Eighth-Grade Course Listing

The information on this page has been updated for the 2020-21 school year. Every effort is made to schedule each seventh grader with the electives they choose.  It is possible that this may not happen due to staffing restraints, class size, seats available, teaming, etc.

Download Junior High Course Catalog

Learn More About 2021-22 Course Registration

Eighth-Grade Course FAQs

Required Courses

alphabetical order

English Courses

Advanced English
ENG811 (first semester) and ENG812 (second semester) | Full-Year Course
REQUIRED ⬜7 ⬛8
⬛ PBLN – ENG811p and ENG812p

This advanced course will provide priority time for students to engage in the language processes of reading, writing, listening, and speaking. Students will study classic and contemporary literature in a variety of genres. Instruction and practice in the writing process with assignments ranging from narratives based on personal experience to explanatory essays. The emphasis is on developing an individual voice and on learning through reading, discussion, and expository writing—to shape experience, discover ideas and communicate effectively in a variety of rhetorical situations. In the context of the students’ own writing, matters of grammar, punctuation, and usage are reviewed as necessary.

English
ENG801 (first semester) and ENG802 (second semester) | Full-Year Course
REQUIRED ⬜7 ⬛8
⬛ PBLN – ENG801p and ENG802p

This course provides priority time for students to engage in the basic language processes of reading, writing, listening, and speaking. In reading workshops, writing workshops, and traditional theme-centered units, specific skills are carefully integrated through whole-class and individual instruction. Students learn to discover, explore, shape, communicate, and evaluate ideas.

MATH Courses

Algebra I C (Advanced)*
MTH805 (first semester) and MTH806 (second semester) | Full-Year Course
REQUIRED ⬜7 ⬛8
⬛ PBLN – MTH805p and MTH806p
*High school credit

This two-semester course is aligned with the High School Iowa Core Math Standards and must be taken for high school credit. Algebra I topics include solving equations with real numbers; solving, writing, and graphing linear equations, quadratic equations and functions; polynomials and exponential functions. This C-level course is an accelerated course designed to meet the needs of students who are proficient in their knowledge of the Eighth-Grade Math Standards.  This course is a prerequisite for Geometry C.  

Pre-Algebra A
MTH801 (first semester) and MTH802 (second semester) | Full-Year Course
REQUIRED ⬜7 ⬛8
⬛ PBLN – MTH801p and MTH802p

This course is designed to meet the learning needs of students who are approaching proficiency in their knowledge of the Seventh-Grade Iowa Core Math Standards. This course is a prerequisite for Algebra I A.

Pre-Algebra B
MTH811 (first semester) and MTH812 (second semester) | Full-Year Course
REQUIRED ⬜7 ⬛8
⬛ PBLN – MTH811p and MTH812p

This B-level course is designed to meet the learning needs of students who are proficient in their knowledge of the Seventh-Grade Iowa Core Math Standards. This course is a prerequisite for Algebra I B.

Geometry C (Advanced)*
MTH231 (first semester) and MTH232 (second semester) | Full-Year Course
REQUIRED ⬜7 ⬛8
⬜ PBLN
*high school credit

Geometry C is a two-semester course, which involves the development and study of a mathematical system. This course is designed to review and strengthen algebraic skills, develop deductive and inductive reasoning ability, and increase spatial perception. The topics include principles of logic, parallelism, congruence, similarity, circles, spheres, constructions and loci, areas, volumes, coordinate geometry, and transformations. Geometry C will enable students to move into either Algebra II and Trigonometry B or Algebra II and Trigonometry C.

P.E. Courses

7-8 Physical Education
PHY781 (first semester) and PHY782 (second semester) | Full-Year Course
REQUIRED ⬛7 ⬛8
⬜PBLN

By the end of Grade 8, the learner will apply tactics and strategies to modified game play; demonstrate fundamental movement skills in a variety of contexts; design and implement a health-enhancing fitness program; participate in self-selected physical activity; cooperate with and encourage classmates; accept individual differences and demonstrate inclusive behaviors; and engage in physical activity for enjoyment and self-expression.  Students may elect to engage in a fundamentals of training section that links to the high school’s strength and conditioning courses.

SCIENCE Courses

Advanced Physical Science*
SCI811 (first semester) and SCI812 (second semester) | Full-Year Course
REQUIRED ⬜7 ⬛8
⬛PBLN – SCI811p and SCI812p
*must be taken for high school credit

This is a high school level course with a focus on middle and high school Physical Science, Engineering Technology and Earth-Space science concepts as outlined by the Iowa Core standards. Students enrolled in this course will experience a compacted, in-depth, and rigorous learning environment inclusive of standards associated with middle school and high school physical science. This course leads to enrollment in Biology at the 9th grade. This course is for 2 high school credits and fulfills 2 credits of the Physical Science graduation requirements.

Science
SCI801 (first semester) and SCI802 (second semester)  | Full-Year Course
REQUIRED ⬜7 ⬛8
⬛PBLN – SCI801p and SCI802p

Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) have been adopted. Eighth-grade science covers Newton’s laws of motion, energy, waves, and information transfer, weather, climate and climate change, effects of human activity on natural resources, and biological evolution. Engineering design standards are incorporated into many units. Eighth-grade science also includes a unit on human growth and development.

SOCIAL STUDIES Courses

Advanced Social Studies
SOC811 (first semester) and SOC812 (second semester)  | Full-Year Course
REQUIRED ⬜7 ⬛8
⬛PBLN – SOC811p and SOC812p

This advanced course will have similar content base compared to the regular section of 8th-grade social studies (US History Pre Columbian America through 1877) but will take a more intense look at the history through a variety of different methods. Students will have the opportunity to debate historical issues, study and compare work of historians, analyze primary resources, apply historical learning in a modern setting and explore problem-based learning. Students will be asked to read and write at a high level in promotion of higher order thinking skills related to the content.

Social Studies
SOC801 (first semester) and SOC802 (second semester)  | Full-Year Course
REQUIRED ⬜7 ⬛8
⬛PBLN – SOC801p and SOC802p

The eighth grade social studies curriculum focuses on the early history of the United States and the civic ideals of the nation. The course begins with pre-Columbian America and ends with Reconstruction after the Civil War (1877). Students will engage in critical thinking, inquiry, and analysis concerning issues facing early America.

Elective Courses

alphabetical order

Art
ART801  | Semester Course
ELECTIVE ⬜7 ⬛8
⬜ PBLN 

One semester course. Students will explore the areas of drawing, painting, and ceramics, as well as delve into digital graphics, specifically Photoshop Elements and digital cameras. Students will develop skills with art-making and self-expression, along with exposure to art history and criticism.

Band
MUS801 (first semester) and MUS802 (second semester)  | Full-Year Course
ELECTIVE ⬜7 ⬛8
⬜ PBLN 

While beginners are welcome in band, it is recommended that students have previous training on their instruments so that they may participate in large group (band) instruction. During the year, the band will perform various concerts. During the week, each student will have a group lesson. All students will have an opportunity to audition for jazz band and will be encouraged to perform in the solo and ensemble contest. Band meets every other day and is a one-year course.

Bass Clef Choir
MUS813 (first semester) and MUS814 (second semester) | Full-Year Course
ELECTIVE ⬜7 ⬛8
⬜PBLN 

Choir is open to any student who enjoys singing. The students sing three and four-part music and perform at various concerts and occasions throughout the year. Attention is placed on the development of vocal skills and choral technique. All choir members are eligible to try out for the show choir. choir meets every other day and is a one-year course.

Treble Clef Choir
MUS815 (first semester) and MUS816 (second semester) | Full-Year Course
ELECTIVE ⬜7 ⬛8
⬜PBLN 

Choir is open to any student who enjoys singing. The students sing three and four-part music and perform at various concerts and occasions throughout the year. Attention is placed on the development of vocal skills and choral technique. All choir members are eligible to try out for the show choir. choir meets every other day and is a one-year course.

Communication Media
COM801 | Semester Course
ELECTIVE ⬜7 ⬛8
⬜PBLN    

This is a one-semester course. Students will learn to recognize and understand the ever-changing media and its importance and influence in the world and their lives. Course study will focus on the use of images in media, communication in print and digital media, and production of a variety of media forms (e.g. newspaper, broadcast news, film). This class may support a variety of authentic media communication throughout the school, which may include the school newspaper, The Tiger Tracks, social media, and yearbook.

Drama
DRA801 | Semester Course
ELECTIVE ⬜7 ⬛8
⬜PBLN    

This is an exploratory theatre arts course lasting one semester. Units of study include Discovering Theatre, Movement, Voice, Acting, Script, and Audition. Possible projects include mime, improvisation, lip syncing, working with scripts, storytelling, learning drama terminology and audience etiquette, and participating in a mock audition.

Exploring Engineering Technology
TEC801 | Semester Course
ELECTIVE ⬜7 ⬛8
⬜PBLN  

This course studies how men and women use different materials and change these materials to make them more useful.  Students will gain experience working with wood, metal and plastic, and study the processes of laminating, welding, and forming.  Problem-solving is also studied.  Projects include clocks, mini-basketball hoops, and various plastic projects.

FCS-Culinary
FCS801 | Semester Course
ELECTIVE ⬜7 ⬛8
⬜PBLN  

This one semester course will provide students the opportunity to develop valuable kitchen skills as they work in labs. Students gain culinary knowledge in the areas of safety, sanitation, utensils, terms and measuring by preparing various food items.  Lifelong nutritious food choices are discussed and encouraged. In addition, students will explore careers related to these skills.

FCS-Textiles
FCS803 | Semester Course
ELECTIVE ⬜7 ⬛8
⬜PBLN  

This one semester course will provide students the opportunity to develop their critical thinking and problem solving abilities, while improving machine and hand sewing skills. Students will construct several projects that will teach textile construction techniques as well as fabric selection and care. In addition, students will explore the areas of design, color and careers related to these skills.

Gateway to Technology: Design, Modeling, Automation, and Robotics
TEC803 | Semester Course
ELECTIVE ⬜7 ⬛8
⬜PBLN  

Design & Modeling – Students apply the design process to solve problems and understand the influence of creativity and innovation in their lives. They work in teams to design a playground and furniture, capturing research and ideas in their engineering notebooks. Using Autodesk® design software, students create a virtual image of their designs and produce their innovative solutions. Students will also trace the history, development, and influence of automation and robotics as they learn about mechanical systems, energy transfer, machine automation, and computer control systems. Students use the VES Robotics ® platform to design, build, and program real-world objects such as traffic lights, toll booths, and robotic arms.

Automation & Robotics – Students trace the history, development, and influence of automation and robotics as they learn about mechanical systems, energy transfer, machine automation, and computer control systems. Students use the VEX Robotics® platform to design, build, and program real-world objects such as traffic lights, toll booths, and robotic arms.

Orchestra
MUS821 (first semester) and MUS822 (second semester) – Indian Hills | Full-Year Course
MUS781 (first semester and MUS782 (second semester) – Stilwell | Full-Year Course
ELECTIVE ⬜7 ⬛8
⬜PBLN 

Students are provided large group, small group, and individual orchestra experience. Each student is also encouraged to audition in a combined junior high chamber orchestra. Individual or small group lessons are available to each student. The orchestra will perform at several concerts during the year. Orchestra meets every other day and is a one-year course.

Spanish I
FRL801 (first semester) and FRL802 (second semester) | Full-Year Course*
ELECTIVE ⬜7 ⬛8
⬜PBLN
*high school credit

This course is an introduction to the Spanish language and to the culture of Spanish-speaking countries. Speaking, reading, writing, and listening skills will be developed through varied classroom activities. Students will gain a basic working vocabulary with which they will be able to communicate. After satisfactorily completing Spanish I, a student is qualified to enroll in Spanish II in high school. This course applies toward the fulfillment of university entrance foreign language requirements. This course is for 2 high school credits, and students must request this class both semesters.

Courses Students Qualify for Based on School Feedback

alphabetical order

ESOL Programming Overview

ESOL Teachers, General Education Teachers, and Counselors work together to choose the appropriate ESOL support for English Language Learners. The team uses information such as length of time in the U.S. schools, scores on the English Language Proficiency Assessment (ELPA21), and previous educational experiences.

Newcomer Program (Indian Hills Only)

The newcomer program is two classes that meet every day: Language development and Reading. Students practice speaking, listening, reading, and writing in English. They develop their English vocabulary skills. ESOL teachers might also support students in other classes.
QUALIFIED ⬛7 ⬛8
⬜PBLN

ESOL Foundations (Indian Hills Only)

ESOL Foundations helps English learners fill academic gaps from interrupted education specifically using math vocabulary and number sense skills. This class meets every day. English learners are also in a grade-level math class. Students receive targeted support at their level to build foundational skills.
QUALIFIED ⬛7 ⬛8
⬜PBLN

ESOL (Everyday Support)

This is an everyday language class for English learners. Students build background knowledge and vocabulary. Students develop listening, speaking, reading, and writing skills. This course may be in place of a regular English Language Arts class.
QUALIFIED ⬛7 ⬛8
⬜PBLN

ESOL (Every-Other Day Support)

This is a language class that meets every-other day. Students build background knowledge and vocabulary. Students work on language skills with a focus on reading and writing in English. This course is in addition to a regular English Language Arts class.
QUALIFIED ⬛7 ⬛8
⬜PBLN

GT Seminar
GT801 (first semester) and GT802 (second semester) – Indian Hills | Full-Year Course
GT781 (first semester) and GT782 (second semester) – Stilwell | Full-Year Course
QUALIFIED ⬜7 ⬛8
⬜PBLN

GT Seminar is designed to help exceptional students who have been identified for the gifted and talented program continue their personalized educational plan. The course is based on the Autonomous Learner Program Model, through which students work individually, in small groups, and with the whole group on projects and presentations based upon their interests, needs, and abilities. GT Seminar meets every other day for half credit each semester and can be repeated for a maximum of two years and two credits. 

Learning Lab
LLB801 (first semester) and LLB802 (second semester) | Full-Year Course
QUALIFIED ⬜7 ⬛8
⬜PBLN

The learning lab is a non-graded class designed to help and assist students who are struggling with academic success, organization skills, and assignment completion.  Parents will be contacted to discuss this option after the school year begins if problems become apparent. The learning lab will become a closely supervised study hall with a small teacher to student ratio.  The class meets every other day or every day, if needed.

Math Resource
MTH831 (first semester) and MTH832 (second semester) | Full-Year Course
QUALIFIED ⬜7 ⬛8
⬜PBLN

The purpose of this course is to provide students with additional direct instruction in math skills and strategies. Students will be assessed for problem areas, and review key concepts using a variety of strategies and methods. Enrollment is based on assessment scores and team recommendation. This course meets every other day. If it becomes apparent by the building administrator that the student has been inappropriately placed, an adjustment will be made.

Reading
RDG801 (first semester) and RDG802 (second semester) | Full-Year Course
QUALIFIED ⬜7 ⬛8
⬜PBLN

The purpose of this class is to provide students with additional direct instruction in reading skills and strategies. Students will review classroom homework, be assessed for problem areas, and review key concepts using a variety of strategies and methods. Enrollment is based on assessment scores and team recommendation. If it becomes apparent by the building administrator that the student has been inappropriately placed, an adjustment will be made.