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8th Grade Seminar Humanities

Course Description

The Humanities block is aligned to the California Language Arts and History/Social Science State Standards. Focus will be given to the study of expository text, and a sophisticated analysis and interpretation of other literary genres. Students will be asked to develop and apply higher order thinking skills to the study of US HIstory, which includes the examination of social, cultural, political, and economic change over time and space during the period from 1620-1900A.D. Class Objective: To develop lifelong readers, competent writers, articulate speakers, and creative critical thinkers.

This is a 36 week project-based course. Each of the 6 six-week projects Language Arts objectives, US History objectives, and Technology objectives are briefly described below. Teaching methods will include thematic units, Socratic seminar, curriculum compacting, problem-based learning, and strong base in technology. While tangible products are irreplaceable in education, many of the finished products for this course will be completed digitally. In addition, the final assessment piece for the course will be an electronic portfolio to be completed no later than Friday June 10th, 2009. Finally, though the emphasis of the course is on 8th grade standards and strategies, to provide a seamless transition from 7th to 8th grade, students will participate in collaborative learning activities with the 7th grade Seminar Humanities classes. These collaborations will provide reinforcement for the learning that took place last year, as well as a comparative assessment of the content shared by the two courses.