What Do Students Learn in the 6th Grade?

For many students, sixth grade marks the transition into middle school. If they were not introduced to the concept in fifth grade, students are now definitely experience different teachers for different subjects.

Subjects are more complex, homework worksheets become longer, and students are faced with new challenges and ideas. Some students excel at these new difficulties, while others can benefit through homeschool worksheets and study at home with parents.

Required reading and in-depth language studies

For many sixth graders, this is the first year that they are exposed to required reading. Many teacher worksheets will cover half a dozen books that students will be required to read on their own time throughout the year.

The language arts class is often split between literature and language chapters, with focuses on grammar, vocabulary, and comprehension. Printable worksheets may be sent home detailing the written responses that are expected from students. Sixth graders also start participating in projects that incorporate several subjects, such as listening, speaking, reading, and writing. They learn how to brainstorm and how to create different styles of writing, such as a play and poems.

Developing upper level math skills

Sixth grade math goes beyond the basics of addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division that were taught in elementary school. Students learn about absolute values, prime factorization, and expanded algebraic problems. Geometry includes a greater focus on measurements and reason, as well as a look at both the U.S. and metric systems of measurement.

Understanding the scientific process

This year, sixth graders will apply the scientific process and how it leads to discoveries. This includes ethics, safety techniques, experiments, and more. They also focus more on the different properties of matter and how liquids differ from gasses and solids and vice versa. Students take a more in-depth look at the solar system, plants, and electricity. They may grow plants and discuss the different functions of specific parts. In energy studies, they will look at how force and motion interact on objects, as well as the use of fossil fuels and electricity. They may also learn about magnets and electromagnetism.

The development of civilization

In Social Studies, sixth grade students learn about early civilizations, such as those in Africa, India, and Rome. They will also be exposed to how the "wild west" was developed, the Industrial Revolution, and a more in-depth look at immigration and its effects on the country. Some classes also review the economic system and political science. Other classes may start to create mock student governments as a better way to understand the political structures.

Becoming increasingly independent

With the start of middle school, many sixth graders are looking for more independence and self-reliance. They are starting to realize that their parents and teachers are not always perfect, and they may question authorities.

Friendships become stronger, and secret clubs and rituals become popular. Both sexes are showing better coordination and reaction time, and they may enjoy participating in competitive sports. There are still varying levels of maturity between boys and girls, with some sixth graders starting to take notice of the opposite sex.

Sixth grade students are more focused on activities that they enjoy, and may even start having plans for their future schooling and careers. Some of their future pursuits may be prompted by a seed planted in six grade.