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Inquiry is at the heart of science classes at Lincoln. Students are encouraged to be curious, ask questions, make mistakes, and be critical investigators of the world around them.

Learning through discussions with peers and their teachers, an emphasis is placed on using reasoning and analytical skills to understand the interconnections in the natural and physical world. Inquiry is also about doing — in a world that is increasingly digital and intangible, we believe in the importance of hands-on experiences and experimentation as a way to learn and explore.

Grades Served:


Our students love science. They love learning actively, being in the lab, and discovering by doing and observing. Lincoln gives every student the confidence to see themselves as a scientist.

Alicia Taylor, Lincoln School Science Department Head

Science: Lower School

Lower School science is all about exploring our natural world while building the habits of a scientific mind. From Kindergarten through Grade 5, Lincoln students are learning how science works by observing the world around them, asking questions based on what they find, and  exploring ways to seek answers. 

Here, science is happily messy—mistakes help us learn. Students become creative problem solvers who are resilient, willing to take risks, and ready to embrace the process. Together, we explore subjects within each of the main branches of science (physical, earth, and life) in every grade level.

Our partnership with Save the Bay enables all students K-5 to have field experiences throughout the year, focusing on the biology and ecology of Narragansett Bay. This partnership acts as a springboard for our biology and marine science curriculum and continues to offer our girls authentic, hands-on, and place-based learning experiences that connect our classroom to the larger world.

Science: Middle School

Middle School science at Lincoln builds upon the concepts and skills developed in younger grades while encouraging students to continue to be curious and creative in their approach to science. Students often enter the door eagerly asking, “What are we doing today? Will there be any explosions?” We foster this enthusiasm at every turn,  empowering our students to see themselves as scientists.

Hands-on activities, labs, and projects have students engaging with scientific and engineering practices, helping them to develop important skills like making observations and hypotheses, visualizing and analyzing data, classifying, and working with metric measurement. Middle Schoolers explore science through a natural lens, from making the Lincoln campus an outdoor classroom while learning how to identify trees, to visiting Penikese Island in Buzzards Bay, a 75-acre wildlife sanctuary filled with scuttling crabs and other creatures.  These kinds of experiences help students develop an appreciation of the natural world while placing learning into real-world contexts.

Science: Upper School

Our Upper School curriculum takes science to the next level with a sequence of Physics, Chemistry, and Biology, developing a cumulative understanding of how these disciplines connect to each other. A combination of lecture, lab work, problem solving, and project-based learning, students build the skills necessary to succeed in college and beyond. With that as their core, they begin to branch out into the scientific specialty that speaks to them.

Beginning sophomore year, students are encouraged to pursue  exciting elective courses like  Marine Biology or Physics of Machines. All junior students participate in a four-day overnight trip to the Marine Biological Labs in Woods Hole, Massachusetts, where they get to immerse themselves in scientific discovery with leading science researchers.

Lincoln students can also choose to participate in Orthopedics in Action, a unique, hands-on partnership with University Orthopedics  that features real-world challenges from orthopedic surgery and biomedical engineering.  The majority of our students choose to take well beyond the required amount of science courses, and many pursue science majors in college. Our program feeds girls’ passion for science and gives them the confidence and skills needed to excel in STEAMx at Lincoln and in life