Although spelling words are stressed more heavily in the lower elementary grades, eighth grade students are still expected to be developing their spelling skills, and the eighth grade spelling list is no joke. Students should be proficiently using about 15,000 words at this point, so adding fuel to that fire might seem a little like stoking a raging inferno, but it's important to keep young minds lit.
A key component of the eighth grade spelling curriculum is teaching students to apply what they already know. They know standard English conventions; now all they have to do is determine the correct spelling of unfamiliar words with those conventions.
For example, a student in the eighth grade should understand that if a suffix starts with a vowel, such as "-ing" or "-ed," and a root word ends in a single vowel and consonant, the final letter of the root word will be doubled. An eighth-grader knows that stop becomes stopping and drop becomes dropped.
Other concepts commonly incorporated into the eighth grade curriculum include:
Correct use of the apostrophe
"-tion" and "-ion"
Silent "e" words
Words with ch sounds
Spelling the sounds of "wh" and "ch"
Consonant digraphs with "f" and "ph"