Welcome to 8th Grade!
We look forward to working with you to help your child move successfully and happily through their 8th grade school year. Through a collective effort, the eighth grade team will work to provide each student with opportunities to grow in knowledge of the academic subjects, performance of life skills, and the ability to accept and follow through with responsibilities. Self-discipline is probably the most important aspect to student success. Our team is focused on helping each student develop that sense of self-responsibility. We work hard to encourage the students to become self-directed in learning about themselves as a learner. They will develop a growth mindset in order to establish healthy study habits. Our goal as an eighth grade team is to prepare every student to be successful in high school.
MATH- MR. SCATES
Our 8th grade math class is based on Arizona’s College and Career Ready Standards and the Deer Valley Unified School District Curriculum. The curriculum includes the following domains: The Number System, Expressions and Equations, Functions, Geometry, Statistics and Probability. This year’s 8th grade content comes from the Illustrative Mathematics Curriculum (also known as OpenUp Resources). You can view/print the family and student resources from the websites below.
Course Objective: The objective of this course will be for all students to have a solid depth of knowledge of the Deer Valley Unified School District’s 8th grade math scope and sequence that is based on Arizona College and Career Ready Standards (AZ-CCRS).
SOCIAL STUDIES- MRS. NUCKOLLS
The content focus of this class will be viewed through civic and economic lenses. Citizenship and civic engagement will be taught through inquiry. Eighth grade students will make connections between historical and current/contemporary issues as a base for implementing change in society. Students will recognize and practice their roles and responsibilities as both American and global citizens. United States History will focus on the major events that have their roots in the Constitution, Bill of Rights, and subsequent amendments.
LANGUAGE ARTS- MRS. THIEL
ELA Course Description
The objective of this course will be for all students to have a solid depth of knowledge of the Deer Valley Unified School District’s 8th grade ELA scope and sequence that is based on Arizona College and Career Ready Standards (AZ-CCRS). The curriculum includes the following: fiction novels, informational articles and informational writing, argumentative articles and writing, poetry/plays, 8th grade grammar, 8th grade vocabulary, and media.
Here is the link to the state standards:
SCIENCE- MS. SCOFIELD
This course is designed to meet the 8th grade science requirements of the Deer Valley School District Curriculum, Arizona’s College and Career Ready Standards, and to help students develop their soft skills to become more prepared and equipped for their future endeavors.
8th Grade Science covers content from Life, Earth & Space, and Physical Sciences. We also focus on the Inquiry Process where we will work on experimental design, data analysis and experimental critique. This class is designed to be a hands-on, engaging, and thought-provoking experience to help students become better scientists, writers, listeners, speakers, and critical thinkers. This class will help students think creatively, communicate effectively with others, understand different perspectives, and use the power of science to change their life and this world for the better.
8th Grade Behavior Policies
Overview: The following is an outline of parameters that must be followed in order to ensure optimal success in the classroom and provide for a smoothly run class. This program is designed to promote positive cooperation between parent, student, and school. Schoolwide expectations are based on the District Student Rights & Responsibilities Handbook policies as well as the Positive Behavioral Intervention Plan (PBIS). Each student is responsible for his/her own behavior.
“No one has the right to interfere with the learning of others.”
School Wide Rules: Be the DIfference
Problem-solver Engaged Accountability Kind
Always be safe, responsible and respectful – you may not verbally or physically disrupt the educational process of any student. Bullying will never be tolerated - either physical or verbal. Always be prepared for class with homework and supplies. Follow all class and school rules.
Failure to meet behavior expectations outlined in the District SR&R and Sierra Verde School Handbooks will result in logical and natural progression of consequences:
Student Rights & Responsibility:
Sierra Verde Handbook:
First offense: Verbal warning from teacher
Second offense: Lunch detention (with notice sent home to parents for signature)
Third offense: Lunch detention (notice sent home and phone call home to parents as well)
Fourth offense: Office referral
Immediate office referral
Bring your chromebook to class every day with a full charge. Students will not be allowed to charge in class. The student will be given an alternate assignment or will have to purchase a charging pass from the PBIS store.
Store all electronic devices (air pods, phones, smartwatches) in your backpack for the duration of the school day until you leave campus (gate to gate).
All technology programs and devices need to be used for academic purposes only.
Please refer to the full description of the district’s technology procedures in the Student Rights and Responsibilities Handbook (page 15)
Bathrooms need to be used before school, at lunch and after school.
Bathroom passes are available during class for emergencies.
Gum is not allowed on Sierra Verde’s campus or in the classroom.
Food is not allowed to be eaten in the classroom unless given permission by the teacher. There should be no food or drink eaten outside of the cafeteria.
Water bottles are encouraged and must have water only.
Water bottles must be filled up before school, at lunch, and after school.
It is the responsibility of the student to have all supplies present and ready to learn for each class.
Each student should have: a pencil, fully charged chrome book, and all necessary supplies for all content areas.
All students must be lined up in line in front of each class after the last class.
Loitering in the pod is not allowed, every student must go directly to class.
The primary goal of grading is to provide feedback regarding mastery of the Arizona State Content Standards. Grading practices at Sierra Verde measure a student's performance with respect to achieving proficiency on the state standards and align with the Deer Valley district's Promotion, Retention, and Grading, (PRAG), handbook, When parents and students receive quarterly report cards, the information is a summative reflection of these grading practices and guidelines.
Students Role in Learning
Complete coursework and practice when assigned and request help from your teachers when/if you have a misunderstanding.
Take advantage of opportunities to redo assessments to show mastery or exceed the standards.
Check Canvas daily for announcements and assignments
Check PowerSchools regularly to monitor your progress.
Analyze your own study habits and figure out what works for you.
Teacher’s Role in Learning
Teachers will design assignments, assessments and learning opportunities that meet the Arizona State Content Standards.
Provide timely feedback and communication to students and parents.
Follow the DVUSD PRAG guidelines for their grade level band, (K-2, 3-6, and 7-8).
Communicate retake policies through their grade level handbooks/websites, etc.
Parent’s Role in Learning
Help manage your child’s time for assignments to be completed.
Provide a suitable study environment.
Sign necessary forms that are part of the teacher’s/grade level’s retake policies.
Check PowerSchools regularly to monitor student’s progress on each content standard.
Grades will be reflective of student performance of the standards and essential skills.
Grading Categories & Weights:
ASSESSMENT: This category includes all items used to measure a student’s proficiency toward the learning standards once the student has had sufficient practice and at a specified point in time. This category can include summative tests, performance assessments, reports, unit or module assessments, quizzes, long-term projects, short-term projects, presentations, capstone projects, research papers, and lab reports. Weight: 80%
COURSEWORK: This category includes formative work that provides students with the opportunity to learn content and skills and to receive feedback on their learning. Coursework is assigned to provide meaningful, independent practice, reinforce learning targets, and extend learning. This category can include in-class assignments, quizzes, exit tickets, checks-for-understanding, and daily activities. Weight: 20%
PRACTICE: This category includes formative student work that a student completes while in the process of learning specific skills. Students' work that is done inside and outside of the classroom, such as classwork, and homework, falls into this category. Weight: 0%
The assignment will be marked with the “Missing” special code in the gradebook
A zero (“0”) will be entered as the score for the assignment in the gradebook
Students will have a maximum of 5 days after the end of the unit to submit missing assignments for full credit.
In order for Late Work to be accepted, students must meet the following requirements:
Assignment is not due within the class period
Assignment is not a timed activity (such as a Quick-Write Essay)
Assignment is not a Long-Term assignment (over multiple weeks)
Assignment is turned in within the following time frame
For 8th Grade: Within 5 school days after the end of the unit
If a student meets the above criteria, he/she will be issued full credit for the work submitted (no added penalties or caps icon the grade that can be earned). The teacher will mark the student’s assignment with the “Late” special code in the gradebook. If the assignment is an assessment, the proficiency level of the standards attached will be entered.
Long Term Project Assignment: A project/assignment due more than 1 week after the date assigned is considered a long-term project assignment. Long-term project assignments cannot be submitted late, unless an arrangement has been approved by the teacher.
Extra Credit: No extra credit assignments will be provided.
In the event that a student does not demonstrate proficiency of the standard(s) (69% or lower) retakes are an available option for assessments. Students seeking to retake an assessment will need to complete all formative coursework related to the content/skill assessed,consult with the teacher, and/or complete the retake contract if required by the teacher prior to scheduling a retake. Retakes must occur within 10 days after receiving the original assessment score. No retakes are available the last week of the marking quarter. Students absent during a test or quiz will be required to take the test/quiz on the day of return. Retakes are not allowed for district and state assessments, Test Outs and Proficiency Exams, final assessments, end of term capstone projects and performance assessments, and screening tests (such as MGM, DIBELS, Reading Inventory, etc.) Retakes will not occur during class time.
Need Help? If a student feels lost in any assignment or has any concerns they need to bring it to their teacher’s attention right away. If there is not time during class, an appointment can be set up that works for both parties. It may not always be obvious if a student has a question so he or she must take the initiative to seek help. Please schedule a time with your teacher prior to coming in for assistance. We are happy to help.
(Note: Math tutoring is available please check Mr. Scates’ Canvas page for times and days.)
We look forward to having a successful year with every student and their family. It is an honor and a pleasure to have your trust and partnership, as we welcome your ideas and participation. Please feel free to contact us anytime. Together we will find success, make good memories and have fun in the process. Yes!