•  ----------------- HONORS COURSES -----------------

    To Be Considered for the Commencement Honors
    (Including Valedictorian or Salutatorian) Distinction:

    • A student must successfully complete six (6) of the official academically challenging courses listed below, with one course selected from the RLHS campus in language arts, mathematics and science. The three remaining additional credits are the student’s choice from the official course listing.
    • A student must maintain at least a 3.5 cumulative GPA.
    • Should a tie exist between Valedictorian and Salutatorian, ACT score standings will determine the top honors.

    Determination of an honors level course is indicated by the amount of “academic challenge” the course requires. Approximately 1/3 additional work is required above a typical RLHS course expectation. The instructor of each academically challenging course will be required to submit a course syllabus, curriculum, assessment information and the alignment with state standards and any project, research, or community service work that may be a part of the course.

    It is the student’s responsibility at the beginning of his/her high school career to work with the guidance counselor and his/her parents, to plan course work, to meet District and State graduation requirements, as well as to work towards Commencement Honors designation if so desired.


    While recognizing that all RLHS courses are academically challenging, the following courses are considered by staff, students and the Honor’s Committee to be especially challenging:

    AP LANGUAGE AND COMPOSITION (01005) – Commencement Honors, Open to grades 11 & 12
    Prerequisite:  English 9 & 10
    Required Materials: Journal

    Students in this introductory college-level course read and carefully analyze a broad and challenging range of nonfiction prose selections, deepening their awareness of rhetoric and how language works. Through close reading and frequent writing, students develop their abilities to work with language and text with a greater awareness of purpose and strategy, while strengthening their own composing abilities. Course readings feature expository, analytical, personal, and argumentative texts from a variety of authors and historical contexts. Students examine and work with essays, letters, speeches, images, medias, and imaginative literature. During the course, a wide variety of texts (prose and image-based) and writing tasks provide the focus for an energetic study of language, rhetoric, and argument. Throughout this semester students prepare for the AP English Language and Composition Exam, and may be granted Advanced Placement, college credit, or both as a result of satisfactory performance.

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    AP LITERATURE AND COMPOSITION (01006) – Commencement Honors, Open to grades 11 & 12
    Prerequisite: English 9 & 10, AP Language
    Required Materials:  Journal

    Advanced Placement (AP) English is one semester in reading, discussing, writing, and rewriting. With intensive concentration on composition skills and on authors’ narrative techniques, the course prepares students for the AP exam and for college and career challenges. AP English requires students to be prepared and motivated to work on a college level. Through various class activities, especially student-conducted seminars, the teacher acts as a consultant and facilitator, allowing students to assume responsibility for learning.

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    COMX 111 INTRO TO PUBLIC SPEAKING (01151) – Elective, Open to grades 11-12
    Credits: 3 college credits, 1 high school credit
    Core Class for College: Verbal Communication

    Public Speaking is a course designed to aid students in overcoming speech anxiety through preparation and presentation of speeches in a variety of formats.  This a public speaking skills acquisition course with a two-part objective: (1) improving abilities to access, retrieve, and evaluate information (2) in order that the information might be used in effective public performance. This course will fulfill the core requirement in verbal communication in college.

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    ANATOMY (03053) – Elective, Commencement Honors: Open to grades 11 & 12
    Prerequisites: Passing grade in Physical Science as well as a “C” or better in Biology. Chemistry is strongly recommended.
    Required Materials: Colored pens or pencils

    Anatomy and physiology is a study of the physical structure of the human body and how it works. The study will cover a range of topics including molecules, cells, body systems, and processes. There are many hands on labs, including dissection of a pig as well as other appropriate organs. This course is designed for college preparation, especially for biology and health career majors. The class is fast paced and requires many hours of individual study. This is an honors course. Alternates every other year with Science Laboratory Exploration.

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    CHEMISTRY (03101) – Elective, Commencement Honors; Open to grades 11 & 12
    Prerequisites: Algebra II (must have passed or be taking concurrently) & Physical Science
    Required Materials:  Scientific Calculator with Trigonometric Functions, Composition Notebook, Lab Notebook (can be purchased from the school), Red Marking Pen

    This course provides an introduction to chemical concepts using practical issues and applications to illustrate the principles of chemistry. Subjects that are covered include: matter, atomic structure, the periodic table, chemical bonds, stoichiometry, gases, thermodynamics, solutions, and chemical kinetics. This class is intended to provide students with a strong background in chemistry and prepare them for college courses. You can expect to be challenged by the material and in turn will be expected to keep pace with a demanding schedule of reading/homework assignments and out-of-class assignments.

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    AP BIOLOGY (03056) – Commencement Honors, Open to grades 11 & 12
    Prerequisite: Earned a C or better in Biology

    AP Biology is an introductory college-level biology course. Students cultivate their understanding of biology through inquiry-based investigations as they explore topics like evolution, energetics, information storage and transfer, and system interactions. This course is yearlong and prepares student for the AP Exam in the spring.  Earning a 3 on the test earns 8 credits at Montana State colleges. If you are looking to go out of state please check with testing requirements.

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    COLLEGE PHYSICS (03165) – Elective, Commencement Honors; Open to grades 11 & 12
    Prerequisite: Algebra II
    Required Materials: Scientific Calculator

    The Algebra based study of kinematics, dynamics, the conservation laws, fluids, heat, sound, and optics, electricity, magnetism, and electromagnetic waves. Emphasizes the development of problem-solving skills. Contains a weekly lab component.  NOTE: College Physics may be taken for duel credit in association with Montana Tech., there is a fee and a prerequisite of a 27 Math ACT score. This is optional and is not required for RLHS credit.

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    SCIENTIFIC LABORATORY EXPLORATION (03212) (A.K.A. Research Class) – Elective, Commencement Honors; Open to grades 11 & 12 (class size limited to 16)
    Prerequisites:  “C” or better in Physical Science as well as in Biology
    Required Materials:  3 inch 3-Ring Binder

    Science Laboratory Exploration is a class devoted to teaching students how to prepare and conduct a scientific research or engineering project as would be done in the real world and/or at a university. The research topic will be of the students choosing.  Students will be required to write a full scientific research paper and prepare a digital presentation covering their research. Student’s will be encouraged to participate at the local Science Fair.

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    PRECALCULUS AND TRIGONOMETRY (02110) - SEMESTER – Elective, Commencement Honors; Open to grades 11-12
    Prerequisite: Algebra II
    Required Materials: SAT and ACT approved graphing calculator (e.g., TI-84 Plus CE)

    Pre-Calculus and Trigonometry is designed to follow Algebra II and Geometry. We will study more advanced concepts of Algebra including polynomial, rational, exponential and logarithmic functions, taking what was learned in Algebra II and deepening our understanding of the subjects. We will also explore key concepts of trigonometry including; right triangle trigonometry, angles of rotation, radian measure, arc length and areas, trig functions and their inverses, trig identities, and the Laws of Sines and Cosines. During this class, we will be relying heavily on graphing calculators and other graphing applications.

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    CALCULUS (02121) – Elective, Commencement Honors; Open to grades 11 & 12
    Prerequisite: Precalculus and Trigonometry
    Required Materials: SAT and ACT approved graphing calculator (e.g., TI-84 Plus CE)

    This Calculus course is designed as an introduction to Calculus for students wishing to continue their mathematical careers in high school. This course will focus primarily on Limits and Derivatives with special attention to continuity, rules for differentiation, and applications of differentiation. With anti-differentiation and integration as time allows. During this class, we will be relying heavily on graphing calculators and other graphing applications. This is the preferred prerequisite to AP Calculus.

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    AP CALCULUS AB (02124) – Elective, Commencement Honors; Open only to grade 12
    Prerequisite: Calculus and teacher approval
    Required Materials: SAT and ACT approved graphing calculator (e.g., TI-84 Plus CE)

    AP Calculus AB is the most advanced calculus course that is offered at Red Lodge High School and is recommended for all students who plan to take calculus in college. The course places a strong emphasis on preparing to pass the AP Exam, which can earn college credit. Throughout the year we will cover three general areas: 1) Functions, Graphs, and Limits 2) Derivatives and 3) Integrals. We will focus on analysis of a graph, limits of functions, asymptotic and unbounded behavior, continuity, derivatives at a point, concepts of differentiation, derivatives as functions, second derivatives, applications of derivatives and integrals, properties of definite integrals, the Fundamental Theorem Calculus, applications of anti-differentiation, and numerical approximations to definite integrals. Upon completion of AP Calculus, students will be prepared to take the AP Exam and if they pass, may enter directly into Calculus II in college.

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    SPANISH III/COLLEGE SPANISH (24054) – Elective, Commencement Honors; Open to grades 10 – 12
    Prerequisite: Spanish 1 & 2
    Required Materials: 3-Ring Binder, Spanish/English Dictionary (College Credit – Textbook)

    This class will also be available for college credit. This class will delve into most verb tenses of the Spanish language. Much more emphasis will be paid to specific vocabulary concerning travel and daily needs. Students will be expected to know the grammar and idioms much more specifically and be able to respond to spoken prompts. Students will be expected to read, write and speak Spanish with much more accuracy than in the previous Spanish classes.

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    AP GOVERNMENT AND POLITICS (04157) –  Elective, Commencement Honors; Open to grade 12
    Prerequisite: None

    This college-level U.S. Government and Politics course provides students with an analytical perspective on government and politics in the United States, involving both the study of general concepts used to interpret U.S. politics and the analysis of specific case studies. The courses generally cover the constitutional underpinnings of the U.S. government, political beliefs and behaviors, political parties and interest groups, the institutions and policy process of the national government, and civil rights and liberties.

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    EMERGENCY MEDICAL TECHNICIAN (14055) - Elective, Commencement Honors; Open to 12 grade
    Prerequisite: Anatomy and Physiology or enrolled in Anatomy and Physiology with a B or better

    The Emergency Medical Technician Course includes the essential knowledge and skill required to provide basic emergency care for the sick and injured.  The EMT class covers topics such as patient assessment, medical and traumatic injuries/treatment, basic pharmacology, airway management, bleeding control, CPR, ambulance operations, and safety/well-being of the EMT.  The class requires two hours per week of classroom instruction and 8-10 hours/week online course work in addition to some call shifts during the semester.  Additional skill practices will be held on weekends as needed.  Students who successfully complete the course are eligible to take the National Registry EMT exam.

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    MONTANA DIGITAL ACADEMY – Elective, Open to grades 10-12

    Courses not offered at RLHS, Including Montana Digital Academy Advanced Placement courses which must be taken on the RLHS campus. (College must be approved by Northwest Association of Colleges and Universities or one of its equivalent accreditation associations.) Only scheduled through RLHS Office.

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    DEPARTMENTAL DISTINCTION AWARD