8th Grade Final Exam

Deprived of a Modern Education


“My dad only went through the 8th grade.”  Have you heard that said about someone who was denied the great educational opportunities we now have? And the opportunity been made greater by President Biden who is forgiving billions of dollars in college debt. That will really come in handy for graduates in “Gender Studies” and other degrees where earning a decent living is unlikely.

Daddy was a farmer’s boy born in 1916. Going beyond the 8th grade was considered impractical.Another four years for high school simply wasn’t necessary for successful farming.Going to college was unthinkable!

Daddy went on in life to become a successful farmer, husband, father of seven, and a millionaire businessman.

BUT, “He only went through the 8th grade.”

I decided to investigate what that meant. What did it take to graduate from the 8th grade?

I found the “8th Grade Examination” of Daddy’s era, and I’d like you to take the exam. And I’d love to know your score.

 Grammar (Time, 1 hour)

     1. Give nine rules for the use of Capital Letters.

     2. Name the Parts of Speech and define those that have no modifications.

     3. Define Verse, Stanza and Paragraph.

     4. What are the Principal Parts of a verb? Give Principal Parts of do, lie, lay and run.

     5. Define Case, Illustrate each Case.

     6. What is Punctuation? Give rules for principal marks of Punctuation.

     7-10. Write a composition of about 150words and show therein that you understand the practical use of the rules of grammar.

  Arithmetic (Time, 1.25 hours)

      1. Name and define the Fundamental Rules of Arithmetic.

      2. A wagon box is 2 ft. deep, 10 feet long, and 3 ft. wide. How  many bushels of wheat will it hold ?

      3. If a load of wheat weighs 3942 lbs.,what is it worth at 50 cts./bushel, deducting 1050 lbs. for tare?

      4. District No. 33 has a valuation of $35,000. What is the  necessary levy to carry on a school seven months at $50 per month, and have $104 for incidentals?

      5. Find cost of 6720 lbs. coal at $6.00per ton.

      6. Find the interest of $512.60 for 8 months and 18 days at 7 percent.

      7. What is the cost of 40 boards 12inches wide and 16 ft. long at $20 per meter.

      8. Find bank discount on $300 for 90days (no grace) at 10 percent.

      9. What is the cost of a square farm at$15 per are, the distance around which is 640 rods?

    10. Write a Bank Check, a Promissory Note, and a Receipt.

  U.S. History (Time, 45 minutes)

      1. Give the epochs into which U.S.History is divided.

      2. Give an account of the discovery of America by Columbus.

      3. Relate the causes and results of the Revolutionary War.

      4. Show the territorial growth of the United States.

      5. Tell what you can of the history of Kansas.

      6. Describe three of the most prominent battles of the Rebellion.

      7. Who were the following: Morse, Whitney, Fulton, Bell, Lincoln, Penn, and Howe?

      8. Name events connected with the following dates: 1607; 1620; 1800; 1849; 1865, 1898, 1914.

  Orthography (Time, 1 hour)

     1. What is meant by the following:Alphabet, phonetic, orthography, etymology, syllabication?

     2. What are elementary sounds? How classified?

     3. What are the following, and give examples of each: Trigraph, sub vocals, diphthong, cognate letters, linguals?

     4. Give four substitutes for caret 'u'.

     5. Give two rules for spelling words with final 'e'. Name two exceptions under each rule.

     6. Give two uses of silent letters in spelling. Illustrate each.

     7. Define the following prefixes and use in connection with a word: Bi, dis, mis, pre, semi, post, non, inter, mono, sup

     8. Mark diacritically and divide into syllables the following, and name the sign that in dictates the sound: Card, ball, mercy, sir, odd, cell, rise, blood, fare, last.

     9. Use the following correctly in sentences, cite, site, sight, fane, fain, feign, vane, vain,vein, raze, raise, rays.

   10. Write 10 words frequently mispronounced and indicate pronunciation by use of diacritical marks and by syllabication.

  Geography (Time, 1 hour)

      1. What is climate? Upon what does climate depend?

      2. How do you account for the extremes of climate in Kansas?

      3. Of what use are rivers? Of what use is the ocean?

      4. Describe the mountains of North America.

      5. Name and describe the following: Monrovia, Odessa, Denver, Manitoba, Heca, Yukno, St.Helena, Juan Fermandez, Aspinwall and Orinoco.

      6. Name and locate the principal trade centers of the U.S.

      7. Name all the republics of Europe and give capital of each.

      8. Why is the Atlantic Coast colder than the Pacific in the same latitude?

      9. Describe the process by which the water of the ocean returns to the sources of rivers.

    10. Describe the movements of the earth. Give the inclination of the earth.

Gives the saying "she/he only had an 8th grade education" (when speaking of an early 21st century person) a whole new meaning.  Most of us could use an 8th grade education when compared to what is called a diploma or a degree today. Especially a degree that makes you useless – such as Gender Studies.



 George V. Caylor  hello@teawithgeorge.com