Social Studies 8 - World History

Social Studies 8 - World History
Madame Snelling
What time period is covered in 8th grade Social Studies?
Eighth grade social studies is a survey world history course
designed to give you the opportunity to explore recurring
themes common to civilizations from around the globe and
across time. Our study of world history will take us back
15,000 years, through the stone, bronze and iron ages, and
across four continents. We will walk through peace and
prosperity, work through wars, trade across deserts and travel
silk roads. We will become a community of thinkers as well as
world travelers as we work through the year.
What are the main units in 8th grade Social Studies?
Humanity and the Environment
Ancient Civilizations: Mesopotamia, Egypt, India, and China
Classical Civilizations: Greece, Rome
Forces of Change: Hinduism, Buddhism, Judaism, Christianity, and Islam
Regional Civilizations: Europe, Africa, and China
What are the learning objectives of 8th grade Social Studies?
The main objective of this class is to give you the opportunity to think critically. All
year we will be asking the question, How can what happened in this time and in this
place in history help us understand current events and make decisions for the future?
Other goals for every unit include:
 Understanding the importance of technological advances and significant
contributions of people throughout history
 Understanding the role that geography has played in the development of
civilizations throughout history
 Understanding basic economic needs and methods of meeting those needs in
 Understanding traditions, belief systems and everyday life of people throughout
 Understanding the development of social hierarchies and governments in societies
In addition, process goals include becoming critical, historical thinkers, researchers, and
What will we do to uncover the stories of our past and understand this vast amount
of time?
 Conduct research
 Analyze primary and secondary sources
 Read fiction and non-fiction
 Defend arguments based on known data
 Compare and contrast current events to those of the past
 Visit places of worship
 Invite guest speakers to share their stories
Please remember the purpose of studying history is to learn and grow, not get a grade. However,
until there is a different way, students receive quarterly as well as semester grades. Quarter
grades will be weighted as follows:
Preparation and Practice 10%
These assignments will typically receive completion credit. These assignments serve as skill
practice, preparation for class discussion, and/or preparation of a piece of work for peer or teacher
Communication (Written, Verbal, etc.) 25%
These assignments will be evaluated using the ESMN grade scale with relation to the learning
standard/target. These assignments frequently serve also as a place for teachers to formatively
assess content standards in addition to assessing skills.
Formative Assessment 0%
Formative assessments are used in the learning process. When a skill or content standard is
newly introduced, being practiced, or receiving teacher feedback, a formative assessment grade
using the ESMN scale will be used to communicate student progress. For example, a pre-test
grade would be placed in this category.
Summative Assessment 65%
Summative assessments measure learning that has already taken place. After a skill or content
standard has been introduced, practiced, and studied, a summative assessment will be given to
allow students to demonstrate their understanding. These evaluations of learning will be graded
using the ESMN scale. Examples of summative assessments include DBQ essays, unit tests and
This assignment falls in the “communication” category of your grade in social studies. Your grade will
follow the ESMN scale. What does that mean?
E: Exemplary (99-100%): You demonstrate a degree of knowing, understanding, and/or doing exemplary
work as it relates to a standard/learning target.
S: Standard Met (89%): You demonstrate that you know, understand, and/or can do what is
expected as it relates to a standard/learning target.
M: Making Progress (79%): You demonstrate that you are making progress toward knowing,
understanding, or being able to do what is expected based on the standards/learning targets.
N: Not Yet Understood (69%): This standard/learning target is still something you need to spend
time practicing and studying. If you aren’t sure how to make progress, please make sure you are
asking questions in class and making time to see me for extra help if you need it.
You are not a grade.
You are in this class to learn about the stories of our past,
to investigate the mysteries of the past,
and to work to your greatest potential.