Grade 8Science

Focus: In this unit, students investigate the phenomena of sound and sound waves. The subtitle of this unit is How can a sound make sometime move? The experience of seeing a vibrating object cause another object to move is a phenomenon that students experience when they see the sound from a loud truck cause windows in nearby building to move. What is causes this to happen? Does sound need air to travel though? What causes some sounds to have a high or low pitch? What causes some sounds to be louder than others? This unit allows students to observe these phenomena in detail and then start asking questions, formulating explanations, setting up and conducting activities and research, and working with classmates to analyze the shared experience and formulate new questions and developing new strategies for answering them. Students explore concepts that include the following:

  • How does a sound source cause another object to move?
  • What is happening when speakers and other music makers make sounds?
  • How can any object make so many different sounds?
  • What exactly is traveling across a medium?
  • What transfers more energy, waves of bigger amplitude or waves of greater frequency?

As students move through their day-to-day activities, they will also read Core Knowledge literacy selections. These include factual articles, history of the sciences, art and literature, spotting bad science in media and advertisements, graphics comprehension, research-type articles, reliability of sources, and other areas of science literacy.

Lesson Numbers:

  • Teacher Guide: 14 Lessons
  • Student Reader: 5 Collections

Lesson time:

  • Lesson can be competed in one or more class periods.
  • A Pacing Guide, found in Online Resources, offers the suggestion that the entire unit should take about 24 days to complete if class is held each day.
  • A complete list of materials needed to complete the unit is also provided in the Online Resources.
  • The Core Knowledge Student Reader includes one reading collection per week for every week of the unit. A week’s reading collection relates to the lessons completed in the previous week.
    • The reading is assigned at the beginning of the week with the accompanying writing exercise due at the end of the week.
    • The reading and writing exercises are designed to be completed by students independently, with brief, supporting, teacher-facilitated discussions at the beginning, midpoint, and end of the week.

Additional Search Terms for the Student Reader:

• sound • sound wave • science literacy • medium • wind turbine • amplify • wave frequency • pitch • decibel • amplitude • loudness • hertz • ultrasonic • acoustic • soundscape • longitudinal wave • nonfiction • informational text

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