Eighth Grade

Please review SuppliesSummer Reading, Outdoor Education, & Service Learning


  • 2 Pencil/pen pouch with zipper (sturdy)
  • 12 #2 sharpened pencils
  • 1 package color makers (Classic colors)
  • 1 set Colored pencils: 12-16 sharpened
  • 3 Dark blue or black erasable pens
  • 1 red ballpoint correcting pen
  • 6 Dark blue or black ballpoint or roller ball pens
  • 4 Highlighter pens (no metallic or permanent pens)
  • 4-6 Book covers (non sticky) for all hard cover books
  • MTS Homework assignment notebook (REQUIRED-no other format will be accepted)
  • 6 1” binders each with dividers
  • 3 packages binder paper – white, college ruled 8 ½” x 11”
  • 1 Spiral bound notebook 8 1/2” x 11”
  • 2 large Erasers:
  • 1 Package Graph Paper
  • TI-84 or TI-84 Plus graphing calculator
  • For home use: protractor, compass, metric/standard ruler

Special Classes:           

Instrumental Music Book

* MTS is pre-registered in the Office Depot Give-Back Program. When parents, teachers and students purchase school supplies at any Office Depot, 5% of all qualifying items will be tallied toward a merchandise credit for MTS. Our school ID# is: 70010829.

* In an effort to reduce the weight of supplies to be carried by our students, we request that no large binders be brought to school.

* Please label all supplies with student’s name or initials. If you have any questions about school supplies, please contact the front office.

Summer Reading

Dear MTS Families,

Summer is upon us. What a great year it has been! I have loved getting to know your children and following their reading adventures. With that said, reading is an important part of everyday life. Just because it is summer, students should not put their books away! The more students read, the better readers they will be. I am strongly encouraging all students to sign up at their local public libraries and participate in the summer reading programs. I might even give prizes to those students who bring in their summer reading lists to me when we resume school in August. The summer reading programs are loads of fun, with some great prizes and fabulous programming. The teen programs are also wonderful opportunities.

Attached is my list by grade levels, and for the middle school grades it is based on content. I always like to tell parents that if you are unsure about a book, check Amazon for the School Library Journal review. They are usually very spot on for very age appropriate material. 

While this list is not complete, I put many of my favorites that I recommend and I have also included new books for 2017 as well. I will be busy myself, reading and keeping up with your children this summer with my own reading list. 

Many Public libraries will also have reading lists. I will be happy to help with personalized reading lists over the summer and will be available by email July 1st. I’m always happy to hear from my readers. 

Here are the links to the public libraries. I’m encouraging all students to get their own library cards. 
Marin Country Public Free Library : http://www.marinlibrary.org/
San Francisco Public Library: https://sfpl.org/

If you are going to purchase books, Book Passage is a wonderful bookstore to support and please don’t forget to mention MTS, our school code is 30, and we will receive a rebate for all purchases towards new purchases in the fall. Books, Inc in the city is also a great bookstore with wonderful book clubs and events for students in the intermediate grades. 

I hope you find this list helpful. We hope you and your family will read many stories this summer and reap all of the wonderful benefits that reading has to offer! Have a wonderful and restful summer!

Lisa Levin
MTS Librarian

8th grade summer reading list

Summer Reading: 8th Grade

The purpose of summer reading is to continue to build students’ reading stamina, fluency, and literacy. To support these goals, we require that all rising 8th graders read four books they have not previously read. Students must choose books from the 8th Grade MTS Summer Reading List ( My First Summer in the Sierra is required). 

Required Reading for English:                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          

  • One book must be from from the classics list.
  • One book must be from the nonfiction or historical fiction list.
  • The third book may be from a genre of your choice.

Required Reading for Science/Outdoor Education:

    ● My First Summer in the Sierra by John Muir [ISBN 194077702X]

8th Grade Outdoor Education

Students will attend a weeklong field Science program in Yosemite National Park.  From September 10-15, 2017, students will spend the week in several locations in the Park:  Yosemite Valley, the Institute’s Crane Flat campus and in small group encampments in Yosemite’s backcountry.  The high point of the week is a three night, four day backpack trip through the high country in and around Tuolumne Meadows, during which students will learn wilderness skills, study the natural and human history of Yosemite, and debate issues facing the Park’s future

Dear Parents of 8th Grade Students,

The great naturalist John Muir called Yosemite "Nature's greatest creation."  What he couldn't foresee was that it would become nature's greatest classroom as well.  Yosemite National Park is the site of NatureBridge, an acclaimed outdoor education school that our students will attend from September 10-14.  As mentioned at the parent meeting in May, students be spending a large part of the weekin the backcountry, allowing them to experience the very best of the Sierra wilderness first hand.  The week in Yosemite will be a busy one, filled with daylong hikes, field activities, writing and sketching, group games, evening programs, and visits to places of natural and historical interest.  The week will also be a challenging one, both academically and physically, and it is important for our students to be as prepared as possible.  There are two things students should do during the summer months to get ready for the trip.

We will be on our feet all day, everyday, while in Yosemite, in all types of weather and over all kinds of terrain.  It has been my experience with previous student groups that sturdy, comfortable footwear is perhaps the most important equipment item they needProperly fitted, lightweight hiking boots are a necessity and should be purchased this summer so they can be broken in prior to the trip.  Heavy, all-leather boots should be avoided, as they are expensive, difficult to break in, and unnecessary.

Several types of lightweight, high-top hiking boots are available at outdoor equipment and sporting goods shops throughout Marin and the Bay Area.  They are often no more expensive than a pair of tennis shoes but offer much better support and traction while carrying a pack on the trail.  If possible, the boots should be waterproofed with a silicone sealer before the trip.  Also, refer to the gear and equipment list that was distributed at the parent information meeting, and remember to make arrangements during the summer months for a warm sleeping bag and suitably sized backpack.

The next thing is that students complete their assigned summer reading before school resumes in late August.  Prior to the end of school in June, we discussed as a class the assigned reading book and related writing assignments. Students were given printed handouts that described how to approach the reading, and we began some of the reading together, as well as engaged in related discussion. The assigned summer reading is My First Summer in the Sierra, John Muir’s personal account of his early experiences in the high country meadows near Tuolumne.  This journal will serve as a model for our students as they keep their own journals in Yosemite and later prepare an anthology of selected entries for publication. 

The text is required reading, and students will be expected to participate in discussion and refer to them while preparing related writing assignments prior to and during the trip.

Additional information about the Yosemite trip will be distributed to students and parents the first week of school.  Until then, have a relaxing and enjoyable summer.


Eric Kielich

Service Learning

Dear Middle-School Families,

As part of our effort to encourage our students to be aware and responsive to the needs of others, sixth to eighth-grade students will take part in a middle school service learning program.  In addition to assisting others, working with and for people who are less fortunate than ourselves will help our students develop a greater sense of understanding, empathy and compassion.  Furthermore, we hope service learning will empower our students to realize their ability to make a positive difference in our community and the world.

To that end, each middle school student is expected to fulfill a certain amount of hours with a non-profit organization.  A supervisor involved with that group must provide the supervision and sign a certificate designating the hours of completion.

  • Sixth grade: 12 hours of service
  • Seventh grade: 16 hours of service (half of which should be face to face with people in need)
  • Eighth grade: 20 hours of service (half of which should be face to face with people in need)

Next May, all students will share their service experiences by creating a brief presentation for the lower grades.

Students are encouraged to start over the summer months.  Service opportunities and forms are available on the service learning webpage on the community portal.  We will continue to update the website regularly throughout the year. We will also provide further clarification to the students in the fall. 

Please direct completed forms and any questions to us.

Barbara Guarriello (bguarriello@mttam.org)
Rob Potter (rpotter@mttam.org)