Reading Across the Curriculum

New HSMSE students at Orientation Day.

Welcoming new HSMSE students at Orientation Day.

“Reading Across the Curriculum,” also known as content literacy, is an essential part of all core classes at HSMSE. Literacy instruction at the high school level increases students’ content knowledge and readiness for college and citizenship. Content literacy instruction helps prepare students to read, write, and discuss using the language of science, social studies, mathematics and engineering. Students read texts of increasing complexity from 9th grade to 12th grade, and their skills as readers also become increasingly sophisticated. As a result, students learn to better comprehend and critically think about the subjects they are studying.


Drafting: The New Way Things Work, David Macaulay and Neil Ardley
History: Meditations, Marcus Aurelius
Math: Innumeracy: Mathematical Illiteracy and Its Consequences, John Allen Paulos
Biology: The Double Helix, James D. Watson

10th GRADE

History: All Quiet on the Western Front, Erich Maria Remarque and Ordinary Men, Christopher R. Browning
Chemistry: Uncle Tungsten, Oliver Sachs and Napoleon’s Buttons, Penny LeCouteur and Jay Burreson
Civil Engineering & Architecture: Towards a New Architecture, Le Corbusier
Math: Freakonomics, Steven Levitt and Stephen Dubner

11th GRADE

History: Founding Brothers, Joseph J. Ellis
Physics: Physics for Future Presidents, Richard A. Muller
Digital Electronics: They All Laughed, Ira Flatow
Principles of Engineering: Flying Buttresses, Entropy and O-rings, James L. Adams
Math: Bringing Down the House, Ben Mezrich

12th GRADE

History: The Prince, Niccolò Machiavelli
Engineering: Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance, Robert M. Pirsig
Math: Letters to a Young Mathematician, Ian Stewart and Fermat’s Enigma, Simon Singh

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