8th Grade Language Arts (ELA 128 and ELA 118)

  • Summer Reading Assignment for 8th Grade Language Arts (ELA 128 and ELA 118)

    You will need access to a SpartanDocs account and Google Classroom to complete your summer reading assignment.  Once you are logged in to SpartanDocs and can access Google Classroom, use the code x8bj43 to join the class for your summer reading assignment.  There you will find your book choices, assignment description, and template for your “Gathering Evidence” graphic organizer.


    Choose 1 book and complete the matching “Gathering Evidence” graphic organizer.


    Nonfiction Titles (use the “Gathering Evidence for Nonfiction” graphic organizer)





    Fiction Titles (use the “Gathering Evidence for Fiction” graphic organizer)






    The above titles relate to concepts in 8th Grade Social Studies and themes in the short story unit in 8th Grade English/Language Arts. As you read, complete the appropriate graphic organizer for the book.  Use the sample graphic organizer entry on the next page as a reference. Your entries should not simply summarize the text.  Focus on analysis and connecting the evidence to the text as a whole.  Use the “Analysis Starters” at the top of the organizer as a way to jump-start and guide your analysis.  Complete your graphic organizer by the first day of school.  The organizers will be graded and incorporated into the 1st Quarter overall grade.  In addition, the graphic organizer will be used to plan and write an essay during the first few days of school.  


    Sample “Gathering Evidence for Fiction” Graphic Organizer Entry from Lois Lowry’s The Giver:



    Fictional Element: CHARACTER

    SPECIFIC EVIDENCE from the text (this can be a DIRECT QUOTE from the text or a REFERENCE to the text).  Be SPECIFIC and ACCURATE.


    Make sure to cite the page number for your passage!

    SO WHAT?  What is the CONNECTION between your  SPECIFIC EVIDENCE and the OVERALL TEXT?  This “so what” needs to “WOW” the reader and show the reader SOMETHING HE/SHE MISSED THE FIRST TiME READING THE TEXT.  It should encourage you to go back and re-read this part of the text.

    Beginning of the Text

    “Now, thinking about the feeling of fear as he pedaled home along the river path, he remembered that moment of palpable, stomach-sinking terror when the aircraft had streaked above. It was not what he was feeling now with December approaching. He searched for the right word to describe his own feeling.


    Jonas was careful about language. Not like his friend, Asher, who talked too fast and mixed things up, scrambling words and phrases until they were barely recognizable and often very funny” (Lowry 3).

    This passage reveals the differences between the main character, Jonas, and his friend Asher.  Each of the characters is different in their use of language, and this illustrates the polarity of their personalities.  Jonas tends to be reflective and thoughtful, whereas Asher is reckless and more impulsive.