GREAT NECK NORTH MIDDLE SCHOOL
EIGHTH GRADE PROGRAM DESCRIPTION
Each student is assigned to a team composed of five teachers, each of whom specializes in one academic area (English, social studies, math, science, or special education), and a counselor. The team organization provides an opportunity for teachers to meet daily to exchange ideas concerning curriculum and to discuss ways to provide the best possible learning environment for each student.
The school day consists of eight instructional periods and a lunch period, each approximately thirty-nine minutes in length. Eighth grade periods include the following:
- A daily period of instruction in each of the four academic team subjects (English, math, earth science and social studies)
- Earth science lab for one period on alternating days
- A daily period of instruction in world language: Spanish, French, Hebrew, or Chinese) or ENL (English as a New Language)
- A daily period of instruction in required exploratory subjects (health for 20 weeks, technology for 10 weeks and computers for 10 weeks)
- Physical education for one period on alternating days
- An opportunity to choose additional exploratory subjects*, a special education service, or an academic intervention (English Learning Center and/or Math Learning Center)
* The number of additional exploratory courses a student can take is dependent upon individual program needs. Some eighth graders will have room for one course in their schedule, some will have room for two and others will not have room for any. (See list of exploratory classes below).
Academic intervention classes are designed to provide remediation in concepts and skills. Students with scores of 1 or 2 on the New York State Assessments in Language Arts and/or Math are required to take academic intervention classes. Other students may be recommended by their teachers for academic intervention.
ENGLISH LEARNING CENTER
The English Learning Center is designed for students who need additional assistance in language arts. The staff focuses on supporting regular class instruction, improving reading and writing skills and helping students meet the New York State English Language Arts learning standards.
MATH LEARNING CENTER
The Math Learning Center is designed for students who need additional instruction in mathematics. The staff focuses on supporting regular classroom instruction and improving understanding of mathematical concepts, computation skills and real world problem solving. In addition, support and practice designed to help students meet the New York State Mathematics learning standards are provided. The small class size allows time for focused practice, hands-on activities, computer applications and individualized instruction.
WORLD LANGUAGE OPTIONS
The successful completion of Spanish 7 is a prerequisite for this course. By the end of this course, students are expected to demonstrate a measurable degree of communicative competency both in speaking and writing in Spanish, as mandated by Checkpoint A, the curriculum guide designed by New York State. The course concludes with the students taking the Checkpoint A exam. **The final average from this course will be included on the high school transcript and is included in the total cumulative high school average.**
1 Unit of High School Credit
The successful completion of French 7 is a prerequisite for this course. By the end of this course, students are expected to demonstrate a measurable degree of communicative competency both in speaking and writing in French, as mandated by Checkpoint A, the curriculum guide designed by New York State. The course concludes with the students taking the Checkpoint A exam. **The final average from this course will be included on the high school transcript and is included in the total cumulative high school average.**
1 Unit of High School Credit
The successful completion of Chinese 7 is a prerequisite for this course. By the end of this course, students are expected to demonstrate a measurable degree of communicative competency both in speaking and writing in Chinese, as mandated by Checkpoint A, the curriculum guide designed by New York State. This course concludes with the students taking the Checkpoint A exam. **The final average from this course will be included on the high school transcript and is included in the total cumulative high school average.**
1 Unit of High School Credit
The successful completion of Hebrew 7 is a prerequisite for this course. By the end of this course, students are expected to demonstrate a measurable degree of communicative competency both in speaking and writing in Spanish, as mandated by Checkpoint A, the curriculum guide designed by New York State. The course concludes with the students taking the Checkpoint A exam. **The final average from this course will be included on the high school transcript and is included in the total cumulative high school average.**
1 Unit of High School Credit
This course is a continuation of Latin 7. Increased emphasis is placed on Latin grammar, the reading and writing of Latin, and English vocabulary building. There is also increased emphasis on Greek and Roman civilization and their impact on our modern civilization. This course concludes with the students taking the Checkpoint A exam. **The final average from this course will be included on the high school transcript and is included in the total cumulative high school average.**
1 Unit of High School Credit
This course is an introductory course for students in grade 8. A strong emphasis is placed on communication and the integration of listening, speaking, reading and writing skills. Thematic vocabulary and grammar are acquired gradually as students build interpersonal communicative skills. Students work to develop a familiarity and understanding of the cultural environments where Spanish is spoken and various aspects of everyday living. Students who successfully complete this course will go on to Spanish II in the high school. Students who did not take a world language in grade 6 or grade 7 must enroll in Spanish 1 in order to meet New York State graduation requirements. This does not pertain to students who have been exempt from LOTE by the CSE.
It should be understood that the availability of all courses and programs described on this website is subject to recommendation by the administration of the school district and to final action and authorization by the Board of Education as the Board develops its school budget for next year.
Art Foundation 9
In line with requirements in the high school, the Art Department offers an accelerated course in art. This course is the beginning of the high school sequence in art and is demanding as well as broad in scope. It provides varied and exciting experiences in drawing, painting, sculpture, and computer graphics. Art appreciation, art criticism and advanced problem solving are all integral aspects of this course. **Students will receive one unit of high school credit upon successful completion of this course and their final grade will appear on their high school transcript.**
Prerequisite: Successful completion of Art 7, Department approval and placement exam
This course is designed to expose students to a variety of materials and subject matter in art. **It expands upon key concepts addressed in Art 6 and Art 7 as well as introduces new ones keeping in alignment with the New York State Learning Standards for Visual Art and student interests.**
Intro to Film and Video
Using the latest green screen technology and video equipment, this class will introduce students to the concepts and skills required to produce high quality professional media content. Students will gain hands-on experience working with a multiple camera setup in a real studio and an attached control room. The focus will be on critical thinking, communication, collaboration and creativity. Students will have an understanding of all the key roles involved in producing a variety of live productions from conception to production, including: talk shows, variety shows, commercials, TV news, and game shows. Students will utilize NewTek hardware and software to take advantage of virtual sets and backgrounds.
Photography & Art
If you like to take pictures, and who does not, and would like to do creative things with them, this course is for you! This elective offering sponsored by the art department is a project-based, art course with a central theme of photography. All projects are tied to photography in some way. Students will make their own photographs using iPads, digital point and shoot cameras and DSLR cameras. Students will learn to manipulate images using Adobe Photoshop, the standard in the photo industry as well as other image manipulation APPs.
This course is designed to broaden students’ knowledge of different forms of media and intensify the skills they acquire throughout their experiences in North Middle School computer classes. This course is project-based and driven by students’ skill-set and interest. Projects may include creation of music videos, animated videos, original soundtracks, calendars, and advanced photo editing. Some programs used are Adobe Photoshop, Go!Animate, Garageband, iMovie, and FinalCut Express.
FAMILY AND CONSUMER SCIENCES
Family and Consumer Sciences (FACS)
This project-based course consists of several units in both the food lab and sewing lab with a focus on leadership, communication, and critical thinking. Students will complete several projects that cover a variety of topics including sewing, culinary arts, entrepreneurship, and service learning. Culinary units include intermediate recipe preparation with an emphasis on function of ingredients and recipe adjustments. Students will also take place in culinary challenges such as a "Cupcake Wars" competition. Sewing units typically are tied to service learning and machine sewing projects. The entrepreneurship unit focuses on creating a business which culminates into students’ participation in the North Middle School “Shark Tank” competition. Students assume the role of aspiring entrepreneurs who pitch their food-based business idea to a panel of potential investors, they’ll hope that someone on the panel likes their business enough to bite!
Students who are interested in singing in a group may elect chorus. They will work on proper singing technique: individual vocal tone quality, intonation, projection, breath control, and articulation of vowels and consonants. The chorus performs a wide variety of musical selections in three-part harmony, including popular and Broadway songs, as well as music from the master composers. Students who participate in NYSSMA in the spring will have the opportunity to be considered for the All-County Festival. Chorus participation culminates in two evening concerts. After school rehearsals are required two weeks prior to concerts.
All students who play brass, woodwind and percussion instruments and have successfully completed the seventh grade band course (or one year of private study) may register for eighth grade band. The band rehearses as a full concert band ensemble and incorporates basic technique, drills and warm-ups with the rehearsal of concert band repertoire. Band participation culminates in two evening concerts. After school rehearsals are required two weeks prior to concerts.
All string players who have successfully completed the seventh grade orchestra course (or one year of private study) may register for eighth grade orchestra. The orchestra rehearses as a full string ensemble and incorporates basic technique, drill and warm-ups with rehearsal of string orchestra repertoire. Orchestra participation culminates in two evening concerts. After school rehearsals are required two weeks prior to concerts.
Welcome to Drama, a class where you can discover talents you may not have realized you have! This course is designed to allow the student to develop performance and production skills. We will also delve into the history of theater and view productions of varying styles. All aspects of theater such as acting, directing, playwriting, scenery design, costumes, lighting and make-up will be explored in order to instill a deeper appreciation of the art of the theater and its relevance to our society today.
This course includes the development and implementation of scientific research procedures and instruction in the use of selected laboratory equipment and other essential technology. Students will participate in various science competitions and contests, such as the Long Island Science and Engineering Fair and Science Olympiads. While this course is NOT a prerequisite for the North High School Research Program, it provides a strong preparation for students interested in this sequence. **Students who select Science Research will be given further instructions regarding the application process for this course.**
Law and Justice/Economics
During this class, students will explore social science topics related to Law and Justice as well as Economics. Students will learn about the workings of the legal system in the United States, the rights and freedoms guaranteed to us under the law, and the actions and consequences set in motion when laws are violated. Landmark court decisions from the past and cases in the news will be researched, discussed, and debated. For the Economics portion, students will investigate where money comes from and where it goes. They will learn about investing in the Stock Market by participating in Investopedia, an on-line game. They will also research companies and create a business plan.
GRADES AND GRADING
Report cards are posted and can be viewed on the parent portal four times a year. The letter symbols listed below indicate academic achievement.
A+ = 97-100
A = 93-96
A- = 90-92
B+ = 87-89
B = 83-86
B- = 80-82
C+ = 77-79
C = 73-76
C- = 70-72
D = 65-69
F = 64 and below
Progress reports will be posted halfway through each marking period. They allow the teacher to communicate with the family regarding their child's academic progress.
Please note: Most of our eighth graders take courses which bear high school credit such as Earth Science, Algebra, Art Foundation 9 and all the third year LOTE classes. The final grade for these classes will appear on the high school transcript.
Extra help is offered by teachers to all students. It may be scheduled before school, during lunch or after school.
The Homework Center in the library is open Monday through Thursday from 3:00 p.m. to 4:25 p.m. Two staff members are assigned to the center to assist children with homework in all academic areas. Bus transportation is available at 3:45 p.m. and 4:30 p.m. If you have any questions or concerns about extra help, we urge you to contact your child's teacher or his/her school counselor.