School Improvement in Maryland

Using the State Curriculum: Science, Grade 8

Print:

Earth/Space:

Science:

State Curriculum Toolkit

Tools aligned to State Curriculum indicators and/or objectives.

  • Clarification of Indicator and/or Objective
    Explanation and/or examples of indicator and/or objective
  • Introduction for Standard or Indicator
  • Lesson Seeds
    Ideas/seeds for an objective-aligned activity
  • Public Release Items
    Actual MSA items and annotated student responses as appropriate

Standard 2.0 Earth/Space Science

Students will use scientific skills and processes to explain the chemical and physical interactions (i.e., natural forces and cycles, transfer of energy) of the environment, Earth, and the universe that occur over time.

Topic

B. Earth History

Indicator

  • 1. Explain how sedimentary rock is formed periodically, embedding plant and animal remains and leaving a record of the sequence in which the plants and animals appeared and disappeared.
Objectives
  1. Explain how sedimentary rock buried deep enough may be reformed by pressure and heat and these re-formed rock layers may be forced up again (uplift) to become land surface and even mountains.
  2. Cite evidence to confirm that thousands of layers of sedimentary rock reveal the long history of the changing surface of the Earth.
  3. Explain why some fossils found in the top layers of sedimentary rock are older then those found beneath in lower layers.

Indicator

Objectives
  1. Recognize how different types of fossils are formed, such as petrified remains, imprints, molds and casts.
  2. Recognize and explain that the fossil record of plants and animals describes changes in life forms over time.

Topic

D. Astronomy

Indicator

  • 1. Identify and describe the components of the universe.
Objectives
  1. Recognize that a galaxy contains billions of stars that cannot be distinguished by the unaided eye because of their great distance from Earth, and that there are billions of galaxies.
  2. Identify that our solar system is a component of the Milky Way Galaxy.
  3. Identify and describe the various types of galaxies
  4. Identify and describe the type, size, and scale, of the Milky Way Galaxy.

Indicator

Objectives
  1. Identify and describe the relationships among the period of revolution of a planet, the length of its solar year, and its distance from the sun.
  2. Identify and explain the relationship between the rotation of a planet or moon on its axis and the length of the solar day for that celestial object.
  3. Identify and explain the cause of the phases of the moon.
  4. Describe how lunar and solar eclipses occur.
  5. Identify and describe how the shape and location of the orbits of asteroids and comets affect their periods of revolution.

Indicator

  • 3. Recognize and explain the effects of the tilt of Earth's axis.
Objectives
  1. Recognize and describe that Earth's axis is tilted about 23¼° from vertical with respect to the plane of its orbit and points in the same direction during the year.
  2. Recognize and describe that as Earth orbits the sun, the tilt of Earth's axis causes
    • Changes in the angle of the sun in the sky during the year
    • Seasonal differences in the northern and southern latitudes
  3. Recognize and describe how the tilt of Earth's axis affects the climate in Maryland.

Indicator

Objective
  1. Identify and describe the cause of high and low tides.

Topic

E. Interactions of Hydrosphere and Atmosphere

Indicator

Objectives
  1. Describe the composition of the atmosphere and hydrosphere.
  2. Recognize and describe the water cycle as the distribution and circulation of Earth's water through the glaciers, surface water, groundwater, oceans, and atmosphere.
  3. Identify and describe how the temperature and precipitation in a geographic area are affected by surface features and changes in atmospheric and ocean content.

Indicator

  • 2. Recognize and describe the various factors that affect climate.
Objectives
  1. Identify and describe how the temperature and precipitation of an area are affected by surface and ocean features.
  2. Recognize and describe the global effects of volcanic eruptions, greenhouse gases, and El Nino.

Indicator

  • 3. Identify and describe the atmospheric and hydrospheric conditions related to weather systems.
Objectives
  1. Identify and describe weather patterns associated with high and low pressure systems and the four frontal systems using appropriate data displays including weather maps.
  2. Identify and describe the atmospheric and hydrospheric conditions associated with the formation and development of hurricanes, tornadoes, and thunderstorms.
  3. Identify and describe how various tools are used to collect weather data and forecast weather conditions.

Note: Highlighting identifies assessment limits. All highlighted Indicators will be tested on the Grades 5 and 8 MSA. The highlighted Objectives under each highlighted Indicator identify the limit to which MSA items can be written. Although all content standards are tested on MSA, not all Indicators and Objectives are tested. Objectives that are not highlighted will not be tested on MSA, however are an integral part of Instruction.

January 2008