8th Grade Class

Instructional Overview


Literature based units are used to build skills in reading comprehension, fluency, and develop knowledge of literary elements. Socratic seminars give students the opportunity to evaluate the text critically and listen to the insight of other students. Quality classical literature is selected for both class and individual student reading. Text include Oliver Twist, The Hiding Place, Animal Farm, The Adventures of Huck Finn, Short stories by Tolstoy, and a Greek Mythology unit.


Holt Traditions Warriner’s Handbook Level 4 is utilized to reinforce and continue to build a foundation of excellent grammar. IEW’s (Institute for Excellence in Writing) Fix-It series also challenges students to apply their knowledge of grammar to classic texts. Grammar and writing instruction are integrated throughout the year and across subject areas.


We follow a classical approach to teaching writing, using the Institute for Excellence in Writing. Students are carefully guided through the writing process and learn to manipulate language to craft well-written pieces. Writing is focused on crafting longer narratives, research papers, poetry, and creative writing.


Students may take either Pre-Algebra (Glenco, 2003) or Algebra 1 (Glenco, 2003), depending on their previous course work.


We believe that God is the author of all truth and that we are instructed to hide His word in our hearts. Students memorize scripture, read passages to capture the Biblical narrative, and begin to dive deeper into the themes that run through the NT and OT. This course focuses on the major and minor prophets of the Old Testament and the fulfillment of those prophesies in the New Testament.


Exploring America by Ray Notgrass is a challenging text, accompanied by original sources. Students study the themes and motives that characterize the United States from Civil War times to current day. This course also instructs the U.S. Constitution and the forms and functions of government.


God reveals himself through his creation and has created children with an innate wonder of the natural world around us. Students study life science, earth science, and physical science depending on the year. Materials vary with focus of instruction on utilizing hands-on activities and applying knowledge to God’s world around us. Completion of a science fair project is also part of this course.


Language study is an essential part of classical education, building foundations for vocabulary study, grammar, logic, and critical thinking. According to Dorothy Sayers, author of The Lost Tools of Learning, “even a rudimentary knowledge of Latin cuts down the labor and pains of learning almost any other subject by at least fifty percent.” This course combines Latin grammar instruction with the development of translation skills in preparation for translating original text documents.


The Thinking Toolbox, along with additional sources is used to train students to build logical arguments. Students build their repertoire of known fallacies and work to craft their own arguments avoiding these fallacies.


Students are instructed through on-line keyboarding programs to utilize proper keyboarding skills.

Other Studies

All students also participate in art, music (vocal and instrumental), and P.E.