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8th Grade Honors Science 8th Grade Honors Science


8th Grade Honors Science is a course providing advanced and enriched curriculum for selected students with an emphasis on physical science, chemistry and earth science.  Development of problem solving, critical thinking, and mathematical skills are stressed.  This course is taught at a high school level and thus, the pacing is demanding.  Once behind it will be difficult to catch up, so good attendance, a good work ethic, and a commitment to asking questions in class are all desirable traits for students in this class to have.  Students achieving a grade of A or B in this course will advance to the high school honors science program.

Course Objectives

The main objective of this course is to have students appreciate the nature of science and become engaged by its fascination and wonder. Other goals of this course include: (1) to further develop their science process and study skills, (2) to learn to work cooperatively and collaboratively with fellow classmates, (3) to express ideas clearly and process information in a clear and organized way, (4) to understand concepts and transfer learned knowledge to new situations, and (5) to form a basis for future science classes.

Course Content

Science in the eighth grade continues to be integrated in scope, combining units from earth, life and physical science. It is an activity- and inquiry-based program mixed with traditional educational techniques, and it engages students by studying interesting topics in science relevant to their own world. (For more information on inquiry-based learning visit "Inquiry-based Learning".) There are a variety of learning activities utilized and most include thinking, talking, and writing about what one discovers. There is a heavy emphasis on concept and skill development and math skills will be reinforced as a part of every unit.

Click this link to take advantage of many interactive science lessons in your online textbook:  Prentice Hall: Physical Science Concepts in Action

The pacing guide for this class is as follows but will be flexible as specific needs arise:

Chemistry, Physics, Earth and Space Science

Key Idea: Investigation and Experimentation (10%)*

Review of Science Skills - will be reviewed at the beginning of the year and practiced the entire year

Key Idea: Structure of Matter and the Periodic Table (27%)

Properties of Matter

 States of Matter

Atomic Structure

The Periodic Table

Chemical Bonds

Trimester One Ends November 21 

 Key Idea: Reactions and the Chemistry of Living Systems (22%)

 Chemical Reactions

Solutions, Acids, and Bases

 Carbon Chemistry

Nuclear Chemistry Research Project

Key Idea: Motion (13%)


Key Idea: Forces, Density and Buoyancy (23%)

Forces and Motion

Forces in Fluids

Work, Power and Machines

Energy Research Project (Electricity and Thermal Energy and Heat)

Trimester Two Ends March 6

Key Idea: Earth in the Solar System (12%)

The Solar System

Exploring the Universe


The following chapters review 6th and 7th grade concepts and will be considered toward the end of trimester three: 

Mechanical Waves and Sound (17)

The Electromagnetic Spectrum and Light (18)

Optics (19)

Magnetism (21)

Earth's Interior (22)

Earth's Surface (23)

Weather and Climate (24)

Enrichment activities based on 8th grade standards will also be considered based on students’ readiness for 9th grade.

Trimester Three Ends June 12

*The percentages in parentheses denote the amount of emphasis that the teacher will place on these concepts in each trimester which corresponds to CST guidelines. 

*Investigations and Experimentation will be an integral part of our class all year long. The 10% only denotes that the process is reviewed at the beginning of the year.

Honors, CP, and Passport Physical Science
Conejo Valley Unified School District
Sequoia Middle School
2855 Borchard Road
Newbury Park, CA 91320