Grade 8 Curriculum Guide

Social Studies

  • Nature and purpose of government
  • Structure and function of United States government
  • Structure and function of New Hampshire government
  • Relationship of United States with other countries
  • Rights and responsibilities of citizenship at local, state and national level
  • Political process
  • Basic economic concepts
  • Cycles in the economy
  • Financial institutions and the government
  • Economics and the individual
  • International economics and trade
  • Personal finance and the free market economy
  • The world in spatial terms
  • Places and regions
  • Physical and human geographic features
  • Physical systems and patterns of the Earth’s surface
  • Characteristics and spatial distribution of ecosystems
  • Human migration
  • Cultural mosaics
  • Economic interdependence
  • Human settlement patterns
  • Forces of cooperation and conflict among peoples
  • Interaction between Earth’s physical and human systems
  • Political foundations and development
  • History of governance in our state and country
  • Contacts, exchanges and international relations
  • World views, value systems and forms of expression
  • Economic systems and technology
  • Changing forms of production, distribution and consumption of goods and services over time
  • Interaction of various social groups over time
  • Political foundations and developments

Science

  • Atmosphere, climate and weather
  • Layers of atmosphere
  • Water cycle and its affect on climatic patterns
  • Impact that natural and human factors have on the climate
  • Layers of the Earth
  • Plate tectonics
  • Earth’s evolution over geological times
  • Fossils and geologic time
  • Observation of Earth from space
  • Geological changes on the Earth’s surface
  • Differential heating/convection’s affect on climate and weather
  • Processes of the rock cycle
  • Physical and chemical properties of water
  • The water cycle’s connection to Earth’s weather patterns
  • Characteristics of sun and its position in the universe
  • Phases of the moon
  • Lunar and solar eclipses
  • Moon’s affect on tides
  • Temporal relationships among the Earth, Sun and Moon
  • Solar energy
  • Solar influences on atmospheric conditions
  • Movements and patterns of the planets of our solar system
  • Gravitational force on planets and their moons
  • Size, scale and astronomical unites of measure in space
  • Movement and patterns of stars, galaxies, asteroids, comets and meteors
  • Universe
  • Importance of technology as it relates to science
  • Calculating temperature in Celsius
  • Measuring and calculating using metric system
  • Classification of life
  • Anatomical features and patterns of development
  • Functions of the human body’s systems
  • Relationships among the structure and function of cells, tissues, organs, and organ systems in an organism
  • Biodiversity of an ecosystem
  • Asexual and sexual reproduction
  • Oviparous and viviparous organisms
  • Fertilization
  • Meiosis and mitosis
  • Regeneration of genetic information
  • Impact of environmental changes on individual organisms and entire species
  • Physical conditions of environment and its affect on the survival of organisms
  • Flow or energy through living systems (food chains and webs)
  • Autotrophs and photosynthesis
  • Comparing photosynthesis with respiration
  • Recycling of matter within a system (matter is neither created nor destroyed)
  • Identifying carbon, hydrogen, oxygen, nitrogen and phosphorus as the building blocks of life
  • Impact of environmental changes
  • Extinction
  • Evidence of biological evolution
  • Natural selection
  • Heredity and genes
  • Genotype and phenotype
  • Survival of the fittest
  • Biological inheritance and behavior
  • Behavioral response and internal and environmental stimuli
  • Causes of disease
  • Viruses, bacteria, fungi, and parasites
  • Immune system and white blood cells
  • Patterns of human development
  • Technology’s influence on the course of history
  • Technology and science’s improvement on health and medicine
  • Atoms, molecules and compounds
  • Comparing pure substances and mixtures
  • Comparing heterogeneous and homogeneous mixtures
  • Volume, mass and density
  • Comparing physical and chemical changes
  • Chemical reactions and bonding
  • Reaction rates
  • Oxidation
  • Transfer of energy in a chemical reaction
  • Law of Conservation of Energy
  • Kinetic Energy and Potential Energy
  • Light’s interaction with matter (transmission, refraction, absorption, scattering and reflection)
  • Light Spectrum and wavelengths of light
  • Gravitational forces
  • Friction
  • Magnetic properties
  • Laws of Motion

Language Arts

  • Identifying word origins, including words from other languages that have been adopted into our language
  • Identifying and describing subplots
  • Identifying the characteristics of epics (poems, novels and dramas)
  • Identifying hyperboles
  • Describing characterization (e.g., stereotype, antagonist, protagonist)
  • Identifying and understanding universal themes
  • Demonstrating knowledge of author’s style
  • Demonstrating knowledge of author’s use of hyperbole, symbolism, or use of punctuation to analyze literary works
  • Organizing information to show understanding or relationships among facts, ideas, and events
  • Outlining
  • Identifying characteristics of schedules
  • Explaining how purpose may affect the interpretation of the text
  • Identifying and evaluating potential sources of information
  • Evaluating information presented, in terms of completeness and relevance
  • Recognizing organizational structures within paragraphs or within texts (i.e., cause/effect, investigation)
  • Making links to author’s choice of words, style, bias, literary techniques, or point of view
  • Drawing a conclusion by synthesizing information (e.g., demonstrate a connection to the broader world of ideas)
  • Creating images
  • Developing characters through relationships with other characters
  • Using an organizational text structure appropriate to focus/controlling idea (i.e., cause/effect, investigation)
  • Stating and maintaining a focus/controlling idea/thesis
  • Establishing an authoritative voice
  • Applying rules of standard English usage to correct grammatical errors (i.e., subject-verb agreement, pronoun-antecedent, consistency of verb tense, case of pronouns)
  • Applying appropriate punctuation to various sentence patterns to enhance meaning (i.e., hyphens, dashes, parentheses)
  • Applying conventional and word-derivative spelling patterns/rules (including foreign derivation)

Mathematics

  • Demonstrating conceptual understanding of rational numbers in respect to absolute values, perfect square and cube roots and percents
  • Demonstrating an understanding of relative magnitude of common irrational numbers (e.g., √2, π)
  • Solving problems with percent increase and decrease, interest rates and markups
  • Solving problems with squares and cubes and taking squares and cubes
  • Using mental computations to solve problems using compatible numbers, applying properties of operations, using mental imagery and using patterns
  • Determining reasonableness of answers
  • Mentally calculating benchmark perfect squares and related square roots
  • Determining part of a number using benchmark percents and related fractions
  • Estimating tips, discounts, taxes and non-perfect square roots
  • Demonstrating conceptual understanding of field properties
  • Applying the Pythagorean Theorem
  • Determining the impact of scaling on the volume or surface area of three-dimensional figures when linear dimensions are multiplied by a constant factor
  • Solving problems involving growth and rate
  • Calculating surface area and volume of rectangular prisms, triangular prisms, cylinders, pyramids and cones
  • Generalizing nonlinear relationship using words and symbols
  • Demonstrating conceptual understanding of linear relationships as a constant rate of change
  • Informally and formally determining slopes and intercepts represented in graphs, tables and problem situations
  • Distinguishing between linear relationships (constant rate of change) and nonlinear relationships (varying rates of change) represented in tables, graph and equations
  • Evaluating and simplifying algebraic expressions containing square roots, whole number exponents and rational numbers
  • Solving formulas for a variable requiring one transformation
  • Solving multi-step linear equations with integer coefficients
  • Showing two expressions are not equivalent by applying commutative, associative or distributive properties, order of operations and substitution
  • Interpreting line graphs, scatter plots, histograms and box-and-whisker plots
  • Analyzing patterns, trends and distribution of data using measures of central tendency, dispersion, outliers, quartile values and estimated line of best fit
  • Evaluating the sample from which the statistics were developed (bias, random and non-random)
  • Predicting the theoretical probability of an event and testing the prediction through experiments and simulations
  • Considering limitations that could affect interpretations

Health/Safety

  • Risk of dependence and addiction
  • Physical, social and emotional effects of alcohol and drug use
  • Short-term and long-term effects of alcohol and drug use
  • Signs and behavior of alcohol and drug use
  • Benefits of not using alcohol and drug (physical, social, emotional, legal and financial)
  • Peer pressure
  • Healthful choices about alcohol and drug use
  • First Aid
  • Transportation safety
  • Violence prevention
  • Valid sources for getting help
  • Use of protective equipment
  • Suicide prevention
  • How to recognize signs of depression and mental illness
  • How to get help for self and others
  • Healthful eating
  • Accessing nutrition information and products
  • Influences on food choices
  • Balancing food intake and physical activity
  • Food safety
  • Healthful physical activity
  • Physiological responses to physical activity
  • Growth and development
  • Emotional, physical and social changes with growth and development
  • Puberty and adolescence
  • HIV and other STD prevention
  • Short-term and long-term risks of tobacco use
  • Addictive effects of nicotine
  • Choosing to be tobacco free
  • How to make personal commitment not to use
  • Strategies to resist pressure to use
  • Benefits of being tobacco free
  • Emotional health
  • Mental health problems
  • Recourses and support for mental help issues
  • Personal health and hygiene
  • Body changes that occur during growth and development
  • Preventing disease and infection
  • Environmental health and resource conservation
  • How to advocate for the protection of natural resources
  • Environmental health risks

Life Skills/Character Education

  • Conflict resolution techniques
  • Ways to communicate respect for self and others
  • Diversity of relationships
  • Positive self-image
  • Interpersonal relationships and communication
  • Stress management

Foreign Language — Spanish

  • Pronunciation
  • Basic conversational phrases
  • Spanish sentence structure
  • Reading Spanish prose and poetry
  • Regular and irregular verbs
  • Verb tenses
  • Spelling
  • Vocabulary
  • Writing declarative and interrogative sentences with punctuation
  • Spanish Vocabulary:
    • Greetings
    • Numbers/Counting
    • Colors
    • Shapes
    • Family members
    • Animals
    • Household articles
    • Sports and games
    • Things at school
    • Food
    • Articles of clothing
    • Calendar (Days and Months)
    • Weather
    • Feelings
    • Modes of travel
    • Places