Sixth Grade Reading and Writing: What to Expect (page 2)

Sixth Grade Reading and Writing: What to Expect

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Updated on Jul 5, 2013


Vocabulary and Word Use: Vocabulary is a powerful link between reading and writing. In sixth grade, expect teachers to go deeper than before, introducing literary concepts such as connotation, denotation, simile, metaphor, and allegory. Although you may also see formal vocabulary lists, you should rejoice if they are linked to actual reading and writing assignments. Research shows that this practical, “integrated” approach is the best way to help kids not just learn new words, but put them into use. Whatever the instructional method, celebrate any time your kid tries out a new word, especially if that includes playing around with more than one meaning or context.


What to watch for: As kids are asked to handle so much more on their own, you may run into reading and writing gaps you didn’t foresee. If your child seems bored and turned off, or is often either unusually withdrawn or agitated—tell your teacher immediately. In reading, some kids succeeded with the careful support elementary school teachers, but may not be comprehending the more difficult stuff that’s assigned in middle school. In writing, sixth graders frequently stumble over the task of taking an idea and sequencing it over several grammatically correct pages. Your child may have jumped a stage without realizing it, and will benefit from extra help. Learning differences can also show up at this level. Don’t hesitate to seek help—remember, just because it’s middle school doesn’t mean you can’t call your teacher!

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