Upper School Academics

In high school, college prep is a key focus for students at Keith Country Day School students. Upper School students take courses in science, math, English, history and foreign language, steadily learning and building on the foundation skills they learned in the Lower and Middle Schools.

  • English

    8 Semesters

    In Upper School, the English Department places an increased focus on analytical reading and critical dissection of text, using textual evidence in writing, and learning how to compose collegiate-level research papers. Using both the latest technologies available and some very traditional methods, our high school program produces outstanding writers, readers, and thinkers ready to master the ever-growing world of communications. High school English courses include American, European and World Literature, and AP English. Students are required to take four years of English and one semester of speech.

  • Mathematics

    8 Semesters

    Through our rigorous mathematics curriculum, we foster an appreciation for the power of that language by helping our students acquire meaningful problem-solving skills, confidence and the ability to make successful transitions from one level to the next. Keith’s mathematics department centers upon the standards set forth by the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics. In addition to teaching our students how to think logically and to work in an organized manner, our four-year high school program puts an emphasis on learning to be effective critical thinkers. Our course offerings in math include algebra, geometry, AP geometry, college algebra, trigonometry, probability and statistics, pre-calculus and AP calculus.

  • Science

    8 Semesters

    Four years of science is required to graduate from Keith Country Day School. The Upper School science program aims to foster the thrill of scientific discovery through hands-on experiments. All classes are laboratory courses with a double-period laboratory time scheduled during each six-day rotation. Some of the laboratory experiences include dissections, microscope studies, chemical testing of water, electrophoresis of DNA, bacterial transformation, forest monitoring, chemical reactions, and wave formation. In addition to our indoor lab work, the department takes great pride in using the natural laboratory outside on our the 15-acre campus. Surrounded by adjacent fields, woodland, parks, and the Rock River, our curriculum puts a great emphasis on studying natural science and creating awareness and understanding of current societal and environmental issues. Courses offered include biology, chemistry, physics environmental science, and AP courses in biology and chemistry.

  • History

    8 Semesters

    The History Department plays a vital role in encouraging the development of knowledge and critical thinking skills necessary for responsible citizenship and a more extensive understanding of the events, people and casual mechanisms which have created the world in which we live. A global education is more than just memorizing facts. Our program encourages students to see connections between the past and the present and with other disciplines, to view complex issues from multiple perspectives, and to understand that people create histories and that interpretations can change over time. Developing a lucid writing style, being comfortable articulating positions in class and collaborating with peers on complex research projects are just a few of the many skills expected of students after four years of study. A nationally recognized program, Keith’s Advanced Placement history classes are among the best in the world. In fact, the College Board rated Keith’s AP U.S. History course and the AP European History course among the best in the United States.

  • Foreign Language

    8 Semesters (in one language)

    “The Limits of my Language are the Limits of my World,” reads a poster in one of the foreign language rooms at Keith. This quote serves as an underlying creed of the foreign language department. Keith’s Upper School offers Spanish, Latin, Greek, and French. Using the newest technologies and traditional teaching methods, the department’s goals are to help students build their vocabularies, develop reading and writing skills, enhance their ability to speak accurately and to pronounce confidently, to become familiar with the history and culture of other places and times, to develop insights into the English language and to experience a variety of literary genres.

    For graduation, Keith students are required to take four years of high school level courses of the same foreign language. However, many students take on multiple languages, some even selecting high school level courses starting in Middle School.

  • Senior Project

    1 Semester

    Senior students have the unique opportunity to assess their skills and talents and to plan a project that investigates a career or area of personal interest. The class culminates in the project itself: a carefully designed excursion into the world outside the school’s walls. A faculty advisor oversees each student’s project and written and oral reports are required.