EIGHTH GRADE

A Waldorf eighth grade class experiences a gradual but significant shift from the presentation of a subject solely from the teacher to the class, to the mutual consideration of a subject by teacher and class together. A sense of community develops in which speaking becomes more thoughtful and listening more attentive. With the awakening capacity for logical thinking and free, independent judgment, the eighth grader now wants to be in the world more than ever before. They want to do, to discover, to know, and to find relevance in their studies by finding connections with the outside world.
 
Throughout this year, the students continue to expand their sense of place in the world. They plunge into the Age of Revolution, and embark on a study of noteworthy individuals who have found the courage to follow their passions in revolt against the status quo. In addition to their continued inquiry into scientific phenomena and experimentation, students study the lives and struggles of scientists and inventors who first discovered chemical and electrical laws. These studies ground students in the human aspect of scientific thought, while providing a picture of the profound effects of modern technology upon society and culture.
 
The eighth grade year marks the students’ final year at Circle of Seasons, and culminates in the completion of their grade school experience. Given the huge step these students are about to take in the world, the curriculum is designed to inspire passion and highlight the incredible potential of the human mind and soul. It is our hope that our students will graduate with compelling questions that will continue to fuel their love of learning for years to come.
 
Language Arts:
Texts from influential writers, such as Shakespeare and Edgar Allen Poe
Epic and dramatic poetry: sonnets, haiku, ballads
Folklore and poems from around the world
Novels may include the Scarlet Pimpernel, The Master Puppeteer, and Uncle Tom’s Cabin
Review of grammar and syntax, including subordinate and independent clauses
Newspaper articles and editorials
Skits and play writing
Emphasis on note taking and journaling
Weekly oral news reporting
 
Mathematics:
Geometry: polygons, angles, area and volume, Pythagorean Theorem, polyhedra,
Algebra: order of operations, operations with radicals, operations with polynomials, exponents, linear and quadratic equations, factoring
Statistics: Mean, median, mode, quartiles, interquartile range, mean absolute deviation, and basic probability
Graphing coordinate points, lines
Number bases, and set concepts
Computers, basic coding in Linux and Python
Problem solving techniques
 
Social Studies:
1700 to the present
Contrasting the Reformation with the Age of Enlightenment
The French and American Revolutions
Industrial Revolution: rise of the factory; city life and child labor; early attempts at social reform
American History: Colonization, The Declaration of Independence and the U.S. Constitution
World economy, free trade, war and peace
Biographies may include Napoleon, Harriet Tubman, Abraham Lincoln, Robert E. Lee, George Washington, Lafayette, Benjamin Franklin, Bismarck, Mahatma Gandhi, Joseph Stalin, Robespierre, Karl Marx, John Wilkes Booth, and Martin Luther King Jr.
Geography of Asia, Australia, and Antarctica
World Geography, including tides, map reading, and weather
Consideration of how maps influence our perceptions of the world
Studies may also include the philosophies of Confucianism, Daoism, Buddhism, and Shintoism


Science:
Organic Chemistry: proteins, fats, sugars, and starches; nitrogen cycle; plant structure and chemical processes
Physiology: bones and muscles, nervous system, reproductive system, body chemistry and addiction
Physics: sound, heat, optics, current electricity, hydraulics, aerodynamics, meteorology, climatology

 
Artistic Work:
3-dimensional geometry
Black and white drawing with charcoal
Bamboo, ink brush, and landscape painting
Calligraphy
Modeling the human head and bones in clay
Specialty Subjects:

 

Gardening

Art
Games & Movement
Fiber Arts
Choir
Spanish
Orchestra/Recorder/Flute
Manual Arts

Guidance