Middle School Electives (6-8) » 8th Grade Electives

8th Grade Electives

All 8th grade electives are yearlong. Incoming 8th grade students select ONE elective course and ONE alternate course. 


Art 8 (Yearlong)

Course Description: How does art help to develop a more broad and nuanced understanding of the world and ourselves? In this more advanced course, students will produce, interpret, and reflect about works of art. We will explore the elements of art and principles of design at an increased level of complexity. All instruction is aligned with the California Content Standards for Visual Arts and the National Core Arts Standards. During this course, students will explore the many possible applications of a variety of 2-D and 3-D materials. Assignments are designed to build skills and techniques step by step, from simple to more complex. Career opportunities in the visual arts field are introduced and the importance of maintaining a portfolio is emphasized. Students will develop their own art project at the end of the year as a culmination of the skills they have learned over the year as well as display their work in at least one art show. 


Band 8 (Yearlong)

This course is designed to give the student an enriching and diverse instrumental music education. This class provides a number of performance opportunities for the student both on and off campus. The daily objective of the course is to foster and promote musical growth through the playing of an instrument by the student. As a member of the band program, group effort and cooperation are necessary to a successful program. Band is a skilled effort in which each student is expected to show technical and musical growth throughout this course. Band instruments include flute, clarinet, alto sax, trumpet, trombone, euphonium, tuba, and percussion. No prior experience necessary, so be a part of the band! 


Drama 8 (Yearlong)

Our world is greatly shaped by the art of performance through a story. The roots of performance began thousands of years ago with the Greeks and continues to be popular all throughout modern society. The purpose of this class will be to study a wide variety of dramatic presentation formats, from basic story archetypes, to the history of theater and Shakespeare, opera, ballet, the American musical, and much more. Assignments will include lectures, acting skits, multimedia projects, class presentations, and research collaborations. Come learn about the history of the world and yourself through performance and story.


Spanish 8 (Yearlong)

This year-long course is designed to give students an opportunity to listen, speak, read, write, and SING in Spanish through building vocabulary, grammar, and verbal communication skills. Students are expected to actively participate and maintain consistent homework habits and independent studying. This course is rigorous and fast-paced and covers the entire content of a traditional Spanish 1 course. Students will be amazed by what they have learned by the end of the year! Upon completion of this course, students will take a final exam to determine eligibility for promotion into Spanish 2 at the high school level.  


STEAM Robotics/Coding 8 (Yearlong)

Using prior knowledge from STEAM courses in combination with the engineering design process and technology, will students be able to problem solve tasks independently and collaboratively? Students will use the engineering design process to solve problems presented by the instructor, the students and/or the community. Students will participate in digital photography exploring a variety of perspectives, coding projects, stop motion photography, VEX IQ Robotics (building, modifying & programming), Tech Lab workshop projects, and video editing. During the school year, students will use a variety of software to enhance and strengthen their programming/coding skills. We will also learn how to design a website with Google Sites and use a spreadsheet with Google Sheets. Students will be introduced to Arduino and Microbits. They will complete tiered lessons, which include building devices using Arduino and Microbits and then writing code to use these devices. During the final trimester, STEAM students will write and propose a personal project from start to finish using the skills they have developed in class. Once they have approval, they will have the Tech Lab tools and supplies to create their project. This elective class aligns with the California elective codes 9064 Web Design, 9380 Media Arts, 7210 Intro to Graphic Design, and 9060 Computer Literacy.


Yearbook/Digital Photo 8 (Yearlong)

How does collaboration expand the creative process? How can we use photography to tell a story about our community and values? 8th grade students will lead yearbook organization, assign jobs to 6th and 7th graders, and assist in problem solving using the yearbook program and other digital platforms. Our focus will be digital photography, composition, photo editing, group collaboration, growing social skills, and taking on a leadership role. Students will explore the elements of art and principles of design through the photography medium. All instruction is aligned with the California Content Standards for Visual Arts and the National Core Arts Standards.