Grade 8 Science Semester – 2

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Grade 8 Science Semester – 2

Recommended Grade Level: 8

Grade 8 Science (Middle School Comprehensive Science 3) is the third in a series of three consecutive middle school science classes. It builds on concepts introduced in the first and second courses of the series (Grade 6 Science, Grade 7 Science), including the disciplines of life science, physical science, and earth-space science. In addition, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) concepts are integrated throughout the course. Students learn about properties of matter, physical and chemical changes, atoms and the periodic table of elements, photosynthesis and cellular respiration, the universe, and the solar system. Hands-on and virtual laboratory investigations are included throughout the course to provide students opportunities for exploration through scientific inquiry, research, measurement, problem solving, and experimental procedures. By the end of the course, students will be practicing, experimenting, thinking, and talking like a scientist!


In this semester students will

  • learn the processes within the carbon cycle that demonstrate a conservation of matter and energy within Earth’s various ecosystems
  • discover how nature uses the carbon cycle to re-cycle
  • learn about the formation and structures of galaxies, the solar system, and stars, including our closest star, the sun
  • review the physical properties of stars and how they can change with size and temperature
  • investigate the role of electromagnetic radiation and technology in exploring space
  • learn about the formation of our solar system, and the planets and astronomical objects within it
  • explore the interactions between our Earth, sun, and moon system, and how these interactions lead to seasons, eclipses, and tides
  • investigate the phases of the moon as viewed from Earth



Required Materials:


Student-Supplied Resources

Students need to supply the following materials to complete the coursework.


Segment 02


06.02 Exploring the Solar System

  • Five pounds of dry ice, finely crushed
  • Insulated container to hold the dry ice
  • Thick gloves
  • Rubber mallet
  • Safety goggles
  • Plastic bowl
  • Large towel to protect your work area
  • Several 12-gallon garbage bags
  • Flat tray
  • Liter of water
  • 2 cups of dirt
  • 1 tablespoon of starch
  • 1 tablespoon of dark syrup or soda
  • 1 tablespoon of vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon of rubbing alcohol
  • Hairdryer
  • Flashlight
  • Adult supervision

06.03 Seasons and Tides

  • Thermometer or color-changing temperature strip
  • Protractor (or print-out of a protractor)
  • Large flashlight or table lamp (Cell phone flashlights or energy-efficient bulbs will not work for this activity.)
  • Adult supervision


School-Supplied Resources

  • Adobe Flash Player
  • Java
  • Windows Media Player
  • Apple iTunes



Segment 2:


Module 04: Cycles and Conservation

  • 00 Module Pretest
  • 01 Conservation
  • 02 Photosynthesis
  • 03 Cellular Respiration
  • 04 Advanced Interrelated Nature
  • 05 The Carbon Cycle
  • 06 Conservation Models
  • 07 Discussion-Based Assessment
  • 08 Module Exam

Module 05: The Universe

  • 00 Module Pretest
  • 01 Space and Beyond
  • 02 Galaxies
  • 03 Stars
  • 04 Solar Properties
  • 05 Advanced Space Weather
  • 06 Electromagnetic Spectrum
  • 07 Space Technology
  • 08 Discussion-Based Assessment
  • 09 Module Exam

Module 06: Our Solar System

  • 00 Module Pretest
  • 01 Formation of the Solar System
  • 02 Exploring the Solar System
  • 03 Seasons and Tides
  • 04 Eclipses and Moon Phases
  • 05 Discussion-Based Assessment
  • 06 Module Exam
  • 07 Segment Two Exam


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