Essential Standards and Course Descriptions
Grade 8 Mathematics
Hortonville Middle School  Greenville Middle School
The following document has been created with our parents in mind. The purpose is to communicate with parents related to the ‘essential standards’ being taught for every subject and in every grade level. Included is also a brief course description written by a collaborative team of teachers representing both middle schools. As a school district, we believe very strongly that although we have two unique middle schools, both schools must ensure a guaranteed and viable curriculum. What this means is that the same ‘essential’ learning being taught at HMS will also be taught at GMS to ensure that EVERY student, regardless of enrollment, will be prepared to enter Hortonville High School having learned prioritized academic and behavioral expectations.
What is an ‘essential standard’? Every school district adopts academic standards for every area of study. The Hortonville Area School District is no different. Unfortunately, not all standards are created equal. This means that some standards have been predetermined by the teaching faculty as most critical or ‘essential’ for students to learn and demonstrate before moving on to the next grade level. These standards are assessed and reported out to parents on progress reports (formerly called report cards). We sometimes call these our ‘must know’ standards. This is not to say that all other standards, or ‘nice to know standards’, are not covered, but they may not be covered to the same level as our ‘essential standards’.
Below you will find a listing of courses taught at the 7th grade level in the Hortonville Area School District. Included will also be a brief course description and the ‘essential standards’ assessed. If you should ever have any questions, we strongly encourage parents to contact our faculty members early and often.
Subject: 8th Grade Mathematics
Course Description: 8th Grade Math is taught as a collaborative and inquiry based class in order to allow students to explore and develop a deep understanding of a wide variety of mathematical concepts. Units taught include "Thinking with Mathematical Models" – Linear and Inverse Variation, "Looking for Pythagoras" – The Pythagorean Theorem, "Growing, Growing, Growing" – Exponential Functions, "Butterflies, Pinwheels, and Wallpaper" – Symmetry and Transformations, "Say It With Symbols" – Making Sense of Symbols and Linear Equations, "It’s in the System" – Systems of Linear Equations.
Essential Standards Taught:
o 8.F.A.1 – Functions
Define, evaluate, and compare functions.
1. Understand that a function is a rule that assigns to each input exactly one output. The graph of a function is the set of ordered pairs consisting of an input and the corresponding output. 1
Define, evaluate and compare functions.
2. Compare properties of two functions each represented in a different way (algebraically, graphically, numerically in tables, or by verbal descriptions). For example, given a linear function represented by a table of values and a linear function represented by an algebraic expression, determine which function has the greater rate of change.
Define, evaluate, and compare functions.
 1. Give examples of linear equations in one variable with one solution, infinitely many solutions, or no solutions. Show which of these possibilities is the case by successively transforming the given equation into simpler forms, until an equivalent equation of the form x = a, a = a, or a = b results (where a and b are different numbers).
 2. Solve linear equations with rational number coefficients, including equations whose solutions require expanding expressions using the distributive property and collecting like terms.

3. Interpret the equation y = mx + b as defining a linear function, whose graph is a straight line; give examples of functions that are not linear. For example, the function A = s2 giving the area of a square as a function of its side length is not linear because its graph contains the points (1,1), (2,4) and (3,9), which are not on a straight line.
o 8.EE.C.7 – Expressions and Equations
Analyze and solve linear equations and pairs of simultaneous linear equations.
7. Solve linear equations in one variable.
Understand congruence and similarity using physical models, transparencies, or geometry software.
5. Use informal arguments to establish facts about the angle sum and exterior angle of triangles, about the angles created when parallel lines are cut by a transversal, and the angleangle criterion for similarity of triangles. For example, arrange three copies of the same triangle so that the sum of the three angles appears to form a line, and give an argument in terms of transversals why this is so.
Other Topics Covered:
Inverse variation
The Pythagorean Theorem
Exponential Functions
Systems of Equations
