Science Overview

  • The Decatur High School science department is committed to laying the foundation for every student to someday pursue a career that requires science or technology competencies.  We recognize that many of our most complex problems demand both scientifically literate citizens and a large and diverse population of problem-solvers who will work in career fields that require these science and technology competencies.

    Science at Decatur High School is based on a physics-chemistry-biology sequence which leads students, over four years, from the simple to the complex.  Ninth grade physics students explore the laws that govern our world using an inquiry-based approach that complements and strengthens their mathematics learning.  Through interpretations of data they collect themselves, students construct their own understanding of the fundamental forces in the universe.   The physics course makes extensive use of concrete experiences from students' daily lives, such as transportation, safety, and sports.  The following year, students take chemistry -- a discipline based upon the physics concepts of charge and the forces among charged particles.  As juniors and seniors, students complete a two-year biology program and are able to understand modern biology concepts, such as genetics and the function of DNA, that require a background in chemistry and physics.  Juniors and seniors may also elect to take a two-year physics program, and seniors may opt for the elective forensic science course as a capstone.