NCERT Science Textbook for Class VIII

Publisher: Ncert Books
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About this eBook

Preface This book is the outcome of the efforts of the textbook development committee appointed by the NCERT. The committee met a few times to interact with one another to improve the draft. Then there was a review meeting in which many experts and practicing school teachers were invited to review the draft and suggest improvements. By and large we have stuck to the format of the Class VII book. By now famous characters, Boojho and Paheli, have been used to make the text interactive. Attempt has been made to recall children s own experiences and build concepts around them. This is designed to connect science that they study in the school with their everyday life. Many activities have been suggested to clarify concepts. Some of these activities are so simple that children can perform them on their own. The requirement of the apparatus required for the activities is minimal. We performed all the activities ourselves to ensure that there was no difficulty in performing them in the school situation. The activities should also help children in developing skills such as presentation of data in tabular and graphical forms, reasoning and drawing inference from the given data. The language of the book has been kept as simple as possible. A large number of photographs, illustrations, cartoons, etc. have been included to make the book attractive. To help teachers evaluate children effectively, a large number of exercises have been given at the end of each chapter. The teachers are encouraged to frame additional exercises to test children s understanding. Some challenging exercises have also been devised for those children who would like to appear for the National Talent Search Examination conducted by the NCERT. We are conscious of the fact that there is a paucity of additional reading material for children. We have tried to address this problem by providing non-evaluative boxes. These boxes, in light orange, contain additional information, anecdotes, stories, strange facts and other such interesting materials. We all know that children are mischievous and playful by nature. Therefore, in order to prevent any untoward incident during the performance of the activities in the school or outside, necessary cautions, in magenta, have been inserted at various places in the book. To prepare children to assume their roles as responsible citizens of tomorrow, attempt has been made to sensitise them to the issues concerning gender, religion, environment, health and hygiene, water scarcity and energy conservation. We have sought to weave into the text the value of cooperation and the importance of peer learning. An important feature of the book is what we call Extended Learning. These are totally non-evaluative, and purely voluntary activities and projects. Some of the projects in this section have been designed to enhance children s interaction with the experts, teachers, even parents, and society at large. The children are required to collect information of various kinds and draw conclusions of their own. My request to teachers and parents is to use the book in the spirit in which it has been written. Encourage children to perform activities and learn by doing, rather than by rote. You can supplement, or even replace, the activities given here. If you
feel that you have better alternatives, especially with your local regional flavour, please write to us so that these activities could be used in the future editions of