High School Curriculum

Highschool students with their teacher

9-12 Curriculum

9-12 Math

Graduation Requirements – 3 credits (6 semesters) of High Schools math coursework

Regents Admission requirements (University of Iowa, Iowa State University, and University of Northern Iowa)  Three years, including one year each of Algebra, Geometry, and Advanced Algebra (Algebra 2). Check specific University requirements.

Courses offered in the math department – 

Algebra I

Geometry and Geometry Block

Algebra 2 and Algebra 2 Block

Advanced Algebra

PreCalculus (Concurrent Course – Dual Credit)

High School Calculus

Calculus I (Concurrent Course – Dual Credit)

Calculus 2 (Concurrent Course – Dual Credit)

Statistics & Probability

Prep for College Math 2

Prep for College Math 1

9-12 World Language

Courses offered in the World Language Department

Spanish 1,2,3, and 4

Heritage Spanish

9-12 Science

Graduation Requirements – 3 credits (6 semesters) of High School Science coursework Regents.

MHS students using virtual reality for a lesson.

MHS students using virtual reality for a lesson.

Admission requirements (University of Iowa, Iowa State University, and University of Northern Iowa)  Three years, including one year each from any two of the following: Biology, Chemistry, and Physics. Check specific University requirements.

Courses offered in the Science Department

Physical Science


Advanced Biology

Unified Science – Forensic Science (Crime Scene Investigations)

Applied Bio-Chemistry

High School Chemistry

Pre-General Chemistry I

General Chemistry I (Concurrent Course – Dual Credit)

General Chemistry II (Concurrent Course – Dual Credit)

Organic Chemistry

Conceptual Physics


Advanced Placement Physics

College Physics (Concurrent Course – Dual Credit)

Anatomy (Human)

Project Lead the Way (PLTW) courses – elective science credit

Principles of Bio-Medical Science (PBS)

Human Body Systems (HBS)

Medical Interventions (MI)

Principles of Engineering (POE)

Introduction to Engineering Design (IED)

Computer Science Principles (CSP)

PLTW Computer Science A

9-12 Social Studies

Graduation Requirements:  World History (1 credit) Class of 2022 and after, American History  (1 credit),  Social Studies elective (½ credit) Government (12th grade/ ½ credit), Financial Literacy (1/2 credit) Class of 2020 and after.

Regents Admission requirements (University of Iowa, Iowa State University, and University of Northern Iowa :  Three years is essential, but four is better. Take at least one year of U.S. history and one year of world history. Check specific University requirements.

Courses offered in the Social Studies Department

World History

Adv. World History 

US History (Concurrent enrollment, Dual Credit)

American History I

American History 2

Contemporary U.S. Issues 

AP European History 

General Psychology 

Advanced Psychology 

Introduction to Psychology (Concurrent enrollment Dual Credit)


AP Government 


9-12 Language Arts

Graduation Requirements:  4 years to include English 9, English 10, English 11, and 4th year of ELA Credit course

Regents Admission requirements (University of Iowa, Iowa State University, and University of Northern Iowa): Four years of coursework. Check specific University requirements.

Courses offered in the English Language Arts

English 9

English 9 Honors

English 10

English 10 Honors

English 11

AP Language and Composition

Composition I and II (Concurrent Enrollment Dual Credit)

Creative Writing

Drama I and II

English Composition with Film Analysis


AP Literature and Composition

Multicultural Literature (Concurrent Enrollment Dual Credit)

Science Fiction

English 12

9-12 Fine Arts


Instruction provided by:  Music/Band/Orchestra Instructors

Music Standards- General Music Standards 


MHS band students practicing.

  • The music curriculum is guided by the music performance standards grouped under the artistic processes of: Creating, Performing and Responding.  

  • For instrumental music, students at MHS can be a part of Symphonic Band, Marching Band, Wind Symphony, Jazz Band and Orchestra.  

  • The vocal music options consist of Treble Choir, Concert Choir and Show Choir at the high school level.

  • Students participate in individual and ensemble groups for performance and competition.  

  • One of the music standards is performing.  All students share their talents with families, friends and communities in performances at the MHS/Community Auditorium.


Instruction provided by:  High School Art teachers

Art Standards- Visual Arts Standards


  • Art Mission Statement: The Marshalltown Art Department works together to grow a well-rounded student who has the ability to do multiple tasks with skill, creatively solve problems, empathize and relate to others around them.

  • Artistic Processes are the cognitive and physical actions by which arts learning and making are realized. National Core Arts Standards are based on the artistic processes of Creating; Performing/ Producing/Presenting; Responding; and Connecting.

  • All students in the Marshalltown Community School District have the opportunities to grow through art experiences starting in kindergarten.  All students receive art instruction through grade 8 and students at the high school have a selection of electives to continue their exploration.  

  • At MHS, students can take a variety of electives to continue to hone their artist’s skills.  Classes in basic and advanced Art 1, 3-D concepts, Design, Digital Photography, Drawing, Graphic Design, Painting, and Pottery are offered as electives at the high school.  

  • Art also develops critical thinking, social skills and 21st Century Skills.    Students are engaged in their own learning to develop skills, and concepts through sensory awareness, aesthetic discrimination and authentic, creative projects.  They acquire skills important to lifelong success, such as communication, collaboration, creativity, critical thinking, and problem-solving.

    • Formatively and continually reflect upon their own and others’ artistic processes, learning how intent,artistic choices, visual media, and communication influence one another.

    • Be encouraged to discover that multiple solutions exist within an artistic problem, therefore fostering innovation and creative practice.

    • Examine diverse local and world art cultures and histories.   

    • Bolster social-emotional learning for themselves and others through studio environments supported by peer critiques and collaborative inquiry.

MHS band students practicing

MHS band students practicing

9-12 Physical Education

Instruction provided by: 9-12 PE teachers

PE Standards – SHAPE America


  • Marshalltown School District Physical Education will empower physical learners with the skills, knowledge, and healthy mindset to pursue lifelong fitness.


A MHS student practicing hip hinges in P.E. class.

  • Healthy kids learn better. Physical activity can help students be healthier but more and more research is showing that physical activity may also impact academic achievement. Physical activity wakes up the brain, improves behavior and increases concentration.  One of the goals of the Physical Education program is for students to celebrate physical literacy, which is the ability, confidence and desire to be physically active for life. 

  • The MHS PE program provides a choice based physical education program.  Students can select their individualized course for their PE credits. Courses range from Soccer for Fitness, Sports Activities for Fitness, Personal Fitness, and Strength and Conditioning.  The focus as the “fitness” of each course is to improve each student’s overall health and understanding. The health related components of fitness  are cardiovascular endurance, muscular strength, flexibility, muscular endurance, and body composition.  Nutrition and healthy choices are also stressed with the goal to improve and achieve a balance in each of these areas.

  • They use heart monitors to help students understand their levels of activities and its effect on their bodies.  The department has recently added the Drum Fit curriculum to their PE program as a means to integrate music, rhythm and movement.

  • One of the most important skills learned in the physical education program is the social aspect.  The students learn cooperation, teamwork. best effort and positive attitudes along with a growth mindset. An active life can enhance the student’s social and emotional learning.  Being physically active can release endorphins which can alleviate feelings of stress, anxiety, sadness, depression, and frustration to name a few.  Body control and personal and team success can boost positive energy and confidence.

A MHS student practicing hip hinges in P.E. class

A MHS student practicing hip hinges in P.E. class

Library Services

Instruction provided by:  Teacher Librarians/Media Specialists

Library Standards –Iowa School Library Standards


  • Mission Statement:  We develop students and staff who become effective users of information and embrace a love of reading and literature through personalized learning experiences. 

  •  The Marshalltown Community School District Libraries follow a curriculum aligned with the American Association of School Librarians, the National Education Technology Standards, the Partnership for 21st Century Skills, and the Iowa Core Curriculum.

  • All schools offer a fully staffed and full-service library with a  teacher librarian who is uniquely prepared and strategically positioned to:

    • teach students to think critically and independently to construct new understandings and insights from varied information sources.

    • lead and embrace the integration of technology to enhance learning.

    • connect communities of learners in virtual and physical spaces.

    • collaborate with the school community to design and enact rigorous learning experiences and participate as positive digital citizens.

    • maximize access to quality print and digital resources.

    • champion and support the reading life of students.

    • nurture curiosity to develop in students a passion for learning for life.

  • Teacher Librarians enhance the student literacy and technology experiences.  Each school maintains a library with print and digital resources and maintains websites with online resources for inquiry and research.  Students are also introduced to information literacy, digital citizenship and Project Lead the Way coding in their library experiences starting as early as kindergarten. Various additional activities such as Battle of the Books, Lit over Lunch, and Poetry Out Loud and a positive relationship with the Marshalltown Public Library provide students additional opportunities to explore reading as a lifelong passion.  

  • At the middle school and high school levels, the Teacher Librarians co-teach with content teachers to provide instruction in research strategies and formats.  


  • Students in the district use various forms of technology.  The district is one on one with Chromebooks for students in grades PK through 12.  The district uses the Google Suite of products to promote communication, collaboration, creativity, and critical thinking skills.  Coding is introduced at the elementary levels and continues at all grade levels through middle school.