6th Grade English

Welcome to the English Department Sixth Grade Page

English Language Arts is divided into three categories – Literature, Composition, and Language Study.

The 6th grade Language Arts curriculum at Concord Middle School focuses on the following essential questions:

  • What does it mean to be a member of a community?
  • How does literature help us to develop empathy and open-mindedness as we develop integrity and create a supportive community?


Throughout 6th grade students learn to read literature and interpret its layers of meaning.   Students analyze: Character and character motivation; conflict and plot development; theme development; symbolism; and the importance of historical/cultural context in literature. To achieve these outcomes, 6th graders study a variety of titles throughout the year. Each title progresses in its structural complexity and literary depth. The core titles include:

  • Odyssey
  • Crash
  • Stargirl
  • Seedfolks

Students further study the elements of literature through myths, legends, and folktales.

In addition, all 6th grade students are expected to do required outside reading; these independent books are assigned through English Language Arts or other content areas.


6th graders learn the characteristics of four genres of writing. They read and analyze texts of various genres as well as complete tasks to demonstrate understanding. They apply the characteristics of all types of writing in their original compositions.

  • Expository – literary analysis; literary response journal
  • Descriptive – character sketches; journal writing; setting, mood
  • Persuasive – persuasive letter/essay
  • Narrative – personal non-fiction narrative


6th graders study both conventional English as well as figurative language devices.   The expectation is that students will connect these language skills to both personal composition and literature interpretation.


The discreet instruction of the mechanics and usage of conventional English focuses on the following: basic sentence structure; sentence variety and fluency; parts of speech (nouns, verbs, pronouns, adjectives, adverbs, conjunctions, prepositions); punctuation (commas, semi colons, colons, quotation marks); and capitalization.

Figurative Language:

Students study figurative language, learn to interpret its meaning in literature, and apply techniques in the construction of their own written work.   The major devices include: simile/metaphor; personification; hyperbole; onomatopoeia; and alliteration.

Nuance of Language:

Students study how language creates mood and tone in literature and composition.   They analyze imagery as well as the nuances of word choice and its importance in written language.


Students study Greek and Latin roots in addition to learning strategies to understand vocabulary in context.