El- Massria Integrated Schools

Grade 8

At EIS, we believe that curriculum must be based on a current, clearly articulated progression of Standards of Learning. These standards and corresponding Benchmarks must be sequential and dynamic to meet the needs of our unique students.

To that end, at EIS, we use the National Standards as our reference with specific standards of learning chosen from AERO and Common Core State Standards. We believe that in doing so, we are able to meet the values and mission of EIS and provide quality learning and success for our students in the 21st century.

At EIS we are dedicated to using exemplary educational practices to provide students with a strong academic foundation. Our goal in designing our curriculum is also to address the affective domain. We wish to provide opportunities for students in their studies to utilize problem solving, inquiry, discovery and self-direction as well as creative and critical thinking.

To ensure alignment and current pedagogy, we utilize a school wide curriculum review process where we review Standards and Benchmarks and match those with quality textbooks and learning resources.

All students are expected to carry a full program of studies. Year 8 yearlong core courses include English, Arabic, French/German, Pre-Algebra and Algebra I, Earth Science, Social Studies, Physical Education and Computers. Electives include Art Mixed Media and Intermediate Band.

Grade 8 students are required to study the following core subjects:

Core Subjects
English: Grade 8 students learn and apply interviewing techniques as well as continuing to refine and build presentation skills. They demonstrate the correct use of language, spelling and mechanics by applying grammatical conventions in writing and speaking. Students plan, draft, revise and edit writing, with emphasis on exposition and persuasion in essay writing. A Grade 8 student applies reading and writing skills as well as responds critically to literature, reading a variety of fiction and nonfiction independently for appreciation and comprehension. Students describe themes or inferred main ideas, interpret cause and effect relationships and draw conclusions from a variety of literary and informational selections. A Grade 8 student is able to use a systematic research process and produce a final writing portfolio that contains samples of polished, publishable writing.

Arabic: Arabic in Grade 8 represents a progression from Elementary Arabic to Middle School Arabic. Students read and write compositions in Modern Standard Arabic, with a focus on the preliminary study of syntax. Students summarize novels and simple poetry to develop their verbal skills in language and become more familiar with the more advanced genres of literature as they advance.

Students who may have weak Arabic skills may qualify for Arabic support. This will be discussed with the Middle School Principal before a decision is made.

French/German: Beginning French/German is a semester long course in which students will be introduced to the French/German language through a focus on vocabulary building, grammar and punctuation. The four key skill areas are listening, speaking, reading and writing. Students will be able to practice their French/German in real-life situations via role play and classroom participation. The course also includes an introduction to various cultural aspects of France/German and French/German-speaking countries.

Beginning French/German is a semester long course designed for students who have completed French/German. Emphasis will continue to be placed on French/German proficiency and comprehension through the four skill areas of listening, speaking, reading and writing. Students will be able to practice their French/German in real life situations via role play and classroom participation.

Pre-Algebra: A Math Departmental recommendation is required.

In Pre-Algebra, Grade 8 students review or extend concepts and skills learned in previous grades and add new content that prepares them for more abstract concepts in algebra and geometry. Students gain proficiency in computation with rational numbers and use proportions to solve a variety of problems. New concepts include solving two-step equations and inequalities, with a focus on the Pythagorean Theorem and probability.

Algebra I: A Math Departmental recommendation is required.

Grade 8 students focus on symbolic reasoning and calculations with symbols which are central to algebra. They develop an understanding of the symbolic language of Mathematics and algebraic skills and concepts and use them in solving problems.

Tables and graphs are used to interpret algebraic expressions. Computers and other appropriate technology tools are used to assist in teaching and learning.  Throughout Algebra I, students are encouraged to talk about mathematics, use the language and symbols of mathematics in representations and communication, discuss problems and problem solving and develop confidence.

Earth Science: By the end of the course, Grade 8 students will be able to connect the study of the earth's composition, structure and processes alongside its environment in space. Students will emphasize historical contributions in the development of scientific thought concerning earth and space and interpret maps, charts, tables and profiles.  They will use technology to collect, analyze and report data and utilize science skills in systematic investigation. Problem solving and decision making are an integral part of Earth Science and students will study the fundamental concepts of ecology, geology, hydrology meteorology and astronomy. Major topics of study include plate tectonics, the rock cycle, earth history, the oceans, the atmosphere, weather and climate and the solar system and universe. Field and laboratory experiences are an integral part of science investigation.

Social Studies and Foundations to Modern Civilization: In Social Studies and Foundations to Modern Civilization, students explore the historical development of people, places and patterns of life from approximately the 1st Century BC to 1500 AD.  Students study the history and geography of great Empires that were developing throughout the world during these years.

Social Studies students explore Roman, Byzantine, Islamic, West African, Classical Asian and American Empires of the time.  They also study the early middle Ages as a transition area of study from Empires to Europe, in preparation for their continued study in History.

Physical Education: In Grade 8 students are expected to demonstrate competence in skillful movement in modified, dynamic game situations and in a variety of dance and recreational activities. They transition from modified versions of movement forms to more complex applications across all types of activities including sport, dance and recreational pursuits. Students demonstrate the ability to assume responsibility for guiding their own learning as they apply their knowledge and abilities to create a practice plan to improve performance in one of these areas. They demonstrate mature responsibility as they show respect for others, make reasoned and appropriate choices, resist negative peer pressure and exhibit fair play. Students are able to set goals, track progress and participate in physical activities to improve health related fitness.

Computers: Grade 8 students begin Computers by reviewing essential knowledge, skills and processes and adding to the topics of Computer Ethics, Computer History, Computer Parts and Functions and previously learned applications. They also continue to improve their keyboarding skills, striving for 30 wpm and 90% accuracy by the end of the school year. Students receive instruction in advanced techniques in MS Access and HTML web language. They begin the LEGO Mind storms NXT program which serves as an introduction to programming. They are expected to demonstrate their new skills and knowledge of these applications in the completion of integrated projects for their other classes. They also refine the use of electronic source citation that began in Grade 6.

Elective Subjects

Art: Grade 8 Art will focus on the synthesis and application of previously learned concepts. Students will be able to apply more complex technical skills as they manipulate the elements of art and the principles of design and art media. Students will acquire art skills that enable them to make conscious choices of media and techniques for expressive purposes. They produce works of art that are developed from preliminary ideas and sketches and will debate the purposes of art, develop their own criteria for making art judgments and develop a personal aesthetic. The acquisition of these skills enables students to place the discipline of art within a broader context and relate it to other fields of knowledge.


Intermediate Band: This course is designed for students to continue their musical growth playing a band instrument selected in grade 7. This is a yearlong class and, instruction builds upon and reinforces fundamental skills learned previously.

Intermediate Choir: This course is designed for students to continue their musical growth while singing in a choir. Instruction builds upon and reinforces the fundamental skills learned previously, fundamentals of notation, rhythm and interpretive symbols, along with instructions on how to sing. Students perform each semester and are expected to practice outside of class.

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