Class Information

English Language Arts
Students in sixth grade read and analyze a wide range of literature from different times and cultures, with an increasing emphasis on analyzing informational text on grade-level topics in all sixth-grade subject areas. The emphasis in sixth grade is on students’ comprehension of complex narrative and informational texts. Students read two or more texts on a topic and use a variety of comprehension strategies to compare, contrast, and integrate information from the texts. They analyze how structure, point of view, visual elements, and figurative language contribute to the meaning or tone of texts. As their analysis skills deepen, students can identify key individual events and details and use them as evidence to support their analysis and to distinguish claims that are supported by an author from those that are not. Additional analysis skills call for students to compare and contrast one author’s presentation of events with another interpretation. They learn academic language and domain-specific vocabulary through their reading and use it in their writing and speaking. In their writing, students in sixth grade develop more sophisticated skills, such as using evidence from a variety of sources to support their purpose or conclusion. They revise, edit, and rewrite their compositions and learn to try new approaches and use technology to improve their writing product. Students conduct research projects that provide them with practice in gathering information, using print and digital sources, and paraphrasing or summarizing information. Integrating reading and writing across the different content areas is emphasized through the addition of the standards for literacy in history/social studies, science, and technical subjects. Students engage effectively in collaborative discussions with diverse partners and in different groupings on sixth-grade topics and texts. They can identify and analyze logical fallacies in speakers’ presentations or from media sources. They learn to present an argument and support it with a logical sequence of evidence. They also learn to use expression and nonverbal elements for effect and to engage the audience. To support their writing and speaking, they learn conventions of standard English grammar and usage, capitalization, spelling, and punctuation, such as using commas to set off parenthetical clauses. In sixth grade, the proper use of pronouns is emphasized. Developing academic as well as domain-specific vocabulary is highlighted. Students learn to distinguish between words with similar meanings and to use common affixes and roots as clues to the meaning of words. They also use the relationships between certain words (e.g., cause/effect or part/whole) to help understand each word. More information can be found in the
Class Syllabus

Ancient Civilizations (Social Studies)
Students in grade six expand their understanding of history by studying the people and events that ushered in the dawn of the major ancient civilizations. Geography is of special significance in the development of the human story. Emphasis is placed on the everyday lives, problems, and accomplishments of people, their role in developing social, economic, and political structures, as well as in establishing and spreading ideas that helped transform the world forever. Students develop higher levels of critical thinking by considering why civilizations developed where and when they did, why they became dominant, and why they declined. Students analyze the interactions among the various cultures, emphasizing their enduring contributions and the link, despite time, between the contemporary and ancient worlds. We will also emphasize reading and writing skills. More information can be found in the Class Syllabus

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