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8th Grade Social Studies

The eighth grade curriculum concentrates on the “Emergence of the Modern World.” The seventh grade skills are applied, and PES is re-introduced as a standard of evaluation. Political, economic, and social conditions are researched, and then evaluated as either a success or a failure.

Eighth graders shall focus on the modern world, global economic interdependence, political systems and cultural diversity as it applies to the United States. Major events in the twentieth century, and a shifting balance of power among nations is discussed and analyzed. World War I and World War II are studied for their profound global affect on 20th and 21st century life.

The primary objective is to analyze historical evidence and make inferences in relation to the emergence of the developing world, global interdependence, and current issues.

Students in Middle School continuously refine their research and written response skills. Logical progression of thought becomes second nature to the students. Students are fully prepared to meet all New York State Standards, and to succeed in competitive testing.


1) Provide framework and methodology
2) Problem Solving and decision making
3) Use of geography to determine living patterns
4) History
5) Interdisciplinary connections
6) Analyze Primary Sources
7) Inferences
8) Values and Empathy
9) Economics and Economies
10) Governments
11) Values and Empathy
12) Political Systems
13) Technology and society
14) Current Events
15) Research Skills
16) Written and oral communication



Students will simulate the planning that resulted in “Operation Overload,” the Allied invasion of Western Europe in June of 1944. Under directives of General Dwight D. Eisenhower, students assume the role of Allied commanders in charge of planning the invasion.

Students read background information and research various events of WWII leading up to D-Day. They investigate Allied historic shortcomings made during previous invasions to become experts in one aspect of their planning, determine their final invasion, and plan and debrief comparing their plan to what actually took place in history.


The complex subject of Vietnam, America’s longest war, is dissected in this unit. Students experience the scope of the war and its consequences through readings, soldiers’ perspectives, mapping, timelines, and dramas.

Cross-curricular activities provide opportunities to practice poetry, essay and reflection writing, perform dramas, and create artwork. Immersed in the causes and culture of the Vietnam War, students achieve a deeper understanding of America’s involvement.