General Studies

General Studies


Our college-preparatory curriculum stresses independent learning skills. We teach our students not only to read critically and to listen actively, but also to write and to speak with cogency and confidence.

  • 9th Grade: Literary Genres
    The major goals in this course are to develop the student’s ability to think critically and to read, to write and to speak with increasing effectiveness.
  • 10th Grade: Literary Appreciation
    The major goals of this course are to provide the literary background integral to responding critically and analytically to a sophisticated body of literature and to increase student proficiency in writing and speaking skills.
  • 11th Grade: American Literature
    The primary goals of this survey course are to examine masterpieces from major periods in American Literature, to think critically and analytically about those works, and to develop an organized, cogent prose style, attending to grammar and usage and word choice through a more refined vocabulary.
  • 12th Grade: World Literature
    The course is designed to introduce a range of world literature that is culturally diverse and engaging to students.
  • Advanced Placement:
    Students prepare to sit for the Advanced Placement Examination in Language and Composition, and Literature and Composition.


In every HHNE Hebrew language course, students engage in discussions, search for information, express thoughts and exchange opinions through listening, speaking, reading and writing in Hebrew.

  • Modern Hebrew I:
    Modern Hebrew I covers the basic vocabulary, pronunciation, and facility with grammatical forms necessary for oral communication.
  • Modern Hebrew II:
    Modern Hebrew II continues work on Hebrew grammar and vocabulary.
  • Modern Hebrew III:
    Modern Hebrew III advances students’ quest for proficiency in the foreign language skills (reading, writing, listening and speaking).
  • Modern Hebrew IV:
    Modern Hebrew IV examines classic literary pieces by preeminent Jewish figures.


Our goal is to help our students to learn and to uncover the meaning of the core principles of mathematics.

  • Pre-Algebra:
    Pre-Algebra gives students a strong background in the types of mathematical reasoning and problem-solving that serve as a foundation for future math study.
  • Algebra I:
    Algebra I uses variables to extend the laws of arithmetic. Following a brief review of pre-algebra, the topics covered include real numbers, solving equations, operations on polynomials, systems of equations and graphs, radicals and exponents, fractional and quadratic equations and inequalities.
  • Geometry:
    Geometry takes an inductive approach to mathematics integrating arithmetic, measurement, algebra, formal geometry and logical reasoning.
  • Algebra II:
    Algebra II extends the topics from Algebra I which may include: functions, systems of equations and inequalities, polynomial functions, quadratic functions, conic sections, rational polynomial expressions, exponential and logarithmic functions, sequences and series, probability and statistics, trigonometric functions and identities.
  • Pre-Calculus:
    Pre-Calculus serves as preparation for Calculus and provides a foundation for advanced math study.
  • Statistics:
    Statistics emphasizes reasoning and logical thinking. The course uses theory and design to exemplify how statistics is used to picture and describe the world.
  • Advanced Placement Calculus AB:
    AP Calculus (AB) includes functions, graphs and continuity and limits. Derivatives follow with slopes, velocity, the chain rule and trigonometric functions, differentiating algebraic functions, and applications of differentials including minimas/maximas, predicting hidden behaviors and polynomial functions.
  • Advanced Placement Calculus BC:
    AP Calculus (BC) deepens students’ understanding of calculus concepts and further includes vectors, polar coordinates and areas, and polynomial approximations and series.


Science, as a discipline, provides a unique educational environment for students to develop critical thinking skills. It is the philosophy of the Science Department that all students can do science at a high level. Student-scientists will go beyond solely collecting facts by trying to understand natural phenomena and their interrelationships.

  • Introductory Physical Science (IPS) focuses on the process of scientific inquiry, which includes making observations; raising questions; formulating hypotheses; designing and conducting experiments; analyzing, interpreting, communicating results; and finally, applying the results of the investigative activity. IPS is offered to 9th
  • Chemistry studies matter and the changes that it undergoes. Chemistry is offered to 10th
  • Physics continues to develop science process skills as students move from the micro-world of chemistry to the macro-world of physics. Here they engage in studies of motion, momentum, forces, waves and energy. Physics is offered to 11th
  • Biology is strongly grounded in inquiry skills and represents the culmination of a vertical team effort to develop the skill sets necessary to facilitate an understanding and appreciation of the natural world. It is the goal of the Science Department that 12th graders take biology.


Students progress from World History through American Government, U.S. History, to AP European History and senior electives such as Current Issues and War and Peace.

  • Writing skills are stressed in each grade. Beginning in the sophomore year, all students in the history program have experience analyzing, synthesizing and evaluating primary and secondary source material, writing and sample DBQs (Document Based Questions) from the College Board AP program.
  • The Course Offering Guide  provides more detailed descriptions of all of the General Studies classes available to students.