English Department 7/8th

7th Grade ELA:

Goals and Expectations

In order to master the Common Core English Language Arts Standards, we will work together to accomplish the following goals:

1. Read a variety of texts/genres and novels and respond to ideas critically and closely using iPads and textbook. We will be reading 3-4 novels. Students are encouraged to read additional, non-assigned novels and texts independently.

2. Write, revise, edit, and publish shorter and longer pieces for a variety of audiences and purposes. We will write a minimum of 6 full process essays.

3. Conduct, organize, and present research collaboratively

4. Come to class prepared to discuss and reflect on key ideas in a respectful manner

5. Use technology and other materials appropriately and in ways that enhance learning and communication

6. Respect all students and cultures

7. Practice a growth mindset and reflect on learning


7th grade Common Core Standards StudySync Curriculum Units:

Unit 1 In Pursuit: Throughout this unit, your students will be reading short stories, poetry, memoirs, and several nonfiction narratives to explore the missions some people or characters have pursued to achieve their goals. Essential questions: What is it that drives us to undertake a mission? Is it to pursue a goal regardless of the risks? And is achieving that goal as important as what we learn on the mission to accomplish it?


Unit 2 The Powers that Be: Throughout this unit, students will investigate the principles of a just society by exploring different cultures and eras and diverse points of view. Essential Questions: What do people mean when they talk about a “just” society? The term implies fairness—but to whom? The people who rule the society? Those who work to keep it alive and flourishing?


Unit 3: Justice Served: Throughout this unit, students will explore human struggle, determination, and the fight for human rights. Essential Question: Why is it essential to defend human rights?


Unit 4 Getting Along: Throughout this unit, students will explore the many challenges human beings face in forming relationships with one another and with the world around them.

Essential Questions: Why is it so difficult for people to get along? What are the barriers that hold us back from communicating with one another and forming strong, lasting relationships?





8th Grade ELA:

Goals and Expectations

In order to master the Common Core English Language Arts Standards, we will work together to accomplish the following goals:

1. Read a variety of texts/genres and novels and respond to ideas critically and closely using iPads and textbook. We will be reading 3-4 novels. Students are encouraged to read additional, non-assigned novels and texts independently.

2. Write, revise, edit, and publish shorter and longer pieces for a variety of audiences and purposes. We will write a minimum of 6 full process essays.

3. Conduct, organize, and present research collaboratively

4. Come to class prepared to discuss and reflect on key ideas in a respectful manner

5. Use technology and other materials appropriately and in ways that enhance learning and communication

6. Respect all students and cultures

7. Practice a growth mindset and reflect on learning

8th Grade

Unit 1: Suspense!

Driving Question: Why do love suspense? What attracts us to suspense? What keeps us from closing the book or changing the channel? What compels us to experience in stories the very things we spend our lives trying to avoid?


Unit 2: In Time of War

Driving Question: What does our response to conflict say about us? How do we behave during war? In the dangerous, heightened period of war, people make extreme decisions, sometimes reflecting the very best of humankind, and sometimes the worst. What do our responses to war and other conflicts teach us about ourselves?


Unit 3: A Moral Compass

Driving Question: How can life experiences shape our values? How is character formed? People are not simply good or bad, but reflect the diversity of human experience. This Grade 8 unit prompts students to explore this question and consider the complexities of morality. How do human beings draw upon their experiences to make a difference in the world and to make themselves better people?


Unit 4: The Civil War

Driving Question:How did The War Between the States redefine America? This unit explores the Civil War (1861–1865) through fiction, journals, nonfiction narratives, speeches, letters, and poetry.