8th Grade Curricula

8th Grade Course Overviews by Content Area
Provided below are brief overviews of the content taught in core academic classes.  For more specific information regarding the scope and sequence of each curriculum, please utilize our curriculum maps, which can be found in Rubicon Atlas.

Language Arts
Students in ELA 8 read both fiction and nonfiction, with close attention to key ideas and details, craft, structure, and the integration of new ideas and knowledge. Reading units include Literary Traditions, Nonfiction Reading and Research, Science Fiction/Dystopia, and Reading Like a Writer (craft analysis.) Students write opinion, informational/explanatory, and narrative pieces, using the craft elements and organization appropriate to each. Eighth grade grammar includes the study of gerunds, participles, and infinitives, as well as active and passive voice. Students learn Greek and Latin affixes and roots to develop vocabulary and improve fluency.

Math 8 focuses on three critical areas: (1) applying equations in one and two variables; (2) understanding the concept of a function and using functions to describe quantitative relationships; (3) applying the Pythagorean Theorem and the concepts of similarity and congruence. 


8th grade science provides a hands-on approach to the Life Sciences. Our units include Environmental Science, Taxonomy, Anatomy, Cytology and Cells, and Genetics.  We study life science by examining patterns in nature and discussing the systems that exist on each organizational level of living organisms. Students learn to use microscopes, design and implement lab experiments and investigations while collecting data and providing evidence-based claims throughout all units.
Social Studies
8th grade social studies covers the evolution of the human species until globalization of the world zones first introduced in Columbus’s voyages.  Students study how communities, production and development, and trade networks adapt and change over time and location.  A heavy emphasis is placed on reading non-fiction.