Departments » 6th Grade Core

6th Grade Core


Multidisciplinary Curriculum Overview

The goals of sixth-grade core are to help every child develop a strong academic foundation in preparation for the coming years of middle school, and to boost their self-esteem through hard work, responsibility, and humor.

The curriculum is designed to meet the needs of the individual student. There are opportunities for choice and open-ended assignments to encourage all students to reach the upper limits of their abilities. Core consists of an interdisciplinary class made up of social studies and the language arts.

As a part of the social studies curriculum, students study the theories of early humans, archaeology, and the ancient civilizations of Mesopotamia, Egypt, India, China, Israel, Greece, and Rome. Students also study basic geography throughout the year, stressing present-day maps along with maps of past civilizations. Our social studies curriculum is supported with innovative supplemental art projects focusing on ancient civilizations through LPIE, Lafayette Partners in Education.

The reading program includes the use of a variety of fiction and non-fiction text, some of which relate to the history timeline.  Emphasis is on the acquisition of critical thinking strategies that can be applied to all genres of text to give students the tools necessary to be successful and confident readers.

As they read, students respond to a wide variety of literary prompts and are exposed to a number of pertinent literary terms. Reading is focused on both independent and guided reading, as well as book clubs.  Students are offered choices in their selection of materials to foster and encourage a lifelong love of reading.

The language arts program is designed to incorporate student reading with the writing process, along with vocabulary development and the acquisition of grammar skills. The Writing Workshop explores narrative, argument, and information writing. In addition, students work on vocabulary to improve knowledge of academic word meaning.  Use of newly discovered words is encouraged in writing assignments throughout the school year.

The Value of Cooperative Groups

Groups are used frequently in sixth grade instruction.  Sixth graders are social people and often benefit when they work with their peers.  This method reflects the styles of interaction that are used in real life.  Learning to be flexible, be a good listener, keep an open mind, compromise, and act together on an issue are all skills that cooperative learning helps promote.  The individual student is responsible for accomplishing personal goals as well as developing new academic skills.  Many minds together are better than just one.

Classroom Differentiated Learning
  • Workshops provide a purposeful pace with explicit teaching, conferencing, and one-to-one instruction. Reluctant readers and writers, as well as strong readers and writers, are supported and validated in small group settings.
  • Varied teaching modalities, such as questioning strategies, use of graphic organizers, and visual, auditory and kinesthetic approaches to teaching and learning, allow students opportunities to grow.
  • Choice in selection of writing and reading topics within multidisciplinary units, during independent reading, and as a focus for projects promotes students' involvement.
  • Flexible groupings are based on students’ specific goals, activities, and needs. This is determined by on-going, formative assessment of readiness, interests, and learning preferences.
  • Critical Thinking means EVERYONE takes ownership of their learning and is expected to work with rigor at their level.

Common Core Standards

Federally Generated Common Core Standards

California Common Core State Standards

California Common Core State Standards Link

New Staff
We warmly welcome Katia Coate to our department! 

Departmental Awards

Each year, an award is given to recognize one exceptional student in each of the 6th grade core classes. Although all students strive to achieve their personal best, the award recipients have gone above and beyond, excelling in all three Core subject areas – Language Arts, Reading, and History.  These students demonstrate initiative, responsibility, and diligence in their academic endeavors. They exemplify sound character by conducting themselves with integrity and showing respect to others.  

Grading System

A point system is used for most assignments.  Point totals are later converted to percentages. Assignment categories may be weighted to ensure balanced grading.


Percentage Scores:

100% - 90%          A

89% - 80%            B

79% - 70%            C

69% - 60%            D

59% - 0%              F