8th Grade Curriculum
Physical Science 8
Physical Science provides students with a working knowledge of how math and science truly interact on a consistent basis. The curriculum units included in this course are Lab Safety, The Scientific Method, Scientific Measurements and Math Skills, Motion and Forces, Work and Machines, Energy, and Sound and Light. Through these units of study, students are strongly encouraged to explore, experiment and increase the knowledge of science that they have acquired through previous courses. This course is very hands-on with several labs and activities that require students to properly use various pieces of scientific equipment and follow proper scientific lab and safety procedures.
Science is best understood when students truly experience it. This course allows students to participate in hands-on activities that help them naturally develop a deeper understanding of science. Students will have opportunities to work in groups, collaborate and discuss their work which allows them to experience the job of a scientist. Virtual field trips and several forms of technology are utilized throughout this course which provides students with very accurate and current methods for learning and understanding science.
Through the English 8 course, students will further expand their previous knowledge of English concepts and skills. The focus will be on students to gain a deeper understanding of vocabulary, grammar, reading, writing, research and oral presentation skills. Several of these skills and topics are taught cohesively as this allows students to recognize the how writing, reading and all other aspects of the English course not only complement each other but are also necessary for success in other academic areas and in life. Students will have several opportunities to express themselves through writing and speaking. They will also deepen their research skills throughout this course.
Several forms of technology will be used throughout the school year to helps students develop a variety of strategies for reading, writing, researching and presenting ideas. Students will work both individually and in groups on projects and pieces that they will create. Students will be encouraged to respectfully critique each other as they work together to fine-tune their writing and speaking. They will also work together to examine and critique published works.
In Math 8, students begin with a review of previously acquired math skills, then delve into gaining a deeper understating of mathematical concepts. Topics covered in Math 8 will include: Real Numbers and the Coordinate Plane, Solving Linear Equations, Introductions to Functions and Graphing Functions, Systems of Linear Equations and Exponents. Students will also expand their knowledge of Geometry, Transformations, Measurement and Data Analysis. Many Pre-Algebra concepts will be embedded throughout each of the units of study.
This course will involve several methods of instruction and practice including pencil-paper practice, utilization of computer programs that will enhance math skill and abilities, projects, games and situations that require students to apply mathematical concepts in ways that allow them to make connections between math and other subjects. Students will also opportunities to encourage recognizing and understanding the extended use of math in everyday life.
Eighth-grade students who meet given criteria are invited to participate in Algebra 1. Upon successful completion of this course, students will have earned a high school course credit for math. This course is fast paced and will cover a wide variety of mathematical concepts including operations with complex numbers, exploring linear, quadratic, cubic and piecewise functions using numerical and algebraic techniques as well as using graphing techniques. The student will be able to solve quadratic, radical and absolute value equations and inequalities. The student will also gain a more in depth knowledge and understanding of probability and data analysis.
This course is designed to enhance learning for students who demonstrate a profoundunderstanding of math and mathematical concepts. The student will participate in computer programs to provide a variety of opportunities for practicing, learning and growing as math students. Students will also have opportunities to collaborate as they work on projects and activities designed to provide experiences in which practical applications of these concepts and skills are explored.
Georgia/American History 8
This course provides eighth-grade students with an opportunity to learn about and understand our own country as well as the specific area of the county in which we live. Units included in this history course will allow students to examine and explore the geographic environments, state and local governments, laws and geographic areas of Georgia and the United States of America. These units are designed to provide students with a better understanding of how cultural, geographic and economic diversity affect their own lives. This course will incorporate comprehension strategies and critical reading skills to enhance their knowledge and understanding of the topics studied and allow for connections between history and other subject areas. There will also be a focus on writing skills and oral presentation skills.
Throughout the year, students will be introduced to new topics and gain a deeper understanding of concepts through hands- on activities, projects done both as groups and individuals, field trips, virtual field trips, guest speakers and various uses of forms of technology. Students are also given many opportunities to choose for themselves and contribute their own ideas for activities that enhance not only their learning and understanding of local history, but also their desire to expand their knowledge about their country.
This course will introduce students to diverse styles of sculpture and innovation using well-known sculptors and artists as an influence. Students will design and complete sculpture projects and write supporting descriptions. The projects will focus on specific goals: movement, repetition, force and flow in nature, sculpting, and commercial design. Materials will include wire, wood, cardboard, and materials found in the woodlands. The concepts in this class will help students make connections to real-world use for 3D design.
Photoshop and Digital Art
Students will design graphics, sequential illustrations, and photographs that demonstrate a basic understanding of computer software by utilizing basic Photoshop tools and setting up individual workspaces. Learned skills include painting with a digital stylus, layering techniques, understanding and altering values in photographs, black and white photography, digital mandalas using lasso tools and magic wands, sequential stories, exaggerative photographs, self-portraits, and the development of a history or timeline of photography with highlights on several photographers and individual research.
A historical study of peoples through the ages and their ability to communicate and influence others using marks and symbols, including the invention of letters and numbers. Students will then learn how to elevate these marks into something aesthetically beautiful with calligraphy, stylized journaling, logo design, illuminations, type design, mandalas, symbols, and signage. Tools include ink, dip pens, micron pens, drafting pencils, gouache and brushes, gold leaf techniques, and ink washes.
Drawing & Painting
This course will focus on artistic expression in American history, including modern movements and art connected to social change. Painting projects will use acrylics, water paint, and India-ink wash. Pencil and/or ink compositions will use ink and various pencils, focus on still-life and architectural elements, and include the study of values and shading to create weight and shadow.
Broadcasting is an 18-week course that utilizes the basics of Video Production to produce a weekly news broadcast to include various segments such as sports reporting, human interest stories, commercials, Man On the Street, weather, etc. Students will be responsible for meeting multiple deadlines each week. This course is designed to give "real world" experience. The end production is seen throughout campus and on social media. Students may be required to video/live stream an after-
School event. Self-motivation and creativity are highly encouraged.
Chorus is offered to aspiring singers regardless of their previous choral experience. The course explores choral music from a wide variety of cultures and time periods through study and performance. The curriculum emphasizes the basics of vocal technique, sight-reading, music theory and music history. Students will have opportunities to participate in various Honor Chorus events and audition for GMEA All-State Chorus. In addition to concerts held on campus throughout the year, performances at local nursing homes and community events will also be scheduled. Chorus and Drama classes will combine to present special shows: 7th grade will perform 2 madrigal/dinner theater shows and 8th grade will perform a Broadway Jr. musical.
In this 18-week course, students will experience and participate in many types of oral presentation and theatrical performances. Aspects of stagecraft such as movement, voice, timing, teamwork, costumes, prop and set design will be explored. Class assignments will be a combination of practiced performances, improvisational games, speaking on given topics, and participation in a class play.
Exploratory: Persuasive Writing
Teaching one of the most commonly used writing techniques of the day, Persuasive Writing focuses on the use of words in a convincing manner. Students will learn to improve their critical writing and thinking skills, developing the elements to build a persuasive essay. Participants in this class will develop the skills needed to write in a way that offers and supports their opinion, improves their argument, and/or aligns the reader with their point of view.
Exploratory: Physical Education
Physical Education is designed to promote physical activity, teamwork, self-motivation, self- discipline and increased development of body movement and athletic ability. Students are beginning to mature in their ability to perform various athletic tasks and movements. In this course, students will demonstrate more mature motor movement, perform more complex rhythmic skill and apply movement forms to developing motor skills. Along with athletic skill and increased motor skills, Physical Education focuses on good sportsmanship, building students’ confidence in their abilities and their willingness to try new things. Students will also improve their individual fitness levels through cardiovascular conditioning, general body strength and flexibility.
This conditioning class will be organized and systematically planned to provide students the opportunity to efficiently develop themselves in the following "health and skill related" fitness components:
Cardiovascular Endurance, Muscular Endurance, Muscular Strength, Flexibility, Body Composition, Agility, Balance, Power, Reaction Time, Coordination, Speed.