Teaching 8th Grade Science TEKS
Are you teaching the 8th grade science TEKS? When I think back to teaching middle school science, the first word that comes to my mind is overwhelmed. I have often said science is one of the hardest subjects to teach because students need to build an entirely new vocabulary to study the concepts taught in science. As a teacher, you are not only managing content but experiments as well.
After leaving the classroom, I made it my goal to make teaching easier for teachers. One of the ways I do that is by creating resources I wish I had had when I was in the classroom. Now that I am living in Texas, I am doing a deep dive into 8th grade science TEKS.
My latest resource is one of my favorite that I have ever created. It is an entire science unit content plan aligned to 8th grade Science TEKS SCI.8.5.A-D. While it does not include experiments, this unit has absolutely everything you need to teach your students the content related to the introduction to chemistry described in SCI.8.5.A-D.
Planning a Science Unit
Here is how it works. I imagined how I would proceed through the content, and I made resources for each step. Then, I planned out the general unit and created a daily plan. Next, I wrote the test. Using the test, I created the reading passages and activities students would need to learn the content. Then, I made the study tools that would help the 8th grade science students understand and remember what they learned.
Here is the daily plan I created:
Teaching Using the Latest in Brain Science Research
All of the learning activities in this unit are based on brain science research. First, students need to connect new information to their existing background knowledge, so I give instructions on how to do this in the classroom. Next, students need to know the vocabulary in order to understand a topic, so I made vocabulary cards to build a word wall. The reading passages and activities on the atom, chemical and physical properties, and the periodic table are also based on brain science. After students learn the content, it is important to give them the opportunity to move the new information into their long-term memories using tools such as the study guide and flashcards.
As you can see, all you have to do is print the materials or share them with your students on Google Classroom. Seriously, I wish I had a resource like this as a teacher because I spent so much time finding or making the resources I needed to teach.
8th Grade Science TEKS SCI.8.5.A-D Planning
Are you wondering exactly what is covered in SCI.8.5.A-D? Here is what I came up with:
As you can see, I even linked up each of the activities to make them even easier to access.
- Atoms are individual units of mass made up of protons, neutrons, and electrons. (SCI.8.5.A)
- The protons and neutrons are bigger than electrons and in the nucleus of the atom. (SCI.8.5.A)
- Electrons are smaller than protons and neutrons. We use the model of the electron cloud that shows where an electron is most likely to be found. (SCI.8.5.A)
- Protons determine an atom’s identity. (SCI.8.5.B)
- Valence electrons determine an atom’s reactivity and other properties. (SCI.8.5.B)
- The periodic table is organized into groups (families) and periods based on element properties. (SCI.8.5.C)
- Chemical formulas tell the number of atoms of each element in molecules. (SCI.8.5.D)
Having made this resource, I can tell it is a lot of work to plan a unit based on the 8th grade science TEKS. You will save so much time and hassle using this unit that I created! Just head over to Teachers Pay Teacher to grab it now!
Are You Teaching Another Science Topic?
I am working on creating more science units so that every science teacher can get exactly what he or she needs for her students. You can also read about how I use brain science to teach other science topics on my blog. Click the pictures below to learn more.