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Grade 8


In addition to emphasizing the etymologies of key vocabulary words, Grade 8 English works in conjunction with Grade 8 History to examine topics of human rights. Students read, discuss, and respond to pertinent literature, including South African short stories about apartheid, Harper Lee's novel, To Kill a Mockingbird, and poems from the Middle East. Using the guiding question "What can I do?" girls are encouraged to think about how they can improve the quality of life for others in the world. Grade 8 can be a time of tremendous growth in compassion and social awareness, so the idea of defending the human rights of others is a natural fit. The final term centers around Shakespeare: Students recite monologues for the Shakespeare Recitation Contest in April, and in May, they join more than one hundred city schoolchildren for a performance as part of Shakespeare in the City. This unique program has featured hundreds of school children from all over the city in Hamlet, Romeo and Juliet, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Macbeth, and Othello.


Physical science in Grade 8 explores the “whys” of how the world works. More specifically, what is the stuff that makes up everything on earth? How does that stuff interact? In this class students learn about chemistry: atoms, molecules, the behavior of substances made up of atoms and molecules, and how their behavior affects our lives. They will also study some of the rules of physics: how objects interact when they come into contact (even invisible contact!) with each other. Both of these principles will be used to examine human design and energy use.

We students to think the way scientists do: to observe and see things as if for the first time. The great scientists of history are great because they have questioned and thought about what they have seen. This class is highly laboratory- and activity-oriented, to familiarize participants with laboratory techniques, keeping laboratory records, and safety in the science lab.


Students in the eighth grade take either Pre-Algebra or Algebra I.


Grade 8 Pre-Algebra is a continuation of Grade 7 Pre-Algebra. Students sharpen their skills with fractions, decimals and percents, work with the rules for order of operations and for exponents, learn to simplify simple algebraic expressions and solve equations, and learn the skills needed to create circle graphs and graphs of linear equations. Students are expected to develop a strong, working mathematical vocabulary, preparing them to succeed in subsequent mathematics courses.

Algebra I

Algebra I is an introduction to the language of mathematics. Students study the properties of real numbers, solve equations (both linear and quadratic), perform a variety of operations on polynomials, factor quadratic expressions, work with rational expressions, graph straight lines, and learn various methods to solve word problems algebraically.

Middle School World Languages

All students in Grades 6-8 are required to take French or Spanish. Additionally, all 7th and 8th Graders are required to take Latin I. New 7th and 8th graders to Lincoln should register for Level 1 Language courses in Upper School unless they have previously studied the language. (A placement test may be necessary) Looking ahead: To meet US graduation requirements, all students must complete three years in the Upper School of one language.

Spanish or French

Middle school French and Spanish take students on an exciting trip to new cultures while introducing them to basic grammar, language functions and everyday vocabulary. Individual and collaborative activities provide ample opportunity for the students to develop and use the language creatively and personally. Evaluation of student performance is based on participation and on frequent skills testing (listening, speaking, reading, and writing) throughout the year. Each year builds upon the other, allowing students to reinforce the old and incorporate the new.


The Latin program in grades 7 & 8 offers our students an opportunity to study the world of the ancient Romans through their language and culture. As they examine the lives and language of the ancient Romans students learn about this important source for the intellectual and legal culture in which they find themselves today. Through their efforts to learn to read and write the Latin language students learn the origins of technical terminology used today in many fields of study throughout the world, and they are encouraged to employ a form of the scientific method as they parse out the meaning of sentences written in Latin.

Visual Arts

The middle school art curriculum blends an appreciation for art history and contemporary art with a focus on the elements of art and principles of design. Students learn about the different functions and purposes of art and create their own artworks in various materials including still-life drawing, collage, ceramics, painting, sculpture, and printmaking. Artworks created in class address problems that challenge students to think about personal and self-expressive uses for art and to be innovative and original in their work. Students utilize technology in their classes to do research for their projects and improve their art-making practice.

Throughout their time in the studio, students also learn to present and curate their own artwork and display it school-wide as well as in the classroom, challenging them to consider how we look at artwork in society.

Performing Arts


Each year the 8th grade class takes part in a class musical in the first Trimester. Students are invited to act or sing on stage, run lights and sound, create sets and props and to produce their own publicity for the show. This year the class is working on High School Musical, Jr.


In Grade 8 continue our exploration of music with a small research project, expanding our concepts of what music is and where it comes from. We also work as a class to create a musical performance for the end-of-year celebrations.

Exploring Technology

In this course, students to explore the working world with technology.They dive deep into different technology-related jobs and engage hands-on with robotics and coding. By taking a look at technology beyond the classroom, students become familiar with the working world and technology jobs in computer science, the arts, business, robotics, and beyond.

Academic Support

Academic Support is available to all Middle School students. The goal is to develop a plan for each student that enables her to reach her learning potential in a supportive and empowering environment. We believe academic support should be a team effort between the Learning Skills Specialist, teachers, and advisors to help students develop the strategies they need to become independent learners. The Learning Skills Specialist works in concert with classroom teachers and parents to monitor students' progress, work on organizational skills, modify study strategies, set goals, and make additional recommendations when appropriate.

Physical Education/Health

Through exposure to a broad variety of activities, each student in the Lincoln School Physical Education program is encouraged to build her physical potential. The goal is to develop each student's competency and confidence in basic skills, her understanding of and appreciation for a variety of team and individual sports and her apprecation for physical fitness, fostering a desire to participate in physical activities throughout life.

Typical sports skill offerings include soccer, field hockey, football, basketball, volleyball, lacrosse, team handball, badminton, and softball. The units emphasize skill development, game strategies, positioning and rules. Other activities include Fitness Center training, S.A.F.E. self-defense program, yoga, and Zumba. Recreational games, team-building activities, and intramural opportunities are included throughout the year.