The Eighth Grade Renaissance Project1
Term Define it! Use the term in a sentence Draw it!
a time of rebirth when things
Renaissance such as a style of art or music,
become very popular again
How will you use your talent to improve the reputation of middle
school students and the school as a whole?
Before the 1920’s thousands of African American people fled the south to escape institutionalized racism.
Many wound up in northern cities, especially Washington D.C. and Harlem. It was in these cities,
particularly Harlem, N.Y., where they were able to find comfort as a community; some went on to use
art to communicate their African heritage and significance as a people.
The 8th Grade is at a social and academic crossroads. Unlike the African American people of the early
20th Century, you are not oppressed. You aren’t subject to the horrors of legal bigotry. You are, however,
in an important place where you can merge your talents with your intellectual abilities to enhance the
community’s perception of our middle school.
Poets—carefully write and photo-illustrate a book of poems designed to show off your perception of
this time in your life, while simultaneously working to boost community members’ understanding
and perception of hard-working PAML students.
Painters—masters in this particular realm of art can channel their talents into paintings of middle school
students or student life in a positive light for all to see.
Drawing portfolio—those capable of creating eye-catching art with pencils, pens, and markers will
demonstrate visitors to the 8th grade wing what we’re capable of doing. The goal of your work is a positive
artistic portrayal of this grade.
Multi-tiered Survey makers/analyzers—surveyors can begin to build a bridge of mutual
understanding within the school. By creating questions based on mutual concerns, and targeting a wide-
range of students, faculty, and staff they can begin to discover and sort-out underlying problems and
Writers—do you tell a great story? Put your talent to good use by writing an engaging story about 8th
grade students doing something right (socially and/or academically).
Film Makers— those who already have a foundation of knowledge about filming and computer editing
with Windows Movie Maker may create a well-crafted scripted short film or a documentary while
representing Team Discovery in the school community.
Comic Book Artists—combine your writing and drawing talents by creating a comic book that depicts
the social, academic and emotional life of the average 8th grade student.
Environmental Impact Study*—research how our school’s decisions affect the environment; find
ways to better the school’s reputation. *Students who choose this must write a proposal.
Other written renaissance proposals will be considered! Yes, you have to put it in writing if you
want to pitch a different idea. Tell me how you will target the G.E.’s outlined.
Be sure to have the written permission of everyone depicted in your work before you begin. Your final draft will be seen by all.
Possible Grade Expectations (G.E.’s) Assessed (based on route taken): Positive Art (capital
A) for the purpose of
Art: boosting self-and
Negative work will
A7-8:11 Students demonstrate skills by… not be accepted.
-Selecting their own art work for a public exhibition and defending
their choice. POV must be
-Demonstrating individual point of view to create meaning in their work of art. grounded in its
ability to bring about
a positive outcome.
Language Arts: All writing G.E.’s may apply:
Social Studies (all will be assessed on these):
Students connect the past with the present by…
8:8 Explaining differences between historic and present day objects in the United States
and/or the world, evaluating how the use of the object and the object itself changed over
time, (e.g., comparing modes of transportation used in past and present exploration in
order to evaluate impact and the effects of those changes).
Describing ways that life in the United States and/or the world has both changed Students will
and stayed the same over time; and explaining why these changes have occurred. compare and
Investigating and evaluating how events, people, and ideas have shaped the United
States and the world, and hypothesizing how different influences could have led to brought on by the
As a group,
different consequences. Harlem
Students act as citizens by… Movement with
that need to be H&SS7-
Comparing the rights and responsibilities of citizenship in another country to those of the on by the 8th
addressed in 8:14
U.S Identifying the various ways people become citizens of the U.S. Grade
the 8th grade as
far as inside Giving examples of ways people act as members of a global community Renaissance;
and outside Demonstrating positive interaction with group members. students will
perceptions Identifying problems, proposing solutions, and considering the effects of a course
of action in the local community, state, nation, or world. and failures in
Each will Explaining and defending their own point of view on issues that affect themselves and
create or society, using information gained from reputable sources
design projects Explaining and critically evaluating views that are not one’s own. i
to make Giving examples of ways in which political parties, campaigns, and elections provide
improvements. opportunities for citizens to participate in the political process. i
Illustrating how individuals and groups have brought about change locally,
nationally, or internationally
Demonstrating how identity stems from beliefs in and allegiance to shared political values
and principles, and how these are similar and different to other peoples
Establishing rules and/or policies for a group, school, or community, and defending them
--Students will be self-directed and use time effectively; they will have a work plan during the course of
--Students will come to class with a book to read (for potential downtime [magazines are not
Student Determined Classroom rules:
1. We will be responsible for our learning.
2. We will be respectful and supportive of everyone.
3. We will create a positive environment so everyone can learn.
*subject to change.
Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday
9 10 11 12 13
Update notes Brainstorm activity Work Period Work Period First two-thirds -
Review Assignment following intro following intro -Work Period
Finish notes What is the activity activity and clean-up
Countee Cullen perception around following
(time permitting) the school? Final 8-10 Final 8-10 attendance.
What areas do we
need to work on? minutes is a minutes is a
Pick topic and
determine what you
reflection reflection Second third—
need for supplies; some Finish Notes class midway
may not be provided assessment.
by the school. Countee Cullen
Write down three areas poetry
that need to be
addressed. Homework: Noonan and Slater Trayah and Speers
Come in prepared
and ready to work 35 minutes 35 minutes 30 minutes
16 17 18 19 20
Work Period Work Period Last day to work Display Fair & Harlem
following intro following intro on projects assessment Renaissance &
activity activity 8th Grade
Work completion stats Be prepared to talk-up
will be shared with Renaissance
your project and
Final 8-10 Final 8-10 parents on Friday’s explain how it will connection
minutes is a minutes is a boost the 8th grade assessment
35 minutes 35 minutes 45 minutes
Approximate in-class work time: 2 hours 50 minutes
= Days with laptop cart; plan accordingly. Most will not need computers