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Middle School
Eighth Grade Curriculum

Eighth Grade Curriculum

Subjects of Study:

Math-Algebra
Students will:

  • Demonstrate a sense of numbers and apply an understanding of number systems and operations when counting, computing, estimating, and problem solving
  • Apply coordinate geometry to locate and explore points, lines, and slopes algebraically
  • Distinguish between relations and functions, and determine whether a relation is a function
  • Solve equations and inequalities
  • Apply basic and advanced concepts of data collection and analysis, probability, and statistics to develop and evaluate inferences, predictions, and arguments that are based on data
  • Apply basic and advanced concepts of algebra to explore, describe, and model patterns, relationships, and functions involving numbers, shapes, data, and graphs
  • Perform operations with exponents including operations with positive, negative, and fractional exponents
  • Use inductive and deductive reasoning in mathematical situations and applications
  • Use symbols of inclusion: absolute value, negative numbers, opposites, order of operations, parentheses, braces and brackets
  • Construct, interpret and make predictions of data
  • Use the Pythagorean Theorem to find missing sides of triangles and determine a right angle
  • Solve and graph equations and inequalities
  • Solve simple radical and quadratic equations
  • Solve systems of (mostly linear) equations and inequalities
  • Participate in the Catholic Math League

Language Arts
Students will:

  • Delve into deeper contemplation of symbolism in literary works and evaluate the worthiness of the literature, considering both the message and historical relevance of the piece
  • Discuss works of literature in terms of the parts of the plot, analyzing it for symbolic meaning and message
  • Compare setting, figurative language, and the literary techniques learned previously as well as more complex techniques authors use (e.g., foreshadowing and foils)
  • Use the “Shared Inquiry” method in analyzing literature, and write evaluative papers based on evidence from the stories/novels
  • Think critically and apply knowledge so as to diligently find and effectively communicate truth
  • Reflect on truth and analyze the people and events by comparing the plots, literary language and styles of the authors of the short stories, novels, and poems in order to learn to evaluate literature and think about the story from outside of the world it creates
  • Study advanced vocabulary words, Greek and Latin roots, suffixes and prefixes
  • Practice writing to “effectively communicate truth”
  • Express one’s self in such a way that the reader respects that opinion
  • Identify humor in literature and examine references to formal logic
  • Read a variety of literature including works by Lewis Carroll, Ernest Hemingway, Shakespeare and Tolkien
  • Analyze the novel not only as a piece of excellent writing, but for its literary value as a commentary on the current events of the world
  • Work on evaluative writing as well as complete a research paper that will be done in the history class
  • Write creatively in the form of scenes for plays, short stories, and poems
  • Study grammar with an emphasis in using certain complex structures in writing and learn to self-edit
  • Present frequently in class and prepare a formal speech for the speech exhibition
  • Use gestures, blocking, and visual aids in order to keep the attention of the audience and communicate in a memorable manner

Physical Science
Students will:

  • Define the word “matter” and learn how to distinguish between physical and chemical properties
  • Identify different states of matter and classify different arrangements of matter as elements, compounds, or mixtures
  • Attend a week-long field trip to Yosemite, sponsored by Naturebridge, and work in the areas of Earth, Life, and Physical Science
  • Discover how organisms are fit for their environments by examining adaptations along abiotic and biotic cycles
  • Learn how organisms depend on and affect each other, and ultimately, see how everything is connected
  • Learn about the atom, the building block of all matter, and its structure
  • Use the periodic table to classify and organize elements according to patterns in atomic structure and other properties
  • Study the interactions through which matter can change its identity
  • Review how atoms chemically bond with one another to form new substances through chemical reactions
  • Identify the properties of ionic, covalent and organic compounds
  • Study the relationship between force and motion
  • Describe the motion of objects, how forces affect motion, and how fluids exert forces
  • Explore the scientific meaning of the word “work” and learn how machines made work easier
  • Discover how energy allows work and how different forms of energy can be converted into other forms of energy
  • Learn how electricity and magnetism interact, and how electronic technology has revolutionized the world in a relatively short amount of time
  • Participate in the CHA Science Fair

United States History, Part II
Students will:

  • Continue the story of American history from the end of the Civil War to the rise of a strong federal government and its interaction with global powers
  • Review social problems of the Industrial Revolution and the way the federal government worked to solve these problems
  • Learn about “yellow journalism” and the Spanish-American War
  • Review the events that led to finally uniting the North and the South
  • Read and study the end of the era of Isolation and beginning of the first era of Imperialism, where the U.S. tried to solve the world’s problems through humanitarian aid
  • Learn the conditions that caused communism to rise and see its effects on Europe
  • Analyze the unification of Germany under a federal government quite different than our own that caused WWI
  • Study the rise of prosperity in the 1920s in the United States and the collapse of worldwide economies during the Depression
  • Discuss how the world’s leaders’ failure to achieve a harmonious peace led to WWII
  • Study events of WWII and the struggle for peace afterwards, including the Cold War
  • Review the fall of the Berlin Wall

Sacraments and Morality
Students will:

  • Question the purpose for one’s life, recognizing that only God, as He is revealed through Christ, can satisfy each person
  • Study a fuller definition of holiness, sanctity, Christian love and salvation
  • Recognize the dignity of man as a spiritual creature, the nature and significance of the Incarnation, the Paschal Mystery, and how all Christians are called to share in it
  • Focus on grace and how it is communicated through the Church and the Seven Sacraments
  • Review the particular nature of Original Sin as revealed in Genesis, the particular nature of Christ’s redemption, Christ as the New Adam, the sacramental means of sharing in Christ’s nature (Baptism) and mission (Confirmation)
  • Discover the “means” of living the life given to each in Baptism, focusing on the Cardinal and Theological virtues as habitual dispositions either acquired or given by grace
  • Recognize the importance of spirituality and prayer as a means of building a relationship with the person of Christ and the importance of prayer for living the Christian life
  • Develop a deeper understanding and appreciation of the Eucharistic mystery
  • Investigate real nature of the moral law and moral reasoning; review general methods of moral reasoning, putting them into practice through the analysis of various moral situations
  • Use the Beatitudes, in conjunction with the parable of the sower, as a model of interior conversion and perfection
  • Better understand the Sacraments of Healing, with a special emphasis on the Sacrament of Reconciliation
  • Better understand the Sacraments of Vocation
  • Review life issues such as consistent ethic of life taking as its foundation John Paul II’s encyclical Evangalium Vitae and seeks to explain why human life is valuable, and how respect for life is tied to the Gospel of Christ
  • Better understand the Sacrament of Holy Orders

Middle School students also attend classes in Art, Music, Latin and Physical Education.