The sixth grade English student is an active participant in classroom discussions. S/he presents personal opinions, understands differing viewpoints, delivers a formal speech, participates in dramatic presentations, distinguishes between fact and opinion, and analyzes the effectiveness of group communication. The student builds on the study of word origins and continues vocabulary development from grade five. S/he reads independently for at least thirty minutes a night a variety of fiction and nonfiction for appreciation and comprehension, and will record reading progress. The student also plans, drafts, revises, and edits narratives, descriptions, and explanations, with attention to composition and style as well as sentence and paragraph formation, grammar usage, and mechanics. S/he also demonstrates correct use of language, spelling, and mechanics by applying grammatical conventions in writing and speaking. A sixth grade student becomes familiar with and begins to utilize the 6 + 1 writing framework. Particular emphasis in writing is on composing effective and correct paragraphs. Students should be able to confidently write narrative, expository (informational), and descriptive texts of between 400 to 700 words or more by the end of sixth grade. Sixth grade students begin to establish a formal writing portfolio that contains samples of polished writing and which reflects attention to drafting strategies, composition style, and matters of correctness.