8th Grade Language Arts

What's New for November-December?

Our Current Area of Study

We are kicking off the second quarter with an in-depth study of S.E. Hinton's classic The Outsiders. This novel has been a staple of the 8th grade curriculum for many years due to the timelessness of the story. It is likely you read The Outsiders at some time in your education too. By the end of this week, your son/daughter will have read the first three chapters of the novel.

Honestly, a majority of students develop excitement for this story, as the characters and scenarios are still relatable to teens today. While reading time will be given during classes, you should see your child reading it at home throughout the next several weeks, as each student has a copy of the book.

Concepts, Skills, and Assignments for this Unit

  • Considering the differing perspectives of others.
  • Analyzing themes
  • Character analysis
  • Recognizing literary "signposts" while reading
  • Building vocabulary within the context of reading using the system of Notice and Note by Kylene Beers and Jeff Probst. You can learn more HERE
  • Study guides and contribution to small group discussions with preparation
  • Chapter quizzes
  • Written reflections
  • Chapter-related mini-projects
  • Final novel assessment

About Independent Reading Projects...

Students will be advertising one of their choice novels near the end of each quarter. This sometimes requires speaking in front of the class, and they have choices for what style of presentation they give. Missing this assessment will be detrimental, as it counts as two grades. Incomplete projects can make the difference of a whole letter grade.

Please notice and encourage your child's independent reading of choice books in their spare time.

For second quarter, the project will be a formally written book review with a creatively designed book cover. These reviews will also be displayed in the Parkside library.

Please contact me at any time with questions or concerns!

-Ms. Danielle Sommer