Posted by: Teacher Man, Teacher Ms. | September 13, 2009

Year Plan – Language Arts, Grade 8 (Part 2)

P9060018I offer this sunset picture (taken seconds after the one shown in the previous blog) for three reasons: 1) as before, if you want to see a beautiful ending you have to do considerable work to effect that end, 2) I’m not sure what picture is an automatic match for a blog about Year Plans,  3) the same sunset looks different from the first one (as teachers’ Year Plans differ greatly despite covering much of the same material).

Year Plan


– Introduction to the Six Strands of Language Arts

– Listening, Speaking, Reading, Writing, Viewing and Representing

– Sentence and Paragraph Writing

– sentence “starters” and “enhancers”

– methods of elaboration

– topic and concluding sentences

– thesaurus

– Letters

– R.A.F.T.S.

– Writing Assessment #1 (letter)

– Edmonton Spelling Test #1

– Speaking -joke telling

– Reading:  “The Sniper,” “ After You, My Dear Alphonse”

– Viewing: Balablok, Mr. Bean

– Representing: bubble letters

– Tests/Quizzes:   “Starter/Enhancer” Quiz

R.A.F.T.S. Quiz

Sentence/Paragragh Test


– Essay Writing

– scattergrams

– introductions, conclusions

– general – specific, narrowing topics

– order

– Speaking:  essay/research knowledge

– Reading:  “Vital Factor,” “Night Drive”

– Viewing:  Superheroes

– Representing: portfolios

– Tests/Quizzes: Essay Test


– Writing

– Bloom’s Taxonomy/Court

– Superhero project

– stereotypes

– characterization

– Speaking:  “Court”

– Reading: “Leiningen versus the Ants,” “Flashing Spikes”

– Viewing:  Superheroes

– Representing:  Yer Typical . . .

– Tests/Quizzes:   Taxonomy Quiz

Characterization Quiz


– Novel Study

The Giver, Gathering Blue by Lois Lowry

– Context Clues

– the dictionary

– Writing Assessment #2 (essay)

– Edmonton Spelling Test #2

– Speaking – selected portions from the novel

– Reading:  “Lather and Nothing Else,” “The Gift of the Magi”

– Viewing: Christmas movie

– Representing: masks for integrated unit on Brazil

– Tests/Quizzes:   Chapter Quizzes from the novel


– Novel Study

– debate

– review of elaboration skills

– Speaking -debate

– Reading:  “The Snob,” “The Weapon,” “Voodoo”

– Viewing:Western movie

– Representing: 3D collage

– Tests/Quizzes:   Chapter Quizzes from the Novel

Novel Test


– Poetry and Song

– figurative language (SHAMPO)

– literal and figurative meanings

– new words to old songs

– rhyme, rhyme scheme, rhythm

– compressed thought

– Writing Assessment #3 (article)

– Edmonton Spelling Test #3

– Speaking – poetry recitation

– Reading:  “A Good Little Feature,” “ Thank You, Ma’am”

– Viewing: Science Fiction

– Representing: Student-written poetry

– Tests/Quizzes:   Figure of Speech Quizzes

Poetry Test


– Advertising Techniques

– bandwagon, scientific approach, testimonial, glittering generalities, transfer, plain folks

– grammar in action

– Speaking: String Games

– Reading:  “Charles,” “The Street That Got Mislaid”

– Viewing: Animation

– Representing:  Commercials/advertisements

– Tests/Quizzes:   Advertising Techniques Test

Grammar Quizzes


– The Short Story

– plot structure (3I-RACER)

– introduction, initial incident, rising action, climax, epilogue/resolution

– cartoon sequences

– quotation marks esp. in conversation

– thesaurus review

– Writing Assessment #4 (story)

– Edmonton Spelling Test #4

– Speaking: Relating Real Events – “When I was . . . “

– Reading: review of all stories to date, plus “The Most Dangerous Game,” “The Mystery of Monsieur Pliny”

– Viewing: Sports movie

– Representing: cartoons

– Tests/Quizzes:   Short Story Test – Part One

Quotation Marks Quizzes and Quotation Marks Test


– The Short Story

– plot variations

– theme

– moral

– flashback, foreshadowing

– point of view

– irony

– Speaking:  story telling

– Reading:  “The Way Up,” “One Minute Longer”

– Viewing:  Fantasy movie

– Representing:  kites

– Tests/Quizzes:   Short Story Test – Part Two

Point of View Quiz


– Review

– Speaking:  mini-lessons

– Reading:  “The Monkey’s Paw,” “The Open Window”

– Viewing:  The Year in L.A.

– Representing:  origami

– Tests/Quizzes:   Mini Quizzes on Year’s work

The Provincial Government through Alberta Education have set out a curriculum which provides the outline for our course. I attach the summary below for you information.

Grade Eight Language Arts

General Outcome 1

Students will listen, speak, read, write, view and represent to explore thoughts, ideas, feelings and experiences.

General Outcome 2

Students will listen, speak, read, write, view and represent to comprehend and respond personally and critically to oral, print, and other media texts.

General Outcome 3

Students will listen, speak, read, write, view and represent to manage ideas and information.

General Outcome 4

Students will listen, speak, read, write, view and represent to enhance the clarity and artistry of communication.

***AFTER THOUGHT – My year plan may be akin to a paint by number picture with all of the lines and all of the numbers but without the legend that tells which colors go with which numbers. It’s an outline, a skeleton. In future blogs I will describe many of the activities in greater detail.

*** AFTER THE AFTER THOUGHT – Why wait? If you have a question or area of interest, please get in touch.


  1. You are a life saver!! It is my first year of teaching and I had not idea where to get started. This is truly going to help me so much I really appriciate it!!

  2. This was an amazing find as a still-fairly-new teacher who has been assigned a heavy Language Arts load starting in September. Thank you so much! I would absolutely love to know the details of some of these activities.

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