• 8th Grade Humanties - Mr. Coleman

    English Language Arts/Social Studies



    Course Overview. Welcome to Humanities, or the study of human culture! This course examines, develops, and enhances students’ ability to use the English language and their understanding of United States History.


    Specific areas of focus for 8th Grade English/Language Arts will include…


    Verbal Fluency, and Vocabulary Development

    Reading Comprehension (Focus on Fiction and Informational Nonfiction Materials)

    Literary Analysis and Written Response

    Writing Strategies and Applications (Genres and Their Characteristics)

    Written and Oral English Language Conventions

    Effective Listening and Speaking Strategies and Applications


    Amplify Writing curriculum will focus on developing writing proficiency in the areas of...


    Personal Narrative, Focus on a Moment, Revision for Focus, Choosing Precise Details, Establishing Tone, Verb Choice, Use of Dialogue and Narration, Quoting Evidence to Support a Claim,


    Authors: Ray Bradbury, John Steinbeck, Roald Dahl, Benjamin Franklin, Mary Shelley, Frederick Douglas, Harper Lee.

    Areas of focus for 8th Grade US History and Geography will include…


    Pre Columbian North American Civilization

    North American Colonization and significant events preceding the founding of the nation.

    The political principles underlying the U.S. Constitution.

    The foundation of the American political system and ways citizens participate in it.

    The aspirations and ideals of the people of the new nation.

    U.S. foreign policy in the early Republic.

    The divergent paths of the American people of various regions in the early 1800s.

    Slavery and abolition.

    The causes, key events, and consequences of the Civil War.

    The character and lasting consequences of Reconstruction.

    The economic, social and political conditions in America during the Industrial Revolution.


    Humanities instruction is also designed to focus on essential academic skills that students will need to develop and demonstrate to be prepared for future academic success.


    Critical Thinking and Study Skills. The critical thinking skills students will develop and demonstrate include: formulating relevant questions for discussion; analyzing fact and opinion; determining relevant and irrelevant information; comparing and contrasting; recognizing and interpreting cause and effect; identifying stereotypes, bias, use of persuasive language and propaganda; drawing conclusions; relating past events to the present; and relating human behavior to the environment; identifying, analyzing, evaluating, and paraphrasing important quotes.


    Some of the study skills students will develop and demonstrate include: note taking; reading maps and globes; acquiring information from a variety of sources; analyzing charts, graphs, cartoons, and pictures; understanding and communicating using vocabulary and key concepts; and effectively reading, writing, listening, and speaking.


    Humanities students should also develop and demonstrate the ability to recognize personal biases, prejudices, and stereotypes; the ability to practice group problem solving; the ability to set goals, resolve conflicts, and reach compromises; and the ability to recognize issues that require action, and to support and organize action groups.

    Participation Skills. The participation skills that students should develop and demonstrate include coming to class prepared, participating in and contributing to class discussions, making thoughtful comments, expressing interest in and respect for others ideas, and participating constructively in group environments.


    Required Materials. All students should come to class everyday with the following materials:

    1.) 200+ Page Notebook (for ELA and SS)

    2.) Folder with pockets (for ELA and SS handouts)

    3.) Writing instruments. (Blue, black & red ink pen and No. 2 pencil.)

    4.) Textbooks: History Alive!, Independent Reading Book, and various novels.

    Daily Policies and Procedures. Each day an agenda displaying the sequence of topics and activities to be covered and assignments to be due the following class day will appear on the board. All assigned class work and homework is to be completed individually and handed in by the appropriate due date. All tests, quizzes, other graded material, and informational handouts should be kept in the ELA or SS folder. The Instructor will assign a number and title for each assignment. If assignments are completed in the notebook, students should record the number and title of each assignment in their notebook table of contents and number the notebook page accordingly. Notebooks are to be kept neatly, with numbered assignments appearing in the proper order and listed in each unit table of contents.

    Due Dates. On days when assignments are due I will collect them or stamp those in the notebook that appear neat, accurate, thoughtful and complete. Late assignments will not receive full credit. Notebooks will be collected and thoroughly evaluated approximately once every 2 weeks during the term. Grades will be posted regularly on the Powerschool website.

    Classwork/Homework. Classwork and homework assignments will be displayed each day and can include reading, taking notes, defining terms, summarizing passages, completing reflective writing assignments, completing projects, studying, and finishing in-class assignments. All graded assignments will be evaluated based on completeness, accuracy, neatness and depth of thought.


    Quizzes, Tests, Essays and Projects. Quizzes will be given regularly every week or 2. Exams and other formal assessments will be given approximately once every month following the completion of related units. A cumulative final exam will be given in class at the end of the school year. Students will complete several projects and formal writing assignments throughout the semester.



    1.) Be Timely. Arrive to class and be ready to work before the sound of the bell.

    2.) Be Respectful. Respect the learning environment at all times.

    3.) Be Kind. Always treat others with courtesy.

    4.) Be Accountable. You are responsible for making up any assignments missed due to absence.

    Grading Scale:         A+ = 100% - 99%        A = 98% - 94% A- = 93% - 90%

                    B+ = 89% - 87%         B = 86% - 83%         B- = 82% - 80%

                    C+ = 79% - 77%         C = 76% - 73%         C- = 72% - 70%

                    D+ = 69% - 67%         D = 66% - 63%         D- = 62% - 60%

                    F = < 60%

    I anticipate calculating overall grades based on the following weighted scale:



    Tests: 35% 

    Quizzes: 30% 

    Classwork/Homework : 25% 

    (ELA only) Independent Reading: 10%

    (SS only) Projects: 10%



    -------------------Cut Here and return bottom portion signed by student and parent guardian------------------


    Statement of Understanding

    I have read the course description for this Mr. Coleman’s Humanities class and understand what I will need to bring to class each day, the classroom rules and responsibilities, and how my grade will be calculated this year.

    Student Name/Signature/Date:______________________________________________________________                                                                                        

    Parent Name/Signature/Date:_______________________________________________________________      

Last Modified on September 4, 2018