8th Grade Course Descriptions

Two elements define classical education: a philosophy or world view and a pedagogical approach.

Latin A

THIRD  FORM LATIN: Memoria Press

Third Form Latin continues the journey of Latin grammar by reviewing all material in First and Second Form, completing the verb paradigms for all four conjugations in the indicative active and passive, and much more. Third Form employs the identical format of First and Second Form—an attractive, concise Student Text, systematic presentation in five units, extensive Workbook exercises.

 

Mathematics A

 SAXON MATH Course 3: Saxon

This Course develops higher-order thinking skills through meaningful math conversations that occur every day in the classroom. Students learn to express their understanding through continual review and daily practice of several mathematical concepts that foster their long-term retention. The Course also maintains and applies properties of numbers and operations, ratio and proportional reasoning, problem-solving strategies, and more. Additionally, the Course also introduces and develops algebra topics such as graph sequences, linear inequalities, solving systems of linear equations, quadratic equations, etc. Students' skills and wide variety of concepts are evaluated through built-in, frequent cumulative assessments.

English A

GRAMMAR AND COMPOSITION II: A Beka Book

English A dives deeper into higher grammar concepts and composing. It introduces our 8th graders to noun clauses, gerunds, and infinitives, while reviewing the 8 parts of speech plus diagramming. With multiple exercises, including original sentence-writing exercises, it helps our students develop an excellent grasp of grammar. In addition, composition practices are included to prepare our 8th graders for writing a research paper on a great American author. With a condensed handbook provided in this course, our students will have all the tools needed to improve their overall oral and verbal communication skills.

 

Science A

EARTH AND SPACE, A Beka Book

Students are introduced this year to the scientific method. Beginning with the study of soil, they will later expand to the study of the surface of the earth and its layers, and how geological forces deep in the earth shape the thin crust on which we live. Students will learn about the minerals and rocks that form the surface of the earth; moving on to oceanography, meteorology, and finally the study of the solar system, our place in the universe. The purpose of science is not only gaining knowledge but also applying this knowledge to the benefit of mankind. Man’s dominion over the earth comes with the responsibility to manage and conserve resources, thus lessons on environmental sciences are included in this course.

History A

OUR CATHOLIC FAITH II: Seton Hall Press

History A examines of the developments that led to the emergence of contemporary Europe.  Students will learn about the changes brought by the industrial revolution, the development of political events in both France and Great Britain during the second half of the 19th century. Students will learn about the birth of Germany and Italy as nations and the disintegration of the empires, as well as the complex situations that led to the First World War. Students will explain the growing of totalitarian regimes that led to the Second World War and the factors that contribute to the Cold War. All this will help them to understand better the world in which we live.

 

Geography A

GEOGRAPHY III: Memoria Press

The general aim of this course is to review all the material from Geog C and Geog B and to understand current issues and events around the world. Students will develop an understanding of the relation between location and physical surroundings as part of the developments of nations and cultures.

Religion A

FAITH AND LIFE SERIES: Our Life in the Church: Ignatius Press

The eighth grade covers the history of the Church – its founding by Christ, its birth and life in the Holy Spirit, the marks of the one true Church, the Fathers and Doctors of the Church, the saints, and the role of religious communities in Church history. Also covered is the structure and hierarchy of the Church, the Magisterium, clergy, religious, and laity.  Students come to know and love the Church as Christ’s Body, to better understand the nature of their life in the Church, and to respond to the teaching of the Magisterium as the sure voice of Jesus, strengthening their lives in the Church and leading them to discern their specific vocations and to live lives of Christian holiness in the world today.

 

French A

FRENCH 1: Memoria Press

Modern Language French A is an introduction to French for students in grade 8. Students will learn the basics of grammar and develop a large vocabulary. They will practice conversation, reading, and translation, and will be introduced to French culture.

 

Art A

MUSIC APPRECIATION I: Memoria Press

This course aims  to deepen the student’s appreciation of music by grounding the greatest pieces in the canon of Western classical music in their historical context, and by introducing the foundational musical concepts of notation, rhythm, pitch, form, and melody to give a fuller understanding of the inner workings of the pieces and of music in general. Students will listen to each piece of music and then read each chapter and listen to the corresponding tracks, which will demonstrate the concepts discussed. The pieces are mostly ordered chronologically to illustrate the place each one holds in history and in the evolution of music.

Western classical music is as orderly and logical as mathematics, and yet capable of expressing and connecting with the whole range of human emotions. It consists most often of only twelve notes, a few simple rhythms, and a variety of aural textures that manifest in thousands of complex and distinctive styles and forms. It follows a system of rules set in place long ago, but these rules are flexible enough that new music is always being created, building on what previous generations composed, while ever expanding.