SCIENCE, from the Latin word scientia ("knowledge"), is a systematic enterprise that builds and organizes knowledge in the form of testable explanations and predictions about the natural world. Through systematic observation, measurement, and experiment, scientists formulate, test, and modify hypotheses.
The ‘Iolani Science program strives to impart to students a love of science and an understanding of key concepts, and to help them develop the skills to become scientifically literate citizens of the twenty-first century. Students observe, hypothesize, perform experiments, report their observations in writing, and draw conclusions.
In the Lower School students explore the natural world. Working in two fully equipped Science laboratories, teachers who specialize in Science focus exclusively on the subject. A designated outdoor area provides hands-on experience in composting, gardening, and other outdoor educational activities. Students participate in field trips, community service, and environmental awareness projects. Parents, community professionals, and older ‘Iolani students visit classes. Special programs occur at all grade levels, including a third-grade Space Night when students and their families camp overnight, use telescopes to observe the night sky, and participate in expert-led science activities.
In the Upper School (grades 7-12), students deepen their scientific knowledge and further develop as young scientists. All courses involve hands-on laboratory work that allows students to learn concepts and practice skills. All Science teachers are experts in the subjects they teach. Fully equipped laboratories and additional lecture rooms allow ample space for students to investigate and learn. The average Science course size is small enough to allow individualized attention for students both inside and outside the laboratory. In grades 7 and 8, students explore Earth Science and Physical Science. Once students reach the high school years, there is a three-year sequence of Biology, Chemistry, and Physics. Students have the option of taking a fourth year of high school Science, earning Advanced Placement college credit in Biology, Chemistry and/or Physics.
Through a wide variety of extracurricular activities, students explore science outside the formal classroom setting from third grade through graduation. In the area of robotics, ‘Iolani fields several First Lego League Teams, multiple VEX robotics teams, and a FRC Robotics Team. Middle and high school students participate in three Science Olympiad teams as well as a Science Bowl team. ‘Iolani supports older students in directed summer research.