In this one-semester elective course students will gain a sound understanding of the basic concepts, tools and applications of economics in real world settings. By examining a wide variety of individual and organizational behaviors and situations through the interpretive lens of economics, students will develop their economic literacy and analytical skills. Through reading, writing, research and discussion, students will become comfortable applying rigorous economic thinking as a powerful analytical tool for understanding and improving many aspects of their world.

The Financial Literacy seminar uses a flipped classroom model to teach all seniors about being financially successful. Financial success means being in control of one’s money instead of the other way around. Income does not necessarily determine financial success – one’s choices and priorities do. The essential questions for the seminar: How do you know you are using your resources well? How do you know you are being responsible with your finances? How do you prepare for your own retirement? Units include financial planning and process, budgeting, managing personal debt, education planning, economic concepts, investment strategies and among other useful skills and information related to finances.

Yes! This is a game-based classroom! And a deep investigation of the recent past at one and the same time! With a little math! But not too much! In this course, students will examine the era of the Cold War - from its inception at the end of World War Two to the day the Berlin Wall fell in 1989 - through the prism of elementary Game Theory, applying such concepts as the Prisoner’s Dilemma, Bargaining, Nash Equilibrium and Dominance, among others. Students will take on the roles of the US and USSR and play out their strategies on a giant Risk board as simulated yet historically accurate problems arise. Students will be expected to read primary source documents and secondary sources and write several short position papers throughout the semester to define goals and strategies in response to each other’s moves, as well as those of aligned and nonaligned nations. Other resources will include short texts regarding the principles of game theory, and short online lectures.

The world is a complex, dynamic, and fascinating place. This course explores the concept of global citizenship and what it means to embrace that title. Students will examine the cast of characters that comprise humanity on Earth along with the major trends of interaction and their impacts. Global Citizenship provides students with the opportunity to examine contemporary issues in the modern global community and how the ideas of citizenship can be used to address major present day scenarios while preparing for the future. Global Citizenship will also challenge students to understand the interconnected nature of our planet and how history, culture, economics and political forces shape our world. Through this understanding, students will develop a sense of one’s responsibility as citizens of the earth.

Required course

Our health course is organized around the question "How can we make healthy lifestyle decisions consistent with our values and goals". Students will investigate a number of topics related to physical and mental health to become not only better informed but better able to assess the ever changing flood of information and misinformation related to health. The goal is to prepare students to take responsibility for their own health, as educated consumers of health services, and even more importantly, as the architects of their own personal wellness. Among the issues to be explored are the following: human body systems, nutrition, exercise, sleep hygiene, mental health/managing emotions, communication/relationships, stress and relaxation, addictions (both substance and non substance) and sexual health.

This year-long, required course is an introductory course to history - not just what happened in the world of the recent past, but how to think like an historian. The aim of this class is to give you the skills you need to conduct your own investigations. We will be practicing these skills through a variety of thinking, reflecting and critiquing activities, through problem-solving and project design, and yes, through reading and writing. There is no core text - rather, we will be using on-line resources and a variety of written materials to practice research and close reading skills as we examine major events from the recent past.

Required course

This course will harness the disciplines of History and Cultural Anthropology to build meaningful understandings of the commonly misunderstood peoples and regions of Latin America, which are figuring with increasing prominence in current United States domestic and foreign policy. Latin Americans represent the fastest growing demographic in the United States, exercise increasing cultural and political influence, and comprise much of the U.S. slave labor sector. Despite their rich diversity and fascinating histories, Latin Americans remain subject to a range of common misunderstandings and continuing prejudices which demand deeper cross-cultural understandings in order to dispel them. Modern Latin America aims to foster these understandings.

This course is cross-listed with World Languages and Cultures. Students will need to choose which department to receive credit in.

Lyall Watson famously stated that "if the brain were so simple we could understand it, we would be so simple we couldn't.” Nevertheless, we will take a crack at using our mighty brains to gain insight into ourselves and those around us. In this survey course students will be introduced to core concepts and methods of inquiry and evaluation in the study of psychology. We will take every opportunity to relate these concepts to our own experiences and perceptions, an endeavor uniquely suited to the subject of psychology. Among the topics covered will be the history of psychology, major psychological theories, sensation and perception, learning and memory, intelligence and testing, developmental psychology, states of consciousness, personality, motivation and emotion, prejudice and discrimination, group dynamics, abnormal psychology, treatment and therapies, and careers in psychology. At the end of the course students should have a greater understanding of psychology as a field of inquiry, increased insight into the complex factors that drive our behavior, and be intelligent consumers of psychological theories.

This course is cross-listed with Science. Students must choose which department to receive credit in.

Please see English Department offerings for course description. This course is cross-listed. Students will need to choose which department to receive credit in.

This course will chronicle Arab-Israeli relations predominantly (but not exclusively) defined by conflict, presenting a comprehensive range of agendas and arguments regarding how Arab-Israeli relations developed, where they currently stand, and the multitude of future possibilities. Special focus will be applied to Israeli-Palestinian Relations. Both Arabs and Israelis feature extraordinarily diverse cultures and historical narratives which we will examine to establish contextual background. As the course progresses students will be encouraged to develop their own critical thought, progressively becoming more discerning consumers of current events. Throughout the semester, we will be conducting video conferences with Israelis and Palestinians (separately) to learn their perspectives firsthand. As their various agendas and their mutual collision points become defined, we will attempt what 12 successive U.S. Presidents have failed to accomplish – solve the conflict! As a team, we will try to reconcile them into an actual, mutual agreement which we will draft as a final project.

This course is cross-listed with World Languages and Cultures. Students will need to choose which department to receive credit in.

Many Americans understand - in an abstract sense - that the Civil War was a defining moment in our country’s history. Indeed, many consider the conflict of 1861-1865 the central event in understanding the United States. But what made, and continues to make, the Civil War so important? Just what issues were at stake that compelled most of the southern states to leave the Union? What, in turn, inspired hundreds of thousands of other Americans to attempt to keep their southern neighbors from defecting? And did the war truly end in 1865? In this class we will investigate the causes of the war and the political, military, social, and cultural aspects of the conflict. Through readings, primary source analysis, and critical research and writing, this class will challenge students to think about how the Civil War became - to the surprise of most mid-19th century Americans - a revolutionary struggle to reshape the nation in ways few would have imagined beforehand.

United States History is a yearlong, in-depth study of the nation’s history built around a close examination of three central episodes of American history through the interpretive lens of the broadly-defined concept of "revolution." These three episodes are the American Revolution (eighteenth century), the Civil War and Reconstruction (nineteenth century), and the Civil Rights Movement (twentieth century). We will approach our investigation of these transformative periods as historians, exploring relevant primary source material, comparing perspectives, analyzing factors such as bias, causation and correlation, undertaking collaborative projects, and conducting original historical research, all with the goal of building up a nuanced, balanced and authentic understanding of why and how these pivotal changes occurred, and what they meant at that time and now for the evolution of the American nation and society.

Required course

What creativity means at Darrow

It means connecting imagination to action. It means learning the technical aspects of creative expression. And it means taking risks and taking responsibility. Darrow School’s modern, dedicated facilities for visual and performing arts enable students to develop their creative potential in many disciplines. Traditional areas of study are taught through an active curriculum that emphasizes experimentation, discussion, project development, and interaction with the environment.

See how the right creative environment makes anything possible.

Darrow students in action

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