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Grades 4 - 8

Grade 8

Our Grade 8 students are the leaders of our student body. Their academic work allows them to consider the world outside of our School and the broader perspective helps to shape them as learners and leaders. In this year, the girls solidify their academic, artistic, and athletic skills, and become more self-aware. 

Special projects in Grade 8 include the Nashoba Brooks School Spring Musical, the Washington D.C. trip, Buddy Programs with Grade 4, Student Government, C-SPAN StudentCam Documentary Contest, "Visuals & Voices," and more.

In Grade 8 we focus on developing the following skills:
  • Critical reading, thinking, and writing
  • Narrative and expository writing
  • Research methodology
  • Effective time management 
  • Active speaking and listening in class discussions
  • Public speaking
  • Self-reflection
  • Growth mindset
  • Language learning and cultural competency
  • Leadership
  • SMART goal-setting
  • Problem-solving strategies 

Click on an item below to see a summary of Grade 8 work in that subject area. Please note: Each subject includes a guiding question or questions, some of the topics we address in that area, and an overview of some of the skills we work to build through this subject.

About Grade 8

List of 14 items.

  • A Sample Day In Grade 8

    Students can arrive as early as 7:30 AM and spend time with friends in the Dining Commons. 

    The school day starts promptly at 8:25 AM. In Grade 8, the day begins with either Homeroom or Advisor meetings and a typical day may include:

    • Science
    • Latin
    • English
    • Snack & Recess - students bring their own snacks
    • Health
    • Visual Arts
    • Social Studies
    • Lunch & Recess - the School provides lunch
    • Mathematics
    • Drama
    • Physical Education
    Eighth graders are dismissed at 3:35 PM on Mondays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays, and at 12:30 PM on Tuesdays.

    Students in Grades 5-8 also have the option of being part of our intramural athletic teams which have practice and games after the end of the school day (M, W, Th, F until 4:50 PM).

    At the end of the day, we also offer fee-based External Programs and Supervised Study that allow students to stay as late as 5:30 PM.
  • Drama in Grade 8

    What can you learn from your work on the Nashoba Brooks-Fenn musical?

    Skills We Teach:
    Auditioning • Character development • Reading a script • Memorizing lines • Taking direction • Moving to the music • Singing in character • Handling the lights and sound equipment for those who prefer the role of “techie” • Developing self-confidence • Collaborating toward a common goal with each other and the Fenn School participants
  • English in Grade 8

    Identity and Self: What is identity and why is it important? Where do I fit in and what do I believe? How does society influence our identity and the choices we make?  What is the "American Dream"?

    Topics of Study:
    "This I Believe" • Short stories • Close reading of novels (which may include Night, Lord of the Flies, A Raisin in the Sun, The House on Mango Street) • Dialectical Journals • Grammar, Mechanics and Usage • Vocabulary development and etymology • Narrative essay • Analytical essay • Literary Analysis essays • The Art of Sentence Styling • Year-long Research Project • QFT • "Pecha-Kucha" style end-of-year oral presentation of research • Socratic and Harkness style discussions

    Skills We Teach:

    Developing critical thinking skills through reading and writing • Text annotation • Participation in Socratic and Harkness style discussions • Ethical research practices • Question Formulation Techniques • Narrative writing • Analytical writing • Sentence styling techniques
  • Health & Wellness in Grade 8

    How can you use your position of leadership and seniority to positively impact your community? How is your experience the same or different from those around you? How can this help you to build empathy and understanding? What are some behaviors and factors that put teens at risk; How do we keep ourselves and our friends safe?

    Topics of Study:
    Interview Preparation for Secondary School Placement • Leadership • Social Media Literacy • Healthy Relationships • Perspectives and Perceptions • Personal Safety • Substance Abuse Awareness• Human Sexuality
  • Latin in Grade 8

    Why is Latin relevant today? How can we gain an understanding of the size of and diversity within the Roman Empire? How can we compare and contrast this with our own society and culture?

    Topics of Study:
    Word order and sentence patterns for sentences containing subordinate clauses • Conjugations of verbs • Imperatives • Continued study of all the five main cases • Noun-adjective agreement • Relative Pronouns and Relative Clauses • English vocabulary derived from Latin • Roman Britain and Gaul • Roman Egypt • Continued exploration of art, mythology, and technological advancements of the ancient world

    Skills We Teach:
    Applying understanding of grammar to reading • Memorizing • Building English and Latin vocabulary • Translating longer sentences with multiple clauses • Gaining respect for those learning English as a second language • Comparing/contrasting diverse cultures and civilization contemporaneously and across the centuries
  • Library in Grade 8

    Use of the library in Grade 8 is incorporated into subject area classes.

    Skills We Teach: 
    Developing questions and creating a thesis for research •  Evaluating news sources and websites for bias • Citing sources • Creating notecards • Crafting a works cited page • Using digital resources for research with increased independence
  • Mathematics in Grade 8

    Algebra I

    How do I use Algebraic tools to explore, model and solve real life problems?

    Topics of Study:
    Algebraic expressions • Functions • Rational numbers, • Cartesian coordinate graphs • Developing and solving linear functions and inequalities • Working with systems of equations and inequalities • Graphing and solving exponential and quadratic functions • Polynomials and factoring • Radicals and applying the quadratic formula • Data analysis 

    Skills We Teach:
    Simplifying expressions • Solving multi-step one-variable equations and inequalities • Graphing and analyzing linear, quadratic, absolute value, and exponential functions • Calculating and simplifying rational, exponential and radical expressions • Solving systems • Factoring polynomials • Using a variety of methods to solve quadratic functions • Solving word problems • Preparing for a cumulative exam
  • Music in Grade 8

    Our Grade 8 Voices

    Topics of Study:
    Grade 8 Musical Theater Performance • Our Voices through Song: Final Closing Day culminating performance  

    Skills We Teach:
    Auditioning on stage as a soloist  • On-stage singing • Practicing effectively in class and independently• Critical listening • Successfully collaborating as part of a team to create complete performances
  • PE in Grade 8

    What skills and wisdom will enable me to stay strong and play on?

    In addition to team sports, Physical Education includes the following:

    Topics of Study:
    Flag football • Ultimate frisbee • Touch rugby • Yoga • Floor hockey • Tennis • Health/fitness • Self-defense • Team handball • Adapted sports awareness • Kayaking

    Skills We Teach:
    How to be strong leaders and team players • Applying rules and strategies to games • Self-defense maneuvers • Kayaking basics and water safety
  • Science in Grade 8

    Introduction to Physical Science

    How do we, as scientists, understand our universe? What tools and thought processes can we use to effectively investigate our world?  

    Topics of Study:
    Lab safety and equipment • Experimental design • Measurement • Properties of matter • Atoms and molecules • The classification of elements • Forces and motion • Energy

    Skills We Teach:
    Logic and reasoning • Asking scientific questions • Conducting and designing experiments • Analyzing numeric data • Taking detailed notes • Working in collaborative groups • Thinking critically
  • Social Studies in Grade 8

    Implementing Change in an Imperfect Democracy

    How did the Declaration of Independence and Constitution establish American identity? Who has been left out of the picture and how have they fought for inclusion and social justice?

    Topics of Study:
    Thinking Like A Historian • Foundation, functions, and forms of government • C-SPAN StudentCam Documentary Competition • Women’s rights and roles: Suffrage to today • Constitutional amendments • Significant US court cases and impact • Civil Rights Movement: school integration, sit-ins, freedom rides, legislation, protests, marches and legacy of social change • 20% Time • TEDx Talks

    Skills We Teach:
    Developing, implementing, and communicating new ideas to others • Acting on creative ideas to make tangible innovations • Defining, prioritizing, and completing tasks • Understanding the interconnections among systems • Identifying and asking significant questions that clarify various points of view and lead to better solutions • Articulating thoughts and ideas clearly and effectively through speaking and writing • Exercising flexibility and willingness to be helpful in making necessary compromises to accomplish goals • Assuming shared responsibility for collaborative work • Utilizing time efficiently and managing workload
  • Spanish in Grade 8

    How are free time activities such as concerts, movies, and museums an important part of culture?  Why is the “Quinceañera” such an important tradition for many Hispanic and Latino families? How do our experiences shopping in the US compare to shopping in much of the Spanish-speaking world? How does the geography of Latin America affect travel, and how do we navigate an airport in Spanish?

    Topics of Study:
    In our free time • The Quinceañera • Shopping for clothing and food • The Spanish-speaking market • Airplane travel • Daily Routines

    Students will be able to:

    Discuss free time activities • Identify and describe clothing in detail • Shop for clothing and food • Use the numbers 1-1000 to pay for something and bargain for a lower price • Compare and contrast shopping in the Spanish speaking world with student’s own experiences • Discuss travel and vacations • Talk about packing for a trip • Describe daily routines using reflexive verbs • Narrate detailed stories using various verb tenses such as the present, present progressive, preterite, and future.
  • Technology in Grade 8

    At Nashoba Brooks School, educational technology is meaningfully integrated into all content areas to enhance student learning.

    Skills We Teach:
    Using G Suite for Education, computer software, and iPad applications across content areas to support learning • Managing a device • Problem solving • Using Google Classroom • Producing music independently with software • Using web-based video communication independently • Incorporating extensive video and audio editing • Creating Podcasts • Increasing use of various coding languages across disciplines • Increasing understanding of netiquette and digital footprint • Considering the impact and appropriate use of social media
  • Visual Arts in Grade 8

    How does my artistic exploration and expression reflect my identity? 

    Topics of Study:
    Working as an artist: creating work that reflects personal concerns and interests- 
    Observational drawing • Focus and point of view • Painting- favorite children’s book cover • Altered books • Clay and assembled sculpture

    Skills We Teach:
    Using the principles of design • Observational drawing • Multiple painting techniques, • Color and value • Building skills with a variety of media while creating both flat and 3-dimensional pieces of art

Our eighth graders approach the future with confidence and enthusiasm. They feel well prepared for their secondary schools and life beyond Nashoba Brooks.

Grade 8 Homeroom Teachers

List of 2 members.

  • Photo of Elaine Rabb

    Elaine Rabb 

    Middle School English, Middle School Dean, Grade 8 Homeroom
  • Photo of Rick Mosher

    Rick Mosher 

    Middle School Math, Grade 8 Homeroom
Situated on a beautiful 30-acre campus in historic Concord, Massachusetts, Nashoba Brooks School enrolls all genders in Preschool through Grade 3, and students identifying as girls in Grades 4 through 8. Nashoba Brooks is an independent school designed to build community, character, and confidence in its students.
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