Suzanne Johnson
8th grade Prime Time, Language Arts and Social Studies
Language Arts Overview:
    The district-adopted Springboard curriculum is the primary source for our Language Arts classes.  8th grade unit themes include:  The Challenge of Heroism, The Challenge of Society, Real-Life Challenges, and The Challenge of Comedy.  In addition to Springboard, we may also use novel sets for literature circles, journals, and vocabulary units to strengthen vocabulary skills.  It is frequently our goal to integrate United States History themes to curriculum and concepts being studied in Language Arts.
    8th grade students will have an enriching year of strengthening their reading, writing and communication skills in their Language Arts class.

Social Studies Overview:  
    1st trimester begins with a review of Colonial America and the American Revolution.  8th graders celebrate the completion of these studies with an annual Harbor Ridge Tea Party in late fall.  In October and November of 2016 we will be implementing an Election unit as part of our study of the past, present and future as it relates to key issues of leadership within our communities, nation, and world.  Before the end of 2nd trimester we progress into the time period of the development of our U.S. Constitution.  Particular focus is spent studying the Constitution and applying it to the lives of teenagers.  In January and February all 8th graders will complete the Junior Achievement curriculum in their Social Studies class. This unit focuses on the earning and spending of money, as well as budgeting and investing. It culminates in a field trip to the JA Finance Park in Auburn. As a follow-up activity, all students will complete a Job Shadow in early Spring. During 3rd trimester we will travel from the Constitution to Westward Expansion, the Civil War and Industrialization.  It is during this time that we complete the state required Curriculum Based Assessment (CBA) which is based on Constitutional issues at the 8th grade level.
    A variety of instructional approaches and activities are used to teach these historical time periods:  textbooks, historical fiction novels, documentaries, audio recordings, movies, and research.  Students exhibit their learning in a variety of ways such as individual and group projects, chapter lessons, quizzes and tests, and speeches.
    Throughout the year frequent study and discussion of current events take place as we connect the present to the past and future.

Prime Time:
    Prime Time is a class offered for the first 30 minutes four days a week. Instruction in my Prime Time class focuses on reading strategies to improve skills in both fiction and non-fiction reading for students at all skill levels. A variety of activities and materials will be used in Prime Time to enhance your child’s reading skills.  It is our intent to foster the joy of reading and validate that reading really does matter. To support these ideas, we believe students should also read 20-30 minutes every evening to reinforce good and consistent reading habits.

Mrs. Johnson's Expectations for the year :

    In 8th grade  you will develop as a writer, reader, thinker, 

historian, researcher, leader, and friend.  Bring with you each day

your materials and planner, a novel, your best energy and attitude,

and it will all come back to serve you well!


                                                                                               As Mahatma Gandhi once said, 
"Be the change you wish to see in the world."