Today is the last posting in this “What Your (fill in appropriate grade)Grader Needs To Learn series. I hope you have found some useful information that will be helpful for both you and your student. The following is a brief list of subjects that your eighth grader should learn by the end of the school year. Unfortunately, the series titled “What Your _ Grader Needs To Know by the Core Knowledge Foundation only goes through sixth grade. The organization also has a teacher/school resource titled “Core Knowledge K-8 Sequence” that gives detailed information about what to include in the curriculum for each grade. There are also many other resources available at your local library or accessible via the internet. Just do a Google search to locate.
Eight graders will be very busy preparing for high school and learning a lot of new information in more specialized classes (Such as home economics, wood shop etc…)while building on the foundational core subjects of the past eight years. By this grade, your student should be taking full responsibility for completing class homework and other special assignments on his or her own. Beginning to think about a career is wise at this stage, so that your student can take classes that will help him or her in the selected career.
In Language Arts and other subjects, more emphasis will be placed on making appropriate evaluations, and discussing viewpoints than rote memorization of facts. Clearly, the reading, writing and communication skills learned to date will help students share their opinions in a respectful way. In addition, eight graders will be expected to write essays that describe, persuade, narrate, compare, and contrast. In addition, they will read literature that is more complex.
Through History and Geography your student will focus on post World War 2 events both globally and within the United States. Topics such as the Cold War, The Vietnam and Korean Wars, The Civil Rights Movement, The Middle East conflicts, Terrorism, and the Democratic process will be explored.
Math will again contain large components of Geometry and simple Algebra will begin. Now is when all those years of practicing times tables, understanding fractions and least common multiples will really begin to pay off. This is also the year that many students begin to loose interest in math because of its increased complexity.
Through Science, eight graders will be able to understand the concepts of electricity magnetism, and sound. Students will also study force and motion through the exploration of earthquakes, volcanoes and plate tectonics. The information they learn in science this year will be more in depth than any previous year.