Honors Biology

Term: Yearlong 2020–21, September 8–May 28
Target Grade Levels: Grades 9–11; 12th graders welcome (see placement details below)
Schedule: 3x / week, 60–75 min.
Price: $695.00

Course Sections (choose one)
Section 1:
M/W/F 12:30 p.m. ET with Kathryn Morton

New Placement Process: Click to Read
To help ensure that students enroll in the correct course levels, Scholé Academy requires many students to complete placement evaluations. Placement evaluations are only provided to students after the corresponding course registration has been completed. A placement assessment will be required in the following situations:
  • if the student falls outside of the stated age/grade range for the class.
  • if the student needs to demonstrate a certain level of skill and proficiency for the course.
  • if the student has completed prerequisite requirements somewhere other than Scholé Academy (e.g., at home or with another school). In this case, our instructors will need to verify that the student has adequately fulfilled the prerequisite requirements.
  • if a placement assessment has been recommended by a Scholé Academy instructor.
First, read the available course descriptions, noting prerequisites, target grades, and course objectives. If you think your student is prepared for the course, go ahead and register. After registration, a placement assessment may be provided to students, depending on the course and the student’s previous enrollment with Scholé Academy. Parents are encouraged to connect with the Assistant to the Principal and/or with the course instructor to make the best enrollment decision for their student.
Registration is not finalized until the student’s placement assessment has been returned by the course instructor with placement confirmation.
There is a $75 deposit built into the cost of each course.
  • If a placement evaluation has not been administered, withdrawals requested before May 1 are granted a full refund, including the full $75 deposit.
  • If a placement evaluation has been administered, withdrawals requested before May 1 are granted part of their $75 refund: $35 will be paid to the instructor for the placement evaluation, and the remaining $40 of the original deposit will be refunded.
After May 1, withdrawals are granted a full course refund, less the $75 deposit. Students may withdraw from a course through the second week of classes. After the second week of classes, no refund is given.


This is the course description, syllabus, and book list from the current academic year 2019-2020. It is provided for your reference, but new details for the 2020-2021 academic year will be forthcoming. It will be substantially similar to what you see here but can vary slightly from year-to-year and instructor-to-instructor. We will update this page as we receive the updated course materials from the instructor(s).

What is the chief end of man? Man’s chief end is to glorify God, and to enjoy him forever. In our Biology course students will study God’s living creation. In looking deeply and broadly at the living world, our response should be to glorify our Creator. In glorifying God, we begin to enjoy him now. As we move through our course, we will rest with this end in mind.

Our time together as a class will include opportunities for students to both listen to further explanation of content included in their assigned reading, and to clearly present what they have learned from their independent study. Students will be given opportunities to write about currently debated topics in the field of biology. Students will write about biological ideas and concepts weekly in response to questions that require them to both think clearly and accurately apply what they are learning. Our class will remember and recall learning from earlier chapters through review on a regular basis to sustain a foundation for deeper study.

Students of Schole Academy’s biology course will be expected to actively participate in learning through independent study, discussion, and laboratory experimentation. This course contains a substantial laboratory component in which students will learn basic microscopy and dissection, employ the scientific method, and learn to write a formal lab report. Most laboratory exercises will take place during classroom time and will be instructor-led. At times, for labs that require multiple days, students will need to complete some laboratory preparation at home prior to class.

One week of class time will be given to exploring terms used to describe a variety of Christian views on the origin of life and the origin of human life. These views will include young earth creationism, old earth creationism, intelligent design, and theistic evolution. The goal of these conversations will be to inform students about these terms, to present reasons for these positions in the debate, and to note questions that might be asked of each view. Students will be given the opportunity to write to clarify their point of view, or to support a view separate from what they hold to in an effort to more fully examine that view. Students will not be required to accept one view over another, and they will be encouraged to seek the counsel of the Lord, their church, their family, and their own study to grow in their understanding of the long history of this debate. Ephesians 1:4-5 reminds us that Christ chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. In love we were predestined for adoption to sonship through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will. Even in questioning the science of how and when life and humanity began, we may rest in knowing how and when and through Whom we are called to be holy and blameless.

High School Credit: This course is the equivalent of one high school credit in laboratory science.

Syllabus: View course syllabus here.

At Scholé Academy, we have carefully considered how we should engage our contemporary culture as those who believe that Christ is the Truth (John 14:6), and that all truth has its source in him. We think it is important to provide our upper school students (in grades 7-12) with tools and opportunities for critically examining various cultural trends, issues and mores through the lens of orthodox, Christian beliefs. Being confident in the truth revealed to us in creation, the Scriptures, and the tradition of the church, we are not afraid to follow the truth and its implications nor to address error and falsehood. … Read more about our Faith & Culture.

Required Materials:

    • Textbook: TBD
    • The Student Lab Report Handbook 2nd Ed. by John D. Mays. Novare Science and Math. ISBN: 978-0-9883228-7-5
    • Compound Microscope with 40x, 100x and 400x magnification (Eyepiece x Objective) and electric light. Many options available, check Nature’s Workshop Plus! and Home Science Tools. Mechanical stage is a nice add-on but not required. If you buy used make sure it has been well taken care of, the light works, and the lenses are clean and free of scratches.
    • Lens paper and microscope cleaning solution
    • Dissection kit tray and tools, preserved frog, perch, earthworm and crayfish. (see Nature’s Workshop Plus or Home Science Tools for kits)
    • Lidded box for insect collection (cigar box, cardboard box, wooden box…any type roughly 1 square foot of display space and at least 1 inch high.)
    • Insect spreading board Styrofoam (#BE-INSECBD)
    • Insect pins (#2), ball jar, cotton balls, non-acetone nail polish remover (Dollar Tree), cheap insect net (dollar store)
    • Colored pencils
    • Index cards
    • Spiral notebook or loose-leaf
    • Space in a 3-ring binder


     *Required materials are not included in the purchase of the course.

    Dr. Kathryn Morton has a BA in Biology from Illinois Wesleyan University and a DVM from the University of Illinois. Upon graduation from veterinary school, she moved to Pennsylvania to work as a clinical research veterinarian on a large dairy farm. From there she transitioned to a busy, small animal practice doing medicine and surgery. When the call of homeschooling touched her heart, she left private practice to focus on her husband and six children. She has been teaching math and science courses to the homeschooled students in her local community for 13 years and she heads a robotics club at her town’s public library. She is a lifetime learner and enjoys teaching students about the beauty of the creation and helping them grasp complex topics. kmorton.scholeacademy@gmail.com

    Red checkmarkComputer: You will need a stable, reliable computer, running with a processor with a speed of 1 GHz or better on one of the following operating systems: Mac OS X with Mac OS 10.7 or later; Windows 8, 7, Vista (with SP1 or later), or XP (with SP3 or later). We do not recommend using an iPad or other tablet for joining classes. An inexpensive laptop or netbook would be much better solutions, as they enable you to plug an Ethernet cable directly into your computer. Please note that Chromebooks are allowed but not preferred, as they do not support certain features of the Zoom video conference software such as breakout sessions and annotation, which may be used by our teachers for class activities.

    Red checkmarkHigh-Speed Internet Connection: You will also need access to high-speed Internet, preferably accessible via Ethernet cable right into your computer. Using Wi-Fi may work, but will not guarantee you the optimal use of your bandwidth. The faster your Internet, the better. We recommend using a connection with a download/upload speed of 5/1 Mbps or better. You can test your Internet connection here.

    Red checkmarkWebcam: You may use an external webcam or one that is built in to the computer. Webcam Recommendations: Good (PC only) | Best (Mac and PC)

    Red checkmarkHeadset: We recommend using a headset rather than a built-in microphone and speakers. Using a headset reduces the level of background noise heard by the entire class. Headset Recommendations: USB | 3.5mm

    Red checkmarkZoom: We use a web conferencing software called Zoom for our classes, which enables students and teachers to gather from around the globe face to face in real time. Zoom is free to download and easy to use. unnamed-e1455142229376 To download Zoom:


    1. Visit zoom.us/download.
    2. Click to download the first option listed, Zoom Client for Meetings.
    3. Open and run the installer on your computer.
    4. In August, students will be provided with instructions and a link for joining their particular class.

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    First, read the available course descriptions, noting prerequisites, target grades, and course objectives. If you think your student is prepared for the course, go ahead and register. After registration, a placement assessment may be provided to students, depending on the course and the student’s previous enrollment with Scholé Academy. Registration is finalized when the student’s placement assessment has been returned by the course instructor with placement confirmation.


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    This registration will be finalized when the student’s placement assessment has been returned by the course instructor with placement confirmation.

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