Middle School Language Arts
Middle school students develop the reading, writing and critical thinking skills they will need to be successful in the 21st century. The Language Arts and Reading Program focuses on these areas:
Reading comprehension helps students be active constructors of meaning. They are asked to bring purpose and life experiences to the text using one or more of the following general reading process strategies: activating prior knowledge, connecting life experiences to the text, setting purposes for reading, predicting, decoding text, summarizing, visualizing, questioning, monitoring understanding, using clarifying and corrective strategies, and reflecting and applying meaning.
Literature ensures that students experience a wide range of text every school year through poems, newspapers, short stories, nonfiction, essays, excerpts and novels. Students read more challenging pieces as they master literary analysis through their middle school years.
Vocabulary/word study helps students learn prefixes, suffixes, and word roots from Greek, Latin and other languages to build basic vocabulary skills. While individual words studied do increase student vocabulary, more importantly students learn the basic building blocks of the English language. Thus, when students encounter unfamiliar terms as they read, they are then able to use the knowledge of word parts and the context clues to decipher these new words.
Fluency means that students say the words they are reading automatically and accurately. Fluent readers read (sound out) or recognize words in text with minimal errors, and read orally with expression.
Writing is the dynamic process that evolves as students are challenged to write for a variety of purposes, including to express personal feelings and thoughts, inform, persuade and respond to literature. Students also write for a wide array of audiences and are taught the appropriate ways to address these audiences’ needs.
Language usage ensures that students have the needed background in grammar and language usage in order to express themselves verbally and in writing. All students learn the basic mechanics and structural elements of English and how to apply these when speaking and writing.
Research skills are critical skills in our ever-changing technological society. Students need to develop the skills to find reliable and appropriate information in order to explore their worlds. Researching and documenting both print and electronic sources correctly are essential skills taught in all ELA classes.
Learn more about our program by exploring the FCPS Essential Curriculum & Parent Resources.