COURSE TITLE: Honors English – Grade 8 PREREQUISITE: DESCRIPTION: N/A The Grade 8 Honors English curriculum is an extension of the academic program. Instruction at the honors level emphasizes the appreciation and analysis of challenging literature; refined, articulate, and astute communications; and activities requiring high levels of critical and creative thinking. The Grade 8 Honors English curriculum is an integrated program of reading and writing skills, activities, and applications designed to develop clear and effective written and oral communication, a life-long appreciation of literature, and those skills necessary to incorporate electronic technology into the research and writing process. Specific goals include helping students 1) improve critical thinking skills; 2) develop a literary background; 3) read challenging literature; 4) learn grammar, usage, spelling and mechanics through the writing process, 5) develop skills in the use of electronic technology; and 6) develop oral communication skills through individual, small group, and large group learning experiences. MAIN TOPICS: STRAND Writing Research Literature/Reading Oral Language Vocabulary The items listed below outline the required topics for this level. All teachers reinforce the requirements from previous years and, depending on the needs of individual students, may extend instruction beyond the required curriculum. Teachers incorporate activities to review and practice the skills tested on the Grade 8 SOL writing and reading tests. MAIN EMPHASES Review grammar and mechanics as necessary. Edit for correct spelling, capitalization and punctuation. Use the writing process and a variety of writing experiences to create style, tone, sentence variety, organization, unity, elaboration. Write to a specific purpose including writing for the work place; use descriptive, narrative, and expository styles; select appropriate vocabulary. Probe, narrow research topics; avoid plagiarism; practice note-taking skills; paraphrase; explore and utilize print and non-print references; practice Internet safety; create a works cited page; generate research reports Survey/analyze a variety of genres of literature including biography, poetry, novel, short story; study literary elements, poetic devices, persuasive, and expository essays Demonstrate oral communication skills through performances, presentations, reports, readers’ theater, drama, and various other formal and informal oral activities. Explore mass media messages, persuasive techniques in mass media, intent, and factual content. Incorporate interview techniques, note taking, and use of electronic databases into written and oral presentations. Continue exploration of Latin and Greek word elements including prefixes, suffixes, and roots. Participate in word study through literature.