Grade 6 English
In English 6, students read, write, and enjoy literature. While developing independence and a sense of purpose in their reading and writing, they gain the necessary skills for critical thinking and communication.
Reading comprehension work and literary analysis helps sixth graders transition from concrete to abstract thinkers. They learn about summary, plot, theme, characterization, and symbolism, while also focusing on the mechanics of reading. The year begins with a close study of various short stories by Ray Bradbury and Joyce Hansen, which makes for a smooth transition for examining subsequent texts, such as Home of the Brave by Katherine Applegate and Brown Girl Dreaming by Jacqueline Woodson. Lastly, students engage in reading circles, focusing on the theme of empathy to complement their study of an earlier all-class read, Wonder by R.J. Palacio.
In order to celebrate literature and to encourage the desire to become lifelong readers, students also read a book of their own choosing for 20 minutes each night.
Another vital aspect of English 6 is writing poetry, book reviews, speeches, dialogues, letters, and literary paragraphs. Abundant in-class writing time allows for individual teacher-student conferences about writing as this hands-on coaching helps each child in every aspect of the writing process, from planning and choosing topics to revising, polishing, and proofreading.
We study vocabulary and grammatical conventions, including parts of speech, comma rules, sentence work, title indication, and homonyms.
Finally, the Blackstone Valley Exposition (BVE) is a group project that combines all subject areas with a focus on the environmental, cultural and historical aspects of the Blackstone River Valley. Students research their topic, interview an expert, write a speech about their topic, create a Keynote presentation, and present their speech orally during the BVE night. It is our hope that by developing the students’ sense of place, they will gain depth and personal understanding of their community that will cultivate a lifelong love of learning and deeper understanding of the world in a larger context.