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Eighth Grade

English Language Arts
Following the district-wide ELA Learning curriculum, we spend 8th grade wrestling with the essential questions: What is home? Why do Shakespeare’s works hold a universal appeal? What motivates people to control each other’s actions? These questions coordinate with our two, primary texts for the year: Inside Out and Back Again and A Midsummer Night’s Dream. In addition to these books, we launch our year establishing our reading program, which requires that students read at least 20 books outside of school over the course of the year. Our curriculum also places an emphasis on developing our students as analytical readers and writers. To this end we focus on students constructing arguments that are supported by sufficient and relevant evidence and that demonstrate reasoning.

Math

Following the district-wide Illustrative Math (Open Up Resources) curriculum, 8th graders will explore solutions to real-life situations and persist in solving complex problems. Topics covered may include: rigid transformations and congruence; dilations, similarity, and introducing slope; linear relationships; linear equations and linear systems; functions and volume; associations in data; exponents and scientific notation; pythagorean theorem and irrational numbers; linear relationships; linear equations, inequalities and systems; functions and volume; exponential functions; quadratic functions; solving quadratic equations. At Putnam Ave. we are focused on exploring and bolstering students mathematical reasoning skills and employ instructional strategies such as number talks to promote equity of voice and elicit students’ thinking.

Science

Following the district-wide curriculum, the goal of 8th Grade Science is to engage in scientific inquiry by: analyzing and interpreting data; using mathematics and computational thinking; asking questions and defining problems; planning and carrying out investigations and developing and using models in order to make an argument about the value of scientific knowledge as a tool to both understand and manipulate our world. Our units of study will focus on: Environmental Science (How do humans impact the environment?); Physical Science (How will it move?); Biology (Why do organisms look the way they do?).

Social Studies

Following the district-wide curriculum, the purpose of this course is to prepare students for a life of civic engagement. In order to achieve this goal, we will consider the year-long essential questions: What is a just society? What is equality? How can we learn from the past so we make informed decisions for the future? How can individuals and groups resolve conflicts and make a difference? Units include: unpacking personal identities; Indigenous People in the Americas; philosophical foundations; Structure of US and MA government (Constitution, Amendments); justice in action and Supreme Court decisions; civic action and the rights and responsibilities of citizenship.