Eighth Grade

Eighth Grade



Students will continue to build and improve upon their communication skills. This includes a strong focus on the organization and development of effective writing mechanics, grammar, and vocabulary (Wordly Wise). Students will write in a variety of forms to explain, inform, analyze, entertain, reflect, and persuade. Students will also study the literary contributions made by various writers from the Reconstruction: American Civil War to the Twenty-first Century to understand how historical events affect the evolving literary movements. Students will be encouraged to evaluate life lessons and historical, literary, and social contexts while reading representative literature of various time periods through the use of our literature textbook, Mirrors and Windows, and trade books such as: To Kill a Mockingbird, Maus, The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, and Romeo and Juliet.

Social Studies - Modern United States History

Eighth grade Social Studies is arranged chronologically, beginning with Reconstruction and ending at the present, and incorporates geography as well as economic, social and political trends. The course content is divided into nine key units; the first seven trace the human experience in the United States from Reconstruction to the end of World War II. The last two key units examine different themes in United States and New York State history from the post-War period up to the present day, allowing the opportunity to explore contemporary issues. General learning goals of the course will include improving students’ analytical skills, enhancing their understanding of historical interpretations and documents, and improving their writing skills. Students will meet these goals through discussion and debate of required readings, projects, writing assignments such as journals and research papers, and through critical analysis of primary sources. Primary source exercises, in particular, are used to foster critical thinking skills and further understanding of how historians construct and support arguments.


The 8th grade Algebra I math curriculum is designed to be rigorous and challenging to prepare students for either Algebra II/Trig or Geometry. Mathematical concepts are learned through a variety of methods to meet the needs of diverse learning styles. Project-based learning takes a large portion of classroom time. Students are able to think creatively about concepts and see how they can be applied to solve problems in real-world scenarios.

Topics include:

  • Linear expressions, equations, and inequalities
  • Systems of linear equations and inequalities
  • Functions and function notation
  • Exponential functions and logarithmic operations
  • Quadratic functions
  • Polynomials and factoring
  • Irrational numbers
  • Probability and statistics

Occasionally, special topics are introduced to familiarize students with the wide breadth of ideas that can be found in the field of math. Some of these topics can include the history of math, the golden ratio in music, and fractals.

Science - Earth Science

The Earth Science curriculum addresses content and skills as applied to the rigor and relevance to be assessed by the Regents examination in Physical Setting/Earth Science. Focus will also be on application skills related to real-world situations. It is essential that instruction focuses on student under­standing and demonstration of important relationships, processes, mechanisms, and applications of concepts. Students, in attaining scientific literacy, will be able to demonstrate these explanations, in their own words, exhibiting creative problem solving, reasoning, and informed decision making. Future assessments will test students’ ability to explain, analyze, and interpret Earth science processes and phenomena and generate science inquiry. Laboratory experiences will provide the opportunity for students to develop the scientific inquiry techniques and the interconnectedness of content and skills, and problem-solving approaches. The three main units of focus are Geology, Meteorology (Weather and Climate), and Astronomy.


Eighth grade Spanish focuses on the active development of listening and reading comprehension, speaking and writing skills, and cultural knowledge. Using the Santillana textbook series, students build vocabulary and learn basic grammatical structures, creating a solid foundation of the Spanish language. The vocabulary topics covered include food and dining, parts of the body, health, the senses, habits, hobbies, sports, and pastimes. Grammatically, we focus on conjugating irregular present tense verbs, reflexive verbs, direct and indirect objects, forming commands, and the present progressive tense. Additionally, students partake in a variety of hands-on, student-led projects with a cultural focus, culminating in a school-wide showcase at the end of the year.


The 8th-grade visual art curriculum explores the work of traditional, contemporary, and modern artists. There is a strong emphasis on art history as well as conducting in-process critiques during which the students use appropriate vocabulary. They explore painting, collage, photography, and much more. The year culminates in an art history research project including a paper and work of original art based on each student’s individual artist.

Brown School Benefits


Small class sizes that allow for more focused and tailored instruction


A range of subject levels that provides suitable challenges for students


Opportunities to perform at or above grade level with the support of our IGNITE program


Experiential learning through overnight field trips


Co-ed intramural sports


Guitar Classes

Daily Schedule

8:15 - English
9:00 - Math
9:45 - Specials
10:30 - Break
10:45 - IGNITE
11:15 - Spanish
12:00 - History
12:45 - Lunch
1:15 - Science
2:00 - Science Lab
2:55 - Dismissal

Material Lists

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