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Grade Level Writing Expectations - Sixth Grade

Writes Clearly and Effectively

Ideas/Development

  • Writes well-rounded, researched, and reasoned texts on a variety of topics and themes
  • Includes descriptive detail, cause and effect, and comparative facts in informational writing
  • Analyzes a theme or issue in informational and literary texts and in poetry
  • Varies method of developing character, setting, mood, and suspense, and of indicating resolution in narrative
  • Selects from an increasing repertoire of structures and techniques to maintain own interest as well as that of audience
  • Maintains a perspective or argues point of view from third person as well as first
  • Provides detailed labeling, captions, headings, and sub-headings when appropriate
  • Selects relevant information for a specific purpose from a range of material and paraphrases, expands, or summarizes it according to purpose
  • Responds to questions and texts from a considered personal stance supported by experiences or examples

Organization

  • Uses a variety of leads and conclusions

Voice

  • Maintains own voice, experiments with other voices, exploring new audiences, topics, and forms

Sentence Fluency

  • Uses complex sentences competently in a range of contexts

Word Choice

  • Uses precise and specialized language in content writing
  • Checks nuances of meaning or searches for alternatives to words usually chosen
Conventions
Spelling Capitalization Punctuation Grammar & Usage Sentences / Paragraphs
  • Correct spelling of grade-level words
  • Resources to correct own spelling
  • Languages, races, nationalities, and religions
  • Resources to correct capitalization
  • Commas in appositives (e.g., Bob, the dog, was fun.)
  • Apostrophe to show quotation within a quotation in dialogue (e.g., He asked, "Didn't you just say, `I want to go home.' ")
  • Correct use of italics, underlining, or quotation marks for titles
  • Correct use of parentheses (e.g., Bob (the dog) is fun.)
  • Colon to introduce a list (e.g., We received the following items: books, pencils, and pens.)
  • Hyphen to make a compound word or form an adjective (e.g., three-year-old car)
  • Commas to set off direct address (e.g., "Mom, may I go to the dance?")
  • Resources to check punctuation
  • Generally correct grammar and usage
  • Agreement of pronoun and its referent (e.g., A person needs his or her own space.)
  • Resources to check usage
  • Parallel construction particularly in informational and technical writing (e.g., Parallel:
    • chooses action verbs
    • selects vivid modifiers
      Not parallel:
    • chooses verbs _ modifiers are correct)
  • Acknowledges and cites sources correctly

 

Understands and Uses the Writing Process

Prewriting

  • Devotes more time to prewriting, revising, and editing stages, working for clear meaning and effective presentation

Drafting

  • Plans and drafts from oral communication
  • Shows ability to address several points of view

Sharing/Responding

  • Collaborates with peers on long-term projects (e.g., class newspaper)
  • Accepts criticism as a means for improving writing

Revising

  • Devotes more time to prewriting, revising, and editing stages, working for clear meaning and effective presentation
  • Revises and edits to maintain reader's interest while emphasizing point of view and style

Editing

  • Devotes more time to prewriting, revising, and editing stages, working for clear meaning and effective presentation
  • Revises and edits to maintain reader's interest while emphasizing point of view and style
  • Edits to meet 6th grade standards of conventions
  • Understands and uses standard proofreading marks

Publishing

  • Publishes using a wider range of graphics and illustrative
  • material often presented through technological means
  • Publishes work independently
  • Selects from a variety of publishing options

Reflecting

  • Evaluates own work and that of others for the craft of writing as well as the content
  • Self-reflects on pieces selected for portfolio

Addresses Audience, Purpose, and Form

  • Pursues personal writing interest independently
  • Writes about the same topic, theme, or issue in more than one form or purpose (e.g., speeches, interviews)
  • Uses technical and career documents to gather information

Suggested Text Forms

  Literature or Literary Forms Informational, Task-oriented, and/or Technical Writing
New to
Grade Level
 
  • Business letters to persuade
  • Literary analyses (explain about main idea)
  • Film and drama reviews
Previously
Introduced
  • Narrative essays
  • Narrative: experiential stories
  • Narrative: fictional stories
  • Personal letters, cards, and notes
  • Diaries/journals
  • Recounts
  • Rhymes
  • Retellings
  • Poems: patterned poetry, couplet, free verse, quatrain, haiku
  • Plays
  • Biographies and autobiographies
  • Tall tales
  • Comics
  • Personal essays
  • Literary analyses (explain about setting)
  • Editorials
  • Interviews
  • Minutes
  • Labels
  • Captions
  • Informational sentence
  • Recounts
  • Answers to questions
  • Questions and answers
  • Instructions (explain how to)
  • Learning logs
  • Reports
  • Reviews
  • Posters
  • Directions (to a location)
  • Paraphrase
  • Expository writing (explain about)
  • Expository speeches (explain about)
  • Book reviews and reports
  • Brochures
  • Procedures (to a game, to make something)
  • Expository essays (explain why, compare/contrast)
  • Expository speeches (explain why)
  • Field notes
  • Newspaper and magazine articles
  • Summaries
  • Business letters to thank or to request Business letter to complain, explain
  • Letters to the editor
  • Memos
  • Literary analyses (explain about character, plot)