Cougar High School
9th – 12th Grade
At Clariden, we believe in empowering our students to use their voice. It takes the right atmosphere with the right educators to help students love to learn and to feel empowered throughout their academic career. Our award-winning, project-based learning environment promotes creativity and academic excellence. Students engage in a variety of projects throughout the school year and content time that meet and exceed state standards aligning with TEKS. Projects are supported through content time which promote an application of learning. High School content time includes concentrated classes in Math, Language Arts, Philosophy, History, Environmental Science, Chemistry, Physics, Astrophysics, Biology, Theatre, Latin, Foreign Language, Community Outreach, STEM, and College Prep. Projects are tied to real life issues which enable students to understand the significance of what they are learning. Projects are supported through instruction from teachers, mentors, experts, field study, and travel.
“All-Honors Graduation Program”
Clariden graduates students on the Distinguished Academic Plan — Texas’ highest graduation plan. All students begin honors courses in 9th grade. Students typically graduate with many more credits than public school students on the same plan — a bonus for college admissions.
High school students have a complete schedule of core courses. All of our curriculum meets and exceeds State standards, known as TEKS. Students delve into STEAM works to develop their Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math skills. They learn about civilizations and the customs, laws, and arts that define a society’s contribution to humanity. They study the detailed parts of our language that enable us to communicate effectively through spoken and written words. The main difference in our approach is that our small class sizes enable us to go beyond the standard worksheet.
- We offer internship & capstone projects.
- We support students who wish to take the AP exams.
- We encourage dual credit courses that can earn students official college credit that can be transferred to their degree.
- We provide 1:1 College Counseling
- English Language Arts: Honors I-IV
- Mathematics: Honors Algebra I & II, Honors Geometry, Honors Pre-Calculus, Honors Calculus, Honors Trigonometry/Transition College Math/Statistics
- Science: Honors Biology, Honors Chemistry, Honors Physics, Honors Paleontology
- Social Studies: Honors Geography/Latin, Honors US History, Honors World History, Honors Economics, Honors Government
- STEAM: I-IV
- College Readiness: I-II
- Art & Design
- Business Information Mgmt.
- Character Education
- Computer Science
- Digital Art
- World Languages: Spanish, French, German
- (+21 available languages for elective credit)
- Physical Education
- Robotics: I-IV
- Rocketry: I-IV
- Theatre: I-IV
- Yearbook: I-IV
Projects bring all our learning together around a common question with a real-world application. Project-based learning also simulates the way problems are solved in the workforce: through team effort, exploration, testing, analysis, and conclusions. High School students engage in 6-7 projects per school year. Projects provide for the application of concepts taught and acquisition of skills such as collaboration, creativity, oral communication, and critical analysis. Each project comes with what we call the “Project 411.” This document outlines the goals, methods, lessons, timeline and assessments associated with the project. This method of teaching allows us to provide something above and beyond what traditional models of education typically provide.
- Driving Question — What Are We Looking to Solve?
- Learning Outcomes
- Concepts Introduced
- Technology Introduced
- Field Study
- Work Product / Assessment
- Competition (when applicable)
HUMANITIES PROJECT EXAMPLES:
Banned in America Project: Students will assess the role of censorship in American society through a study of banned books in America. Students will engage in reading a grade appropriate banned book then participate in a mock trial around the issues associated with censorship.
Frankenstein Project: Through a novel study of Mary Shelly’s “Frankenstein”, students will explore the characteristics of a frame novel and Gothic hor- ror novels while analyzing conflict from different perspectives. Students will also explore how stem cell research and other modern technology relate to the warning of knowledge within the novel.
STEAM PROJECT EXAMPLES:
Closing the Gap Project: Students will study the emergence of disease and the characteristics of viruses while learning about the biology of HIV/AIDS and treatments such as anti-retroviral therapy. Students will gain an understanding of foreign aid policy for the HIV/AIDS crisis and analyze solutions in the developing world.
“Tiny House” Project: This project met the specific criteria for the architectural division of the United States Super STEM Competition. Clariden middle and high school students built tiny houses to scale. This was a very challenging project that incorporated design, art, construction, and mathematical concepts. We’re incredibly proud of the job our students did and the guidance they received from their educators and mentors. We shipped two tiny houses off to Massachusetts for judging and our students were awarded “2017 Division Winner”.
Field Study Examples: In-State
- Bob Jones Nature Center & Preserve
- Dallas Museum of Art
- Texas State Capitol
- George W. Bush Presidential Center
- Fort Worth Zoo
- Holocaust & Human Rights Museum
- Space Center Houston
Field Study Examples: International
Yearly 10-Day, Tour-Guided, International Educational Travel. Clariden teachers accompany students on these 5-day trips where students get to experience a variety of natural and cultural land- marks and experiences. Participation is optional and parents are welcome to join the adventure. Below are examples of recent years’ destinations:
• London, Belize, The Mediterranean, Europe
STEAM & Competitions
High School students have a daily STEAM class. STEAM is the acronym Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math — which goes beyond STEM to emphasize the design skills needed for real-world product development, packaging, marketing and more. This class combines students from 9th, 10th, 11th and 12th grades onto project teams. This way, mentoring can occur and teams can make sure they have all the skills needed for each of the disciplines. STEAM is a graded class. Students spend weeks doing research, documentation, design, prototyping, testing and data analysis. The projects culminate in either a Presentation of Learning, where the teams present their research and their findings along with their report and build submissions, or in a Competition, in which their engineering notebooks, builds, etc are judged in Regional, State and National/International levels.
VEX V5 Robotics
Clariden High School students participate in VEX Robotics’ V5 program. Learn more about the challenge here
(2020-21 competitions are still being worked out due to COVID restrictions on travel.)
- 2019-2020 VEX IQ Excellence Award & State Finalist – Middle School Team
- 2018-2019 Clariden’s Middle School All-Girls Team Ranked 4th Place at VEX Robotics Competition.
Team America Rocketry Challenge (TARC)
Team America Rocketry Challenge (TARC) is an annual national competition. Clariden students work to build a rocket from scratch and have it complete a number of challenges laid out by the competition. Clariden’s Results:
United States Super STEM Competition (USSSC)
The USSSC “is an educational non-profit organization running a yearly event to challenge the creative mind of all middle school, high school and college students.” The competition is open to both US and International students. There are multiple divisions in which teams can compete. Each year, Clariden selects one of the divisions and then students work to build their entry as part of their STEAM PBL. The project is graded as part of the STEAM class and entry in the competition follows.
Clariden’s Past Results:
- 2019 National 1st Place Winner: Clean Energy Division – Super Wind Turbine
- 2018 National 1st Place Winner: Biomimicry Division – Super Umbrella
- 2017 National 1st Place Winner: Architecture Division – Tiny Houses
Verizon Innovative App Challenge
The Verizon Innovative App Challenge is a nationwide contest that challenges middle and high school students to come up with a mobile app idea that would help solve a problem within their community. Over 1,200 app ideas were submitted nationwide. Clariden’s Results:
- Clariden’s team was named the 2015-2016 Best in State winner in the high school division.
- Because they were named Best in State winners, each student was awarded a mobile tablet along with a $5,000 grant for their school, making them eligible to compete in the Fan Favorite People’s Choice Challenge. Read more
Students experience a variety of art forms from theater, music, graphic design, to fine arts in our state of the art facilities.Read More
Students learn how to fuel their bodies in order to fuel their minds. Exercise, healthy habits, and safety training are all part of it.Read More
Our goal is to help our students find their voice and respect the voice of others. Our Cougar Pride is ingrained in all our curriculum.Read More
After School Clubs
Our extra-curricular activities expand upon the skills built in class and provide further opportunities for students to explore and try new things in a fun, social environment.Read More
We believe travel is an integral part of building independence, expanding our world view and deepening our knowledge through hands-on study.Read More
We offer personalized college prep counseling. This includes testing prep, scholarship research, application help & overall mentoring.Read More
We do not teach to the test. The Clariden School is a private school and does not receive State funding. Therefore, our school is not required to take the State standardized tests and we do not build our days and weeks around testing. Instead, we leverage a number of other national assessment tools. We work to keep a relaxed atmosphere around standardized testing so the students learn healthy approaches to assessment. At The Clariden School, we do not use one assessment tool to determine admissions. We are interested in knowing as much as we can about each student. It is our goal to create learning experiences and environments that promote the overall development of each student. Students receive report cards two times per year along with NWEA benchmark assessments to measure progress. This ensures grade level content is covered and mastered. Students also take the PSAT in 8th grade.