Electives & Course Catalog

  • The curriculum at Hillview includes elective courses outside the academies and core curriculum. Students can study subjects that deepen cultural, artistic, linguistic or practical proficiency. Students select their elective subjects in the spring for the upcoming school year.


    To see a list of this current year’s electives please select the appropriate course catalog below:


    Electives are either trimester or year-long, meaning that a student who wants to try a number of different course offerings may register for three electives in a given year. Those students who may want more advanced or comprehensive courses may choose year-long electives (all world languages, orchestra and band are year-long).



    All students take two electives. Many of our students choose Qu3ST as their second elective. Qu3ST is an acronym standing for Quiet Sustained and Supported Study Time, and it is a class open to all students during the 7th period (last period of the day). This important time provides students with essential academic support before the school day ends, allows them to get a jump start on homework, use extra time to complete a task or to ask questions about difficult concepts. Some students may choose to take a second elective during 7th period instead of participating in Qu3ST. This option is only recommended for independent, organized and motivated students with few conceptual struggles.


    6th Grade Wheel/Electives

    Most 6th Graders do not choose electives, but are part of the 6th Grade Wheel, spending approximately 6 weeks, or half a trimester, in each elective. Examples of such electives are drama, music, character, art, woodshop and media literacy (these might change year to year). The six electives give 6th graders a taste of the more intensive elective offerings in 7th and 8th grades.


    Drama Program
    Hillview offers a rich drama program that starts in 6th grade with the hexmaster wheel and continues through 7th and 8th grade as electives. In addition, Hillview drama has two performances during the year which include a Fall Play and Spring Musical. Over the summer Hillview drama (along with support of Menlo Atherton High School drama, Laurel drama and talented Bay Area choreographer and directors) hosts a summer camp for 4th-8th graders. For more information on the program, performances and camp please visit Hillview Drama Program.


    Physical Education Program

    While our Physical Education program is not considered an elective, students in 7th/8th grade can choose from courses that are outside "traditional" PE program - although the program is anything but traditional! The Physical Education Department’s most important goal is providing a learning environment to improve the health and fitness level of every student. We believe that gaining good fitness habits at a young age will create a foundation for the knowledge, motivation, and behaviors needed for a lifelong commitment to health and physical education. Hillview’s Physical Education programs include team sports, non-traditional games and dance. For more information on the PE Department, visit Physical Education.