidance from the faculty in responsible use of powers, the ethics of living with them, and how to eventually make their way back out into the world.

Recruitment

Xavier's is not publicly known to be a mutant school, and its students as welll as its faculty are found by proactive recruitment.

The school is intended to help students who cannot attend school due to the danger posed from their mutations. Please keep that in mind when crafting your characters' backstory -- the overwhelming majority of their students are there because they need help to learn to control their powers, and were unable to go to their previous schools. If your character has a mutation that is under control and is not experiencing difficulties at their school, it is very unlikely that they would be offered a place at Xavier's.

The sole exceptions are:

a) mutant students from very wealthy families, who are, occasionally, offered spots at Xavier's even if their powers are not posing them any trouble -- with nearly all their students on scholarship, it's helpful to have a few students who are actually paying tuition.

b) immediate family of current faculty (children, siblings) who are -- if they wish -- allowed to attend the school even if they do not require its specialized accomodations. Weirdly enough, very few human relatives actively want to go to Freak School, so this is rare.

Faculty tend to be recruited on recommendation/word of mouth. It is not required to be a mutant to teach at Xavier's, but, obviously, it is required to be positively disposed towards them.

OOC Note: Keep in mind that Xavier's is a middle/high school, not a shelter for wayward or distressed mutants. If you would like a character who is taking refuge at Xavier's, getting help learning to control their powers at Xavier's, etc. you need to make a teenage, student character. Your adult will not be accepted to train and learn at Xavier's, regardless of their own perceived need.

Schedule

The school year at Xavier's is divided into three terms. Breaks fall between terms, with summer term falling for two months beginning in early June. Though classes are not in session, the school is open residentially through all breaks. Students must have permission from their legal guardians to remain at school during breaks and holidays, including summer term. During summer term, an abbreviated class schedule is in place for those students needing remedial/make-up classes, or those enrolled in elective summer school courses.

Daily Class Schedule

Class Schedule
Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday
7:00 - 7:45

Breakfast

7:00 - 7:45

Breakfast

7:00 - 7:45

Breakfast

7:00 - 7:45

Breakfast

7:00 - 7:45

Breakfast

8:00 - 8:45

Class A

8:00 - 9:15

Class A

8:00 - 9:15

Class C

8:00 - 9:15

Class A

8:00 - 9:15

Class C

8:55 - 9:40

Class B

9:45-10:15

Study/Break

9:25 - 10:40

Class B

9:25 - 10:40

Class D

9:25 - 10:40

Class B

9:25 - 10:40

Class D

10:20 - 11:05

Class C

11:15 - 12:00

Class D

9:45-10:15

Assembly/Break

10:50 - 11:35

Study/Break

10:50 - 11:35

Assembly/Break

9:45 - 10:15

Advising

12:10 - 12:55

Lunch

11:45 - 13:00

Class F

11:45 - 13:00

Class E

11:45 - 13:00

Class F

11:45 - 13:00

Class E

13:05 - 13:50

Class E

14:00 - 14:45

Class F

13:05 - 13:50

Lunch

13:05 - 13:50

Lunch

13:05 - 13:50

Lunch

13:05 - 13:50

Lunch

14:50 - 18:05

Athletics/Extracurriculars

14:50 - 18:05

Athletics/Extracurriculars

14:00 - 18:05

Athletics/Extracurriculars

14:00 - 18:05

Athletics/Extracurriculars

14:50 - 18:05

Athletics/Extracurriculars

18:30 - 19:30

Dinner

18:30 - 19:30

Dinner

18:30 - 19:30

Dinner

18:30 - 19:30

Dinner

18:30 - 19:30

Dinner

Academic Calendar, 2023-2024

Summer Term 2023
June 26 (Monday) - Summer session faculty arrival
June 27 (Tuesday) - Summer session students return
June 28 (Wednesday) - Summer session classes begin
August 21-25 (Monday-Friday) - Exam week; special class schedule for exam period
August 25  (Friday) - Summer term ends
Fall Term 2023
August 28-19 (Monday-Tuesday) - New faculty orientation
August 31- September 1 (Thursday-Friday) - Faculty meetings
September 2-3 (Saturday-Sunday) - New Student Orientation
September 4 (Monday) - Labor Day; Returning Students Must Check-in (by 6 pm)
September 5 (Tuesday) - Required Opening of School Assembly; Classes Begin
September 15 (Monday) - classes as usual - Rosh Hoshanah begins at sundown

September 25 (Monday) - No classes - Yom Kippur (begins at sundown on Sept. 24)
October 6-8 (Friday-Monday) - Family Weekend (No classes Monday)
October 12-13 (Thursday-Friday) - Midterms
October 28 (Saturday) - Halloween Dance (Casual)
November 10 (Friday) - Last day of Fall Term classes
November 13-17 (Monday-Friday) - Exam week; special class schedule for exam period
November 17 (Friday) - Last day of Fall Term; Thanksgiving vacation begins
November 21 (Tuesday) - Fall term grades/reports due (Faculty)
November 22 (Wednesday) - Fall term academic review meeting, 9:00-13:00 (Faculty)
Winter Term 2023-2024
December 3 (Sunday) - Thanksgiving vacation ends; students must return and check in before 6 pm.
December 4 (Monday) - Winter term classes begin
December 16 (Thursday) - Winter Ball (Formal)
December 15 (Friday) - Half-day of classes; Winter vacation begins after classes end
January 2 (Tuesday) - Winter vacation ends; students must return and check in before 6 pm.
January 3 (Wednesday) - Classes resume
January 11-12 (Thursday-Friday) - Midterms
January 15 (Monday) - No Classes - Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. Mandatory all-school assembly, 9:45-10:45.
February 5-6 (Monday-Tuesday) - No Classes - Mid-Winter Holiday
February 10 (Saturday) - Valentine's Dance (Semi-Formal)
March 8 (Friday) - Last day of Winter Term Classes
March 11-15 (Monday-Friday) - Exam week; special class schedule for exam period
March 15 (Friday) - Last day of winter term; break begins once exams end
March 19 (Tuesday) - Winter term grades/reports due (Faculty)
March 20 (Wednesday) - Winter term academic review meeting, 9:00-13:00 (Faculty)
Spring Term 2024
March 25 (Monday) - Spring vacation ends; students must return and check in before 6 pm.
March 26 (Tuesday) - Spring term classes begin
April 1 (Monday) - Mid spring holiday, no classes
April 26-27 (Thursday-Friday) - Midterms
May 6-10 (Monday-Friday) - AP exams
May 13-17 (Monday-Friday) - AP exams
May 24 (Friday) - Spring Ball (Formal)
May 24 (Friday) - Last day of Spring Term Classes
May 27-June 31 (Monday-Friday) - Exam week; special class schedule for exam period
May 31 (Friday) - Vacation begins after exams end.
June 1 (Saturday) - Senior-Faculty Dinner
June 1 (Saturday) - Senior academic review meeting, 9:00-13:00 (Faculty)
June 2 (Sunday) - Commencement
June 4 (Tuesday) - Spring term grades/reports due (Faculty)
June 5 (Wednesday) - Spring term academic review meeting, 9:00-13:00 (Faculty)
June 7-9 (Friday-Sunday) - Alumni reunions
Summer Term 2024
June 24 (Monday) - Summer session faculty arrival
June 25 (Tuesday) - Summer session students return
June 26 (Wednesday) - Summer session classes begin
August 19-23 (Monday-Friday) - Exam week; special class schedule for exam period
August 23  (Friday) - Summer term ends

XS School Rules

ICly, all students at Xavier's are expected to be familiar with the rules and follow them while they are living at and attending the school. OOCly, clearly, people break rules and we do not expect all characters to be studious and well-behaved at all times! Just keep in mind that they have teachers who are telepaths, and boarding schools are highly prone to a busily turning gossip mill. There are things that are easy to get away with and things that are likely to be discovered; don't be surprised if your char's frequent class-skipping or curfew-breaking or bullying lands them in hot water with the school administration.

Major Infractions

Major infractions will result in more severe disciplinary action. Choosing to remain present while violations of any school policies are occurring may also result in disciplinary action.

  • A large part of Xavier's safety lies in its discretion. Under no circumstances should information about the school's mutant status or the X-Men or the mutations of anyone associated with the school be divulged. If students believe they have found other children who would benefit from schooling at Xavier's, they should bring this to faculty attention rather than extending any sort of information or invitation themselves.
  • Violence of any sort is prohibited at Xavier's.
  • Hazing or bullying of any kind will not be tolerated at Xavier's. Hazing is defined as harassing, intimidating, bullying, or coercing another student with the purpose or result of embarrassment, disturbance, or humiliation. Bullying or discriminatory behaviour will not be tolerated.
  • Leaving school grounds without permission. All students must sign out with and be cleared by the faculty member on-duty before leaving school grounds at any time. There is no requirement for a chaperone when leaving campus under normal circumstances. However, if there is a crisis students must be attended by a faculty chaperone or a guardian.
  • Purchasing, possessing, using, or distributing any illicit or illegal drug, any prescription drug in a manner inconsistent with the instructions of the prescribing physician, or legal over-the-counter drugs for purposes other than legitimate medical treatment.
  • Purchasing, possessing, drinking or being under the influence of alcoholic beverages.
  • Dishonest acts of any kind, including cheating, plagiarizing, and other forms of academic dishonesty.
  • Xavier's is a safe location for mutants to live and explore their powers free of the judgement and hostility encountered in the rest of the world. Students are encouraged to train and practice and explore responsible use of their powers while at the school. Use of mutant powers in malicious or destructive manners, whether towards persons, creatures, or property, is never acceptable and will be dealt with strictly.
  • ALL out of school visitors, including family members, must be cleared by a faculty member and signed in with security while they are on school grounds.
Additional Policies
  • Students are not permitted to possess weapons or firearms of any sort, including BB guns. Permitted use of weapons during athletic activities and training sessions is allowed only under the supervision of a faculty member.
  • Gambling for money is prohibited.
  • Students are required to attend all their scheduled appointments punctually, including classes, assemblies, athletic sessions, or meetings with their adviser. Students who are ill and unable to attend their appointments must report to the medical bay; only Health Services staff may excuse students for medical purposes. Students with other schedule conflicts must receive a note, in writing, from a faculty member excusing them from their school duties.
  • All Xavier's students are issued a cellphone for emergency use. Students leaving school grounds must bring their school-issued cell phone with them at all times. Xavier's cellphones come with a 'panic button' that alerts the school if students find themselves in trouble. Students are expected to utilize this if they are in danger: casual misuse of the panic button outside of emergencies will result in disciplinary action.
  • All students are allowed access to the equipment in the computer lab and, for those with their own computers, internet connections are available in all dorms and wireless internet throughout the school grounds. All students utilizing school technology resources must comply with the acceptable use policy at all times. (Typical regulations about responsible use, prohibiting fraud, pirating, account sharing, malicious hacking, any illegal activities.)
  • Sunday through Thursday, students under the age of 16 are required to be on school grounds by 8 p.m. and in the mansion building by 10:30 p.m. Students over the age of 16 are required to be on school grounds by 9 p.m. and in the mansion building by midnight. On Friday and Saturday nights, students over the age of 16 have no curfew but are still required to follow appropriate sign-out/permission procedures at all times. For students under the age of 16, Friday and Saturday night curfew is extended; students are required to be on campus by midnight, with no requirement to stay in the building. After curfew, students may not leave again before 5 a.m.
  • There is no formal dress code at Xavier's; students are expected to exercise good judgement in the appropriateness of their attire, both in terms of offensiveness and of modesty. Students must change if requested to by a faculty member.
  • Students are not permitted in Cerebro at any time. Students are not permitted anywhere on the second basement level without a faculty escort.
  • Students possessing a valid driver's license are allowed to keep one personal vehicle in the school garage, if they first obtain the written permission from the faculty.
Dormitory Rules
  • Dormitories have quiet hours to allow students to sleep and study: any period of the day when classes are in session, and after 10 p.m. every night except Fridays and Saturdays.
  • No out-of-school visitors will be allowed on the dormitory floor after 10 p.m. Approved visitors staying overnight at Xavier's will be given a room in the guest wing.
  • Students may only be in their OWN dormitories after curfew. Exceptions may be made only by faculty and RAs.
  • Open flames are not allowed in student dorms, to include candles, matches, incense, lighters, or uses of mutant powers that produce flames. Highly flammable materials may not be stored or used in student dorms. Students may not tamper with smoke detectors or fire alarm systems.
  • Student rooms are required to be kept neat and orderly. Inspections for cleanliness will occur on a regular basis; inspection beyond simple observation is considered a room search and will not occur without dean approval.
  • Pets are permitted to students only with faculty approval. Approved pets are the responsibility of the student to care for and oversee. Approval may be revoked for considerations of hygiene, student safety, and animal welfare.

Academics

Xavier's School runs on trimesters, with an optional summer term for students who wish to stay at school over the summer. In order to graduate, students must complete at least 60 credits of courses through their four years; in almost all cases, classes count as one credit per trimester. Students must enroll in a minimum of four and maximum of six classes per term, except for summer term.

  • Art - 3 term credits; Must study at least two different disciplines (visual arts, performance, or music.) Normally non-credit performance extracurriculars (e.g. Xavier's Players, Band, Chorus) can fulfill a discipline requirement. Visual arts requirements can be waived by permission of the arts department head.
  • Computer Science: 3 term credits; alternatively can test out.
  • English - 11 term credits
  • History - 6 term credits; three of which must be U.S. history and three of which must be non-U.S. history.
  • Health & Human Development: 2 term credits.
  • Language - 9 term credits of one language or 5 each of two; alternatively, can test out.
  • Mathematics - 9 term credits
  • Philosophy, Ethics, and Religion: 6 term credits
  • Physical Education: 2 term credits per year; can use a season of athletics as one term of phys. ed. requirement.
  • Science - 6 term credits
  • Social Sciences - 1 term credits
  • Vocational Tech - 1 term credit

Additionally, students must successfully complete sixty hours of community service activities through the course of four years. Faculty advisors are available to help students find appropriate service projects.

Note: The following courses, highlit in red in the course list, are mandatory for all students:

  • English - Expository Writing
  • Health & Human Development - Teen Health Matters (formerly Health & Human Development. Must be taken first term upon enrolling at Xavier's)
  • Health & Human Development - Thriving in Community (formerly Human Sexuality)
  • Philosophy, Ethics & Religion - Bioethics - Humanity in a Post-Genomic Era
  • Philosophy, Ethics & Religion - Power & Social Responsibility
  • Philosophy, Ethics & Religion - The Ethics of Power
  • Phys. Ed - Psionic Self-Defense

Note: Classes marked with an asterisk* can be repeated for credit. Classes without an asterisk may only be taken for credit once. Any classes may always be audited (for no credit) as fits the students' schedule, with permission from the instructor.

Note: Students taking interdisciplinary classes may choose one department to apply their credit to. Credit will not be awarded in multiple disciplines for the same class.

Xavier's Academic Offerings
Department Course Term Length Teacher Class Description Notes
Arts: Music Introductory Theory and Composition* 1 (Fall) Maya
Class Description
This course is designed to give students a vocabulary to further understand and describe the music they will encounter. After beginning the year learning hand-written musical notation, the study of scales, intervals, tonality, harmony, melodic organization, voice leading in two parts, and harmonic dictation ensues. After this study is complete, students will be in a position to knowledgeably describe every aspect of a typical piece of music that they may come across. Ear-training skills are developed through dictation and sight singing. Those taking this course in the fall are encouraged to combine it with Intermediate and Advanced Theory and Composition to form a three-term Advanced Placement Music Theory sequence. Students will begin composing near the end of the term, but it should be noted that most compositional activity will occur in the intermediate & advanced classes.
Arts: Music Intermediate Theory and Composition* 1 (Winter) Maya
Class Description
Continuing from where Introductory Theory & Composition leaves off, this course begins the students’ hands-on compositional development. Small pieces are composed almost nightly as students now begin to demonstrate what they previously learned to recognize and describe. Also in this term, students will compose several larger pieces that will be written for and recorded by classmates. As the term progresses, the chords of Western music are incorporated into their musical vocabulary one by one. Further study in sight singing and ear training help to continue that development. In most years, this term includes a field trip to see the New York Philharmonic in concert.
Arts: Music Advanced Theory and Composition* 1 (Spring) Maya
Class Description
Completing the music theory sequence, the focus for the beginning of this term is on preparation for the AP exam in May. Students study non-dominant seventh chords, applied dominant seventh chords, and musical form before a week of AP prep. After the AP exam, a larger project is decided upon. Past projects have included studying Chopin’s piano preludes, examining poetic meaning in Schubert’s songs, and composing a 3–5 minute work.
Arts: Music Becoming Musical 1 NPC
Class Description
This course examines the elements that are universal in music and develops the practical skills needed to become functioning musicians. Rhythm, pitch, scales, keys, intervals, and triads are the basic material of the course. By studying a variety of both popular and classical styles, students will discover how composers employ the elements of music to create varied moods and expression. The practical skills of ear training, sight-singing, and dictation as well as the notation of music are integrated into the course. The department encourages students to take private lessons along with this course.
Arts: Music The Nature of Music 1 Maya
Class Description
This course offers a basic introduction to music literature, theory, performance, and composition. Music from various cultures and historical periods is examined in an attempt to increase student awareness of the musical languages and practices. Students compose several original compositions, and they also receive instruction on musical instruments. No previous experience in music is required.
Arts: Music Western Music History 1 Maya
Class Description
A one-term survey of Western music history. The course progresses chronologically from classical antiquity to the music of today, exploring along the way the religious, social, historical, and human issues surrounding music and its composition.
Arts: Music World Music 1 Maya
Class Description
In this performing/writing course, we will explore, connect, and engage cultures from different corners of the world through music composition and improvisation. Students will have access to the many traditional instruments owned by the Xavier's Music Department. All participants will share equally in the creative process and an end-of-the-mod performance will highlight the experience.
Arts: Music Popular Music in America 1 Maya
Class Description
What is American popular music? How does the rich variety of American popular music styles reflect trends in American society and the major events of American history? Through a series of readings and recordings, students will trace the history of popular music in America across three extended time spans: 1840-1920 (beginning roughly with Stephen Foster and the advent of minstrelsy through ragtime and early blues forms); 1910-1950 (to include New Orleans jazz, syncopated song and dance music, big band, swing and bop, and Chicago jazz); 1950-1980 (including cool jazz, rock and roll, rhythm and blues, British rock, rock, soul, Latin music, and contemporary jazz). Emphasis will be placed on developing understanding and perception of the musical elements of instrumentation, rhythm, melody, harmony, dynamics, texture and form through study of classic recordings from a wide spectrum of popular artists.
Arts: Music Your Musical Brain 1 NPC
Class Description
What playlists do you create to accompany you through the parts of your day? How does the music we choose shape the personal and communal tapestry of our daily lives? The Musical Brain explores why music matters so much to us as individuals and as a species. Through reading assignments, listening assignments, and classroom activities we’ll explore the rapidly evolving field of inquiry and research in music perception and cognition. Topics will include the science of sound, the biological origins of music, relationships between music and language, and the sources of music’s emotional impact.
Arts: Music Film Scoring 1 NPC
Class Description
In this course, students will study film music primarily through compositional exercises, as well as analysis of films from various genres and time periods. The course will begin with an introduction to a wide variety of compositional styles and techniques employed throughout the history of film, including changes resulting from increased technological resources throughout the 20th century. Students will then compose music for film scenes from different genres, such as drama, horror, romance, and action/adventure. Though this course will primarily focus on music from the 20th century to the present, students also will learn about how certain composers connected music to visual images in classical concert music prior to 1900.
Arts: Music Jazz History 1 NPC
Class Description
This course begins by examining jazz’s mixture of African and European traditions and the subsequent pre-jazz styles of spiritual, blues, and ragtime. It then proceeds with a study of 20th-century jazz styles, beginning with New Orleans and culminating with the multifaceted creations of today’s artists. Along the way the course pays tribute to the work of some of jazz’s most influential innovators, including Louis Armstrong, Duke Ellington, Count Basie, Billie Holiday, Charlie Parker, and Miles Davis. Original recordings, photographs, and videos are used extensively throughout the term.
Arts: Music Songwriting Workshop 1 NPC
Class Description
Popular music plays an important role in our modern culture: it can provide an escape from our daily lives and influence our thoughts and actions. MUS480 will begin by exploring popular songs from artists such as Ryan Black, Lady Gaga, Miranda Lambert and Rihanna as well as those of other artists from Motown to the present day. We will study songs from a variety of genres—including jazz, blues, rock, R&B, folk, and country western—as a way of building a foundational understanding of popular music. In addition to frequent songwriting exercises, students will create three original songs in the genre of their choice with particular focus on the musical attributes needed to support both the genre and the specific topic of each song. Students interested in all musical genres are welcome; however, it is expected that all students will be capable and willing to perform at a basic level using their own voice and/or an instrument and/or technology.
Arts: Music Modern Music Making* 1 NPC
Class Description
This course is a workshop for students interested in making modern styles of music, primarily through technology. Students will develop their technique, their aesthetic and their ears by working on multiple collaborative and independent projects across a spectrum of musical genres including (but not limited to) pop, hip-hop, EDM, ambient and experimental. There will also be opportunities for live performances, cross-disciplinary collaboration and student-initiated projects. The in-class studio environment will be one of creativity, curiosity and collaboration as students work both together and alongside each other in pursuit of their musical goals.
Arts: Music Music Recording and Mixing* 1 NPC
Class Description
This course will give students hands-on instruction in the craft of recording and mixing music across multiple genres. Through focused discussion, experiential recording and in-depth mixing projects, students will learn the following: foundations of acoustics; aspects of digital recording using a DAW; microphone techniques in a variety of musical circumstances; design and implementation of signal chains in a multi-track environment; proper gain staging techniques; effective use of effects and signal processing; mixing best practices; and the interpersonal nuances of recording. Mixing projects will utilize audio recorded by the class, recordings made at on-campus music events, and stems from professionally recorded studio sessions.
Arts: Music Band* Variable NPC
Band provides students an opportunity to begin and continue instrumental development. Students new to string instruments must take the fall term course "Introduction to Orchestra" before auditioning for placement in an appropriate level of rehearsal: Concert (beginners and intermediate repertoire) and Symphonic (intermediate and advanced repertoire). Percussion Ensemble runs when there are sufficient percussion students and will combine with the other courses for recitals. Additional rehearsals and performances may be required. Participation in this course may count as an "Arts: Performance" credit 'instead' of "Arts: Music" credit for spring term only if the student performs in the year-end combined concert and demonstrates sufficient independent rehearsal commitments. No more than two credits can be exchanged in this manner.
Arts: Music Orchestra* Variable NPC
Orchestra provides students an opportunity to begin and continue instrumental development. Students new to string instruments must take the fall term course "Introduction to Instrumental Music" before auditioning for placement in an appropriate level of rehearsal: String (beginners and intermediate repertoire), Philharmonic (intermediate repertoire), and Symphony (advanced repertoire). Additional rehearsals and performances may be required. Participation in this course may count as an "Arts: Performance" credit 'instead' of "Arts: Music" credit for spring term only if the student performs in the year-end combined concert and demonstrates sufficient independent rehearsal commitments. No more than two credits can be exchanged in this manner.
Arts: Music Chorus* Variable NPC
Chorus provides students an opportunity to begin and continue vocal development. Students new to choral singing must take the fall term course "Introduction to Reading Music" as well as audition for placement in an appropriate level of rehearsal: Treble Choir (beginners and intermediate repertoire, women's voices only), Tenor/Bass (beginners and intermediate repertoire, mens's voices only, does not run all years), and Concert (advanced repertoire, mixed voices). Additional rehearsals and performances may be required. Participation in this course may count as an "Arts: Performance" credit 'instead' of "Arts: Music" credit for spring term only if the student performs in the year-end combined concert and demonstrates sufficient independent rehearsal commitments. No more than two credits can be exchanged in this manner.
Instructor engages in blatant favoritism, both among classes and within classes. Students who can sight sing are often appointed section leader with no other qualifications. Consistently assigns more rep than can be reasonably learned and memorized, and drops selections within the week of the final concert.
Arts: Music Jazz Ensemble* 1 NPC (instruments) & NPC (vocalists)
This audition-only course is for those students interested in pursuing the study and performance of jazz/popular music. Instrumentalists and vocalists will rehearse separately to master jazz techniques before coming together to work on group improvisation and performance. Participation in this course may count as an "Arts: Performance" credit 'instead' of "Arts: Music" credit for spring term only if the student performs in the winter term performance and demonstrates sufficient independent rehearsal commitments. No more than two credits can be exchanged in this manner.
Instructor engages in blatant favoritism, both among classes and within classes. Students who can sight sing are often appointed section leader with no other qualifications. Consistently assigns more rep than can be reasonably learned and memorized, and drops selections within the week of the final concert.
Arts: Performance Beginning Dance Technique* 1 NPC
Class Description
Dance Technique focuses on modern and contemporary vocabularies that enhance the artistic and physical prowess of the dancer. Students are placed in appropriate levels of beginning, intermediate, or advanced depending on their level of training. All three levels explore the same content of technique training but at different accelerated paces. Classes are designed to introduce the technical study of dance movement to students of levels beginning through advanced. The style and technique explored is determined by the individual instructor and the dance chair. Students new to the school who desire to be placed in the intermediate or advanced level must receive the permission of the Dance Department chair.
Arts: Performance Intermediate Dance Technique* 1 NPC
Class Description
Dance Technique focuses on modern and contemporary vocabularies that enhance the artistic and physical prowess of the dancer. Students are placed in appropriate levels of beginning, intermediate, or advanced depending on their level of training. All three levels explore the same content of technique training but at different accelerated paces. Classes are designed to introduce the technical study of dance movement to students of levels beginning through advanced. The style and technique explored is determined by the individual instructor and the dance chair. Students new to the school who desire to be placed in the intermediate or advanced level must receive the permission of the Dance Department chair.
Arts: Performance Advanced Dance Technique* 1 NPC
Class Description
Dance Technique focuses on modern and contemporary vocabularies that enhance the artistic and physical prowess of the dancer. Students are placed in appropriate levels of beginning, intermediate, or advanced depending on their level of training. All three levels explore the same content of technique training but at different accelerated paces. Classes are designed to introduce the technical study of dance movement to students of levels beginning through advanced. The style and technique explored is determined by the individual instructor and the dance chair. Students new to the school who desire to be placed in the intermediate or advanced level must receive the permission of the Dance Department chair.
Arts: Performance Dance 1 NPC
Class Description
All peoples and cultures dance. This course investigates why we dance as a representation of culture, as a form of communication and expression, and as a way of understanding our world. Students will look at various forms of dance generally and then delve more specifically into works of art that shape American concert and pop culture dance. Students will watch and analyze dance, research dance pioneers, and learn examples of significant and pivotal choreography. The class will learn about and do various forms of dance and will culminate with students using techniques and theories learned to develop their own composition. No prior dance experience needed.
Arts: Performance Introduction to Dance* 1 NPC
Class Description
This course introduces students to four primary disciplines: ballet, modern, jazz and hip-hop. Basic composition and improvisation skills will be introduced. Little or no previous dance training required.
Arts: Performance Intermediate Dance* 1 NPC
Class Description
This course focuses on Western concert dance disciplines: ballet, modern and jazz. Composition and improvisation skills will be developed. Previous dance training, which must include ballet, is required.
Arts: Performance Advanced Dance* 1 NPC
Class Description

This accelerated course provides advanced dancers with intensive training in concert dance disciplines (ballet, modern, contemporary and jazz). Classes will consist of a warmup, technique and complex choreographed phrases, along with composition and improvisation. Prerequisite: instructor permission. Extensive dance training, which must

include ballet, is required.
Arts: Performance Introduction to Street Styles* 1 NPC
Class Description
This course introduces students to the culture of hip-hop and a variety of street dance styles under the hip-hop umbrella. Disciplines may include party/social dances, breaking, house, vogue and waacking. Classes will consist of a warmup, historical context, technique and some choreography.
Arts: Performance West African Dance* 1 NPC
Class Description
The content of this course gives an introduction to basic West African movement, rhythms, and songs. Each class begins with a warm-up to prepare the body for this particular style of movement, followed by movements across the floor, and finally work on specific dances. Students will learn several dances from West Africa, primarily from Nigeria, Mali, Guinea, and the Senegambia regions. Classes are accompanied by live drumming, giving the students the opportunity to understand the unique connection between polyrhythmic timing and the body in motion. While the class focuses on the dances of West Africa it is also a means for understanding the culture of the people.
Arts: Performance Moving Your Way 1 NPC
Class Description
This course is a creative movement class designed to introduce the novice dancer to dance in a comfortable learning environment while allowing the experienced dancer to further develop their choreographic tool box. Both novice and experienced dancers will explore and develop creative thinking skills, useful to the learning process. We will look at the different impetus of motion that can be initiated by the stimulus of sound and imagery, as well as external energy forces outside of the kinesthetic realm of the body. The course relies heavily on improvisation as a primary tool for finding one’s own authentic movement quality and is structured to liberate the way we move through space and communicate with each other by freeing up habitual patterns that may be restricting our unconscious and kinesthetic flow of energy.
Arts: Performance Introduction to the Theatre 1 NPC
Class Description
Why do we make live performances? What does it take to create a production? This course explores the foundations of theatre and dance. How the different elements of directing, costume design, scenic design, lighting design, dancing, and acting—combine to create a unified production for an audience. In the process, students will learn the vocabulary of the stage and develop a conceptual framework for creating a performance.
Arts: Performance Fundamentals of Acting* 1 NPC
Class Description
This course is designed for students with little or no acting experience. By doing exercises in movement and voice production, reading, improvisation, and scenes, a student who is curious about the theatre may determine whether he or she has ability or interest in acting while learning something of the process of characterization — the major responsibility of the actor. The emphasis is on the variety of acting experiences rather than on a polished final product.
Arts: Performance Intermediate Acting* 1 NPC
Class Description
This intermediate course focuses on developing and supporting each actor’s unique approaches to performance making and ensemble-building. Vocal and physical training deepens techniques introduced in THR202, empowering students to explore a diverse selection of dramatic texts and develop skills in improvisation and devising. Students may work with “heightened” texts or improvisations that present new challenges in terms of language, physicality, characterization, style or content. Students rehearse, workshop and perform material for each other, becoming increasingly adept at communicating and synthesizing creative ideas.
Arts: Performance Advanced Acting* 1 NPC
Class Description
This course offers students the opportunity to build on performance skills acquired throughout their Xavier's career and immerse themselves in a rigorous, thoughtful ensemble process. The class will conduct intensive analysis and rehearsal of either the work of a playwright or devise new performance material together based on the interest of the group. It may culminate in a series of fully explored scenes or in a full-length production.
Arts: Performance Choreography* 1 NPC
Class Description
This course investigates choreographing dances in a variety of genres and styles for the stage. Students will be led through explorations and formal exercises to learn how to generate and manipulate movement in clear and innovative fashions. Coursework will culminate in a final presentation of original compositions. Students will also examine and analyze works of professional choreographers to gain a deeper understanding of dance elements and choreographic tools. Ultimately, students will deepen their understanding of movement as a form of communication and expression.
Arts: Performance Directing* 1 NPC
Class Description
This course offers the essential theory and practice of stage direction, with particular emphasis on the leadership skills needed to create a constructive ensemble rehearsal environment. Beginning with a series of independent exercises aimed at honing the director’s aesthetic sensibilities and style, the course then invites students to select and direct a short play of their choosing. Students proceed step by step through the entire production process: from play selection, script analysis and casting to the detailed work of a rehearsal period. Along the way, students develop skills in the areas of composition and use of space, picturization, textual interpretation, and collaboration and communication with actors. All plays receive a public performance at the end of the term.
Arts: Performance Lighting 1 NPC
Class Description
This course introduces the fundamentals of lighting design for theatrical and dance productions. Students will learn to use a design concept to make choices about how to express the theme and mood of a play or dance to enhance the storytelling of a production. The course will also enable students to work hands-on with lighting equipment in Theatre and Dance Department spaces as they learn how to manipulate the controllable properties of light: direction, intensity, color, pattern, movement, diffusion, and composition. The course places a heavy emphasis on self and peer critique of work and on revising work.
Arts: Performance Set Design 1 NPC
Class Description
This course introduces students to the design process and elements that inform the scenic designer’s choices when designing for theatrical performances. Focus will be on the use of a conceptual approach to design scenery that coveys the themes and mood of a script and creates a cohesive and effective design for a show. To create designs, the class will use several creative tools, including computer drafting software and the resources of the makerspace. The design process will include several steps, such as written concept statements, visual research, sketching/drafting and model making. The course places a heavy emphasis on self and peer critique of work and on revising work.
Arts: Performance Public Speaking 1 NPC
Class Description
This course offers opportunities to practice speaking in community. Students experiment with writing, preparing and delivering effective and engaging speeches. While investigating communication strategies, students also explore somatic exercises to deepen their own physical and vocal awareness, and manage the anxiety that often accompanies public speaking. We emphasize attention to the dynamic relationship between speaker and audience, and students take an active role in each other’s growth. Students offer one another constructive feedback and gain greater insight into their own public speaking goals. The encouraging and supportive environment fosters greater self-confidence while developing both empathy and leadership skills.
Arts: Performance The Art of Comedy 1 NPC
Class Description
Come discover elements of Comedic theatre. Among other things we will explore stand‑up, slapstick and sketch comedy through radio, movies, theatre, performance and street artists. We will ask what humour really means to humanity and where its edges might be. What can we do with fear, excitement, posture, breath, props, light, and sound? During the class you will create a repertory for yourself. No theatre experience required, just a willingness to have deep fun.
Arts: Performance Filmmaking 1 NPC
Class Description
This course provides practical experience in basic cinematography without dialogue. Using digital video equipment, students learn about the history of filmmaking as well as the use of the camera and editing techniques to create their own short films. Student, amateur and professional film sequences are discussed and analyzed.
Arts: Visual Drawing 1: Methods & Materials* 1 Jax
Class Description
Drawing is fundamentally about learning how to see and how to translate that vision onto paper through a variety of mark-making techniques. Through in-class exercises and formal assignments, students learn the language of drawing and develop skills relating to contour, gesture, and fully rendered compositions. Course concepts include the depiction of three-dimensional form on a two-dimensional plane, use of light and dark contrast, and sighting. Assignments are designed to develop students’ skills in drawing representationally from direct observation and to encourage creative and expressive thinking.
Arts: Visual Painting 1: Paint, Palette, and Process* 1 Jax
Class Description
Develop skills with the basic elements of painting in acrylics as you explore different approaches to generate ideas for paintings. Learn how dots become complex abstract compositions or how the game of Pictionary prompts surreal spaces. Working from both the imagination and observation, specific projects are assigned to facilitate the study of fundamental paint handling, color mixing, and blending. Issues of form and space relationships, composition, and development of ideas are addressed in balance with the student’s desire for self-expression. Class critiques and visits to the Metropolitan Museum of Art complement the actual painting process.
Arts: Visual Advanced Drawing, Painting, and Mixed Media* 1 Jax
Class Description
This course builds on the knowledge and skills developed in Drawing I and/or Painting I, while helping students find and express their artistic voice through one medium or a combination of 2D media. This class focuses on thematic subjects and continues to stress the development of concepts and skills. Using painting or drawing, students can create artworks from both the imagination and observation to broaden their definition of what painting or drawing can be. For those students interested in mixed media, they can combine traditional or experimental drawing or painting methods with collage and other techniques. During this course, students are encouraged to design their own projects and to build a portfolio of their artworks. Critiques and virtual visits to the Metropolitan Museum of Art are important components of this course.
Arts: Visual Life Drawing* 1 Jax
Class Description
Drawing realistically has been a revered art ever since the ancients used mark-making to create the illusion of depth on a two-dimensional surface. This course is designed for beginners who want to learn the basics of drawing from life. Students will develop their representational drawing skills using a variety of charcoal media. As the course progresses, students will draw from still life, photographic references, and finally live models. Through a series of demonstrations, in-class drawing, group critiques, and individual assistance from the instructor, students will develop their ability to draw convincingly from life. Focus topics include composition, proportion, value relationships, edge relationships, modeling, materials, and stylization. In-class drawing exercises and assignments will focus on subjects exposed to one-source lighting and will vary in length from quick studies to more developed compositions.
Arts: Visual Advanced Studio Art: Portfolio Intensive* 3 Jax & NPCs
Class Description
This course provides experienced students a rich opportunity to pursue the successful completion of a professional portfolio of artwork featured in an end-of-term thesis exhibition in the Half Gallery in New York City, team-curated by the class with a contemporary favor. The meaningful study of 21st-century visual culture is infused in the course through visiting artists and the investigation of artists relevant to ongoing studio work in all mediums. Students focus on photography, printmaking, painting, drawing, ceramics and 3-D design. This multimedia studio course requires strong self-direction, a unique studio investment and creative motivation. Students focus on a particular art medium and create multiple works that explore a concept or idea. Under the guidance of the instructor, students will set qualitative and quantitative goals for the term in their chosen studio concentration. Weekly process critiques are an integral part of the course and support ongoing artistic growth. In addition, the instructors meet individually with students for more-specific feedback and to mentor the process. Useful feedback is given to students from Art Department faculty who specialize in their chosen studio discipline to help them develop ideas and offer suggestions. Students may also receive guidance in the development of an art portfolio suitable for college admission criteria.
Arts: Visual Graphic Design* 1 NPC
Class Description
Design shapes how we see and experience information. Those who visually communicate through design have the opportunity to shape the meaning of the images we consume. This course not only addresses the formal, sensory, conceptual, and technical aspects of design, it also encourages students to consider the ethics and design history that have shaped our contemporary visual experiences. Students will use design thinking principles and real-world scenarios to create pieces that will be shared with their communities.
Arts: Visual Graphic Design II* 1 NPC
Class Description
This course is divided into two parts: practical design application and personal projects. We will begin the course by examining the practices of designers working in today’s market. This includes engaging with visiting designers and illustrators and creating work for a real client. Part two of this class is dedicated to exploring one’s emerging design aesthetic using a breadth of digital media. Students pitch and create their personal projects, which can range from branding to book illustrations.
Arts: Visual Architecture I 1 NPC
Class Description
This course will introduce the basic principles of architectural design through a sequence of related projects in drawing, site analysis, and research into precedent, culminating in the design of a space or structure. The design projects will change from Term 1 to Term 3 and will address architectural design in different contexts so that a student wishing to continue with architecture at the advanced level can work with a variety of design issues. With hands-on sketches, drawings, and models, students will explore the issues of a well-planned structure and learn to see the environment in terms of human scale, materials, and the organization of space. Class time will include discussions and demonstrations as well as studio time. There will be a required evening lab. Students often find that this class requires more than the usual amount of homework time.
Arts: Visual Architecture II* 1 NPC
Class Description
Designed as a continuation of Architecture I for students who wish to develop and further expand their ideas. The sequence of projects throughout the term is designed to allow a student to study a range of architectural issues by addressing different contexts—a natural setting and an urban context. This course also will offer the possibility of developing a multidisciplinary project in coordination with work in another class.
Arts: Visual Photography I: Appreciating Light, Color, and Theme* 1 NPC
Class Description
This course allows students to channel their excitement and passion for photography into a more intentional and sophisticated image-making process. Using digital cameras, students will gain a highly functional understanding of essential camera skills and photographic principles and learn to maintain proper exposure, focus, and creative control over the camera. Students will acquire skills in the digital studio including digital workfow management; online portfolio maintenance; Photoshop techniques and inkjet printing methods. Students will also develop their critique skills, learn to frame and present their work in a gallery, and practice writing artist statements. Each exploration challenges students to think conceptually, to shoot creatively, to develop an eye for strong composition and quality of light, and to make images that start conversations. Throughout the term, student photographers develop a vibrant online portfolio based on a series of thematic photo explorations, including identity-based portraiture, abstract, minimalism and Photoshop layers.
Arts: Visual Photography II: Beyond the Camera* 1 NPC
Class Description
Advanced Photography is designed to challenge students to go beyond technical skills and photographic principles to establish a conceptually strong personal photographic style and artistic voice. Through hands-on practice, in-depth critique and weekly assignments, students will develop a refined, concept-driven, professional online portfolio. In-studio learning exercises will continue to challenge students to build their digital camera skills, while out-of-studio assignments will become increasingly more in-depth and creatively challenging. A range of tools will be used including Photoshop, inkjet printers, and an array of studio lighting equipment. Students will produce original work, with special attention to ways in which their technical and aesthetic decisions can clarify their artistic intentions. Photoshop and iMovie are used to explore creative and experimental possibilities for enhancing and manipulating digital photos and video. The course culminates with a self-directed final project, allowing students to practice proposal writing, project development and final presentation, while pursuing work rooted in their own interests and experiences.
Arts: Visual Film Photography* 1 NPC
Class Description
This course in analog photography concentrates on the use of 35mm cameras and chemical processing. Students are instructed in proper camera use, basic film exposure, and darkroom familiarity. Weekly meetings are divided into lab and classroom sessions. In the lab, students learn the fundamental tools and techniques of a traditional darkroom; in the classroom, students present their work to gain a fuller understanding of photography as a medium of expression and storytelling. Students can expect to examine the invention of photography and the “flaneur” tradition of 35mm photography as exemplified in the work of artists such as Henri Cartier-Bresson, Helen Levitt, Robert Frank, and many more. Film cameras will be provided for students to explore light-sensitive silver materials. Laboratory instruction in printing fine art images with variable contrast filters will be provided.
Arts: Visual Ceramics I: Form & Function* 1 NPC
Class Description
The Xavier's Clay Studio introduces students to methods used to create unique sculpture and tableware. Developing their creative concepts, students will throw on the potter’s wheel, hand build forms, and create a series of pieces over the course of the term, which may include objects such as plates, cups, bowls, teapots and sculpture. Drawing inspiration from contemporary ceramic artists, the class will explore a variety of techniques for surface design, glazing and fring. The teacher will offer innovative and sophisticated approaches that will provide further opportunity for experimentation.
Arts: Visual Ceramics II: Molding Meaning* 1 NPC
Class Description
This advanced course offers a combination of assigned and self-directed projects with a further investigation of working with clay. Building of of skills gained in Ceramics I, students develop a more sophisticated approach to methods and techniques that are used to create forms with clay. Projects such as throwing, hand building, modeling and industrial slip casting will foster individual style and creativity. Students will focus on process and exploration of a broad range of contemporary clay works, functional, industrial and sculptural. Examples of contemporary artists’ pottery and sculpture are used as inspiration for studio assignments. Advanced Ceramics also offers the unique opportunity to study the science and chemistry behind glazing and firing.
Arts: Visual Printmaking I: Pop Culture* 1 NPC
Class Description
The printmaking course is a comprehensive studio experience that emphasizes experimentation and creativity while providing a strong technical basis. Students explore a variety of print processes, including screen printing, block carving, and monotype and letterpress printing. Using surfaces such as linoleum, woodblocks and silk screens, combined with a wide variety of carving tools and inks, students will create a substantial print portfolio that explores such concepts as image reversal, multiplicity, color theory, commercial applications and graphic design. Inspiration for projects includes fonts, portraits, still-life objects, photographs, media references and works by artists of the past and present. Inventive approaches, including T-shirt printing, will also be explored. Film clips and the examination of contemporary printmakers will enrich studio work.
Arts: Visual Environmental Sculpture 1 NPC
Class Description
The course provides an opportunity to work and think about art on a large scale. Students create scale models of potential larger works that might require months to actually construct. They work outdoors on projects using simple "green" materials to create large pieces that are both objects and activate the space around them. Students are given a variety of prompts and requirements to address when creating their sculptures. For example, themes have been based on ideas about safety vs. danger and transitions. Students in the class are, sometimes for the first time, sawing and hauling logs, hefting rocks, digging holes and generally breaking a sweat to create their visions.
Arts: Visual Wearable Art 1 NPC
Class Description
In this course, students make art that can be worn on the body. Students use traditional jewelry making and sewing materials but also work with non-traditional materials, with a strong focus on concepts and the transformation of materials.
Arts: Visual The Moving Image 1 NPC
Class Description
Video art has been described as the “electronic canvas.” In this course, students will learn to use the moving image as an artwork unto itself. Students will be exposed to video art’s unique history, as well as the video art pioneers and contemporaries who have created work outside the traditions of the narrative and documentary. We will explore the technical aspects of video, including using the camera, the software, and the moving image in both traditional and experimental ways. Editing will be done using the digital process of Final Cut Pro, but students may also explore other methods of creating moving images. How, where, and when to present work will also be explored.
Arts: Visual Drawing: Otherness & Social Justice 1 Jax & NPCs
Class Description
In this class, students explore drawing using text as primary imagery. Students learn about design and text-based drawing strategies to explore human rights while developing a body of drawings addressing their study. The course is designed to provide students with opportunities to explore fundamental human rights and varying Western/non-Western viewpoints and perspectives through the exploration of art as a vehicle to promote and encourage social change. The course explores the history of political art blending both critique and debate learning opportunities with studio art practices.
Computer Science Digital Literacy 1 NPC
Class Description
In this introductory course, students become familiar with the basic principles of a personal computer, including the internal hardware, operating system, and software applications. Students gain practice in using key applications such as word processing, spreadsheet, and presentation software, as well as understand literacy issues around the Internet, information, and security, including how to navigate sorting trustworthy sources from unreliable ones online.
Computer Science Computing and Society 1 NPC
Class Description
This course introduces students to algorithms and algorithmic thinking through the lens of social and public policy. Students explore the impact of algorithms and software on privacy, censorship and other sometimes contentious matters in the modern world. Students will learn programming as a tool for exploring these concepts.
Computer Science Fundamentals of Computer Science 2 NPC
Class Description
This course begins with an introduction to computational thinking, potentially including programming in a block-based language such as Scratch, and then moves to programming in Python, JavaScript, Processing, or another text-based programming language. Students will learn about variables, functions, conditional statements (if-else), and iterations (loops), and will design and code their own programming projects. The course may include additional units such as programming Finch robots or performing introductory data analysis using SQL.
Computer Science Algorithms and Data Structures 2 NPC
Class Description
This course examines classic data structures: lists, queues, stacks, binary trees and graphs, and hash tables. Standard algorithms for sorting and searching will be studied, and complexity analysis performed using big-oh notation. Students also develop a deeper understanding of software engineering principles as the course emphasizes reuse and generic programming.
Computer Science Mobile App Development 2 NPC
Class Description
Within this course, we will explore mobile spaces by developing applications for one or more of the presently available platforms (Android, IOS, etc.). Students will explore development topics specific to mobile applications, device operations and user interaction. Throughout the term, sound software design and engineering practices in encapsulation and modularization will be emphasized.
Computer Science Introduction to Artificial Intelligence 2 NPC
Class Description
The Introduction to Artificial Intelligence (AI) course teaches students important programming concepts that enable the use of AI in computer science and society at large. Students learn the implications of AI on society and develop a series of projects that illustrate the variety of ways AI can be used to optimize and predict information. Students learn how AI has been used in gaming and other applications, create an unbeatable computer Tic Tac Toe player; learn how chatbots are developed to interact with humans and create an informational chatbot of their own; learn how to make predictive models using linear and logistical regression and clustering, and create their own predictive models using complex data sets.
Computer Science AP Computer Science 3 NPC
Class Description
Three-term course in algorithms, object-oriented programming, and data structures, guided by the College Board’s AP Computer Science course description. The course covers Java language syntax and style, classes and interfaces, conditional and iterative

statements, strings and arrays, Object-Oriented Programming (OOP), searching and sorting algorithms, recursion, data structures, and the design

and implementation of larger programs, including group projects.
English Expository Writing 1 NPC
Class Description
Participants learn how to read challenging texts and how to think and write about them clearly and coherently. Readings for the course are taken from various disciplines, such as literature, journalism, and social sciences. The course enables students to identify the strengths and weaknesses in their writing and to improve their skills through individual and group work, discussions, revisions, in-class exercises, and homework. We read and analyze works that exemplify good writing, and we learn how to define a thesis, organize an essay, and incorporate appropriate vocabulary.
English AP English Language & Composition 3 NPC
Class Description
Learn about the elements of argument and composition as you develop your critical-reading and writing skills. Students read and analyze nonfiction works from various periods and write essays with different aims: for example, to explain an idea, argue a point, or persuade your reader of something. Material is guided by the College Board's AP English Language curriculum.
English AP English Literature & Composition 3 NPC
Class Description
Learn how to understand and evaluate works of fiction, poetry, and drama from various periods and cultures. You’ll read literary works and write essays to explain and support your analysis of them. Material is guided by the College Board's AP English Literature curriculum.
English American Immigrant Literature 1 NPC
Class Description
What does it mean to be an immigrant in the U.S.? What do individuals experience when they move from one country and settle in another? What do these immigrants gain in the process, and what do they lose? How do they deal with being “the other?” How do immigrants connect or disconnect with their American- born children? Students explore all these questions and more by analyzing short fiction and films by American immigrants. Throughout the mod, students read and respond to text on a nightly basis, gaining a better understanding of how difficult assimilation can often be for immigrants in their new abode. Students come ‘up close and personal’ with immigrant issues by interviewing an immigrant of their choice and writing up their interview in a People magazine manner. The course culminates with a final project which ties all the readings together thematically in a creative and artistic way, addressing the essential question: what is the immigrant experience?
English Creative Nonfiction 1 NPC
Class Description
“The essay isn’t a retreat from the world but a way of encountering it,” writes Leslie Jamison in Best American Essays 2017. Throughout the term, we will explore the art of telling stories — ours and those of others — and learn how to translate personal experience and research into effective pieces of creative nonfiction. We will read and listen to essays on a range of topics: health care, bird watching, immigration, craft beer, hunting and Serena Williams (to name a few). Forms will vary from traditional to more contemporary and innovative — memoir, lyric essay, braided essay, graphic essay, podcast and video essay. We will discuss them as readers (digesting content) and as writers (analyzing form). Students will craft original pieces of creative nonfiction, experimenting with a variety of compositional elements and techniques. The writing process will be workshop-oriented: Students will receive peer and instructor feedback, work through multiple drafts and build a supportive writing community.
English Creative Writing: Poetry 1 NPC
Class Description
“Poetry,” wrote Robert Frost, “is a way of taking life by the throat.” From its origins in oral tradition and tribal lore, as well as its role in incantatory spiritual practice, poetry has carried in its rhythms the deep longings of humanity. In this course, students will dip into this current, writing poems with a view to aspects of craft modeled by poets in a diverse range of voices and writing traditions. In our workshops of one another’s poems, we will consider the relationship between content and form, as well as what differentiates poetry from other writing genres. Through experiments in received forms (traditional forms such as the sonnet and sestina), as well as more contemporary approaches (for example, writing in free verse or in prose poems), students will move toward the development of a distinctive voice and style.
English Creative Writing: Short Fiction 1 NPC
Class Description
This writing-intensive course invites students to explore fiction as both readers and writers. The short stories and novels read in class will serve as models for students to create their own fictional work, introducing them to the craft and mechanics of fiction and storytelling. This course traditionally offers an MFA-style workshop model, providing students an opportunity to both receive and offer constructive feedback, and to revise their work using this input. Assignments may include two or three short stories and an analytical essay over the course of the term.
English Under the Fur: Animals in Literature 1 NPC
Class Description
According to thinker Gilles Deleuze, anyone who likes cats or dogs is a fool. But we live in a time when more than one cable television channel is entirely dedicated to animal programming, when whole weeks are given to sharks, and when people carry their dogs as an accessory. It seems we are not concerned about becoming fools for species not our own. This course explores both how animals and animal lives are represented in narrative and how the presence of animals allows us to understand in new ways how narrative and language function. For this reason, we will dip into several genres, disciplines, and media: memoirs, novels, short stories, poems, philosophical essays, critical theory, internet videos, lectures, and films. We will be asked by these works to question what it means to represent animals but also what it means to represent at all. How can representation be ethical? How can it respond to and provoke wider political, theoretical, and philosophical debate? How should we and can we care for the nonhuman world? What are the dangers, boundaries, and rewards of cross-species sympathy?
English African Literature 1 NPC
Class Description
This seminar course will challenge students to take a closer look at African literature by tracing its evolution and discussing its diversity in terms of genre and geographical setting. Class discussions, written assignments, blog postings, and oral presentations will be based on the texts and films recommended for the course. Students will pay particular attention to how literary works produced on the continent have over the ages represented the African identity and how this has been perceived in other parts of the world. Possible texts: The Thing Around Your Neck by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie (Nigeria, West Africa); Betrayal in the City by Francis Imbuga (Kenya, East Africa); A Walk in the Night by Alex La Guma (Republic of S.A., South Africa); Miramar by Naguib Mahfouz (Egypt, North Africa); The Penguin Book of Modern African Poetry, edited by Chikane & Moore (continent-wide). A selection of films and articles will complement the study of these texts.
English The Art of Protest: Revolutionary Writings 1 NPC
Class Description
This course examines protest as a form of literary activism. From the grittiness of hip-hop lyrics to the density of civil disobedience tracts, this class will seek to explore distinct genres of vocalizing dissent. The approach is multicultural and interdisciplinary, and it seeks to inspect the role of literature, art, music and film in galvanizing communities and creating spaces to examine social justice. Students will be asked to write in various protest genres (poetry, epistolary witness, monologue and fiction) to compile a portfolio of their own literary activism.
English Utopias and Dystopias in Literature 1 NPC
Class Description
Fantastic societies have held a fascination for writers from Thomas More to the present day. Utopia, “no place,” represents an idealized society whose inhabitants willingly embrace its difference from our own world. Dystopic visions are the disturbing fip side of this coin. Both genres inevitably cause readers to draw parallels between their own experiences and those of the protagonists. Scientific and technological advances are often at the root of the utopic/dystopic discourse, and one of the main functions of this course is to explore the presentation of technology as narrative. The course seeks to examine some of these alternate worlds to explore the way writers of fiction and filmmakers have presented the effect of projected changes and developments on the fabric of society. We will build our visionary galaxy from the following: Thomas More, Aldous Huxley, George Orwell, Margaret Atwood, Cormac McCarthy, Alfonso Cuarón, Octavia Butler, and other contemporary writers and filmmakers. Students will write analytical and creative essays.
English Theories of Children's Literature 1 NPC-Marlene Zudke
Class Description
This course considers the role of the imagination in communicating and effecting cultural change. Students will be asked to apply a variety of critical theory for interpretation and discussion of the literature. Themes explored by this course will include alternative realities, the nature of dreams, the function of the subconscious, and the use of allegory. Probable selections include The Adventures of Alice in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass, by Lewis Carroll; Haroun and the Sea of Stories, by Salman Rushdie; The Wind in the Willows, by Kenneth Grahame; The Jungle Book, by Rudyard Kipling; The Wizard of Oz, by L. Frank Baum; The Pied Piper of Hamelin, by Robert Browning; The Secret Garden, by Frances Hodgson Burnett; A Child’s Garden of Verses, by Robert Louis Stevenson; The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe and The Last Battle, by C.S. Lewis; and Grimm’s Fairy Tales, Mother Goose, writings by Carlos Castaneda, and essays by Bettelheim and Zipes. Possible films include The Red Balloon and The Point.
This class sounds cute and easy and has a reputation for actually being extremely intense and challenging; the teacher is particularly demanding in expecting students to analyze works & engage in class & homework.
English Gothic Literature: Living in the Tomb 1 NPC
Class Description
This course traces trends in Gothic forms, from their origins in the damp and dark castles of Europe to the aridity of the contemporary American landscape. Students will identify gothic conventions and themes such as the haunted house, family dynamics, apparitions, entrapment, secrecy, and the sublime. They also will read novels, short stories, and poetry spanning roughly 200 years in order to explore questions about the supernatural, the psychology of horror and terror, the significance of fantasy and fear, the desire for moral closure, and the roles of gender, race, class, and sexuality. Probable selections include The Castle of Otranto, by Horace Walpole; Faustus, by Christopher Marlowe; Rebecca, by Daphne du Maurier; Dracula, by Bram Stoker; The Turn of the Screw, by Henry James; stories by Poe, Faulkner, Gaskell, Irving, Hawthorne, Gilman, Jackson, Cheever, DeLillo, Carver, and Oates; and poetry by Christina Rossetti, Thomas Gray, William Cowper, Louise Glück, and Sylvia Plath. Possible films include Affliction, The Royal Tenenbaums, A Simple Plan, Psycho, and The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari.
English Contemporary Native American Literature 1 NPC
Class Description
What does it mean to be a Native American writer in the 21st century? In this course, students will explore life on and off the Native American reservation in works produced by writers from a wide variety of indigenous communities in the United States. The course will involve navigating issues/topics a propos to Native American studies, such as colonialism and genocide, cultural survival, and political and environmental activism. Possible writers to be studied: Luci Tapahonso, Evelina Zuni Lucero, Sherman Alexie, Paula Gunn Allen, Leslie Marmon Silko, Ramson Lomatewama, Simon Ortiz, nila northSun, Joy Harjo, Gerald Vizenor, Louise Erdrich, Diane Glancy, Winona LaDuke, Anton Treur, Wendy Rose, and Linda Hogan.
English Inheritance, Exile, and the Jewish Literacy imagination. 1 NPC
Class Description
Primo Levi’s short story “Quaestio de Centauris” describes a centaur living in exile from others like him in the human world. In her discussion of this story for a series in The New Yorker, Jhumpa Lahiri describes Levi’s time in Auschwitz as “the most brutal form of exile” and later quotes Levi on the subject from The Truce when he writes: “This is the most immediate fruit of exile, of uprooting: the prevalence of the unreal over the real.” The imaginative worlds of writers are necessarily infuenced by their lived personal and inherited cultural experiences. In this class, we will consider the ways in which history, exile and intergenerational inheritance shape the artistic worlds Jewish writers create. While the readings in this course will focus on a particular literary tradition, the course is relevant and welcoming to students of all cultural backgrounds. Writing assignments will ask students to reflect on their own lives and heritage, and the ways that history, culture and diaspora hold meaning for them as community members, individuals, thinkers and artists. Assignments will range from the personal (poem, essay, short story, visual work) to the collaborative (interview, documentary, ekphrasis, collage), inviting students to consider the forces that infuence their own imaginations. Readings will include fiction by Clarice Lispector, Primo Levi, Grace Paley, Franz Kafka and Courtney Sender; poetry by Anthony Hecht, Adrienne Rich and Joseph Brodsky; and criticism by Walter Benjamin, Svetlana Boym and others. The course will include visiting lecturers from within and outside of the Xavier's community.
English Blood Roots: Horror Literature and its History 1 NPC
Class Description
Author Carmen Maria Machado writes that, “Horror is an intimate, eerie, terrifying thing, and when it’s done well it can unmake you.” From historical hauntings to modern-day slashers, horror literature as a genre has existed for centuries. Beginning with Walpole’s 1765 medieval terror The Castle of Otranto, we will study the field’s evolution from gothic horror to contemporary scary stories, exploring the distinctions between gothic, psychological, and supernatural horrors, among others. Machado goes on to say that horror “tells us a lot about who we are, what we are, and what we, individually and culturally, are afraid of,” a claim which will guide us as we dive into ghastly and macabre tales that captivate a culture and hold a mirror up to our truest selves.
English Strange Worlds: Speculative Fiction 1 NPC
Class Description
Whether it is Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings or H. G. Wells’ The War of the Worlds, science fiction and fantasy can not only delight our imagination but also help us understand our real, present world more thoroughly. Students in this course will study a wide array of science fiction and fantasy. They’ll look at how fantasy provides commentary on race, gender and class through works such as Octavia Butler’s Fledgling or Ursula K. Le Guin’s The Left Hand of Darkness, and consider science fiction’s power to comment on technological and social quandaries, such as Frank Herbert’s prescient consideration of global warming in Dune or Philip K. Dick’s exploration of artificial intelligence and identity in Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? Students will write critical reflections, examining the intersection of these imagined worlds with real life as well as trying to craft science fiction or fantasy of their own.
English Crime Fiction 1 NPC
Class Description
This course introduces students to early works in the development of the “detective story” (Edgar Allan Poe, Agatha Christie, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle) and the ways in which those early works help establish the foundations for a variety of “crime fictions” that have steadily grown in popularity throughout the 20th and 21st centuries. Students will learn to appreciate authors working in different times, places and settings and to explore the criminal mind and those tasked with solving criminal cases and fighting criminal activity (whether amateur detective, private eye or police officer). Along the way, students will try their hand at writing their own pieces of crime fiction and produce short analytical pieces examining the books and films they encounter.
English Fictions of Finance 1 NPC
Class Description
What do we value? The pursuit of profit, surges in wealth and the suspect principles of the financier have intrigued authors since the 19th century. How do language, narrative style, structure and literary production transform with shifts in the marketplace? Through a careful investigation of literature, film and illustration, we will discuss how art imagines and redefines social and economic relations. We will supplement the literary works with historical documents or articles that shed light on the economic climate at the time of publication. We might consider how the imagined space of the novel presents the mystery of the financial market, which seems shrouded in a haze. We might also ponder how authors imagine worlds where money has no practical use and nothing has any purchasing power. Over the course of the term, students will write short analytical pieces and complete a creative independent project of their own design.
English Humor 1 NPC
Class Description
Robert Frost called humor “the most engaging cowardice” and Percy Bysshe Shelley characterized laughter as a “heartless fiend,” but maybe they weren’t in on the joke. In this course, we’ll read literary humor writing—including comedy, satire, irony, and wit—in a variety of forms and genres in an effort to face a paradoxical (and not entirely unfunny) question: should we take humor seriously? Students should expect to contend with critical theory, read across genres and media, and attempt to write humor of their own.
English Mid-Twentieth Century American Poetry 1 NPC
Class Description
This course will introduce students to poets and movements that have shaped the direction and contours of American poetry since World War II. Students first study the Beat Movement and then explore the so-called “schools” of poetry—Black Mountain, New York, Confessional, et al. The course finishes with an exposure to poetry that is happening right now, which includes bicultural and multicultural poets. Most class time will be spent deriving themes through discussions of poets, poems, poetic movements, criticism, and theory. Poets include Ginsberg, Corso, Kerouac, Dylan, Waldman, Bukowski, Creeley, Olson, Levertov, Ashbury, O’Hara, Lowell, Plath, Berryman, Bishop, Rich, Dove, Hass, Kinnell, Hogan, Nye, Springsteen, and Colvin.
English Epics and Heroes 1 NPC
Class Description
Great epics of the past tell us about the culture, history, religion and magic of a particular time. As Joseph Campbell wrote, they are “the wonderful song of the soul’s high adventure.” We will look at powerful stories, as well as their meaning for the period and for today. Possible readings include mythology from around the world, Hermann Hesse’s Siddhartha, and an assortment of modern comic books.
English Rememories: Trauma and Survival in 20th-Century Literature 1 NPC
Class Description
In her novel Beloved, Toni Morrison coins the term “rememory” to describe a type of memory that won’t stay buried—ghosts of experiences that resurface across years, decades, even centuries, memories of trauma that continue to haunt literature to this day. This course will examine how narratives of trauma and survival have been represented (and re-presented) in 20th- and 21st-century literature. In our investigation of literature about war, terrorism, diaspora, and other cultural traumas, we will encounter authors writing from a variety of historical moments and perspectives. We will look closely at how trauma literature both delineates and breaks down divisions within individual, societal, and generational trauma experience. And we will engage with course texts by writing in a number of modes, both critical and creative. Thematic focuses will include the problematics of truth and testimony; the dismantling of traditional narrative structures and genres; individual vs. collective memory; societal regeneration; and the ways trauma literature engages with issues of race, class, gender, and national identity.
English Asian-American Literature 1 NPC
Class Description
This seminar explores the literary, historical, and broader sociocultural development of the complex and ever-expanding body of work that collectively (and not always neatly) contributes to what may be called “Asian/American” literature and film. We will engage with a wide range of written and visual texts, including poetry, fiction, memoir, cinema, and television, as well as with scholarly and other artistic forms of production, in order to fashion an analytical framework, informed perspective, and interpretive approach through which to reread and rethink the culture, politics, and history of the United States itself. A related goal is to understand the role of literature and other cultural forms in our nation’s struggles over identity, power, and resources. Focusing on the development and representation of Asian/America, we will unpack the social formation of race and the complexity of racial dynamics in the United States historically and today.
English Theatre of the Marginalized 1 NPC
Class Description
Course previously titled "Theatre of the Unusual/Everyday Life." Students who took that class previously should not sign up for this one) Through literature of the theatre, students focus on differences in everyday lives. Students will have an opportunity to explore many issues of accessibility, physical and mental challenges through time, cultures, definitions, and values, and the everyday struggles individuals have relating to others. Plays may include: Elephant Man, Children of a Lesser God, Fences, Getting Out, and The Ballad of a Sad Café.
English Beyond the Thousand and One Nights: Introduction to Arabic Literature 1 NPC
Class Description
In this class, students will learn of the development of Arabic literature from its inception in the medieval Arabic literary tradition, which begins in the sixth-century with nomadic Bedouin poetry and the Qur'an, through new literary forms adapted from Western imaginative literature. The aim of the course is to introduce students to key samples of modern Arabic literature, which trace major social, political, religious, cultural and linguistic developments in the Arab world, including North Africa. All readings will be in English translations. The class will also explore the politics of translation. Some questions that will be addressed, but not exclusively: How do some Arab writers conceive of "modernity"? How do they conceive of their relation to politics, and how do they understand the role of intellectuals in their societies? Who are the readers (actual or implied) of these texts? How do these authors relate to the Arabic, European, and American literary traditions?
English South Asian Literature 1 NPC
Class Description
This course will focus on different genres, contexts, time periods, and even languages (although all readings will be in English/translation) that fall under the broad category of ‘South Asian Literature.’ In one year, we might focus on the events surrounding the Partition of 1947 and how it inspired a generation of writers in Urdu. Another year, we might focus on Sanskrit literature: for example, poetry, drama, and/or short stories. In other iterations, the class might explore LGBTQ authors, the South Asian diaspora, and even the works of a particular author. The readings would focus mainly on shorter literary works, such as short stories and poems, but there would also be in most of these classes the opportunity to read full books (e.g. Bharati Mukherjee’s Miss New India and Wife, the Sanskrit Vetālapañcaviṃśati, Abha Dawesar’s Babyji) or excerpts thereof. Within each version of the course, students would be able to research and learn about the historical context of the works as well as where they fall in the literary sphere.
English Shakespeare Now 1 NPC
Class Description
Poet Ben Jonson said of Shakespeare that he “was not of his age, but for all time.” But what does a poet-playwright, dead now some 400 years, have to say that speaks to this moment of the human experience? In this class we will read and discuss the Bard’s plays in order to see how they were understood in their time as well as how they address modern sensibilities of race, gender, sexuality, economics and politics. How does Measure for Measure figure in the #MeToo movement What does a queer reading of Twelfth Night yield? How does The Tempest engage colonialism, race and the violence of language, or how does King Lear take on the betrayal of both the body and the body politic? How might Henry IV address cultural appropriation and entitlement or Henry V espouse or critique nationalism? Through discussing, writing about and even performing scenes from some of Shakespeare’s plays, we will test whether and how these works still resonate.
Health & Human Development Teen Health Matters (Formerly Health & Human Development) 1 NPC
Class Description
In this first-term, age-appropriate course, required of all new students, students will discuss health issues such as sleep, time management, living and learning in a diverse community, mindfulness, positive psychology and stress management, media literacy, and social practices in a digital landscape. All topics will be addressed in the context of adjusting to a campus community, accessing resources and understanding school rules. Together, all new students will explore how to fully integrate into their new class and how to have a healthy, mindful transition to Xavier's. A special emphasis on decision-making as they become emerging adults will help students make decisions about their future that offer complexities of choice. In-depth conversations will enable new students to build self-efficacy skills and prepare for challenging health and lifestyle choices. The pass/no pass grading system encourages student participation, honesty and sharing in a supportive and more relaxed environment.
Health & Human Development Thriving in Community (formerly Human Sexuality) 1 Jax
Class Description
In this class, required for all high school students, students will discuss a variety of health issues, such as mental and psychological health, character development, cultural competency, gender, sexual behavior and sexuality, consent/healthy relationships, and alcohol/drugs. This course is focused on helping students navigate some of the most common health and relationship concerns for their age group. Class aims to enable students to build self-efficacy and prepare for challenging health and lifestyle choices. Intentionality is explored throughout the term so that students will develop effective decision-making skills with purpose and thought. In this class students will explore identity development and self-authorship, foundational aspects to a student’s transition from adolescence to young adulthood. The pass/no pass grading system encourages student participation, honesty and sharing in a supportive and more relaxed environment focused around a growth mindset.
Probably the class most complained-about by parents to administration each year; Jax is very open in talking with students about sexuality, gender and identity issues and Many Parents are concerned he will turn their students trans or something.
Health & Human Development The Pursuit of Euphoria 1 NPC
Class Description
This course will explore the use of mind-altering substances throughout history, across cultures and within subcultures of the United States. From a biochemical, sociological and psychological standpoint we will probe the reasons why people seek to alter their state of being, whether through the use of drugs or through natural means. Readings will include selections such as: The Compass of Pleasure by David Linden; Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi; and Forces of Habit by David Courtwright.
Health & Human Development The Power Within: Philosophy and Science of Optimal Health 1 NPC
Class Description
How can we best manage life’s competing challenges? How should we measure success? What are the most effective means to enhance one’s capabilities, strengths and health status? We will aim to answer these and other questions by studying traditional teachings and practices, as well as the insights and lessons offered by modern-day behavioral science and neuroscience. Through reading, research, reflection, personal practice and experimentation, students will investigate the theories, models and methods that have proven to enhance well-being.
History AP Art History 3 NPC
Class Description
Material is guided by the College Board's AP Art History curriculum.
History AP European History 3 NPC
Class Description
Material is guided by the College Board's AP European History curriculum.
History AP U.S. History 3 NPC
Class Description
Material is guided by the College Board's AP U.S. History curriculum.
History AP World History 3 NPC
Class Description
Material is guided by the College Board's AP World History curriculum.
History U.S., Colonialism - 1861 1 NPC
Class Description
This course introduces students to the formation of American values and institutions from the early English settlements of North America through the Revolution and Civil War. Emphasis is given to the cultural, economic and social diversity of early America, the tension between local and central authority during the struggle for independence, the establishment of the Constitution, economic and social change in the young republic, slavery, and the growing sectional confict that culminated in secession. Students will complete a library research project.
History U.S., 1861-1941 1 NPC
Class Description
This course continues the survey of American history with the Civil War and follows with the attempt to rebuild the union during Reconstruction. Emphasis is given to economic and social changes of the late 19th century and the emergence of the United States as a world power. Topics include the transformation of the United States into an urban industrial society, the dilemma of race, the changing role of women, the Depression and the political response to these issues. The course ends with the advent of World War II. There will be a required library research paper this term.
History U.S., 1941-Present 1 NPC
Class Description
This course begins with U.S. involvement in World War II. Emphasis is given to the Cold War and rising global involvement of the United States. Other topics include the Civil Rights movement, the social and political turmoil of the 1960s, the dual crises of Vietnam and Watergate, the Reagan revolution and issues of the contemporary world. A term paper, based on independent research, is required to pass the course.
History Native Peoples of the Americas 1 NPC
Class Description
This course surveys the history of indigenous groups from their prehistoric roots to the Post-Classic Period. Students gain exposure to anthropological, archaeological and historical resources to illuminate the Mesoamerican societies with a particular focus on the Mayan and Aztec Empires. Students also gain exposure to the evolution of independent cultural and social systems among indigenous tribes in North America. Among the subjects highlighted are the production of foodstuff, evolving patterns of tribal life, governance, warfare and economics. During the latter stages of the course, students examine the ways in which the lives of indigenous peoples were dramatically reconfigured as the economic systems of the Atlantic world forever changed tribal life.
History Jailhouse Nation: U.S. History of Crime, Punishment, and Mass Incarceration 1 NPC
Class Description
Jailhouse Nation explores America’s long and troubled history with crime, punishment, and prisons. By first examining how both crime and thus the “criminal” are socially and historically constructed, students will consider the role of violence and systematic punishment in Puritan New England, the slave South, and later, the modern United States. The institution of slavery will provide an important framework to help students understand how new modes of punishment (namely, incarceration in jails and prisons) emerged alongside the abolition of slavery. Furthermore, we will examine the role of post-emancipation prison regimes in shaping popular (mis)understandings of “race” and the idea of “black criminality.” Lastly, we will discuss the rise of the carceral state in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries, noting long historical parallels and the roles of contemporary political and economic forces driving the prison boom. Throughout the course we will consider the distinct experiences of punishment for men, women, children, African Americans, whites, Latinos, sexual minorities and non-citizens in order to tease out the specific relationships between race, class, gender and punishment at various moments in American history. Within our broader exploration of state-based punishment policies, we will also consider community resistance to policing and incarceration and the rise of so-called prison abolitionists.
History Law and American Society 1 NPC
Class Description
This course provides students with an introduction to the American legal system and to the development of American constitutional law. Historic Supreme Court decisions and legal case studies will be used to develop an in-depth understanding of the historical background and present-day constitutional controversies over such topics as free speech, censorship, abortion, workplace discrimination, affirmative action and the rights of the accused. Practitioners from the fields of law and criminal justice may provide an added dimension to the course.
History Rocking the Schoolhouse: US History of Education 1 NPC
Class Description
This class will examine the history of American Education. From the one-room schoolhouse to Race to the Top, students will leave with a deep understanding of how America educates its k-12 students. Rocking the Schoolhouse does not look at a broken system, rather the students analyze why the system is purposely designed to educate some, and leave many behind. Public schools today are as racially segregated as they were in 1954. The class presents a thesis: “The US Public Education System is the greatest Civil Rights issue of the 21st Century.” From this thesis, arguments and evidence will be presented and students will be asked to analyze the data and take their own stand. The racial opportunity gap has been identified, and little has been done to remedy this built-in aspect of public education. The final project challenges the student to identify a need in public education, and design a school that will remedy the problem.
History U.S. Youth Subcultures 1 NPC
Class Description
This course explores the role of subcultures in contributing to the cultural spectrum of the United States between the 1920s and the twenty‑first century. Studying subcultures can reveal as much about the shadows of society in which they resided as it does the mainstream. Subcultures also represent a unique intersection of radical political ideologies and innovative artistic trends, often expressed through a group’s attachment to a specific genre of music, social outlet, and/or fashion. We will examine the value systems, and the broader historical contexts that gave rise to them, of: the flappers; hipsters, and beatniks; greasers; hippies; the hip‑hop and punk rock scenes, and street art. We will also focus on the ways in which society has repeatedly co‑opted these previously marginal movements, rendering them into yet another popular means of corporatized mass consumption.
History U.S. Black Studies 1 NPC
Class Description
Black Studies is a broad field of study that can be approached from many disciplines. In this course, we survey African American history from the period of the Great Migration through the present. We explore the socio-economic, political, and cultural contributions of African Americans with an emphasis on movements for racial equality, the arts, and Black feminism. Texts include foundational writings in African American history and literature, including writings from W.E.B. Du Bois; James Weldon Johnson; Booker T. Washington; Martin Luther King Jr.; Malcolm X; Ida B. Wells; Angela Davis; Shirley Chisholm; Audre Lorde; Richard Wright; James Baldwin; Langston Hughes, and many others
History U.S. Environmental History 1 NPC
Class Description
How did European cattle wage war on the Wampanoag in colonial Massachusetts? How did the Bible’s Eden, a belief in magic, and a mapping mistake come together to lay the groundwork for race-based disenfranchisement and colonial incursion? How did soil make decisions about what slavery would look like in the Cotton South? How did capitalist ideas effect changes in the landscape of New England? How does the difference of 20 inches of rain per year lead to drastic differences in population, politics, and culture between eastern and western states? What myths do we tell ourselves when we visit our national parks? How are we, through globalization, forcing ourselves to change the way we talk about the natural world? What is truly natural and how do we use Nature as a weapon to destroy societies and the earth? With this introduction to the newest field of American History, we will learn to study history by looking at the roles humans play within ecosystems and the effects of those ecosystems on human society.
History U.S. Constitution 1 NPC
Class Description
US Constitution is a hands-on, project-based class that seeks to examine the roots and development of the Constitution and the Bill of Rights, and then asks students to apply the document practically to several real and fictional Supreme Court cases. Hence, students begin the module with factual readings, the Federalist Papers and smaller debates, and general discussion. The class looks at the way fundamental concepts and definitions of freedom, citizenship, and “for all” have been shaped, undermined, and refined through the Constitution and its interpretation by the US Supreme Court. As the mod progresses, the assignments become more difficult and intense (briefing cases like Marbury v. Madison and Tinker v. Des Moines School District), culminating in the preparation and presentation of oral arguments for a mock Supreme Court in two cases, and sitting as a justice for one. Much of the grading for the class is done in groups, rather than individually, and so students are asked to trust and depend on their peers while making sure to hold up their own end of the workload.
History The Transatlantic World: Empire, Contact and Legacies 1 NPC
Class Description
This course examines the imperial interests, race and gender relations, and cultural influences and exchanges that manifested during the era known as Colonial America. Though the course, by the end, focuses on the colonies that would become the United States, it begins with the pre-contact experiences of Native Americans, Africans and Europeans and how their lives eventually converged. Relationships impacted by economic development, racism and religious fervor forged a complex, historical, multiethnic legacy that is still visible today.
History Race: A Global History 1 NPC
Class Description
Scientists agree that there are few genetic differences between people of different races and ethnicities. Social scientists thus contend that racial distinctions are a product of society and culture rather than biology. At what point, then, did differences in skin color and other phenotypic traits become signifcant? This course will explore the history of race and racism by looking at examples across the world. We will consider how humans have been divided into different “groups” and the historical circumstances that have led to those divisions. We will also interrogate the use of scientific theories to justify racism and the more recent repudiation of these theories. Using both primary and secondary sources, students will apply the methods of historical thinking to understand the evolution of racial categories and the impact of history on modern-day issues related to race and ethnicity.
History The 20th Century 1 NPC
Class Description
This course is an introduction to significant events in the 20th century. Students investigate cause, effect and change in places such as Europe, Africa and Asia (including the Middle East). One principal aim of the course is for students to develop a better understanding of the response of traditional societies to the impact of modernization on their values and customs. Another is to examine ideological conficts of the modern world. Students also research contemporary problems that originated in the 20th century that demand creative and thoughtful solutions. Analytical skills, synthesis of conficting viewpoints, conducting research in the Academy Library, participating in debates and writing historical essays are all emphasized in this course.
History Classical Greece 1 NPC
Class Description
This course examines the archaeology, literature, history and society of the Greek city-states from 1000 to 300 BCE. From Homer and Sappho to the Acropolis of Athens, a variety of materials introduces students to the literature, art, material culture and everyday life of an expansive Greek world. This course encourages students to establish connections between the ancient world and today and question the modern reception of the classical past. It introduces and develops fundamental historical skills, particularly research and writing.
History Classical Rome 1 NPC
Class Description
This course examines the archaeology, literature, history and society of the Roman world from the foundation of the city through Late Antiquity. Central themes include urbanism, architecture, imperialism, daily life and archaeology. The course introduces and develops fundamental historical skills, particularly writing and research. It encourages students to establish connections between the ancient world and today and question the modern reception of the classical past.
History The Medieval Worlds 1 NPC
Class Description
In the wake of the fall of the Roman Empire, three distinct and dazzling civilizations emerged. This course examines the creation of the European, Byzantine and Islamic worlds from the end of antiquity to roughly 1350, exploring the political, cultural, social and religious changes in each society. We examine the rise of the Christian Church in Europe and Byzantium, the birth and rapid success of Islam, and the impact on the values and behaviors of medieval people. Key figures, themes and events are studied, including Charlemagne, Muhammad, Justinian, mysticism, scholasticism, the Reconquista and the Crusades. We also discuss how early interactions and conficts shaped the views each society held of the others.
History Early Modern Europe, 1350-1660 1 NPC
Class Description
The centuries following the Black Death saw the beginnings of modern Europe. This course focuses on the rebirth of European society and the new values, optimism and cultural achievements of the Renaissance. It then examines the turbulence of the Reformation — the shattering of Christian unity and the wars fought in the name of religion. The course then explores the development of new politics and the Age of Exploration when Europeans set sail and changed the shape of the world.
History Absolutism and Revolution, Europe 1660-1800 1 NPC
Class Description
Beginning with the reign of Louis XIV, students examine 18th-century European society. We explore how the Scientific Revolution and the Enlightenment challenged the ideas of the Old Regime and created new perceptions of humanity, society and government. The course concludes with an analysis of the French Revolution and the rise of Napoleon.
History The European Century, 1800-1914 1 NPC
Class Description
Beginning with the study of Napoleon’s Empire and the Congress of Vienna, this course examines how the French Revolution of 1789 and the Industrial Revolution transformed European society and politics in the 19th century and established Europe’s global preeminence. The course concludes with an examination of World War I, the shattering event that culminated Europe’s dominance.
History World War and European Society, 1890-1945 1 NPC
Class Description
At the pinnacle of its power and confidence at the start of the 20th century, Europe could not have imagined the crises, mainly of its own making, that it would face between 1914 and 1945. In this course, we examine the era when Europe was shattered by two world wars, an unprecedented international depression, and the rise of totalitarian states in the Soviet Union and Nazi Germany. We examine why Europeans cheered for the Great War when it began in 1914, and how four years of industrial warfare and diplomatic failures contributed to catastrophes that followed. We then explore European culture during the interwar period called the Age of Anxiety, the Russian Revolution under Lenin and Stalin, the foundering of the democracies, and the rise of Hitler and Mussolini.
History Europe Since 1945 1 NPC
Class Description
Once the region of geopolitical domination, Europe after World War II was forced to rebuild and redefine its place in a rapidly shifting world. This course examines the change in Europe’s position as it contended with the Cold War’s series of freezes and thaws; economic, political and social developments, such as the student revolts of the 1960s; and the dramatic decade of the 1980s with Thatcherism, Gorbachev, the fall of the Berlin Wall and communism. Topics analyzed include modern leadership in Germany, Great Britain and France; the Soviet Union from Stalin through its collapse; Eastern Europe’s transition from communism, and the European Union. We will conclude by examining Europe’s current position in the contemporary world.
History Capitalism and its Critics 1 NPC
Class Description
This course provides a survey of the origins and evolution of capitalism in a global world up to the present, with emphasis on the political economies of the West. Students examine the ideas of the great political economists such as Adam Smith, David Ricardo, Thomas Robert Malthus, Karl Marx, J.M. Keynes and Friedrich von Hayek, as well as trace the progression of modern industrial economies in Europe and the United States. The course ends with an analysis of the 2008 financial crisis and the Occupy movement.
History Understanding Violence, War and Peace 1 NPC
Class Description
This course explores both the history of and theories related to violence, war and peace across the globe, from ancient to modern times. Readings may include selections from a variety of disciplines, such as anthropology, ethics, philosophy, psychology and sociology. Students may consider such questions as: Is there such a thing as a just war? Are humans naturally violent? How do societies avoid violence and maintain peace? What role does technology play in shaping violent behavior? Can justice be achieved through the use of violent means? Is peace a realistic possibility in a globalized world? Is there more to peace than an interim between wars?
History China: The Last Dynasty 1 NPC
Class Description
This course explores Chinese history with a focus on the Qing Dynasty period (1644-1912). Students will tackle such questions as: How can Buddhism, Confucianism and Daoism coexist in the same time? How did the role of the Qing Dynasty in global history shift across the centuries? What makes the Opium Wars (1839-1842, 1856-1860) and the Boxer Rebellion (1899-1901) turning points in modern Chinese history? How does Chinese history look different from the perspective of a rural female villager versus an emperor? What are the strongest motivating factors in these two individuals’ decision-making? To help us explore how lived experience of this vast history can vary based on where in China one lived, what role in society one fulfilled, and which events one lived through, we will analyze a range of sources including film, fiction and scholarly assessments.
History Modern China 1 NPC
Class Description
This course examines China’s dramatic recent history through multiple lenses: historical survey, biography, memoir, film and journalism. We begin by identifying key themes and questions to guide our study. Then we move back in time to the 19th century, when contact with Westerners provoked war and internal rebellions. We examine the decline and eventual collapse of the imperial dynastic system, the rise of warlordism, an experiment in weak republican government, the prolonged civil war, China’s role in World War II, the founding of the People’s Republic, the thought and governance of Mao Zedong, the economic and social reforms of Deng Xiaoping, and China’s entry into the global marketplace. The last part of the course utilizes a variety of current sources to address the majorissues facing China in the 21st century.
History Contemporary Middle East 1 NPC
Class Description
The course begins with the breakup of the Ottoman Empire and examines the rise of Arab nationalism and the struggle against foreign domination. The strategic and economic importance of the region is studied along with the founding of Israel; the continuing confict among Jews, Arabs, and Christians; and the rise of Islamic fundamentalism. Particular emphasis is placed on understanding the Arab-Israeli confict.
History Modern Asia: Contested Histories 1 NPC
Class Description
How and why do different national histories define themselves in competition with those of their neighbors? This course will focus on how recent trends in the writing of history are applied to the context of contemporary Asia including China, India, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Thailand and Vietnam. These topics will be explored through a range of sources including film, memoirs, fiction, periodicals and scholarly assessments that reflect the diversity of experiences across Asia. Topics will include Marxist history, cultural history, gender, memory, modernity and ethnicity. This course will rely on students to conduct independent research throughout the term in digging through contested topics and historical controversies, including but not limited to competing national histories of imperialism, colonization, and nationhood in the 20th century.
History Precolonial Africa 1 NPC
Class Description
This course introduces students to the complexity and dynamism of the African past, from antiquity to the dawn of the 20th century. The course begins with an examination of the Nile Valley civilizations in antiquity, the historical debates surrounding that era and the advent of Christianity in North Africa. Students then study the rise of Islam in Africa and the West African empires of Ghana, Mali and Songhai. Next, students examine the role played by slavery in the creation of the Atlantic World. The course ends with an analysis of the dynamics of the cultural clash that ensued from the European colonization of Africa.
History Modern Africa 1 NPC
Class Description
What do we mean by “modern,” and what does “modern Africa” look like? The story of modernity has often been told from a Eurocentric perspective — one that conveniently excludes Africa. In this course, we will investigate the ways in which Africa is tied to modernity and the world. Chronologically, the course will investigate the continent’s history, beginning with the abolition of slave trade; 19th-century imperialism and the “scramble” for the continent; anti-colonial movements and decolonization; as well as the post-independence social and political realities. For the most part, academic study of Africa in the Global North has been dominated by non-Africans. Alternatively, in this course, we re-center African voices — that is, scholarly, literary and political writings of notable Africans to help students challenge the conventional wisdom about the rise of the modern world and the role of Africa in the global arena.
History Modern Latin America 1 NPC
Class Description
This course examines how modern social and political institutions developed in the region that includes Central and South America and the Caribbean. We begin by questioning why such diverse places are imagined as a single region. We explore how colonialism shaped the region and how independent nations emerged from European political control in the early 19th century. Through a series of case studies, we then examine selected social, political and economic issues that shaped Latin America in the 19th and 20th centuries.
History Modern India 1 NPC
Class Description
This course examines the history of what is today the world’s largest democracy. It starts in roughly 1700 with a study of the Mughal Empire and its decline, followed by the rise of British India. We explore the East India Company and the impact of British imperialism on India. The 1857 rebellion, the beginning of direct British rule and the consequences of these major events are analyzed. We explore the development and role of the Indian National Congress, explore the emergence of Indian nationalism, and assess Gandhi and other Indian leaders, as well as the forces around independence in 1947. In the last part of the course we study India’s identity from independence to today and the current issues and conflicts confronting this increasingly prominent nation.
History Japan: Tradition to Modernity 1 NPC
Class Description
This course is an overview of Japanese history and considers how changes in political institutions, economic patterns, social organizations, and cultural practices took shape to transform the lives of individuals across the archipelago. We will explore questions that contemporary scholars grapple with to this day: How did the role of the emperor transform from the 16th to the 18th century? Why is the samurai such a powerful symbol? How did a region poor in resources and largely isolated from the West emerge economically vital in the last hundred years? Why did the concept of progress become such a pivotal concern for the leaders of Meiji Japan in the late 19th century? What are the consequences for rapid industrial revolution? With an emphasis on primary sources, students will analyze this history in terms of those who lived it. We will read from the perspectives of a daimyo reformer and a low-ranking samurai, from an impoverished farmer and an afuent merchant, the emperor and a housewife.
History Japan: Post-war to the Akihabara Generation 1 NPC
Class Description
The Akihabara district of Tokyo, Japan houses the world’s largest collection of everything that is associated with anime and the otaku culture and industry. It provides us with the goal and opportunity to examine Japan’s emersion from World War II into a thriving economic revival, democratic politics, and a new social order. With a particular focus on the creation of Otaku culture, we follow Japanese history through the 20th and into the 21st century, its cultural expansion and impact on not only the neighboring countries but the Western world as well. Post-war Japan has navigated its way through challenging encounters with its past, this course looks at those encounters and examines what role the otaku culture plays in the definition of 21st century Japan.
History Humans and the Environment 1 NPC
Class Description
What drives human history? Do the pivotal factors lie beyond human control, such as climate, geography, ecosystems and microbes? This course examines the interactions between people and the natural world over time. In struggling to master an often hostile environment, human societies have had an ever-increasing impact on the planet, and apparent success has often ended in failure. The course begins with the emergence of humans in the Paleolithic period and then explores the invention of agriculture, the emergence of global trade and migration networks, colonialism and the Industrial Revolution. Students examine in depth an instance of humans managing — or mismanaging — a natural resource and conclude the course with a close look at 20th-century trends and the future we collectively face.
History Genocide in the Modern World 1 NPC
Class Description
This course studies the history of genocide in the 20th and 21st centuries, exploring both the patterns and unique circumstances of this important global issue. Students read and hear from historians, victims and perpetrators. Likely case studies are the Holocaust, Cambodia, the Balkans, and Rwanda, with time set aside for research into events determined by student interest. Students study root causes, including economic, political and social factors that permit the occurrence of genocide; assess international responses; and evaluate attempts at reconciliation, including justice systems and community reactions. The comparative nature of the course creates a framework to draw broad lessons about what leads to genocide in the modern world; enables us to assess the behavior, actions and inaction of the various groups involved; and pushes us to consider how these lessons could be applied to prevent such crimes in the future.
History Totalitarianism: Past & Present 1 NPC
Class Description
This course takes students on a fascinating exploration of the totalitarian and fascistic tendencies that have proven to be alluring alternatives to the democratic states and societies. These movements were often shrouded with utopian promises against a backdrop of apocalyptic struggles, regardless of the temporal or geographic location of the totalitarian movement. We begin by examining five national case studies drawn from Europe and Asia between the 1920s and 1960s. We then investigate more modern iterations of fundamentalism, including political, racial, and religious fundamentalism. The class concludes by focusing on the nature and appeal of cults. A final project invites students to tie the course’s main themes together.
History Revolutions 1 Tian-shin
Class Description
Language ASL Track variable NPC - Nadia Dirie
Class Description
There are 9 classes in the American Sign Language track, divided into Beginning (1-3), Intermediate (4-6), and Advanced (7-9), usually scheduled such that each cycles once per school year. Coursework focuses on practical fluency, but also touches on history, culture, sociology, and other aspects of the ASL-using world. Students may test into any level and take any number of these classes, in any sequence, but retaking a passed language class will not count further toward graduation requirements.
Language Arabic Track variable NPC
Class Description
There are 9 classes in the Arabic language track, divided into Beginning (1-3), Intermediate (4-6), and Advanced (7-9), usually scheduled such that each cycles once per school year. Coursework focuses on practical fluency and literacy but also touches on history, culture, sociology, and other aspects of the Arabic-speaking world. Students may test into any level and take any number of these classes, in any sequence, but retaking a passed language class will not count further toward graduation requirements.
Language Chinese - Mandarin Track variable Tian-shin
Class Description
There are 9 classes in the Mandarin track, divided into Beginning (1-3), Intermediate (4-6), and Advanced (7-9), usually scheduled such that each cycles once per school year. Coursework focuses on practical fluency and literacy but also touches on history, culture, sociology, and other aspects of the Mandarin-speaking world. Written instruction is in pinyin Simplified Chinese script. Students may test into any level and take any number of these classes, in any sequence, but retaking a passed language class will not count further toward graduation requirements.
Language English as a Second Language Track variable NPCs
Class Description
There are 3 classes in the English as a Second Language track: Beginning (1), Intermediate (2), and Advanced (3), each with highly modular curricula that instructors adapt to the needs of current ELL students. Coursework focuses on practical fluency and literacy but also touches on history, culture, sociology, and other aspects of the English-speaking world. At all levels, half of each class is given over to one-on-one tutoring, supervised independent study, or other instruction recommended by students' IEP assessments. Students may test into any level and take any number of these classes, in any sequence.
Language French track variable Matt, NPC
Class Description
There are 9 classes in the French track, divided into Beginning (1-3), Intermediate (4-6), and Advanced (7-9), usually scheduled such that each cycles once per school year. Coursework focuses on practical fluency and literacy but also touches on history, culture, sociology, and other aspects of the Francophone world. Students may test into any level and take any number of these classes, in any sequence, but retaking a passed language class will not count further toward graduation requirements.
Language German track variable NPC
Class Description
There are 9 classes in the German track, divided into Beginning (1-3), Intermediate (4-6), and Advanced (7-9), usually scheduled such that each cycles once per school year. Coursework focuses on practical fluency and literacy but also touches on history, culture, sociology, and other aspects of the German-speaking world. Students may test into any level and take any number of these classes, in any sequence, but retaking a passed language class will not count further toward graduation requirements.
Language Ancient Greek track variable NPC
Class Description
There are 3 classes in the Ancient Greek track: Beginning (1), Intermediate (2), and Advanced (3), usually scheduled to cycle over the course of a school year. Coursework focuses on literacy but contain significant elements of history, literature, sociology, and topics relevant to the Classics and the ancient world. Students may test into any level and take any number of these classes, in any sequence, but retaking a passed language class will not count further toward graduation requirements.
Language Latin track variable NPC
Class Description
There are 3 classes in the Latin track: Beginning (1), Intermediate (2), and Advanced (3), usually scheduled to cycle over the course of a school year. Coursework focuses on literacy but contain significant elements of history, literature, sociology, and topics relevant to the Classics and the ancient world. Students may test into any level and take any number of these classes, in any sequence, but retaking a passed language class will not count further toward graduation requirements.
Language Japanese track variable NPC
Class Description
There are 9 classes in the Japanese track, divided into Beginning (1-3), Intermediate (4-6), and Advanced (7-9), usually scheduled such that each cycles once per school year. Coursework focuses on practical fluency and literacy but also touches on history, culture, sociology, and other aspects relevant to the Japan-speaking world. Students may test into any level and take any number of these classes, in any sequence, but retaking a passed language class will not count further toward graduation requirements.
Language Russian track variable NPC
Class Description
There are 9 classes in the Russian track, divided into Beginning (1-3), Intermediate (4-6), and Advanced (7-9), usually scheduled such that each cycles once per school year. Coursework focuses on practical fluency and literacy but also touches on history, culture, sociology, and other aspects relevant to the Russian-speaking world. Students may test into any level and take any number of these classes, in any sequence, but retaking a passed language class will not count further toward graduation requirements.
Language Spanish track variable NPC
Class Description
There are 9 classes in the Spanish track, divided into Beginning (1-3), Intermediate (4-6), and Advanced (7-9), usually scheduled such that each cycles once per school year. Coursework focuses on practical fluency and literacy but also touches on history, culture, sociology, and other aspects relevant to the Spanish-speaking world. Students may test into any level and take any number of these classes, in any sequence, but retaking a passed language class will not count further toward graduation requirements.
Language AP Chinese Language and Culture 3 NPC
Class Description
Material is guided by the College Board's AP Chinese Language and Culture curriculum.
Language AP French Language and Culture 3 NPC
Class Description
Material is guided by the College Board's AP French Language and Culture curriculum.
Language AP German Language and Culture 3 NPC
Class Description
Material is guided by the College Board's AP German Language and Culture curriculum.
Language AP Japanese Language and Culture 3 NPC
Class Description
Material is guided by the College Board's AP Japanese Language and Culture curriculum.
Language AP Latin 3 NPC
Class Description
Material is guided by the College Board's AP Latin curriculum.
Language AP Spanish Language and Culture 3 NPC
Class Description
Material is guided by the College Board's AP Spanish Language and Culture curriculum.
Language AP Spanish Literature and Culture 3 NPC
Class Description
Material is guided by the College Board's AP Spanish Literature and Culture curriculum.
Mathematics Transitional Mathematics variable NPC
Class Description
Transitional mathematics courses are offered to help merge new students into the mathematics program at Xavier's. Courses are designed to help students adjust to seminar-table methodology and problem-based curriculum, and to fill gaps and cope with varied backgrounds in mathetmatics prior to Xavier's. Introductory courses give students and instructors additional information to determine placement for the following term. Typically, transitional courses last one term, but some extend for two or even three terms.
Mathematics Algebra 3 NPC
Class Description
These courses develop facility in working with numbers, tables, equations, inequalities and graphs. The focus is on solving word problems and reading carefully, and thus the building of algebra skills stems from the need to solve problems in a context, rather than from drill and practice for its own sake. Students learn how to use the graphing calculator appropriately as an effective problem- solving tool. In addition, students may do a number of hands-on labs that require them to collect data, make conjectures and draw conclusions. Topics covered include equations and graphs that are linear and quadratic, distinguishing linear data from nonlinear data, inequalities, the basic rules of exponents, and other traditional Algebra I topics.
Mathematics Geometry 3 NPC
Class Description
Geometry develops logical thinking through proofs and attention to definitions. It gives students a new way of looking at the world by analyzing the symmetries and patterns around them, and it develops practical skills through applications. This course covers the standard topics in a college-preparatory course in Geometry.
Mathematics Trigonometry & Precalculus 3 Kyinha
Class Description
An exploration of the circular functions: sine, cosine, and tangent. Topics include right triangle trigonometry, simple harmonic motion, applications, and proofs of trigonometric identities.
Mathematics Integrated Mathematics 3 NPC
Class Description
The purpose of these courses is to enable students to expand their view of algebra and geometry to include nonlinear motion and nonlinear functions. The investigation encompasses circular motion and the functions that describe it, ellipses and hyperbolas, exponential and logarithmic functions, dot products and matrices, and geometry on the surface of the Earth. In particular, logarithms are used to straighten nonlinear data; and matrices are used to describe geometric transformations and various patterns of growth. In preparation for higher level mathematics, two strands are introduced: first, combinatorics and recursion, leading to the binomial theorem; second, approximation behavior, especially instantaneous rates of change and slopes of nonlinear graphs.
Mathematics Linear Algebra 3 NPC-Dr. Samantha Deeb
Class Description
In this class students will use matrices to learn how linear algebra is being applied in various fields. The class will cover content including matrix operations, row-reductions, determinants, vector space, eigenvalues, and transformations. From this course students will be able to further their understanding of the connection between geometry and algebra. In addition, students will further their logical thinking while being introduced to different abstract topics in mathematics. This course will expose students to higher-level mathematics that will better prepare them for the rigors of a college math program.
Professor Deeb is known to assign brutal amounts of homework. Tendency to drone a lot in class; is actually a helpful tutor one-on-one but not particularly interesting or useful in a classroom setting.
Mathematics Multivariable Calculus 3 NPC-Dr. Samantha Deeb
Class Description
Students will learn how to differentiate and integrate functions with multiple variables. In this class students will cover topics such as vector functions, partial derivatives, multiple integrals, and vector calculus. As a result of this class, students will be able to better understand the connection between single-variable calculus and multivariable calculus. Students will further their logical thinking while also being introduced to different abstract topics in mathematics. Students will be exposed to higher-level mathematics that will better prepare them for the rigors of a college math program.
Professor Deeb is known to assign brutal amounts of homework. Tendency to drone a lot in class; is actually a helpful tutor one-on-one but not particularly interesting or useful in a classroom setting.
Mathematics AP Calculus AB 3 Kyinha
Class Description
This is the beginning of the three-term calculus sequence that covers the syllabus of the AB Advanced Placement examination.
Mathematics AP Calculus BC 3 NPC-Dr. Samantha Deeb
Class Description
This is the beginning of the three-term calculus sequence that covers the syllabus of the BC Advanced Placement examination.
Professor Deeb is known to assign brutal amounts of homework. Tendency to drone a lot in class; is actually a helpful tutor one-on-one but not particularly interesting or useful in a classroom setting.
Mathematics AP Statistics 3 NPC
Class Description
This is the beginning of the three-term calculus sequence that covers the syllabus of the Statistics Advanced Placement examination.
Mathematics Personal Finance 1 NPC
Class Description
Personal finance is a term that covers managing your money as well as saving and investing. It encompasses budgeting, banking, insurance, mortgages, and investments. Students will be introduced to the basic understanding of debit and credit, track their spending and even analyze some of the more challenging probability concepts that govern the trading of options on the stock market. The approach to this class will be project based with students able to work on a project that they find meaningful in the world of personal finance.
Mathematics Economics in the World 1 NPC
Class Description
What does it mean to live in a global economy? In this class students will be introduced to an overview of Micro Economics and Macro Economics. By analyzing market trends associated with historical events between the 1900’s and the present time, students will learn how changes in policies have shaped global economies.
Philosophy, Ethics, & Religion Bioethics: Humanity in the Post-Genomic Era 1 NPC
Class Description
This course examines current biological topics that challenge our understanding of humanity and provides a brief introduction to ethics and philosophical anthropology and their roles in setting public policy.

We live in a modern age in which major scientific advances are the norm. Bombarded with stories in the news regarding ethical dilemmas pertaining to novel biomedical interventions, it is often difficult for us to make sense of competing arguments without having a basic command of the biological and philosophical issues involved. Questions to be addressed include: What is a stem cell? When does a developing human being first experience sensation? Show evidence of cognitive abilities? Acquire moral status?

How does our modern, post-genomic understanding of human biology influence our philosophical understanding of what it is to be human? Which biological enhancements are ethical? Which are unethical? To what extent (if at all) should the use of biotechnology be regulated in our society? Historical and current readings will be assigned, and lively discussions encouraged. Students will be graded through a variety of assessments, including papers, presentations, journals, and class participation.
Philosophy, Ethics, & Religion Power and Social Responsibility 1 NPC
Class Description
Philosophy, Ethics, & Religion The Ethics of Power 1 Charles
Class Description
Philosophy, Ethics, & Religion Introduction to Ethics 1 NPC
Class Description
Students in this discussion course will be introduced to a variety of approaches to ethical reflection. Through the use of classical texts and personal and literary stories, students will develop a common vocabulary with which to understand and critically evaluate their moral experience.
Philosophy, Ethics, & Religion Ethics & the Environment 1 NPC
Class Description
We are facing unprecedented environmental challenges to climate, life forms, human health and population, and essential resources. We tend to treat such issues simply as scientific or political problems. In reality, ecological controversies raise fundamental questions about what we human beings value, the kind of beings we are, the kinds of lives we should lead, and our place in nature. Sustainability is not possible without a deep change of values and commitment. In short, environmental problems raise fundamental questions of ethics and philosophy. This course seeks to provide a systematic introduction to those questions.
Philosophy, Ethics, & Religion Social Ethics: Values in a Changing America 1 NPC
Class Description
Whether you read the paper, scroll Instagram or follow trends on TikTok, you will see people disagreeing about how to resolve some of society’s conficts. In this course, students examine various contemporary social issues such as pornography, reproductive rights, trans rights, immigration, the death penalty, CRISPR, mutant rights, privacy rights, political extremism, drug legalization and climate change. Through engagement with current events and contemporary public conversations, the course provides students with ethical frameworks, conceptual tools and contextualized understanding necessary to evaluate and respond to the social issues of an ever-changing world.
Philosophy, Ethics, & Religion Global Ethics: What's Wrong with the World? 1 NPC
Class Description
Terrorism, wars, genocide, refugee crises, economic disparities, economic exploitation, propaganda including “fake news,” drug resistant pathogens, natural disasters, global warming, and so on — what kind of world do we live in? What kind of world ought we live in? How can we move from what is to what ought to be our world? These are the basic questions of global ethics. With consideration for a range of ethical theories, students study current global events in order to better understand why the world is the way that it is and what can be done about it. The course includes readings in anthropology, sociology, political theory, philosophy and the sciences, and it makes use of current news sources, investigative journalism, documentary and feature films, and new media. The course culminates with student projects on any topic concerning the world as it is and might be — or what we can do to get there.
Philosophy, Ethics, & Religion Ethics: Medicine 1 NPC
Class Description
Modern medical research and practice present society with new opportunities and significant challenges. Students in this course will look at various case studies at the intersection of medicine, scientific research, health care, and ethics. Possible case studies may include debates about abortion, euthanasia, animal rights, mutant rights and experimentation, and broader environmental implications of scientific and material progress in the 21st century. Classical and contemporary philosophers will be read as part of our investigation into these topics.
Philosophy, Ethics, & Religion Nonviolence & Moral Leadership 1 Charles
Class Description
This course will examine major figures within nonviolent movements for social change, with a focus on the capacities of moral leadership possessed by these individuals. What characterizes an effective moral leader? How do these leaders motivate others in the face of injustice and oppression? Must moral leadership necessarily be nonviolent? What does 'nonviolence' even mean? Through a study of autobiography, letters, speeches, and case studies, students will come to a more complete understanding of nonviolent movements and the decisions made by individuals who led them. In addition to Gandhi and King, individuals studied may include Nelson Mandela, Desmond Tutu, the Dalai Lama, Aung San Suu Kyi, Thich Nhat Hanh, Paul Farmer, Greg Mortenson. Critics of nonviolence will also be studied. The course will culminate in a substantial independent research project.
Philosophy, Ethics, & Religion Law and Morality 1 Tian-shin
Class Description
A critical examination of issues that arise out of the relationship between law and morality. Questions of concern include the following: For what reasons, if any, should an individual obey or disobey the laws of society? Which kinds of governments (monarchy, aristocracy, democracy, etc.), if any, are legitimate? To what degree should society restrict the freedom of individuals through laws on matters like abortion, pornography, race, and sexual relations? Class discussions and written exercises are designed to encourage participants to develop views of their own against a background of basic understanding of the readings.
Philosophy, Ethics, & Religion Introduction to Philosophy 1 NPC
Class Description
What is really real? How do I know what I know? Do I have free will? What is the good? These and other speculative questions have troubled the Western mind for millennia. This course follows a topical approach to the history of Western philosophy and focuses on such issues as metaphysics, epistemology, the problem of evil, the existence of God and the philosophical roots of ethics. Students will read from the works of ancient and modern writers such as Plato, Aristotle, Aquinas, Kant, Hume, Bentham, Locke, Arendt and Hill Collins to assist them in coming to their own understanding of these topics. Students will discover what philosophy is and how philosophers question and reason.
Philosophy, Ethics, & Religion Justice and Globalization 1 NPC
Class Description
What does justice demand of us (as individuals and collectives) and how does it apply internationally? In this course, we will explore the following topics: (a) the possibility of individual and collective responsibility in the face of the polarities of great wealth and great suffering across our planet; (b) cosmopolitanism and internationalism as compared to nationalism as underlying different responses to global inequity and conflict; (c) colonialism and imperialism, and responses to them; (d) the arguments for colonial or environmental reparations; and finally (e) consideration and assessment of competing political-economic approaches to globalization and development. In all of this, we will ask ourselves what principles, practices, and institutions hold the most promise for securing a more desirable and just future. Through reading, writing, and collaborative discussion, participants will work together to develop a deeper understanding of how we should approach justice at a global scale. In short, we will explore what we owe others wherever they are on Earth.
Philosophy, Ethics, & Religion Proof and Persuasion 1 NPC
Class Description
A practical introduction to informal logic and to the philosophical study of language. Some of the questions raised are the following: What is the difference between a good argument and a poor one? What are the common fallacies of thought? What are the limitations of logic? What are the meaning of “meaning” and the truth about “truth?” The course stresses the development of individual skill in argument and includes a critical examination of the patterns of thought one encounters every day in magazines, in newspapers, and on television.
Philosophy, Ethics, & Religion Philosophy of Sport 1 NPC
Class Description
Through common readings, journal entries, reflection papers, prepared essays, visitors to class, presentations, and open discussion, we explore answers to questions including: What is the contribution of sports to human flourishing?; How do sports contribute to the construction of individual, group, and national identities?; What role does aesthetic appreciation play in our response to sports as participants and observers?; What does the experience of flow—“being in the zone”—in sports reveal about possibilities of transcendence for humans?
Philosophy, Ethics, & Religion Christianities 1 NPC
Class Description
What is Christianity? How has Christianity changed over time? Why are there so many diferent Christian groups? How are Christianity and power politics connected? This course explores these questions and others, with particular attention paid to diferent ways that Christian groups define themselves in relation to the wider culture, from the ancient world to today and from the Mediterranean through Asia, Africa, Europe, and South and North America. Students will have the opportunity over the term to study in more depth an area of interest. In addition to reading and discussion, the course will potentially include site visits, meetings with religious leaders and films.
Philosophy, Ethics, & Religion Global Islams 1 NPC
Class Description
With nearly two billion practitioners, Islam is one of the fastest growing religious traditions in the world today. Yet, with less than 1 percent of the American population identifying as Muslim, it is also one of the most misunderstood here in the United States. What is Islam? What is not Islam? And who gets to decide? This course aims to introduce students to the vast internal complexities of the Islamic tradition through an exploration of history, scripture, law, film, comic books, and social media. We will investigate and contextualize controversial (and popularly misunderstood) elements of Islamic tradition such as jihad, sharia, and veiling. From Malcolm X to Midnight Mass, and from China to Cairo to Chicago, students will examine the practices, lives, and legacies of Muslims in history and today.
Philosophy, Ethics, & Religion Judaism 1 NPC
Class Description
What is Judaism? Contemporary Jewish communities forge unique identities, religious practices and spiritual paths in religiously and culturally diverse ways. This course introduces Judaism in a variety of forms and explores some of the many questions, challenges and affirmations of the many facets of Jewish identity, practices, core beliefs and ethics in the 21st century. For instance, Jews might practice yoga; sport tattoos; eat organic instead of kosher foods; grow up in an interfaith family celebrating Christmas and Hanukkah; become a rabbi; attend a Jewish LGBTQ wedding; identify as “spiritual” rather than “religious”; only attend synagogue during the Jewish high holidays; or voice doubts about Israeli politics. The class will explore these or other possibilities as a case study of how the Jewish people balance tradition and innovation to remain vibrant in a changing world.
Philosophy, Ethics, & Religion Religions of the Book 1 NPC
Class Description
This course will introduce students to the world of scripture and interpretation in Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. Students will explore the ways that communities look to sacred writings to answer questions such as: How does God communicate with humanity? How does one live a holy life (and why bother)? Is there life after death? What happened at the beginning of time? What will happen at the end? We will examine the scriptures themselves, but also documentaries, music, comic books, art, and films from religious communities around the world, and reflect on how the Bible and Qur’an created and shaped these three interconnected and diverse religious traditions encompassing more than half the world’s population.
Philosophy, Ethics, & Religion Hinduism and Buddhism 1 NPC-Lauren Briggs
Class Description
What is Hinduism? What is Buddhism? This course explores Sanatana Dharma — the duties, practices and traditions that define a Hindu way of life — as well as the traditions, beliefs and spiritual practices based on original teachings attributed to Siddhartha Gautama, the Buddha. As students explore these timeless ways of being and learn about people who embody them, they will encounter concepts of ultimate reality, the (non)self and the purpose of human life that have informed diverse ethical systems and cultures in India, China, Tibet, Korea, Japan and Southeast Asia. Historical and philosophical studies of prominent fgures, such as Mahatma Gandhi and the Dalai Lama, will provide students spaces to refect on their own senses of what it means to live a devoted life. Students will also explore certain ways these religious traditions appear — through ideas, symbols and practices — in America and Europe, as they wonder about contemporary cultural representations of yoga and meditation in the West.
Overly woo white woman who loves to wear "Indian" inspired clothing (Indian from India? "Indian"-Native American? yes.) and greet the class with "Namaste". Smells of white sage a lot.
Philosophy, Ethics, & Religion Paganism Through History 1 Matt
Class Description
Has a reputation as a bit of a bird course; Matt a very easy teacher to sidetrack onto tangents and a very lenient grader.
Philosophy, Ethics, & Religion East Asian Ways of Knowing: Zen Buddhism 1 NPC-Lauren Briggs
Class Description
Zen Buddhism opens up to rich and varied practices of knowing and living. Through reading primary sources, both ancient and modern, and engagement with a range of Zen practices, students in this course gain an appreciation for the religious tradition and its history, as well as the types of knowing that it engenders. Students study koans (Zen training riddles) such as “What is the sound of one hand clapping?” and “What was your original face before your parents were born?” and other manifestations of Zen Buddhism across cultures and times, including contemporary derivations of “Zen” memes in popular culture and social media.
Overly woo white woman who loves to wear "Indian" inspired clothing (Indian from India? "Indian"-Native American? yes.) and greet the class with "Namaste". Smells of white sage a lot.
Philosophy, Ethics, & Religion Mysticism and the Contemplative Traditions 1 NPC
Class Description
How does it feel to commune with the Infnite? What ecstasies can humans experience? What personal and communal transformations result? These are questions of mysticism. It has been said that all religions converge in the contemplative tradition — the great world illuminated by the swamis and yogis of Hinduism, the core meditation practices of the Buddha, the Kabbalist teachers of Judaism, the Sufs of Islam, and the Christian mystics. What can we learn by reflecting on their teachings and their practices? How do they connect with current research on the mind-body connection? How do these make possible a deeper sense of self, or what we might call the “unique self ”? What does it mean to speak of wisdom as a kind of knowledge? We will consider selections from a range of faiths, from the ancient texts of the Upanishads to the poets Rumi and Meister Eckhart to modern writers such as Thomas Merton, Howard Thurman and Pema Chodron.
Philosophy, Ethics, & Religion Criticizing Religion 1 NPC
Class Description
Is there a destructive side to religion? Religion and religions have undoubtedly shaped the lives of individuals and communities around the globe for millennia for the better, but would the world be a better place if we imagined, with John Lennon, a world with no religion? Contemporary examples of the destructive side of religion fill the news on a daily basis. On the other hand, religions around the world have been a driving force for peace, for justice, for compassion, for leading a purposeful life. Many people turn to religion to find resources that provide them with community, values and meaning in their lives. Is religion’s checkered past and present leading to increased secularism? Will science ultimately replace religion? The course will explore scientifc, economic, political, feminist and queer critiques of religion — and their responses — from thinkers such as Friedrich Nietzsche, Fyodor Dostoyevsky, Karl Marx, Mikhail Bakunin, Sigmund Freud, Ayn Rand, Mary Daly, Anthony Pinn, Dan Brown, Ursula LeGuin, A.C. Grayling, and the New Atheists (Richard Dawkins, Christopher Hitchens Sam Harris, and Daniel Dennett), as well as films such as Spotlight and Jesus Camp.
Philosophy, Ethics, & Religion One Nation Under God?: Religious Traditions in America 1 NPC
Class Description
The United States has always been a mix of various peoples and faiths. This course examines the religious traditions that make up the American religious and cultural landscape, focusing on Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Buddhism, Hinduism, etc. The distinctive ethos and practices of each are explored, along with their presence in the daily news. To assist students in experiencing and examining these religious traditions, the course will use make use of visual materials, guest speakers, and church and potentially other site visits, as well as firsthand experiences such as observing Buddhist meditation, a Passover Seder or a Muslim prayer service. Attention is given to students’ understanding of their own background in relation to the diversity of religious expression today.
Philosophy, Ethics, & Religion Comparative Religion 1 NPC
Class Description
Religion is consistently a news item in our world today; it factors into conflicts in North America, Europe, the Middle East, and India, among other places. Catholics are divided on the wisdom of the pope, Jews on the policies of Israel, and Muslims on their relation to modern secularism. But none of these divisions makes sense to outsiders without a basic understanding of the religions involved. In this course, gain a basic understanding of the beliefs and practices of the world’s major religions. Explore the meaning of religious experience, the distinction between myth and history, and the appeal—or not—of ritual. We also will discuss important questions: Why do religious communities split, for example, Sunni and Shiite Islam? What does “law” mean to observant Jews? What do Christians mean by the “Trinity”? Can “nothing” be “something” in Hindu and Buddhist contexts? Is Confucianism a religion at all? These questions and more will enliven our explorations into the major religions of the world.
Physical Education Psionic Self-Defence 1 Charles
Class Description
The psionic self-defense class at XS is geared for all people, not just those with psionic abilities. While it is generally not possible for someone without psionic abilities to thwart a determined psionic assault, it is the case in this class -- as in many self-defense classes -- that the best protection is never getting into the fight in the first place. Given that it is not going to be possible for non-psionics to stop a psionic intrusion, the aim of this class is to help teach students mental discipline and techniques helpful for avoiding notice and keeping unwanted thoughts from surfacing too strongly. This class's goals are to help students order their minds enough to minimize stray surface thoughts that may be overheard by psionic eavesdroppers, to help keep thoughts under control so as not to attract mental scrutiny, to recognize the signs of psionic manipulation, and to learn grounding techniques for maintaining emotional stability in the face of mild psionic influence.
Physical Education Principles of Fitness 1 NPC
Class Description
The Principles of Fitness course is designed for students of all physical abilities. The goal of this course is to provide students with lifelong fitness habits. Students will gain an understanding of the effects of exercise on health and well-being while being able to apply the learned skills to their everyday life. This will be accomplished by introducing students to facilities, equipment and resources that are available on campus. Topics will include resistance training, cardiovascular fitness, warm-up/cool-down, plyometrics and flexibility. Classes will be built around individual and group workouts.
Physical Education Running* 1 NPC
Class Description
The PE running program is designed for students who want to run for fitness. Beginning runners will receive thorough introduction to distance running. Experienced runners will further develop their speed and stamina. Daily runs of 2 to 5 miles will compose the bulk of the training, but alternate modes of training and drills that are essential to strong, injury-free running will also be part of the course.
Physical Education Strength Training & Conditioning* 1 NPC
Class Description
In the strength and conditioning class, students are encouraged to define one or more training goals for the term. What is strength and conditioning? Strength is the ability to produce force, and it is a more durable adaptation than Conditioning, which is comparably transient, and is more concerned with work capacity- how much physical work can be done in a given time period. These two very different physical adaptations require different types of training. You can do either or both, but you must have a plan to improve them. The most important aspects of your goal-setting to consider are Specific, Measurable, and Timely. Students are expected to come to class in exercise clothing, ready to train.
Physical Education Self Defense* 1 NPC
Class Description
This self-defense course is open to all students. This course teaches practical self‑defense skills that give students the experience of facing their fears and finding their power. In this class, students are taught how to avoid altercations, resist intimidation, communicate assertively, and escape potential assaults. Students learn how to set verbal boundaries and de‑escalate potentially dangerous situations. The course will also teach ways to physically defend against a number of threatening scenarios including front confrontations, attacks from the rear, attempted sexual assault, and ground fighting. Scenarios will be empowering, practical, and useful.
Physical Education Pilates* 1 NPC
Class Description
In our Pilates class, students are introduced to beginner level Pilates mat and reformer exercises, with emphasis placed on learning proper Pilates breathing, and developing “core” connection, strength, flexibility, and proper alignment. The class learns how to access their “powerhouse” muscles and how to maintain that engagement throughout movement. Students also become familiar with beginning safe ranges of motion and how to determine when they are ready to increase the challenge by increasing their range of motion.
Physical Education Bouldering* 1 NPC
Class Description
Bouldering is rock climbing stripped down to its raw essentials. Leaving behind ropes and harnesses and just using climbing shoes and a bag of chalk over safety mats. Your challenge is to climb short but tricky bouldering "problems" (a route, or sequence of moves) using balance, technique, and strength.
Physical Education Cardio-Boxing* 1 NPC
Class Description
Cardio-Boxing is a fun and energetic class where students use choreographed cardio-boxing combinations combined with calisthenics and jumping rope to obtain a great aerobic workout. In our state-of-the-art Health and Fitness Center, students go from being taught how to wrap their hands to eventually completing a boxing circuit of approximately 10 rounds using standalone punching bags. Be ready to feel the burn!
Physical Education Swimming* 1 NPC
Class Description
Aquatics are a means to achieve cardiovascular fitness through stroke development and participation in a variety of swimming workout methods.
Physical Education Indoor Cycling* 1 NPC
Class Description
This course is designed to increase muscle strength and improve cardiovascular endurance using state-of-the-art bikes. Students will experience rolling hills, sprints and other drills to give them a great interval workout.
Physical Education Horseback Riding* 1 NPC
Class Description
Physical Education Outdoor Challenge* 1 NPC
Class Description
Outdoor Challenge is a group-oriented, teambuilding program for those who want to be active in the outdoors. Depending on weather conditions, activities may include snowshoeing, cross-country skiing, mountain biking, hiking, canoeing, trail running, high- and low-ropes challenges, obstacle activities, outdoor survival education, camping skills and orienteering.
Science AP Biology 3 Kyinha
Class Description
Material is guided by the College Board's AP Biology curriculum.
Science AP Chemistry 3 NPC
Class Description
Material is guided by the College Board's AP Chemistry curriculum.
Science AP Environmental Science 3 Kyinha
Class Description
Material is guided by the College Board's AP Environmental Science curriculum.
Science AP Physics 1 (Algebra Based) 3 NPC
Class Description
Material is guided by the College Board's AP Physics 1 curriculum.
Science AP Physics 2 (Algebra Based) 3 NPC
Class Description
Material is guided by the College Board's AP Physics 2 curriculum.
Science AP Physics C (Electricity and Magnetism) 3 NPC
Class Description
Material is guided by the College Board's AP Physics C curriculum.
Science AP Physics C (Mechanics) 3 NPC
Class Description
Material is guided by the College Board's AP Physics C curriculum.
Science Animal Behavior 1 NPC
Class Description
Why do some animals live in groups, and others singly? Why are some animals monogamous while others have multiple mates? Who cares for the young? Why do birds sing and wolves howl? In this course, we will begin to answer these questions. We will read a text that provides an introduction to all areas of animal behavior, as well as selected articles. Our focus will be on social behaviors. Using films, we will observe the social behaviors of animals as diverse as termites and wolves. We will use fieldwork to study the role of society in the foraging behavior of honeybees. Students will be required to write a research paper on a topic of their choice.
Science Astronomy 1 NPC
Class Description
Astronomy is the scientific study of the origin, structure, and evolution of the universe and the objects in it. Topics may include patterns and motions in the sky, gravity and orbits, telescopes and light, planetary systems, the birth and death of stars, galaxies, the Big Bang, the search for extraterrestrial life, and the fate of the universe. This class includes a 45-minute lab period one night a week at the Ptolemy Observatory, located on the Xavier's campus. When the lab period is used, compensation time will be given during a daytime class period.
Science Astronomy Research 1 NPC
Class Description
In this course students will spend extensive time in the Xavier's Academy Ptolemy Observatory, where they will learn to operate the telescope, dome, and CCD camera. Students will learn techniques for visual observing, astrophotography, and photometry. Students will engage in research projects designed to provide an introduction to research techniques in astronomy. When appropriate, results will be submitted for publication. In addition to conducting ongoing research projects, the class will take time out to observe interesting current events (observing the pass of a near-Earth asteroid, a recent supernova flare-up, a transit of the ISS across the moon, etc.). In addition, students will be expected to spend several hours a week in the observatory (due to weather constraints, observing nights will vary.)
Science Biology 1 Kyinha
Class Description
This course is theme-based and focused on major biological topics. Studying a core text will be supplemented with other readings, writing assignments, and data analysis and interpretation. Students will learn a variety of study skills and will have an introduction to library research tools. Laboratory experiments and fieldwork are designed to acquaint students with fundamental biological principles and to build skills in the methods and techniques used to elucidate those principles.
Science Chemistry 1 NPC
Class Description
An introduction to the chemical view of the material world, including atomic theory, atomic structure, chemical reactions, the nature of solids, liquids, gases, and solutions, general equilibria, acid-base theories. Emphasis is placed on developing problem-solving skills as well as on making connections between chemical principles and everyday life. A college-level text is used, but the pace of this course is adjusted to ensure that students have ample opportunity to ask questions and work through problems. Laboratory work is an integral part of the course.
Science Ecology 1 NPC
Class Description
Ecology is a field of biology dedicated to the interactions that organisms have with each other and with the nonliving components of their environment. The discipline of ecology helps to explain the abundance and distribution of organisms and issues of biodiversity and extinction and is grounded in evolutionary principles. In this course we will examine how ecological ideas play out in aquatic and terrestrial environments and students will develop skills in experimental design, data analysis and statistics, scientific literacy, and complex systems thinking. Students will also consider the impact of global climate change and other human impacts on the environment and they will have the opportunity to pursue an area of their own interest.
Science Electronics 1 NPC
Class Description
This introduction to electronics is a hands-on, project-oriented course. Students will build a variety of simple devices, including timing circuits, alarms, flashers, amplifers and counters. By designing, building and analyzing these circuits, students will gain a firsthand knowledge of a variety of basic electronic components, including resistors, capacitors, switches, relays, transformers, diodes, transistors and several integrated circuits. Students will use Arduinos throughout the course for analyzing and testing, and as a central piece of their circuit design. Though some experience in programming is helpful, it is not required for this course.
Science Introductory Genetics 1 NPC
Class Description
This course considers the classical and contemporary views of the nature, transmission and function of the hereditary material. Laboratory investigations in plant and animal genetics supplement class discussion.
Science Molecular Genetics 1 NPC
Class Description
This advanced course examines the biochemistry of the gene in greater detail and considers the underlying principles of recombinant DNA technology. Because DNA science is experimental, much of the time available in this course will be devoted to laboratory work learning techniques of DNA isolation, analysis and manipulation.
Science Marine Biology 1 NPC
Class Description
The goal of this class is to give students a field research experience in which they come to understand how to work as a team to conduct experimental studies in marine science. Students will frequently be off campus, where they will be involved in a variety of new and ongoing projects. They will study the structure of intertidal communities, develop hypotheses, and then implement a research study that will provide baseline data for future work in the area. The students will also study lobster biology and the historic management of the fishery so they can start to look critically at the current state of the Maine lobster industry. In the larval settlement project, students will study organisms that recruit on docks and in the intertidal of Penobscot Bay, and consider the role of invasive species and climate change in affecting biodiversity.
Science Mechanics 1 NPC
Class Description
This course study of the natural laws relating space, time, matter, and energy. Topics include measurement, motion, forces, energy, momentum, and rotation. We want students to understand the behavior of matter, and to become aware of the importance of the physical laws of nature. The approach to the material is highly mathematical. Students will use spreadsheets and graphing programs to analyze laboratory data.
Science Biology of Cancer 1 NPC
Class Description
Cancer is the second leading cause of death in the United States and this disease affects many families. The profound impact of cancer on society has been the driving force behind major research advances and led to a better understanding of cell biology. Understanding the basic biology of cancer and its impact on the human body has led to more effective treatments, enhanced detection methods, and the development of prevention strategies. This course will provide an overview of the biology of cancer. The course will focus on the genetic and molecular basis of cancer. We will explore the role of mutations in cancer cells and how they lead to the deregulation of essential biological processes such as cell division, programmed cell death, and differentiation. We will also examine the interface of cancer and medicine. Classical treatment methods will be compared with newer treatment modalities, such as targeted therapies. The challenges associated with diagnosing cancers, preventing cancers, and curing cancers will also be discussed in light of current technological advances such as genomics and bio‑informatics.
Science Evolution 1 NPC
Class Description
Evolutionary biologist Theodosius Dobzhansky wrote in 1973 that “Nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of evolution,” and his statement still holds true today. Students in this course will read Jonathan Weiner’s Pulitzer Prize-winning book The Beak of the Finch, which documents an ongoing study of evolution in Darwin’s finches on the Galapagos Islands. They will also read selected chapters from Sean Carroll’s text on the burgeoning field of Evolutionary Developmental Biology (Evo Devo), Endless Forms Most Beautiful. We will also consider Darwinian fitness in human populations. Labs will include an investigation of avian comparative anatomy and a study of students’ own mitochondrial DNA using molecular techniques such as PCR and gel electrophoresis.
Science Fluid Mechanics 1 NPC
Class Description
Students taking this course will learn about fluid statics and dynamics. Dimensional analysis and derivation of Bernoulli and Navier-Stokes equations will provide the methods necessary for solving problems.
Social Sciences AP Comparative Government & Politics 3 Tian-shin
Class Description
Material is guided by the College Board's AP Comparative Government & Politics curriculum.
Social Sciences AP Macroeconomics 3 NPC
Class Description
Material is guided by the College Board's AP Macroeconomics curriculum.
Social Sciences AP Microeconomics 3 NPC
Class Description
Material is guided by the College Board's AP Microeconomics curriculum.
Social Sciences AP Psychology 3 NPC
Class Description
Material is guided by the College Board's AP Psychology curriculum.
Social Sciences AP US Government & Politics 3 NPC
Class Description
Material is guided by the College Board's AP US Government & Politics curriculum.
Social Sciences Cultural Anthropology 1 NPC
Class Description
Anthropologists study humans as both biological and cultural creatures. This scholarly orientation raises many fascinating questions. To what degree does culture shape our actions and ideas? Are we primarily products of biological nature or cultural nurture? Can cultural norms make rational people act irrationally? Are there universal human rights or do cultures dictate what we think is ethical? These debates are critical for understanding human interaction and have significant application in fields ranging from law to medicine. Among the topics considered are: “the mind” and epistemology; discipline, law and rules; human bodies and communication; social taboos; ritual patterns of meaning; notions of cleanliness and defilement; festivals; and mythology. These elements of cultural life will be explored in social settings spanning the globe, but also within our own community at Xavier's. Much of the course attempts to contextualize 20th- century anthropological methods against the foil of postmodern critiques.
Social Sciences Intro Psychology 1 NPC
Class Description
Students in this course study a range of explanations for human thought, behavior and emotion. Readings, projects, demonstrations and class discussions facilitate exploration of this fascinating and evolving field. Specifc areas of focus include: the nervous system and brain functions; human development; emotion; learning and memory; social psychology; and addiction. Case studies of psychopathology, as well as the diagnosis and treatment of mental illness, round out the course. Independent research and projects allow students to focus on specifc topics of interest.
Social Sciences Environmental Economics 1 NPC
Class Description
This course is a case-based introduction to using economics to look at some of the major environmental problems in the 21st century. In this topic-driven course, students will learn about the role of market failure in environmental issues, the challenges of pricing environmental goods, and ways in which economic theory can be used to help solve these problems. Topics such as overfishing, global warming, water pollution, and others will be covered from the angles of science and economics. Special consideration of the unique role that social justice plays in many of the topics will be considered as well. Students will be assessed on problem sets, essays, in-class discussions, and an individual research project.
Social Sciences Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies 1 NPC
Class Description
Pink is for boys and blue is for girls. At least it used to be. We will explore the ways that our everyday lives are guided by socially prescribed gender norms. Through the study of the historical production and contemporary interpretation of the categories of “woman” and “man,” “female” and “male,” “heterosexual” and “homosexual,” we will seek to better under- stand how gender-based inequalities have evolved and are both supported and simultaneously contested in societies across the world. In addition, we will seek to gain a better understanding of the ways that gender, sex, and sexuality inform local, national, and global efforts to improve the lives of individuals and to achieve social justice for entire communities. We also will explore the intersection of sexuality, gender, sex, race, ethnicity, class, and other forms of identity. Through a variety of sources—written documents, social media, film—this course will introduce students to a wide variety of issues across disciplines, including historical, anthropological, medical, legal, and popular culture. We also will explore contemporary uses of social media as sites of research, activism, and networking.
Class is SUPER popular with a Certain brand of young feminist-leaning students but do Not take it if you are trans it is like a small incubator for baby terfs.
Social Sciences Critical Race Theory: The American Dream Deferred 1 NPC
Class Description
Historically, American society does not recognize race as the language of class. In this discussion-based seminar, students will examine ways in which race and class intersect. Critical race theory eschews the goal of assimilation into current social structure and instead looks at the experience of the “outsider” as a lighthouse that illuminates structural problems within American Society. Students will use Critical Race Theory to analyze historical legal cases—including the nation’s first successful school desegregation in 1931 where Mexican Americans sued San Diego, CA public schools for access and the famous 1957 court-ordered desegre- gation of Little Rock, AR High school—in addition to contemporary legal cases of “reverse discrimination” such as Fisher v. The University of Texas in 2012. Students will ultimately explore the question, “Is the American dream a structural fallacy that has explanation for success but none for failure?” Assignments will consist of selected readings, reflection pieces, article reviews, and a research paper.
Social Sciences Urban Crisis 1 NPC
Class Description
“All politics,” Tip O’Neill concluded, “is local.” In this seminar, students will put this oft-cited sentiment to the test by examining the dynamic relationship between local, state, and federal politics. American cities—the key sites of contestation for many policy debates in the decades following WWII—will serve as the lens through which students access the lived experience and ramifications of broader national political trends, events, crises, and movements. Students will deploy the methodological tools of urban history to contemplate the cultural, spatial, and social reality of urban environments, and examine the contingent historical development—and impact—of urban policies on social and economic inequality in modern American cities. Some of the issues covered include suburbanization in Detroit, the War on Poverty in Las Vegas, the War on Crime in New York, and the War on Drugs in Los Angeles.
Social Sciences The Olympics 1 NPC
Class Description
This course will examine the origins and evolution of the modern Olympic games via the following topics: impact on politics and society, equity and ethics, controversies and scandals, inspirational stories and the role of athletes as national icons, and lessons of sportsmanship. Students will engage with a variety of sources across disciplines. Independent research and analytical writing skills will be emphasized
Vocational Tech Collision Repair, Paint, and Refinishing* 1 NPC (Scott Summers)
Class Description
Students meet two hours daily for classroom and laboratory instruction. The students receive training in the fundamental and manipulative skills related to auto body repair and acquire the knowledge to become competent in the field of auto body repair. Areas covered are body frames, fender and bumper, removing windows and repairing damaged panels, replacing windows and windshields, welding light metals, filling with lead or plastic, estimating and pricing repair work, and spray painting. This course can be taken a maximum of twice for credit. This course provides instruction and training necessary for I-CAR student certification(s).
Mr. Summers is takes safety seriously -- almost every year someone is removed from his course for making the same dangerous error twice. Not a charismatic lecturer, often very blunt in feedback. Most students who make it to the end of the course pass the certification exams on the first try.
Vocational Tech Automotive Technology I: Maintenance and Light Repair 2 NPC (Scott Summers)
Class Description
The course offers students theory and experience in most all phases of automotive drive-train repair. Students spend approximately 75 percent of their time with hands-on training and the remaining time is devoted to classroom instruction. Shop management and youth leadership are also incorporated into the course of study. This course provides instruction and training necessary for ASE student certification(s).
Mr. Summers is takes safety seriously -- almost every year someone is removed from his course for making the same dangerous error twice. Not a charismatic lecturer, often very blunt in feedback. Most students who make it to the end of the course pass the certification exams on the first try.
Vocational Tech Automotive Technology II: Automotive Service 2 NPC (Scott Summers)
Class Description
This course is a continuation of Automotive Technology but also includes new concepts and innovations, new engine types, studies of anti-pollutant equipment on automobile engines, and computerized engine analysis. This course provides instruction and training necessary for ASE student certification(s).
Mr. Summers is takes safety seriously -- almost every year someone is removed from his course for making the same dangerous error twice. Not a charismatic lecturer, often very blunt in feedback. Most students who make it to the end of the course pass the certification exams on the first try.
Vocational Tech Welding 1 NPC (Scott Summers)
Class Description
This course will allow students to fortify and increase their knowledge of welding procedures and skills used in project construction through class assignments and projects. Topics covered may include: oxyfuel cutting/heating/welding, Shielded Metal Arc Welding (SMAW), Gas Metal Arc Welding (GMAW), Flux-cored Arc Welding (FCAW), plasma arc cutting, safety, and metal fabrication. In addition, record keeping, communication, employability, and human relation skills will be taught. This course will allow students to gain knowledge and skills that promote personal development and career success through involvement in the FFA. This course provides instruction and training necessary for the ASW Certified Welder certification.
Mr. Summers is takes safety seriously -- almost every year someone is removed from his course for making the same dangerous error twice. Not a charismatic lecturer, often very blunt in feedback. Most students who make it to the end of the course pass the certification exams on the first try.
Vocational Tech Metal Fabrication* 1 NPC (Scott Summers)
Class Description
This hands-on course will build on skills developed in Welding in the form of guided fabrication projects. Course hours will be split between classroom instruction in reading and creating shop drawings and independent work on instructor approved projects.
Mr. Summers is takes safety seriously -- almost every year someone is removed from his course for making the same dangerous error twice. Not a charismatic lecturer, often very blunt in feedback. Advanced students in this course are often connected with potential employers in New York City and surrounding areas.
Vocational Tech Carpentry 1 NPC
Class Description
Vocational Tech Drafting 1 NPC
Class Description
Vocational Tech Bicycle Maintenance and Repair 1 NPC
Class Description
Vocational Tech Culinary Arts: Desserts and Baked Goods 1 Jax
Class Description
Vocational Tech Culinary Arts: From Soups to Steaks 1 NPC
Class Description
Vocational Tech Horticulture (Decorative) 1 NPC
Class Description
Vocational Tech Horticulture (Edible) 1 NPC
Class Description
Vocational Tech Beekeeping 1 NPC
Class Description
Interdisciplinary: History and Religion Paganism Through History 1 Matt
Class Description
Interdisciplinary: History and Social Science Fashion in History 1 NPCs
Class Description
“There is something about fashion that can make people very nervous,” remarks Anna Wintour in the 2009 film The September Issue. Fashion studies is an interdisciplinary field, but one that retains a study of the past as central. It asks the question, “Does what people wear matter?” More than any other facet of material culture, an interest in fashion is often dismissed as trivial or seen as an emblem of superficiality. However, clothing represents far more than narcissism or the physiological need to cover oneself for warmth and safety. From headwear to footwear, fashion can communicate what we do, who we think we are or would like to be, where we are from, and what we care about. Fashion can be used as a lens to consider change. Using iconic fashion items from history, this course will explore what they communicate about global cultures, historical moments, social and political status, economic clout, gender, and identity.
Interdisciplinary: Science and Vo. Tech Regenerative Agriculture 1 NPCs
Class Description
This course will explore agricultural practices that aim to have positive environmental impacts, such as improving soil heath, increasing native species diversity and sequestering carbon. It will also explore agricultural practices that aim to have positive social impacts, such as reducing food insecurity, honoring ancestral farming practices and promoting economic wellbeing of local communities. Scientific topics such as conventional versus organic systems, seed banks, closed loop food production, permaculture, soil science, nitrogen cycles and plant physiology will be investigated. Emphasis will be placed on experiential learning on local farms and campus. The course includes a service learning component and potential for research projects.
Interdisciplinary: Science and Ethics Medicinal Drugs 1 NPCs
Class Description
Medicinal chemistry provides a bridge from the periodic table to the array of natural and synthesized biologically active agents available today. The ongoing development of medicinal drugs aims to integrate new scientific discoveries with precision-based strategies for treating individuals as well as large populations. A key goal in the design of new drugs for the pharmaceutical industry is to treat symptoms without the harm of side efects. Moreover, the scale-up and production of medicines are dependent on public health investment, while social and economic factors underpin access. This course will take a deeper look at the major classes of pharmaceutical drugs, including hypertension, high cholesterol, oncology, depression, diabetes, asthma and vaccines. How companies currently distribute drugs, determine pricing and ensure equity of access will be examined. Widely used compounds such as nicotine, nonsteroidal anti-infammatory agents, contraceptives, cannabinoids and pain suppressors will be explored based on their chemical structure and its relationship to function. Lab activities will provide experience with computational drug design, controlled-release drug delivery systems, pharmacokinetics and nuclear medicine.
Interdisciplinary: Science and English Nuclear Semiotics 1 NPCs
Class Description
Highly radioactive nuclear materials are an accumulating component of our physical world. These materials will be actively decaying and affecting living things for thousands of years to come, possibly even millions of years. Nuclear semiotics is about the semantics of nuclear science to answer the question: how can humans of the 21st Century warn humans thousands of years from now about the location and nature of these materials? Though this question has been asked since the late 1980’s, by minds including Carl Sagan, there is no conclusive answer to this. Solving the nuclear semiotics problem may involve combining knowledge of materials science, nuclear particle physics, linguistics, symbols and cryptography, artistic expression, data science, engineering, and sociology. This course seeks to explore the fusion of these concepts and develop ideas of how to answer the question: how do we warn our future selves about our current choices?
Interdisciplinary: Science and Computer Science Robotics 1 NPCs
Class Description
Students in this course will learn to use a microcomputer to control output devices and interpret input sensors. Students will complete a series of small projects that will culminate with a working autonomous robot. The initial focus of the course requires students to build and analyze several micro-controlled devices. Students will learn fundamental engineering skills such as programming the microcomputer and building simple electronic circuits. The middle portion of the course will feature the construction of an autonomous robot that uses a microcomputer and several sensors to make navigational decisions. The final weeks of the course will require students to independently research, design and implement a system or systems that will increase the capabilities of their robot. Previous programming experience is recommended, but not required.
Interdisciplinary: Science and Ethics Water: The Science and Story of Water Around the World 1 NPCs
Class Description
How has water and humanity intersected around the world? Using an interdisciplinary lens, explore the science and ethics behind water scarcity and access, the chemistry and ecology of water systems, and the role water plays in literature, art and religion of populations around the world. Students will use current data and news sources to understand the pressing issues surrounding water rights and the intersection with rights for marginalized groups, study primary sources from around the world to examine the way water weaves through religious ritual and artistic expression, and create their own water based installations. Students may also travel to see an Aga Khan exhibit centered on the role of water in Islamic culture. The course will culminate in a final independent project exploring one aspect of water from multiple lenses.
Interdisciplinary: Science and Vo. Tech Molecular Gastronomy: The Science of Food 1 Jax & NPCs
Class Description
The “science of food” food may seem like a new fad, but it is really the logical extension of centuries of the study. The understanding of how grapes are transformed into wine and champagne has been known for centuries. The production of cheese by the use of acids, enzymes, and bacteria has likewise been handed down through generations and has only recently been both “lost,” and then “rediscovered.” This class will investigate both the traditional aspects of food science—like how cheese is made or bread is baked—as well as cutting edge ideas such as how apple juice can be made into “caviar” and how shrimp can be made into “noodles.” A significant lab component will allow students to create many of these foods, and laboratories will be held in the school kitchen so that results can be tasted.
Interdisciplinary: Science and English Science as Story: Communicating Science in the 21st Century 1 NPC
Class Description
What is science communication, and how can science storytelling both educate and entertain an audience? In this course, students will learn to define, recognize, and critique common science communication media ranging from TikToks to Ted Talks. Students will practice essential science communication skills including idea/topic generation, script writing and editing, graphics and video design, and hosting/presenting. In each of these skills, research methods will form the foundation of the exploration as students gain expertise in their particular field of science being communicated. Through discussions and readings, students will also work through the ethical framing of these media and engage in case studies involving equity on both the audience and creator sides of the field. By the end of the mod, students will have produced a science communication portfolio by working independently and in small groups, and will share these media products with an online audience platform of their choosing.
Interdisciplinary: Science and English Astrobiology: Life Among the Stars 1 NPC
Class Description
We invite you to embark on a journey to explore the field of astrobiology, the study of the origin, evolution, and distribution of life in the universe, on and beyond planet Earth. We will begin our exploration by studying the fundamentals of relevant sciences—physics, astronomy, chemistry, and biology—and will then apply these sciences to understand the potential requirements and limitations of life on Earth as well as on other planets and moons in our solar system. As we learn about historical and current efforts to detect life on these bodies, we will consider objects resident in our own solar system, including Mars, the moons of Jupiter, the moons of Saturn, and other solar system bodies such as Ceres and Pluto. Next, we will expand our view to include other possible abodes of life outside of our solar system as discovered by modern astronomers and modern instrumentation (i.e., the Hubble and Kepler space telescopes). Finally, we will examine the role of fictional alien biology on the human imagination through literature, film, and music.
Interdisciplinary: Science and Performance Applied Anatomy in Motion 1 NPC
Class Description
This course combines the structural dynamics of physiology and dance as a means to investigate how the two disciplines interact. By approaching movement from the perspectives of both science and dance, the student will examine how anatomy informs dance and how dance is an expression of human structures and systems.
Interdisciplinary: Science and Art Anatomy and Physiology 1 NPC
Class Description
This upper-level biology class explores the complexity of human physiology. Students will be asked to use visual arts and graphic design skills to document many aspects of the mystery and wonder of the human body systems. The course will involve independent research on the systems of students’ choosing, using visual and creative ways to present the information they find. Students will research one of the body systems in its entirety or in detail. The systems to be considered are the nervous, the cardiovascular, the respiratory, the skeletal, the endocrine and muscle, or the digestive, reproductive, and lymphatic systems. Students are required to think independently and devise a final project of their own design that incorporates very clear scientific understanding of the body systems and their form and function.
Interdisciplinary: Philosophy & Phys. Ed Yoga as Meditation* 1 NPC - Lauren Briggs
Class Description
Yoga at Xavier's is taught in several ways, and choosing one is a matter of preference. Yoga is an individual practice and all students are welcome regardless of previous experience. In both types of yoga, joints, muscles and internal organs beneft from movements that stimulate often-neglected areas of the body. You can expect to improve overall mobility, strength and balance and will probably enjoy stress reduction and a greater sense of well-being, too. Yoga as Meditation, a style sometimes referred to as “gentle yoga,” focuses on learning and holding classic asanas (poses), working with the breath (pranayama) and practicing mediation skills in a calm and peaceful environment, allowing the mind and body to quiet. Vinyasa Yoga is for the student who is seeking the same overall benefts as listed above but through a more active sequence of movements.
Overly woo white woman who loves to wear "Indian" inspired clothing (Indian from India? "Indian"-Native American? yes.) and greet the class with "Namaste". Smells of white sage a lot. Noticeably hesistant to correct form of physical mutants in the class.
Interdisciplinary: Philosophy & Phys. Ed Vinyasa Yoga* 1 NPC - Lauren Briggs
Class Description
Yoga at Xavier's is taught in several ways, and choosing one is a matter of preference. Yoga is an individual practice and all students are welcome regardless of previous experience. In both types of yoga, joints, muscles and internal organs beneft from movements that stimulate often-neglected areas of the body. You can expect to improve overall mobility, strength and balance and will probably enjoy stress reduction and a greater sense of well-being, too. Yoga as Meditation, a style sometimes referred to as “gentle yoga,” focuses on learning and holding classic asanas (poses), working with the breath (pranayama) and practicing mediation skills in a calm and peaceful environment, allowing the mind and body to quiet. Vinyasa Yoga is for the student who is seeking the same overall benefts as listed above but through a more active sequence of movements.
Overly woo white woman who loves to wear "Indian" inspired clothing (Indian from India? "Indian"-Native American? yes.) and greet the class with "Namaste". Smells of white sage a lot. Noticeably hesistant to correct form of physical mutants in the class.
Interdisciplinary: English & Religion The Old Testament 1 NPC
Class Description
“In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. ...” So begins one of the most infuential books in human history. From ancient times until the present, Jews, Christians and Muslims have grappled with the cosmic questions, universal myths, compelling laws and dramatic narratives of the Hebrew Bible, also known as the Old Testament. It is a book that is both timeless and timely. In this course, students will gain an appreciation of the historical, political and social context from which the Hebrew Bible emerged, and will explore the narratives’ eternal themes, such as creation and destruction, rivalry and loyalty, love and betrayal, doubt and faith, freedom and captivity, and forgiveness and revenge, as well as delve into the ethical and legal teachings that have served as a major foundation of Western civilization.
Interdisciplinary: English & Religion The New Testament 1 NPC
Class Description
The New Testament, which has been called “the most widely read, quoted, debated, maligned and believed book in Western civilization,” will be the focus of this course. Students will read and explore the New Testament; study the life of Jesus, the travels and letters of Paul, and the book of Revelation; and consider these both in their historical context and in contemporary literature and films.
Interdisciplinary: Science & Religion Epistemology 1 NPC
Class Description
Epistemology is a philosophical term meaning “the study of knowledge.” This course explores how we know what we know about the world around us and within us. Questions engaged over the term include: What is knowledge? What differentiates and connects scientifc, literary, philosophical and artistic ways of knowing? What makes someone good at “knowing”? For that matter, what does it mean to be a student? The class explores how different modes of inquiry and experience can be distinguished from each other and then integrated into our understanding of knowledge. Class materials include readings from the Western philosophical tradition of reason (Plato, Descartes and Kant), the scientifc revolution (Galileo, Newton and Einstein), postmodernism (Illich and Abram) and literature (Dostoyevsky and Woolf). Students will also experience the visual and performing arts, take a night trip to the observatory, and engage in contemplative or meditative traditions, including practices known as “mindfulness” or “mind-body work” (Zen Roshi Jan Chozen Bays).
Interdisciplinary: English & Religion Religion and Popular Culture 1 NPC
Class Description
Images, ideas, stereotypes and symbol systems of religion surround us in popular culture, whether in movies, television shows, sports, fashion, the internet, music or literature. From Disney and Harry Potter to Black Panther, from rock ‘n’ roll to hip-hop, the materials for this course will be drawn from a wide range of media. Through the lens of American popular culture, this course introduces students to the academic study of religion by exploring the world’s religions and such topics as the problem of evil, the afterlife, myth and the nature of the sacred. The course will conclude by inviting students to explore an expression of religion and popular culture that deeply interests them.
Interdisciplinary: English & Religion Faith and Doubt 1 NPC
Class Description
This course invites students to an exploration through fiction and personal narrative of the depth and complexity of religious experience in its many forms from traditional belief through skepticism. The texts we will read range from some classics in this field to contemporary cultural selections. We will explore the timeless questions of the human condition, such as self-discovery, sufering, mortality, goodness, faith and doubt, the quest for meaning and the development of a spiritual self. At the end of the term, students will have the opportunity to expound on these themes in their own lives as they write a mini-meditation or spiritual autobiography for their final class paper.
Interdisciplinary: Philosophy & Science Science as a Human Activity 1 NPC
Class Description
Though often seen as a vast, impersonal enterprise, science depends upon the effort and intelligence of human beings. In this course we will ask fundamental questions about how and why people pursue scientific inquiry. To this end, we will read the works of Francis Bacon, Rene Descartes, and Baruch Spinoza, as well as works by scientists and scholars like Albert Einstein, Sigmund Freud, and Max Weber. We also will consult historians of science such as Thomas Kuhn and Steven Shapin in order to understand science as a social enterprise. In these ways, we will examine the moral and intellectual aspirations of scientific work and the nature of science, above all, as a human activity.
Interdisciplinary: History & Science Pox & Pestilence: Disease and Medicine in the United States 1 NPC
Class Description
In recent years, historians have begun to understand the impact of disease on the human story and have incorporated it into the more traditional narratives. In common with other parts of the world, the history of the United States has been profoundly influenced by infectious disease. In this course we invite you to come along on a multi-disciplinary journey to explore the impact of disease on the American experience in the 19th and 20th centuries. After exploring the pre-contact situation in the Americas, we will focus on syphilis, smallpox, bacterial sepsis, cholera, yellow fever, malaria, tuberculosis, influenza, polio, HIV/AIDS, COVID-19 and bioterrorism agents such as anthrax. Students will research the role these diseases played in the social, military, and political history of the United States together with the science and medicine that developed in response to them. This is a research seminar and students will use a variety of sources to write a term paper. There is no final examination.
Interdisciplinary: Ethics & Social Sciences Feminist Philosophies 1 NPC
Class Description
This course will address feminist moral and political theories. There is no singular ‘feminism’, and feminists disagree with each other on the answers to many of those moral and political claims. We will survey a variety of feminisms, including liberal and radical feminisms, womanism, and others. The course will also cover topics including sex and gender, the nature of oppression, intersectionality (including discussions of race, disability, gender identity, and class), and sexual ethics. Special topics will be chosen by students for further focus, but could include topics such as body shaming, trafficking, or understandings of masculinity
Interdisciplinary: Ethics & Computer Science Silicon Valley Ethics: Case Studies in the High-Tech World 1 NPC
Class Description
In a world where technology permeates almost every aspect of our lives — the internet, smartphones, thousands of apps, cloud-based voice systems, screens in our classrooms, artificial intelligence, robotics, the gig economy, video gaming, virtual reality, and numerous other products and applications currently under development — what ethical challenges are raised by their ubiquity? Through a series of case studies in an industry where a well-known motto is “move fast and break things,” this course will explore whether ethical considerations have kept pace with evolving technologies. Where does goodness fit in the knowledge revolution? If we have “outsourced our brain to Google,” as some would claim, have we also outsourced our ethics to it and other big tech companies? When we do a Google search, is Google also searching us? What are the ethical considerations of what companies do with our information in this so-called “surveillance economy”? What are the ethical consequences associated with posting personal information on social media such as Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat or WeChat, and who has access to that information and for what purposes? Using specific case studies drawn from the vast and complicated world of technology, this course will assist students in identifying these various ethical issues and in developing strategies to deal with them. To assist students in identifying some of the ethical challenges that technology presents, the course explores chapters from works such as Ruha Benjamin’s Race After Technology, Safya Noble’s Algorithms of Oppression or Cathy O’Neil’s Weapons of Math Destruction.
Interdisciplinary: Mathematics & Social Sciences Media as a Mirror: A Statistical and Visual Approach to Deconstructing False Narratives 1 NPC
Class Description
Who does the media say we are? What does it mean if we are seeing our reflections in a false media mirror? How can we analyze and describe the types of distortions that we are seeing?

Students will use a statistical and visual art approach to explore the portrayal of various demographics in the media. How are non-dominant groups such as women, racial and ethnic minorities and LGBT people in the media portrayed? How are dominant groups portrayed? How do these stories shape the narratives in which we all live?

Students will examine metrics such as screen time, dialogue, and casting through statistical tools such as t-tests, chi-square tests, and linear regressions to reveal the underlying distortions in what we see. They will then use visual art techniques such as compilation, montage, and the film essay to explore and deconstruct clichés and stereotypes and create graphs of discovered data, trends and patterns to explore and process the data. The final project will be a self-portrait that explores the ideas of false mirrors versus authentic narrative.
Interdisciplinary: Math & Visual Art Ordering Chaos 1 Jax & NPC
Class Description
This class is an Integrated Studies course designed to explore the connections and overlap between math and art. Using math and visual arts skills, students will explore a variety of questions, assumptions, projects, and theories that challenge stereotypes about math and art. This class aims to build resilience in young scholars who enjoy problem-solving. Students are asked to take academic and intellectual risks by exploring ideas and approaches that are out of their comfort zone and to practice self-motivation by staying engaged with the class activities and homework assignments. This class is open to students of all grades.
Interdisciplinary: Math & Computer Science Math Modeling 1 NPC
Class Description
The aim of this class is to introduce students to the basic concepts of applied statistics and data science. Students will learn how to clean and filter data, analyze large data sets, how to utilize math modeling programs, data visualizations techniques, and how to create and interpret math models. Though coding will be utilized in this course, no experience with coding is required.
Interdisciplinary: English & Spanish The Sky Is Falling: Magical Realism in Latin American Literature and Beyond 1 NPC
Class Description
What if you entered a library with infinite titles, endless corridors, and duplicate copies? What if a speck in the sky turned out to be a ceiling, one that got lower and lower with each passing day? What if your new next-door neighbor seemed remarkably—even eerily—like a future version of yourself? In this course, we will explore the broad umbrella of magical realism, a literary genre in which primarily realistic stories contain some element of magic, as well as varying alternative fictions. Each of our texts will take the recognizable world and add unsolved mysteries, the supernatural, or unexplained phenomena to complicate our understanding of reality, as well as our characters’ experiences and emotional states. We will explore how and why authors choose to manipulate reality and examine the effects on our understanding of a character’s motive and identity. Using a broad scope of writers and traditions, we will address Sigmund Freud’s “uncanny,” as well as Da Chaon’s “spooky” and Margaret Atwood’s “speculative fiction.” In keeping with magical realism’s roots, we will begin the term with midcentury Latin American writers such as Jorge Luis Borges and Gabriel Garcia Marquez, and then expand our scope to include Kelly Link, Shirley Jackson, and Jean Rhys, among many others.
Interdisciplinary: History & Social Sciences Borders: Immigration, Migration and National Boundaries 1 NPC
Class Description
This course examines how borders shape our world. Whether these are internal or external, societal or national, we all encounter barriers, but we do not all experience them in the same way. From the establishment of Europe to the discovery of the North American continent, from the Scramble for Africa to the Islamic State, and from the declarations of independence by former colonies, the development of borders has played a key role in geopolitical, religious, racial, and cultural matters. The course looks at nationality, identity, and the meaning of nationalism. It examines the lines drawn by politics, race, religion, class, and education, that lead to the creation of separate communities. This course addresses the nature of rights; natural, national, and human that emanate from the recognition of borders and that determine their legitimacy. Rights give rise to conflict, and when it comes to living spaces, these disputes are even more contentious.
Interdisciplinary: History & Social Sciences Decolonizing Women: Shattering Oppression 1 NPC
Class Description
This course examines the colonization of women in disparate societies around the globe. Whether by imperialist forces, colonial occupation, war, patriarchy, dictatorship, or political movements among others, women have encountered a super-imposed culture that has warranted adaptations and transformations. This in turn has given rise to internal and external resistance. This course seeks to examine the origins and nature of these movements across the globe that have been generated by women for women. Incorporating their specific national, cultural, and traditional histories, this course will enable our students to learn about the impact colonization has had, and in some cases continues to have, on the development of women’s rights in regions far removed from their own. They will be able to make comparisons between their own (native) women’s movements, whether national or regional and establish underlying connections between the movements on the whole. This course will also focus on the question of location; how does the location of a women’s movement influence its success? What relevance do culturally specific laws, common law, and traditional societies have on the emergence of women’s rights and movements from within their communities?
Interdisciplinary: English & History Revolutionary Russia 1 NPC
Class Description
This course examines Russian history from the Decembrist uprising of 1825 to Stalin’s show trials and the destruction of the Old Bolsheviks in the late 1930s. After a brief survey of autocracy and orthodoxy in Old Russia and westernization under Peter the Great, students focus on the 19th and early 20th centuries, with emphasis on the French Revolution and the Napoleonic Wars, the development of the revolutionary tradition, the rise of Marxism, the Bolshevik Revolution, the Civil War, Marxist-Leninist theory in practice, and Stalin’s dictatorship. Special attention is given to Russian literature, with works by Pushkin, Gogol, Turgenev, Dostoyevsky, Tolstoy, Chekhov and Koestler.
Interdisciplinary: History & World Languages Roman History for Latin Students 1 NPC
Class Description
This course provides a deeper historical background to the world of the authors that students will read in their Latin courses. Beginning with Roman state and urban formation of the early Iron Age, students will use primary and secondary sources to study in depth a selection of topics from the first millennium BCE. Students will also read primary sources in the original Latin language and finish the term with a role-playing opportunity examining the collapse of the Roman Republic.
Interdisciplinary: History & Religion The Holocaust: The Human Capacity for Good and Evil 1 NPC
Class Description
How did the Holocaust happen? How could some people commit such heinous crimes, while others remained bystanders, and still others risked their lives to save innocent people? We will consider these questions and many more as we examine the Holocaust from the perspective of the human capacity for good and evil. Discussions of human psychology and behavior, as well as the religious and historical sources of anti-Semitism, will be examined as background to the events of the 1930s and 1940s. We will also consider the memory of the Holocaust in survivor testimony and in more contemporary efforts to memorialize, represent and reckon with the historical events. The course will culminate with a project of each student’s own design.
Interdisciplinary: English & Social Sciences Queer Literature & Identities 1 NPC
Class Description
This course approaches American literature with an emphasis on the ways in which non-heterosexual and non-cisgender identities and experiences have been represented in post-Stonewall (post-1969) writing. Despite the actual lived range and combination of gender identity, sexual orientation, and sexual practice, mainstream heterosexuality attempts to confine sexuality to a rigid duality where observation of a person’s secondary sex characteristics are supposed to infer hir (gender neutral pronoun) gender identity and sexual practice. In this context, the term “queer” is invoked to describe any possible combination of gender identity, sexual orientation, and sexual practice that challenges the norm presented by heterosexuality. By reading essays and literature by self-identified queer writers, we will challenge and redefine the concepts of sex, gender, masculinity, femininity, diversity, oppression, and empowerment. By the end of this mod, we will have developed a greater awareness of issues concerning gender and sexual identity.
Interdisciplinary: English & Social Sciences Lockdown 1 NPC
Class Description
Prisons are a growth industry today in the United States. This course, through a blending of literature, film, and social sciences, will examine incarceration. By reading novels, memoirs, and poetry and viewing a few films, we can gain a greater appreciation of the psychological effects of these institutions and the power of art as a means of coping with them (touching then on witnessing and testimonials). We will ask questions about ethics and justice, about self-expression, and about social control. The course will include some experiential learning in the form of trips to a nearby jail and a nearby youth court. Some possible titles may include: Orange Is the New Black, Gould’s Book of Fish, The Trial, Brothers and Keepers, A Place to Stand, One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich, and Zeitoun.
Interdisciplinary: English & History Change Agents: Examining Advocacy, Audience, and Impact in Literature and the Arts 1 NPC
Class Description
This course will focus on the intersection of literature and activism. After defining our key terms in relation to questions of representation, propaganda, branding, and witnessing, we will delve into case studies involving civil rights and social justice, and environmental activism. We will read fiction, poetry, and drama—thinking about questions of audience and impact. In addition, music, performance, and visual arts may provide further contexts to understanding the relationship between literature and activism. Writers may include James Baldwin, Don L. Lee, Alice Walker, Richard Powers, Annie Dillard, etc. Students will choose a cause and investigate a range of artistic acts of activism—and perhaps produce some of their own. Projects may include the potential for collaborations here on campus and beyond.
Interdisciplinary: English & History History & Literature of the Haitian Revolution 1 NPC
Class Description
Few events have been as transformative and far reaching in effect—yet so untaught and unlearned across the humanities—as the Haitian Revolution, which occurred from 1791 to 1804. This interdisciplinary course will investigate the revolution and its legacy and attempt to address, at least in part, the monumental significance of the only successful large-scale slave rebellion in the Atlantic World. By 1804, the newly independent Haitians, freed by their own hands, had won for themselves a unique inheritance: theirs was a society born of the Age of Revolutions and animated by the Enlightenment-inspired language of liberty, but equally theirs was a society deeply rooted in African and Afro-Caribbean slave culture. In its independence, Haiti became the center of a transnational black diaspora as it defended its existence at a time when the United States and European colonial powers viewed racial slavery as the pillar of their burgeoning capital economies. This elective aims to explore these complicated ideas through a variety of texts, digital archives, fiction and nonfiction, literature, and history.
Interdisciplinary: English & Social Sciences Crossing the Line: U.S.-Mexico Border Literature and Contemporary Politics 1 NPC
Class Description
What does it mean to live on or near a border, and more importantly, what does it mean to read and write literature about border experiences? In this course, students will explore the U.S.-Mexico border and literature produced “on the line,” what Gloria Anzaldúa describes as “La Frontera.” Students will read works that identify as “border literature” and will be introduced to border studies, discussing themes such as immigration, hybridity, border militarization, and in general, issues concerning U.S-Mexico border politics. Possible authors to be studied: Yuri Herrera, Cormac McCarthy, Nicholas Mainieri, Cristina Henríquez, Luís Albero Urrea, Emma Pérez, Lucretia Guerrero, Sandra Cisneros, Reyna Grande, and Ana Castillo.
Interdisciplinary: English & Philosophy Existentialism 1 NPC
Class Description
Existentialist philosophy asks us to think about what it really means to have control over who we are and what we do. In this course, we’ll look at some of the key texts of existentialism, both fictional and nonfictional, focusing on Jean-Paul Sartre, Albert Camus, and Simone de Beauvoir. We’ll grapple with some of the biggest questions humans can ask themselves: What makes us who we are? How much choice and control do we have over our lives? What does it even mean to be a person who can think for themselves and interact with the surrounding world? You’ll leave the class not only with a clearer understanding of complex philosophy, but also with a way of thinking about yourself and the world that you can apply every single day.
Interdisciplinary: Music & Performace American Musical Theatre 1 NPC
Class Description
Musical Theatre is an interdisciplinary and experiential class that will explore both the history and performance elements of American Musical Theatre. Beginning with the 1920s and culminating with present day, students will explore the historical context of a significant musical in a particular decade each week. Students also will perform a number from that musical each week, challenging themselves in the discipline of performance. Over the course of the term, students will gain knowledge of American history through the lens of the performing arts and gain experience in performing in the three elements of musical theatre (song, dance, and spoken word). Public performances will occur throughout the term, including a final project.
Interdisciplinary: English & Performace Play Writing 1 NPC
Class Description
Creating the literature of the theatre requires a good ear for the way people communicate, a keen sense of imagination, an understanding of how theatre works, writing skills to give voice to one’s ideas, and speaking ability to give verbal life to written plays. The process demands the general willingness to venture into this specific genre of literature, patience, revisions, and humor. Plays created by this class may be selected by student directors and performed. This course will include reading, writing and theatre exercises to explore themes and topics.
Interdisciplinary: English & Performace Social and Political Theatre 1 NPC
Class Description
Students study important social and political literature of the theatre that addresses social justice issues, including experiences of war, personal and political freedom, assumptions, stereotypes, and responsibility. Readings may include the works of well‑known playwrights and contemporary playwrights as well some lesser known artists. Classes will include an exploration of how we use the world of theatre to analyze text and character, bringing text to life, and open discussions and reflections about how we can use theatre to bring important topics to light. We will explore our own relationship to themes we discover in the work we read and write as well as the possible meaning to society as a whole. This course will include reading, writing and theatre exercises to explore themes and topics.
Interdisciplinary: Performance & Vocational Tech Costuming 1 NPC
Class Description
An introductory exploration into the areas of costume design and costume construction, this course will highlight primary design elements utilized in costume design for the stage and screen (i.e., line, color, tone, texture, movement, mood composition, balance, and focus). The course will examine historical period silhouette and the art and craft of the stage costume. Practical experience will be given in areas including construction, flat patterning, draping, and fabric manipulation.
Interdisciplinary: English & Philosophy Costuming 1 NPC
Class Description
Existentialist philosophy asks us to think about what it really means to have control over who we are and what we do. In this course, we’ll look at some of the key texts of existentialism, both fictional and nonfictional, focusing on Jean-Paul Sartre, Albert Camus, and Simone de Beauvoir. We’ll grapple with some of the biggest questions humans can ask themselves: What makes us who we are? How much choice and control do we have over our lives? What does it even mean to be a person who can think for themselves and interact with the surrounding world? You’ll leave the class not only with a clearer understanding of complex philosophy, but also with a way of thinking about yourself and the world that you can apply every single day.
Interdisciplinary: English & Visual Art Graphic Narrative 1 Jax & NPC
Class Description
The graphic novel is an extended comic book with similar subject matter to—and the sophistication of—traditional novels. By its very nature, the graphic novel challenges our assumptions of what a narrative and novel can be. For those tied to words, the comic offers a challenging visual text that forces us to read in new and surprising ways; much of this course will be about reframing our visual and narrative habits and expectations. While the graphic novel is increasingly mainstream, it often has offered voices from the margins about the margins. Its subject has been everything from the coming-of-age novel to historical memoir to cross-cultural conflict to the darker side of the superhero. We will read a variety of texts with the rigor accorded to more traditional texts while also stretching ourselves to understand the aesthetic visual choices the artist makes. By the end of the term, we will even attempt our own small comics. Texts may include Alan Moore’s Watchmen, Chris Ware’s Jimmy: The Smartest Kid on Earth, Marjane Satrapi’s The Complete Persepolis, Art Spiegelman’s The Complete Maus, Frank Miller’s Batman: The Dark Knight Returns, and others.
Interdisciplinary: English & History The Great Migration 1 NPC
Class Description
“They traveled deep into far-flung regions of their own country and in some cases clear across the continent. Thus the Great Migration had more in common with the vast movements of refugees from famine, war, and genocide in other parts of the world, where oppressed people, whether fleeing twenty-first-century Darfur or nineteenth-century Ireland, go great distances, journey across rivers, desserts, and oceans or as far as it takes to reach safety with the hope that life will be better wherever they land.” Isabel Wilkerson, The Warmth of Other Suns: The Epic Story of America’s Great Migration. Students will engage with art, film, literature, and music about the African American exodus from Southern regions of the United States into the northern cities of Chicago, Cleveland, New York City, and others. A few writers that students can expect to read are James Baldwin, Lorraine Hansberry, Toni Morrison, August Wilson, Richard Wright, among others.
Interdisciplinary: Performance Arts & Vocational Tech Puppetry and Props 1 NPC
Class Description
This hands-on laboratory course investigates the history, styles, tools, materials and techniques of puppetry. Students will bring imaginative ideas to life by engineering and constructing various puppets forms, experimenting with performative objects, and exploring puppet manipulation as a performer. Note: as part of this class, students will learn the use of small hand and power tools.
Interdisciplinary: Performace & English Screenwriting 1 NPC
Class Description
In recognizing the important role that film has in the life of our culture today, this course focuses on the skills particular to writing in that medium. Using the Robert McKee classic text Story as our guide, we learn about elements of story substance and structure, and we look at principles of story design and style in screenwriting. We also analyze the way these principles reveal themselves in significant modern and classic films, as we read and discuss screenplays ranging from Casablanca to Fruitvale Station. Viewings of these films accompany class discussions. Students complete the course with a portfolio of scenes and the treatment and outline for their own original film.
Interdisciplinary: Performace & English Identity 1 NPC
Class Description
This course explores the intersection of writing and performance through an investigation of personal identity and will be taught collaboratively by instructors who specialize in each area. The course will culminate in a performance of a devised theatre piece of the student’s creation before a live audience. Designed for students with acting experience and a serious commitment to the art form, students will build off their existing skills through in-depth character work and scene study and push their understanding of themselves and acting by exploring their own identity. Students will be encouraged to think theatrically, engaging in a search for the connection between literary themes, historical context, and personal identity. Over the term, the class will gain insight into the roles that race, class, gender, sexual orientation, and faith affects our daily existence and live performance. Lastly, students will experience and examine how live performance interacts with public discourse, civil disobedience, and art.
Interdisciplinary: Performace & English The Playwright's Playground 1 NPC
Class Description
Theater-making often begins with the playwright’s script — and ends with the work of an entire community of collaborators: directors and actors, literary directors and dramaturgs, designers and stage managers, producers and marketers, community organizations and advocates, and more. Students will consider the following questions in discussions and writing: How do we stage a production in an ethical and responsible way about a community that is not one’s own nor represented by our audiences? Should it be done? Which collaborators are essential to preserving the integrity of the play’s meaning? How do we engage the playwright? How do we engage the communities represented as theater-makers and artists? Students will read plays by and about BIPOC characters, be in conversation with the playwright, and direct readings of Sahar Ullah’s plays, including Hijabi Monologues and The Loudest Voices
Interdisciplinary: History & Vocational Tech History Through Food 1 Jax & NPC
Class Description

From the Neolithic Revolution through the emergence of the global food markets of the 20th century, this course examines the changing relationship between humans and food. Through a combination of readings, tastings and hands-on cooking, we will examine how food can help us understand various aspects of the

past around the world. Topics include the relationship between food and the economy, food and identity, food and empire, and food and the environment. Come hungry to learn and to eat. We will be reading about, writing about, cooking and tasting food that can help us understand how humans shape what they eat, and how what we eat shapes us.
Interdisciplinary: English & Music Beats, Rhymes, and Narrative 1 NPC
Class Description
Hip-hop music’s infuence on popular culture, literature, entertainment and politics is undeniable. This course will examine the relationship between hip-hop and storytelling. Course texts will consist of weekly listening sessions, scholarly articles on hip-hop theory and definitive text on hip-hop culture. We will listen to selected songs by a diverse array of artists and analyze their structures and traditional literary elements. A section of the course will be devoted to the study of a chosen album. Class discussions will examine hip-hop as a modern-day social justice tool and a narrative genre that explores gender, race, spirituality, class and resistance. Writing assignments will consist of original rap songs, which include recordings, and a final epistolary project.
Interdisciplinary: English & Music The Harlem Rennaisance 1 NPC
Class Description
Harlem, New York. 1920s. A constellation of African American writers, artists, performers and thinkers are changing American and world culture, pollinating African American art and literature. Between WWI and the Great Depression, Harlem was distinctly in vogue. The Harlem Renaissance became a landmark of American literary, artistic and intellectual history: the emergence of a distinctive modern black literature, a clustering of black artists who sought to give expression to the ambiguous and complex African American experience. The course centers on the distinctive voices and styles of Claude McKay, Jean Toomer, Nellie Larsen, Zora Neale Hurston, James Weldon Johnson, Countee Cullen, Langston Hughes and others. We will honor African American achievements in music and visual arts during that period and examine the Harlem Renaissance’s legacy within the evolution of African American literature and American, Afro-Caribbean and global art and literature. Class will include a field trip to a performance at the Apollo Theatre.

Extracurriculars

Life at Xavier's is not all classwork and training. Between sports* and student organizations, the students have a wealth of opportunities to choose from to enrich themselves outside the classroom.

Athletics (The Xavier Titans)

Fall Season
  • Cross Country (BV/GV)
  • Field Hockey (V)
  • Football (V)
  • Soccer (BV/GV) (Coach: Kyinha)
  • Volleyball (GV)
  • Water Polo (BV)
  • Fencing (BV/GV)
Winter Season
  • Basketball (BV/GV)
  • Ice Hockey (BV/GV)
  • Swimming & Diving (BV/GV)
  • Wrestling (V)
Spring Season
  • Baseball (BV)
  • Crew (BV/GV)
  • Cycling (V)
  • Lacross (BV/GV)
  • Softball (GV)
  • Tennis (BV/GV)
  • Track (BV/GV)
  • Water Polo (GV)
  • Gymnastics
  • Ultimate Frisbee
Student Organizations

This is a sampling of student organizations that have been found among Xavier's students in the past. Feel free to add new ones that your char might be interested in or organize your own!

  • Classics Club (Sponsor: Matt)
  • Science & Tech Club
  • Math Club (Sponsor: Kyinha)
  • Chess Club (Sponsor: Matt)
  • GSA
  • Cryptology Club
  • Rock Climbing Society (Sponsor: Jackson)
  • Robotics Club
  • Jewish Student Union
  • Christian Fellowship (Sponsor: Jackson)
  • Muslim Student Union
  • Alianza Latina
  • Asian Student Alliance (Teacher: Tian-shin)
  • French Club (Sponsor: Matt)
  • German Club
  • Board Gaming Club
  • Women's Forum
  • Drumline
  • Unaccompanied Minors (a capella group)
  • Model UN
  • Astronomy Club
  • Debate Team
  • Mock Trial (Teacher: Tian-shin)
  • Peer Tutoring
  • Odyssey of the Mind
  • Culinary Society
  • Movie Club
  • Student Council
  • Yearbook
  • Phoebe's Oracle (Student Newspaper)
  • Literary and Arts Magazine
  • Archery Club
  • Martial Arts Club
  • Table-Tennis Club
  • Tabletop Society
  • Photography Club
  • Hiking/Nature Club
  • Wonderbolts (Equestrian Club) (Sponsor: Jackson)
  • Xavier's Players (Theatre Club)
  • Dance Dance Evolution (Dance Team)
  • Society for Creative Anachronism Student Group
  • Peer Support Group
  • Note that because of the vast discrepancy in abilities among the student body, joining an athletic team must be approved both in tryouts and by the Xavier's Ethics board.

XS Life

XS Dorms

Student dorms at Xavier's are segregated into two wings based on binary identified gender. Students who do not identify with a binary gender, regrettably, have to pick one of the two wings to live in.

Nearly all dorm rooms are currently set up for two people; in some cases due to availability or extreme power related considerations, students may be assigned a dorm by themselves.

The dorms at Xavier's are, as dorm rooms go, fairly comfortable. They are quite spacious, and come standard with a pair each of twin beds, dressers, nightstands, desks with bookshelf/hutch, and large closets. There is ample room in the dorms for students to customize their own half of their rooms as they like so long as it does not violate any school regulations.

Bathrooms in the student dorms are shared with the wing; they have long rows of sinks and toilets on one side and, separately, the rows of showers, in their own enclosed booths with plenty enough space to bring all clothes and toiletries in and have them stay dry.

The teachers' wing is on a different floor. Teachers who choose to live on campus get their own suites; they vary in size but all come with their own in suite bathrooms and some have small kitchenettes or small sitting areas as well.

Roommate Assignments

ICly, roommates at Xavier's are assigned by the administration, and cannot be specifically requested. Sometimes roommates do not get along; sometimes friction occurs -- usually these students will simply be told to learn how to get along. In cases of serious, persistent hostility/incompatibility that is impacting the students' ability to thrive, the students may request a change of roommate, though they may still not request a specific new roommate. As of fall term 2023, rooms are triples, not doubles.

OOCly, though, roommates at Xavier's are not assigned and are handled wholly and entirely by OOC agreement between players. Nobody will ever assign you a roommate here, so please do not ask. If you would like a PC roommate, you will need to a) see if there is someone who has a PC living in the same wing as yours who does not yet have a roommate and b) see if they are interested in being your roommate. If nobody is available, please either assume your PC has an NPC roommate or, if they are brand-new, may be one of the lucky few who has the double room to themselves until someone new shows up!

Current PC room assignments at XS (check here to see if anyone is free/unassigned if you are looking for a roommate):

Advising at XS

ICly, every student at Xavier's is paired soon upon arrival with an advisor. The job of the advisor is to make sure the student's needs at the school are being met and the student is being properly prepared for graduation/life after Xavier's. This means: helping them figure out their goals after high school, helping them a class and extracurriculars schedule that is manageable for them and will prepare them for a successful graduation, arranging that they get whatever access to coaching and therapy they might require (whether this is powers-based, medical, or psychological.)

Please note that their advisor is not required to be the person who gives them powers-based coaching if it is needed, and advisors at Xavier's are, as a general rule, not selected based on similar powersets to students. When possible, students are matched with advisors based on personality and cultural competency -- meaning they try hard to pair students to advisors they think they'll get along with and talk to, not just advisors who can train them to use their powers.

OOCly, similarly to roommates, advisors at Xavier's are not assigned and are handled wholly and entirely by OOC agreement between players. Nobody will ever assign you an advisor here, so please do not ask. If you would like a PC advisor, you will need to see if there is someone who has a PC faculty or X-Man who is interested in being your student's advisor. If nobody is available, please assume your PC has an NPC advisor -- there is no situation, period, where a student will not have an advisor, so do not RP that they have not been assigned one.

When asking about advisor/advisee relationships, it is a good idea to check in OOCly and make sure you are on the same page about what you all want OOCly out of that RP relationship -- some people might want to actually roleplay out advising sessions on camera while other people are not interested in that genre of scenes and might only want that as a background to inform your characters' relationship for other types of scenes, and it is better not to set yourself up for frustration if you want very different things!

Mentor Assignments:

(OOCly) Unassigned Students (remember that ICly, these students will still have an advisor, they will just be an NPC until you choose to pair with a PC advisor):

Dining at XS

The kitchen is run by Savita Chavan, who has been the cook for many, many years at XS. She is fully human; her daughter was a mutant who graduated long ago.

Meals happen on a set schedule (breakfast at 7 am, lunch around 12/1p, dinner around 6:30; shifted an hour later on weekends), but there are always plenty of snacks and leftovers kept around the extensive pantry for students who need more food in between meals.

Xavier's does its best to cater to the wide variety of cultural and physiological needs of its students. The dining hall is NOT a restaurant or cafeteria with a full menu that kids can order from it's a school dining hall.

Mealtimes generally include one meat and one vegan entree with a number of sides that students can pick and choose from to make their own meal as best suits them. Entrees and sides at a given meal will generally all be along a similar cuisine for ease of mixing and matching, with a wide range of dietary choices represented among the available options. While Savita's specialty is South Indian food, she tends to try and cater her cooking to the (predominately whiter, more American) palate of the school body; though there's a wide variety of recipes on rotation, they skew towards Things That An Uncertain Immigrant Thinks Would Be Inoffensive To A Wide Audience Of American Kids. Less often palak paneer, more often ravioli.

XS Tech

  • There is wifi everywhere throughout the mansion and covering a good portion of the grounds around the mansion. It reaches down to the boathouse and docks, but peters out soon into the woods.
  • The computer lab is open 24/7, with many machines available for students who do not have their own personal computers. It is well-equipped with computers, scanners, and printers for all students' computing needs.
  • All students are required to have smartphones. Students may not use cell phones during class, but must keep their phones with them at all times when they are signed out to leave school grounds. They are expected to use the cell phones in emergencies; they are all equipped with a 'panic button' which will send an alert with the student's location to the school, dispatching available X-types to respond. Hitting the panic button OUTSIDE of actual crises is a severe infraction and will result in disciplinary action.
    • Students are welcome to see the school's IT department if they have their own appropriately capable cellphone they would prefer to keep and use; they will install a similar panic-button app for them. Students who do not have/cannot afford their own phone will be provided one by the school.
  • All students, staff, and faculty receive Xavier's email addresses. The default format is first initial-lastname at xaviers.edu . So, e.g., Daiki Komatsu is dkomatsu@xaviers.edu. Alumnae keep their Xavier's email address for as long as they stay active with it; they can contact the school sysadmin to reinstate it if they let it go idle and it is deleted.
    • Staff, faculty, and alumnae are allowed to pick up to two mail aliases for their email as well. So, e.g., Jackson, in addition to being jholland@xaviers.edu, can also be reached by jax@xaviers.edu or littlemisssunshine@xaviers.edu. Mail aliases must have some modicum of propriety; nothing vulgar or profane will be allowed.
  • Xavier's internal network has extensive online support for all academics. Students can log in to check their class syllabus, assignments, announcements from teachers (which will generally also come with email notification), class discussions, lecture notes, grades, calendars, and any other media that the teacher has posted to help with class.
    • All teachers of academic classes are given instruction in how to use this system when they start teaching; it is pretty simple and intuitive and does not require much tech savvy. Teachers are required to post their syllabus and assignments, at the least, here.
    • For this reason, not knowing about assignments is never an excuse; if class is missed, the week's assignments and topics are posted online and all students have plenty of internet access. A teacher forgetting to post an assignment, however, is an excuse, so teachers should get used to being on the ball with this.
  • Xavier's sysadmin is very On The Ball, although nobody seems to ever have seen him. Any and all network problems can be directed to cerebro@xaviers.edu, though, and tend to be answered uncannily quickly. The network does not inherently have any constraints on it for things like file sharing and porn and general Misbehavior, but students will find that things outside of the school's Acceptable Use Policy (things like: attempted hacking, illegal activity, using obnoxious amounts of bandwith nonessentially, etc. ) are quickly discovered and quashed.
  • Students -- or malicious outsiders! -- will also find that their network is remarkably secure and resistant to malicious tampering and intrusion. Students attempting to test the network's security will even occasionally receive an email offering advice, and explaining what they did wrong, along with a suggestion that should they wish to practice their "1337 haxx0r skillz" they should take one of the many CS classes offered by the school.

The Neighborhood, and Beyond

Xavier's School is located in the town of Salem Center, a town of around 5000 people in Westchester county. Salem is a small and close-knit community, the type of place guidebooks probably call "charming" or "quaint". Its town center makes a deliberate effort to retain the same general feel it has kept for generations, old-fashioned storefronts and cobbled streets with a lot of eye for aesthetic and very little thought for accessibility. While there are some things to do in town -- an arcade, a diner that's popular with the students, a roller skating rink, a small movie theatre -- in honesty the primary recreational activities of the youth who live there are Getting High Behind the roller skating rink, movie theatre, etc. The Weirdo School up at the old Xavier place is something of an open secret in town; while people don't know for sure the full scope of the school they are well aware that there's a Higher Proportion Than Usual of freaks that come into town from there and have grown to a grudging mutual tolerance.

At just under a mile from campus, getting to the town center is a middling walk on a pleasant day, or a very quick bike or car trip.

Westchester County is just north of the Bronx. In zero-traffic conditions, it takes approximately an hour by car to get from the school to Manhattan -- in most actual New York City congestion situations, tack at least an extra half an hour onto that. Public transit is a more hit or miss prospect -- the school is served by commuter rail; the schedule is geared around people getting to and from day jobs in the city and not to the needs or desires of people wanting to get FROM Westchester TO the city on an after-school/weekend schedule.

Timed correctly, the trip from Salem Center to Grand Central Station by train is often quicker than sitting in traffic and will run about an hour as well -- however on top of that needs to be factored in time to get from downtown Manhattan to wherever people actually want to be, as well as the fact that the train runs extremely intermittently on weekends and does not run late at night. The trip by buses (which are necessary to get back in between trains) requires several transfers and can take well over 2 hours from downtown, depending on transfer times and how behind the buses are.

Additional Trivia

The school colours are blue and yellow, though Xavier's branded apparel comes in different colours as well.

The school teams are the Titans -- the mascot, when it is brought out, does not look much like a Greek god, but that's how it goes.

The school motto is mutatis mutandis.

Roster

These are the current PCs who have some affiliation with Xavier's.