Eighth Grade Program of StudyPLANNING A PROGRAM OF STUDIES

The program of studies which students plan for themselves will help them to enjoy successful and profitable high school careers. The program will also determine how well prepared these students will be for entering college or for obtaining and holding jobs. Well planned programs of studies will contribute to the day-by-day personal growth and happiness of the students.

IN DEVELOPING A PROGRAM OF STUDIES A STUDENT SHOULD:

Establish personal goals. Students should have some specific educational, occupational, and personal goals toward which they are working. They should be allowed to revise these goals if necessary. The important point is that they have some goals.

Evaluate personal qualifications. Students should consider honestly what their real interests are, where their own strengths and weaknesses lie, and what their needs will be in achieving their personal goals.

Learn requirements for college entrance. Students should investigate just what the colleges of their choice expect of applicants since colleges vary in their requirements for College Board scores, rank in class, and in subjects taken in high school. Knowing what their colleges require, students can then plan their programs of study accordingly. Many colleges require a minimum of a two-year sequence in a modern foreign language. Students who do not plan to attend college should find out all the information that they can about the kind of work they plan to do after graduation from high school.

Visit colleges, technical schools or places of employment. Students will learn through visitations whether they really are suited for the colleges, schools, or places of employment in which they have shown an interest.

Consult parents, teachers, and guidance counselors. Students should confer with parents, teachers, and guidance counselors to obtain the benefit of their experiences and to become aware of available information.

Select subjects in the program of studies. Students should take into consideration their goals, interests, and needs, and their college or vocational school requirements, and the advice of parents, teachers, and counselor; then they should include in their programs of studies the subjects that will contribute most toward helping them achieve their established goals


STUDENTS ARE REMINDED OF THE FOLLOWING:
  • Certain basic subjects are requirements of all students at Susquehanna.
  • Elective subjects should be selected on the basis of the student’s individual aptitudes, interest, and skills.
  • Students should discuss their choice of electives with their parents and guidance counselor.
  • Students should select carefully from the course offering for each grade.
  • Students and one of their parents must sign the Program of Study sheet. Once the sheet is signed, no course changes will be allowed without permission from the high school office and parent.
  • Students who need help in selecting subjects for a program of study, or who desire further information concerning the courses and subjects offered at Susquehanna may come to the Guidance Office for an appointment.

Content mastery and performances of the student learning outcomes shall be deemed successful when a student can demonstrate learning outcomes of the 70% level or better.

The district is in the process of developing what will be assessed (criteria) for the planned course outcomes.

These will be developed as the planned courses are written.

(See planned course action plan).

Please note—Satisfactory completion of an IEP shall also constitute mastery of student learning outcomes.

The IEP will specify how the mastery of the outcome will be adapted to meet the specific needs of identified students.


Programs of Study for Grade Eight
English 8

This course covers the PA Core Standards for Reading, Writing, Listening, and Speaking, which can be accessed at www.pdesas.org.

English 8 is a comprehensive course covering the basics of language arts. The course includes a study of grammar, sentence structure, conventional usage, punctuation, and vocabulary in a more extensive manner than is covered in seventh grade. Students will also read a variety of selections including novels, short stories, and plays. Composition will be a major component of this course, preparing students to take the PSSA test in the Spring. Composition topics will derive from the literary selections as well as the students’ own interests. Students should consider this course a stepping stone into senior high.



Reading 8 (if required)

This course covers the Pennsylvania academics standards of Reading, Writing, Listening and Speaking. This program builds upon basic reading skills and background knowledge. Students focus on decoding and spelling skills, reading comprehension strategies and vocabulary in context. The goal is to help students to improve overall reading ability. In addition, students will analyze text and write in response to that analysis. The students will encounter a variety of rich-text excerpts, essays, speeches, poetry, and articles.



READ 180

Read 180 (Stage B or Stage C):
Read 180 is an innovative reading intervention program by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. READ 180 is a research-based program with proven results in raising student reading achievement. READ 180 uses cutting-edge technology to deliver individualized reading instruction, provide valuable skills practice, and motivate students to become confident readers. In our READ 180 class, students and teachers work together to: • Build essential literacy skills for college and career readiness. • Bring reading proficiency up to grade level. • Develop multi-paragraph writing skills. • Apply reading and writing strategies to other subjects such as social studies, science, and math. • Show students that they can attain reading success. This class meets for two periods each day.



Academic Literacy (required)

Academic Literacy is a yearlong course and a requirement for all eighth grade students. The structure of this course allows students to read a variety of texts (self-selected and class assigned) and become aware of the mental strategies involved in comprehension. This course is designed to build on the shared knowledge of reading skills the teacher and students bring to the classroom. Academic Literacy follows the Reading Apprentice curriculum helping students develop strategies for reading in the content areas while addressing the goals of the PA Common Core Literacy Standards.




Math 8

The mathematics department has adopted a program which has been developed by Carnegie Learning to meet the requirements of the Keystone exam. Carnegie Math is an integrated series which includes Course 1, 2, 3; Math 180; Algebra 1, Algebra 2 and Geometry. The courses are hybrid combination of classwork with a focus on cooperative learning and problem solving skills and computer time to develop fundamental skills through individual practice. The classes will be divided roughly 60-40 for class/computer time.



Course 2
The Carnegie Learning Math Series Course 2 is written specifically for the Common Core State Standards. This course contains complete alignment, coverage, and support for the Standards for Mathematical Content and Practice. Course 2 focuses on proportional reasoning, developing number sense, algebraic thinking, geometry, and statistical thinking and probability.

Course 3
The Carnegie Learning Course 3 is written specifically for the Common Core State Standards. This course contains complete alignment, coverage, and support for the Standards for Mathematical Content and Practice. Course 3 focuses on algebraic thinking, geometry, and statistical thinking and probability, and revisits algebraic thinking and geometry.





Math 180 (Course 1 or 2):

MATH 180 is an innovative math intervention program by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. MATH 180 is a research-based program with proven results in raising student math achievement. MATH 180 uses cutting-edge technology to deliver individualized math instruction, provide valuable skills practice, and motivate students to develop confidence and fluency in math. In our MATH 180 class, students and teachers work together to: • Build essential math skills for college and career readiness. • Bring math proficiency up to grade level. • Develop mathematical practices and habits of mind. • Apply math skills to solve real-world problems. • Show students they can attain academic success in math.


*All math classes cover the Pennsylvania Core Standards of Mathematics.

*Advanced placement only if the student is felt to be exceptional. The student may begin their Math sequence in 8th grade.




American Civics

This course offers a broad view of citizenship in American Society, encouraging students to discover that citizenship means involvement, in their home, their community, and in the problems of American life. Students also examine the role of education and jobs in their lives as well as their responsibilities as members of local and state governments, as citizens of our federal government, and as members of the world community. Students study both the ideals and the institutions of American society, as well as its problems such as pollution, health care, crime control, consumer protection, and weigh these problems and reach informed conclusions. The Pennsylvania Standards for Civics and Government, Economics, and Pennsylvania History are assessed throughout this course.




Science 8

This course follows the Pennsylvania Academic Standards of Science, Technology, Environment, and Ecology. It is an inquiry course integrating several areas of study from Force and Motion, Chemistry, as well as Earth History. Specific topics to be covered include: scientific method, motion, acceleration, force, gravity, momentum, elements, phases of matter, energy transfer, chemical reactions, earth's formations, erosion and deposition, and geologic time. Much emphasis will be placed on scientific processes and laboratory technique. Students will be required to keep an interactive notebook where they diagram and process what they are learning in class each day. Much work is done in co-operative learning groups, which helps to increase individual learning.



Physical Education

This course covers the Pennsylvania academics standards of Health, Safety, and Physical Education. Physical Education is that phase of education which endeavors to promote physical fitness through instructional and participation in activities which develop strength, speed, agility, endurance, fundamental motor skills and individual and social conduct and attitudes favorable to maintenance of physical fitness by participation. All Physical Education students who have a medical excuse must do one of two things to receive a grade in Physical Education class. (1) Students will dress for class, do what exercises possible and help in the class by keeping score or referring. (2) Go to the library or study hall with a term paper assignment which must be handed in at the end of Medical excuse or quarter to receive a grade. Classes missed for absence or disciplinary reasons must be made up as so as possible. P.E. grading system is based on being prepared for class with proper P. E. uniform along with cooperating with classmates/ teachers according to school policy. Students must fully engage in each class objective to receive full credit per class. Points will be deducted/added based on objective participation. Sleeved, T-shirt, athletic gym shorts; and proper gym sneakers. It also includes full participation by the students in the class. If the student does not have the proper uniform and/or footwear for P.E., it is considered an unexcused class. The student will have 10 points deducted from his or her grade per unprepared class.



Quarterly Courses


Health 8

This course is a quarter course and its main objective is to elaborate in great detail about the drug and alcohol epidemic that is sweeping through today’s youth. We discuss various drugs and the short and long term effects that occur within the body. We discuss the short and long term ramifications that come along with drug use and all who may be impacted beyond the user. This is accomplished through classroom discussions, videos, worksheets, and guest speakers.



Project Lead the Way (Automation and Robotics)

Project Lead the Way is a program that introduces students to engineering concepts, following STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) experiences in a hands-on environment. This course in a 9-week rotational class. PLTW curriculum states that, "Students design and build automated systems that incorporate the principles of electrons, physics, and robotics to gain an enriched understanding of the contemporary mechanical world." This is the second rotation all students take with the PLTW initiative. Project Lead the Way: Gateway to Technology, "harnesses the enthusiasm and energy of middle school students. The program focuses on showing, not telling, students how to use engineering skills to solve everyday problems."



Family & Consumer Science 8

This course covers the Pennsylvania academics standards of Family and Consumer Sciences. Students will be introduced to the major areas of family and consumer sciences:
  1. Financial and Resource Management
  2. Balancing Family, Work and Community Responsibility
  3. Child Development
  4. Food Science and Nutrition



Computer Applications 8

This course covers the Pennsylvania Academic Standards of Science and Technology. It is a 45-day course designed to review computer applications skills gained in Computer 7 while introducing more complex tools and building on previous skills. Emphasis will be on the use of Google’s software programs: Docs, Slides, and Sheets. Students will also use online programs to explore topics such as 21st Century skills, Internet Safety concerns, and the History of Computing. This class provides hands-on lessons using Google Apps, Microsoft Office 2013 and various other online programs.



Electives

Band and chorus cover the PA academics standards for the Arts and Humanities


Concert Band

Band is open to all current instrumental students or students new to their particular instrument. Students will have opportunities to reinforce ensemble skills as well as broaden their knowledge of music through the study and performance of music from a variety of musical eras and cultures, traditional and contemporary. All students in this ensemble are required to participate in two or three performances each year, most notably the evening Holiday and Spring concerts as well as the Memorial Day and graduation ceremonies. Occasional opportunities to perform at community events may occur.




Chorus

Chorus is year-long course of instruction in vocal techniques and performance. Students will demonstrate proficiency and be graded on the following criteria: sing alone and with others, sight-read repertoire, identify and apply musical terms of notation, expression and articulation, demonstrate understanding of correct posture, breath support, and embouchure, articulation, pitch and tone. Students will have opportunities to reinforce ensemble skills as well as broaden their knowledge of music through the study and performance of music from a variety of musical eras and cultures, traditional and contemporary. All students in this ensemble are required to participate in two or three performances each year, most notably the evening Holiday and Spring concerts. Occasional opportunities to perform at community events may occur.




Eighth Grade Learning Support Program of Study

Reading: The course covers the Pennsylvania academic standards for Reading, Speaking, and Listening. This course utilizes the SRA Direct Instruction Reading Program, the Reading Mastery Plus Program, and The Strategies to Achieve Reading Success Program. They emphasize development in recognizing sight words, reading decoding/comprehension, vocabulary, and study skills. Improving reading levels is the primary goal of these programs.

Read System 44 is a foundational reading program designed for the most challenged struggling readers in Grades 3-12. Intentionally metacognitive, System 44 helps students understand that the English language is a finite system of 44 sounds and 26 letters that can be mastered.

English, Science, and Social Studies: The course covers the Pennsylvania academics standards for each content area. Learning Support students participate in these regular education classes. Depending on individual needs, the student may be placed in a class that utilizes the co-teaching model which allows the regular education teacher and special education teacher to work together to provide an optimal learning environment. Curricular adaptations and modifications are in accordance with each student's Individualized Educational Plan.

Math 180 (Course 1 or 2):
MATH 180 is an innovative math intervention program by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. MATH 180 is a research-based program with proven results in raising student math achievement. MATH 180 uses cutting-edge technology to deliver individualized math instruction, provide valuable skills practice, and motivate students to develop confidence and fluency in math. In our MATH 180 class, students and teachers work together to: • Build essential math skills for college and career readiness. • Bring math proficiency up to grade level. • Develop mathematical practices and habits of mind. • Apply math skills to solve real-world problems. • Show students they can attain academic success in math.

Study Skills: The Itinerant Learning Support Teacher is available for those students who have been identified as needing special education services. The duties of the Itinerant Learning Support Teacher include helping students to prepare for tests and quizzes and to receive specially-designed instruction for testing services, teaching organizational skills, prioritizing and completing homework assignments, and monitoring the student's progress in the general education curriculum.