Learning Previews - Grade 8 - November 2017

Learning Previews - Grade 8 - November 2017
Posted on 11/14/2017
Math (On-Grade Level): Mr. Jose Oliveira

Students have been working on our unit about lines and linear equations. They are deepening their understanding of slope, y-intercept, slope formula, and slope-intercept formula. Before completing this unit, students will work on a “stained-glass” window project about lines and linear equations. Ask your student about the different types of slope there are.

Accelerated Math Pathways: Mr. Jose Oliveira

Over the past few weeks students have been learning about functions and various components of functions, such as domain, range and relation. We have also begun looking at some additional linear equation situations and concepts. Students will begin to work with some statistics and look at a line of best fit/trend line. They will also explore piecewise functions and some additional ideas about absolute value functions. Be sure to ask your student about three ways to write a linear equation.

Science: Mr. Suchy

Our 8th graders have completed their study of how climate works and are now focusing on the issue of climate change. First, we will study the greenhouse effect, natural warming processes in Earth’s atmosphere, and what could affect these processes. Next students analyze many different forms of data to provide evidence for human caused climate change and the problems being created by it. Finally students will develop evidence based solutions to climate change for different areas of the country. Ask your child about how they are helping the world!

English Language Arts: Mr. Nathan Saveriano

8th graders are truly readers and researchers. Before beginning the National Book Award winning novel Inside Out and Back Again by Thanhha Lai, our students are spending some time researching the complex history of Vietnam, the Vietnam War, and the plight of refugees. Next, students will put on their reading caps to jump into Lai’s novel that is told through poetic journal entries. As readers, we are currently determining the best text evidence to help us analyze character. We are also considering how word choice affects tone and how tone affects meaning. I encourage you to share any knowledge you may have regarding the Vietnam War, the history of Vietnam, and the plight of refugees.

Social Studies: Mr. Thomas Trainor

This month, students will continue their exploration of Ancient Japan by analyzing the evolution of the Samurai class. We will connect our year long work with social justice and identity issues by creating a public service announcement combating the negative stereotypes often given to the Samurai in modern media. This web resource from PBS, provides an interactive timeline that will be used in class (

Students will begin to become skilled at accessing relevant, readable information from online databases. Students will keep considering the essential questions of the unit:
  1. How has Japanese identity evolved?
  2. Who made a difference in Japanese history?
After our exploration of Japan is completed, 8th graders will dive right into their next unit of study, the Middle Ages. We will begin the unit by engaging in our first Document Based Question assignment of the year. Students will use multiple primary and secondary sources to provide the evidence to create an original thesis supported by a well-constructed 5 paragraph analytical essay. They will grapple with and eventually answer the question: Were the Dark Ages really dark?