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Skills available for New Hampshire eighth-grade science standards

Standards are in black and IXL science skills are in dark green. Hold your mouse over the name of a skill to view a sample question. Click on the name of a skill to practice that skill.

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Science Process Skills

  • SPS1 Scientific Inquiry and Critical Thinking Skills (INQ)

    • 1 Making Observations and Asking Questions.

      • S:SPS1:8:1.1 Use appropriate tools to accurately collect and record both qualitative and quantitative data gathered through observations (e.g., temperature probes, electronic balances, spring scales, microscopes, stop watches).

      • S:SPS1:8:1.2 Determine the degree of accuracy that can be obtained using a given instrument.

      • S:SPS1:8:1.3 Investigate similarities and differences noted when making observations.

      • S:SPS1:8:1.4 Construct and use a dichotomous key to classify a given set of objects or organisms.

      • S:SPS1:8:1.5 Evaluate methods of classification for a specific purpose.

      • S:SPS1:8:1.6 Rephrase questions so that they can be tested or investigated using scientific methodologies.

      • S:SPS1:8:1.7 Ask questions about relationships between and among observable variables.

    • 2 Designing Scientific Investigations

      • S:SPS1:8:2.1 Identify the manipulated, responding and controlled variables in an experiment.

      • S:SPS1:8:2.2 Design a controlled experiment, identifying and controlling the major variables.

      • S:SPS1:8:2.3 Identify flaws or omissions in the design of simple experiments.

    • 3 Conducting Scientific Investigations

      • S:SPS1:8:3.1 Use appropriate laboratory techniques to carry out student- or teacher-developed procedures or experiments.

      • S:SPS1:8:3.2 Use appropriate tools to gather data as part of an investigation (e.g., ruler, meter stick, thermometer, spring scale, graduated cylinder, calipers, balance, probes, microscopes).

      • S:SPS1:8:3.3 Follow the teacher's instructions in performing experiments, following all appropriate safety rules and procedures.

    • 4 Representing and Understanding Results of Investigations

      • S:SPS1:8:4.1 Use appropriate tools (including computer hardware and software) to collect, organize, represent, analyze and explain data.

      • S:SPS1:8:4.2 Identify sources of error in experiments.

      • S:SPS1:8:4.3 Draw appropriate conclusions regarding the scientific question under investigation, based on the data collected.

    • 5 Evaluating Scientific Explanations

      • S:SPS1:8:5.1 Determine if the results of an experiment support or refute the scientific idea tested.

      • S:SPS1:8:5.2 Evaluate whether the information and data collected allows an evaluation of the scientific idea under investigation.

      • S:SPS1:8:5.3 Determine what additional information would be helpful in answering the scientific question.

  • SPS2 Unifying Concepts of Science.

    • 1 Nature of Science (NOS)

      • S:SPS2:8:1.1 Describe how scientific investigations usually involve the collection of relevant evidence, the use of logical reasoning, and the application of imagination in devising hypotheses and explanations to make sense of the collected evidence.

      • S:SPS2:8:1.2 Realize that when similar investigations give different results, the scientific challenge is to judge whether the differences are trivial or significant, and this often requires more investigations.

      • S:SPS2:8:1.3 Realize that knowledge, based on science, is subject to modification as new information challenges prevailing theories and as a new theory leads to looking at old observations in a new way.

      • S:SPS2:8:1.4 Provide examples that show how some scientific knowledge is very old and yet is still applicable today.

      • S:SPS2:8:1.5 Recognize that some matters cannot be examined usefully in a scientific way, such as those matters that by their nature cannot be tested objectively and those that are essentially matters of morality.

      • S:SPS2:8:1.6 Give examples of how science can sometimes be used to inform ethical decisions by identifying the likely consequences of particular actions but cannot be used to establish that some action is either moral or immoral.

    • 2 Systems and Energy (SAE)

      • S:SPS2:8:2.1 Understand that any system is usually connected to other systems, both internally and externally; thus a system may be thought of as containing subsystems and as being a subsystem of a larger system.

      • S:SPS2:8:2.2 Analyze how the output of one part of a system, which can include materials, energy or information, can become the input to other parts.

      • S:SPS2:8:2.3 Realize that as the complexity of any system increases, gaining an understanding of it depends increasingly on summaries (such as averages and ranges) and on descriptions of typical examples of that system.

      • S:SPS2:8:2.4 Explain that when energy is transformed or converted from one type to another, there is no net loss of energy.

      • S:SPS2:8:2.5 Describe how objects and substances can store energy (e.g., a battery, food, gasoline).

    • 3 Models and Scale (MAS)

      • S:SPS2:8:3.1 Demonstrate how mathematical models can be displayed on a computer and then modified to see what happens.

      • S:SPS2:8:3.2 Know that different models can be used to represent the same thing; what kind of model is used and how complex it should be depends on its purpose; and the usefulness of a model is one of the instances in which intuition and creativity come into play in science, mathematics and engineering.

      • S:SPS2:8:3.3 Discover how properties of systems that depend on volume, such as capacity and weight change, change out of proportion to properties that depend on area, such as strength or surface processes.

      • S:SPS2:8:3.4 Recognize that as the complexity of any system increases, gaining an understanding increasingly depends on summaries (such as averages and ranges) and on descriptions of typical examples of that system.

    • 4 Patterns of Change (POC)

      • S:SPS2:8:4.1 Analyze how physical and biological systems tend to change until they become stable and then stay that way unless their surroundings change.

      • S:SPS2:8:4.2 Recognize how many systems contain feedback mechanisms that serve to keep changes within specified limits.

      • S:SPS2:8:4.3 Realize that symbolic equations can be used to summarize how the quantity of something changes over time or in response to other changes.

      • S:SPS2:8:4.4 Explain how symmetry (or the lack of it) may determine properties of many objects, from molecules and crystals to organisms and designed structures.

      • S:SPS2:8:4.5 Realize that cycles, such as the seasons or body temperature, can be described by their cycle length or frequency, what their highest and lowest values are, and when those values occur; different cycles range from many thousand years down to less than a billionth of a second.

    • 5 Form and Function (FAF)

      • S:SPS2:8:5.1 Describe the relationship between structure and function of organ systems in plants and animals.

      • S:SPS2:8:5.2 Describe the structure and function of various organ systems (i.e., digestion, respiration, circulation, nervous, protection and support) and how these systems contribute to homeostasis of the organism.

      • S:SPS2:8:5.3 Compare the structure and function of organ systems in one organism to the structure and function in another organism.

  • SPS3 Personal, Social, and Technological Perspectives

    • 1 Collaboration in Scientific Endeavors

      • S:SPS3:8:1.1 Work effectively within a cooperative group setting, accepting and executing assigned roles and responsibilities.

      • S:SPS3:8:1.2 Work collectively within a group toward a common goal.

      • S:SPS3:8:1.3 Demonstrate respect of one another's abilities and contributions to the group.

      • S:SPS3:8:1.4 Demonstrate an understanding of the ethics involved in scientific inquiry.

    • 2 Common Environmental Issues, Natural Resources Management and Conservation

      • S:SPS3:8:2.1 Locate and collect reliable information about the environment and environmental topics using a variety of methods and sources.

      • S:SPS3:8:2.2 Judge the weaknesses and strengths of the information they are using.

      • S:SPS3:8:2.3 Explore the uses and limitations of models.

      • S:SPS3:8:2.4 Synthesize observations and findings into coherent explanations about natural resources and the environment.

    • 3 Science and Technology, Technological Design and Application

  • SPS4 Science Skills for Information, Communication and Media Literacy (from ICT Literacy Map for Science, www.21stcenturyskills.org)

Earth Space Science

  • ESS1 The Earth and Earth materials, as we know them today, have developed over long periods of time, through constant change processes.

    • 1 Atmosphere, Climate, and Weather

      • S:ESS1:8:1.1 Identify and describe the processes of the water cycle and explain their effects on climatic patterns.

      • S:ESS1:8:1.2 Identify and describe the impact certain factors have on the Earth's climate, including changes in the oceans' temperature, changes in the composition of the atmosphere, and geological shifts due to events such as volcanic eruptions and glacial movements.

    • 2 Composition and Features

    • 3 Fossils

      • S:ESS1:8:3.1 Explain how fossils found in sedimentary rock can be used to support the theories of Earth's evolution over geologic time; and describe how the folding, breaking, and uplifting of the layers affects the evidence.

    • 4 Observation of the Earth from Space

      • S:ESS1:8:4.1 Describe how catastrophic changes that have taken place on the Earth's surface can be revealed by satellite images.

    • 5 Processes and Rates of Change

    • 6 Rock Cycle

      • S:ESS1:8:6.1 Describe the processes of the rock cycle.

      • S:ESS1:8:6.2 Explain that sedimentary, igneous, and metamorphic rocks contain evidence of the minerals, temperatures, and forces that created them.

      • S:ESS1:8:6.3 Explain how sediments of sand and smaller particles, which may contain the remains of organisms, are gradually buried and cemented together by dissolved minerals to form solid rock.

      • S:ESS1:8:6.4 Using data about a rock's physical characteristics make and support an inference about the rock's history and connection to the rock cycle.

    • 7 Water

      • S:ESS1:8:7.1 Describe how water flows into and through a watershed, falling on the land, collecting in rivers and lakes, soil, and porous layers of rock, until much of it flows back into the ocean.

      • S:ESS1:8:7.2 Identify the physical and chemical properties that make water an essential component of the Earth's system.

      • S:ESS1:8:7.3 Explain the processes that cause cycling of water into and out of the atmosphere and their connections to our planet's weather patterns.

  • ESS2 The Earth is part of a solar system, made up of distinct parts, which have temporal and spatial interrelationships.

    • 1 Earth, Sun, and Moon

      • S:ESS2:8:1.1 Identify the characteristics of the Sun and its position in the universe.

      • S:ESS2:8:1.2 Recognize and describe how the regular and predictable motions of the Earth and Moon account for phenomena, such as the phases of the Moon and eclipses.

      • S:ESS2:8:1.3 Recognize the relationships between the tides and the phases of the moon; and use tide charts and NOAA information to describe them.

      • S:ESS2:8:1.4 Explain the temporal or positional relationships between or among the Earth, Sun and Moon (e.g., night/day, seasons, year, tide).

    • 2 Energy

      • S:ESS2:8:2.1 Describe the Sun as the principle energy source for phenomena on the Earth's surface.

    • 3 Solar System

      • S:ESS2:8:3.1 Identify the characteristics and movement patterns of the planets in our Solar System and differentiate between them.

      • S:ESS2:8:3.2 Explain the affects of gravitational force on the planets and their moons.

      • S:ESS2:8:3.3 Explain why Earth and our Solar System appear to be somewhat unique, while acknowledging recent evidence that suggests similar systems exist in the universe.

      • S:ESS2:8:3.4 Compare and contrast planets based on data provided about size, composition, location, orbital movement, atmosphere, or surface features (includes moons).

      • S:ESS2:8:3.5 Explain how gravitational force affects objects in the Solar System (e.g., moons, tides, orbits, satellites).

    • 4 View from Earth

      • S:ESS2:8:4.1 Explain how technological advances have allowed scientists to re-evaluate or extend existing ideas about the Solar System.

  • ESS3 The origin and evolution of galaxies and the universe demonstrate fundamental principles of physical science across vast distances and time.

    • 1 Size and Scale

      • S:ESS3:8:1.1 Define an astronomical unit as the distance from the Earth to the Sun.

      • S:ESS3:8:1.2 Explain that special units of measure, such as light years and astronomical units, are used to calculate distances in space.

    • 2 Stars and Galaxies

      • S:ESS3:8:2.1 Describe objects such as asteroids, comets and meteors in terms of their characteristics and movement patterns.

    • 3 Universe

      • S:ESS3:8:3.1 Describe the universe as being comprised of billions of galaxies, each containing many billions of stars; and explain that there are vast distances separating these galaxies and stars from one another and from the Earth.

  • ESS4 The growth of scientific knowledge in Earth Space Science has been advanced through the development of technology and is used (alone or in combination with other sciences) to identify, understand and solve local and global issues.

Life Science

  • LS1 All living organisms have identifiable structures and characteristics that allow for survival (organisms, populations, & species).

  • LS2 Energy flows and matter recycles through an ecosystem.

  • LS3 Groups of organisms show evidence of change over time (e.g. evolution, natural selection, structures, behaviors, and biochemistry).

    • 1 Change

      • S:LS3:8:1.1 Describe the type of impact certain environmental changes, including deforestation, invasive species, increased erosion, and pollution containing toxic substances, could have on local environments.

    • 2 Evidence of Evolution

    • 3 Natural Selection

      • S:LS3:8:3.1 Recognize that hereditary information is contained in genes, which are located in the chromosomes of each cell; and explain that inherited traits can be determined by either one or many genes, and that a single gene can influence more than one trait, such as eye and hair color.

      • S:LS3:8:3.2 Recognize that in any given environment the growth and survival of organisms depend on the physical conditions that exist; and explain that in all environments, organisms with similar needs may compete with one another for resources, including food, space, water, air, and shelter.

      • S:LS3:8:3.3 Explain how individual organisms with certain traits are more likely than others to survive and have offspring.

      • S:LS3:8:3.4 Recognize that humans are able to control some characteristics of plants and animals through selective breeding; and explain how this results in small differences between the parents and offspring, which can accumulate in successive generations so that decedents are very different from their ancestors.

      • S:LS3:8:3.5 Cite examples supporting the concept that certain traits of organisms may provide a survival advantage in a specific environment and therefore, an increased likelihood to produce offspring.

  • LS4 Humans are similar to other species in many ways, and yet are unique among Earth's life forms

    • 1 Behavior

      • S:LS4:8:1.1 Recognize that unlike human beings, behavior in insects and many other species is determined almost entirely by biological inheritance.

      • S:LS4:8:1.2 Explain that organism's behavioral response is a reaction to internal or and environmental stimuli, and that these responses may be determined by heredity or from past experience.

      • S:LS4:8:1.3 Explain how all behavior is affected by both inheritance and experience.

    • 2 Disease

      • S:LS4:8:2.1 Recognize that disease in organisms can be caused by intrinsic failures of the system or infection from other organisms.

      • S:LS4:8:2.2 Describe how viruses, bacteria, fungi, and parasites may affect the human body and provide examples of how they can interfere with normal body function.

      • S:LS4:8:2.3 Describe the function of white blood cells and explain how they support the body's defense system.

      • S:LS4:8:2.4 Use data and observations to support the concept that environmental or biological factors affect human body systems (biotic and abiotic).

    • 3 Human Identity

      • S:LS4:8:3.1 Compare patterns of human development with those of other vertebrates.

      • S:LS4:8:3.2 Recognize that an organism can be described in terms of a combination of traits; and differentiate between inherited traits and those that result from interactions with the environment.

      • S:LS4:8:3.3 Describe the major changes that occur over time in human development from single cell through embryonic development to new born (i.e., group of cells during the first trimester, organs form during the second, organs mature during the third).

      • S:LS4:8:3.4 Using data provided, select evidence that supports the concept that genetic information is passed on from both parents to offspring.

  • LS5 The growth of scientific knowledge in Life Science has been advanced through the development of technology and is used (alone or in combination with other sciences) to identify, understand and solve local and global issues.

    • 1 Design Technology

      • S:LS5:8:1.1 Explain how technology has influenced the course of history, and provide examples such as those that relate to agriculture, sanitation and medicine.

      • S:LS5:8:1.2 Provide examples of ways technology is used to protect the environment, such as using bacteria to clean water.

    • 2 Tools

      • S:LS5:8:2.1 Recognizes and provide examples of how technology has enhanced the study of life sciences, as in the development of advanced diagnosing equipment improving medicine.

    • 3 Social Issues (Local and Global), Medical Technology, Biotechnology

      • S:LS5:8:3.1 Explain the necessity of and purpose for the proper disposal of medical products.

      • S:LS5:8:3.2 Give examples of how increased understanding of biology has led to improvements in biotechnology, such as scientific methods for increasing the yield or the pest-resistance of important food crops.

      • S:LS5:8:3.3 Describes ways biotechnology helps humans, including improved health and medicine.

    • 4 Career Technical Education Connections

      • S:LS5:8:4.1 Understand that some scientific jobs/careers involve the application of life science content knowledge and experience in specific ways that meet the goals of the job.

Physical Science

  • PS1 All living and nonliving things are composed of matter having characteristic properties that distinguish one substance from another (independent of size/amount of substance).

  • PS2 Energy is necessary for change to occur in matter. Energy can be stored, transferred and transformed, but cannot be destroyed.

    • 1 Change

      • S:PS2:8:1.1 Explain how substances react chemically with other substances to form new substances, known as compounds, and that in such recombinations, the properties of the new substances may be very different from those of the old.

      • S:PS2:8:1.2 Identify factors that affect reaction rates, such as temperature, concentration and surface area; and explain that dissolving substances in liquids often accelerates reaction rates.

      • S:PS2:8:1.3 Explain that oxidation involves combining oxygen with another substance, as in burning or rusting.

      • S:PS2:8:1.4 Explain that states of matter depend on the arrangement of the molecules and their motion.

      • S:PS2:8:1.5 Given a real-world example, show that within a system, energy transforms from one form to another (i.e., chemical, heat, electrical, gravitational, light, sound, mechanical).

    • 2 Conservation

      • S:PS2:8:2.1 Explain the law of conservation of energy.

      • S:PS2:8:2.2 Collect data or use data provided to infer or predict that the total amount of mass in a closed system stays the same, regardless of how substances interact (conservation of matter).

    • 3 Energy

      • S:PS2:8:3.1 Differentiate between kinetic energy, which is the energy of motion and potential energy, which depends on relative position.

      • S:PS2:8:3.2 Recognize the Sun is a major energy source for the Earth, and describes how it affects the planet's surface.

      • S:PS2:8:3.3 Describe ways light can interact with matter, such as transmission (which includes refraction), absorption, and scattering (which includes reflection).

      • S:PS2:8:3.4 Explain that the human eye can only detect wavelengths of electromagnetic radiation within a narrow range; and explain that the differences of wavelength within that range of visible light are perceived as differences in color.

      • S:PS2:8:3.5 Recognize that most chemical and nuclear reactions involve a transfer of energy.

      • S:PS2:8:3.6 Use data to draw conclusions about how heat can be transferred (convection, conduction, radiation).

  • PS3 The motion of an object is affected by force.

  • PS4 The growth of scientific knowledge in Physical Science has been advanced through the development of technology and is used (alone or in combination with other sciences) to identify, understand and solve local and global issues.

    • 1 Design Technology

      • S:PS4:8:1.1 Understand that design features, such as size shape, weight, and function, must be considered when designing new technology.

    • 2 Tools

      • S:PS4:8:2.1 Demonstrate appropriate use of tools, such as rulers, calculators, balances, and graduated cylinders to measure and calculate volume and mass.

    • 3 Social Issues (Local and Global), Energy, Power, and Transportation, Manufacturing

      • S:PS4:8:3.1 Explain how humans use natural resources, such as flowing water and burning of coal, oil, or natural gas to generate electrical energy in power plants.

      • S:PS4:8:3.2 Describe how natural resources, such as coal, oil and natural gas are tapped for use in power plants, and how alternative sources, such as solar, wind, water, nuclear are tapped for power; and compare the advantages and disadvantages of each source.

      • S:PS4:8:3.3 Differentiate between durable goods, which are designed to operate for a long period of time, and non-durable goods, which are only intended to operate for a short period of time.

    • 4 Career Technical Education Connections

      • S:PS4:8:4.1 Understand that some scientific jobs/careers involve the application of physical science content knowledge and experience in specific ways that meet the goals of the job.