6th Grade Reading:Help Your Child Excel at Reading

Learn specific ways to improve and help sustain his love for reading in 6th grade.

By Anne Schwartzberg



Two friends studying

Your child has developed from simply sounding-out words to comprehending and analyzing complex text – signs of a skilled reader. But there’s still much you can do to help him grow further. Learn more about 6th grade reading so you can help your child sustain his love for reading and navigate through expectations at school.

Comprehension in 6th grade reading

Comprehension for a 6th grade reader involves understanding text and ideas on many levels. He is expected to think about and reflect on math, science, and history texts. Help your child understand what he’s reading by using these strategies:

  • Discuss what your child already knows about the subject.
  • Have him explain whether or not text makes sense; this is called “monitoring understanding”.
  • Encourage re-reading to help clarify understanding.
  • Suggest he write down main ideas and supporting details of each paragraph.
  • Have him write down questions or ask them aloud during reading.

 6th Grade reading: Behind the Story

In language arts class, reading involves a variety of genres and techniques that cover complex historical fiction, poetry, non-fiction, and online texts. Many of the techniques involve a careful review of story and author approaches. Support your 6th grader by suggesting she read a variety of genres independently, and to think further about storylines with these tips:

  • Ask questions about her reading like “what problem did the main character overcome"?
  • Ask her to visualize and then describe what’s happening in the text.
  • Have her make predictions about what might happen next, even predictions about what happens after the end.
  • Have a discussion comparing styles of different authors. Ask her about the way each writer describes settings or uses dialogue.

6th Grade reading: Word up

Words and their meaning are cornerstones in reading. Your child learns new key vocabulary words in every subject area of school, so keep plenty of dictionaries and thesauruses on hand. Here are more tips to help your sixth grade reader get used to new words:

  • Have him create flashcards with a new word on the front of the card and its definition on the back, and make a game out of using them.
  • Use the new words as often as you can in everyday life to guarantee exposure.
  • Have your child write down unfamiliar words on sticky notes during family reading time and look them up later.
Reading Comprehension
Milestones & Expectations
Age 11
Reading Comprehension
Content Area Reading
Child Development and Behavior