Sixth Class is the eighth and final year in primary school for the children before they move on to secondary school. Children are aged 11-12 in sixth class. In sixth class, the children have a full day of school starting at 8.45 and finishing at 14.25 (Monday to Friday). They partake in 12 subjects throughout the course of the week and 3 core subjects of English, Irish and Maths each day. As appropriate the teacher will teach these through a thematic approach. For more information on how you can help your child in sixth class, please see some advice from the NCCA.
Focus on oral language, reading and writing. Children engage in all aspects of the curriculum.
Writing: Children will continue to develop themselves as writers. They will focus on finessing each writing genre. They will become consistent in their application of their grammar and spellings rules learnt throughout their school years.
Reading: Focus on continuing to build on their fluency, comprehension strategies and confidence as a reader that has been developed up to sixth class.
Oral language: Sixth class oral language is taught both directly and incorporated throughout almost every lesson. There is a focus on developing the children’s vocabulary on a wide range of topics, continue to work on higher order thinking and answer open ending questions confidently and using the appropriate language. The children are encouraged to ask, argue and justify their points during different social situations throughout the day.
Oral Language: The basis for every lesson, the children will work on language functions, grammar rules and vocabulary development throughout Sixth Class.
Reading: Continuing to focus on comprehension, fluency and pronunciation of words within small texts. Develop their word attack skills for unknown words or phrases that they may come across.
Writing: Continuing to work on applying all grammar and spelling rules and further pushing their use of vocabulary and sentence complexity in small pieces of writing.
Areas covered in Sixth Class: Number, Algebra, Shape and Space, Measures, Data. Continuing to develop some of the areas that were introduced in Fifth Class such as: Long Division with and without decimals, Fractions beyond twelfths, Multiplying and Dividing Fractions Percentages, Positive and Negative Numbers, Square Numbers, Comparing and calculating angles and Variables.
Social, Personal and Health Education
In Sixth Class, children will continue to learn about human reproduction. This is a logical next step from what they have learned about human development, reproduction and puberty in Fourth/Fifth Class and builds on the understanding of the human body they have been developing since they started school. If you would like more information on this, the Busy Bodies programme is an excellent resource developed by the HSE for parents and teachers of children aged 10-14.
Preparation for Secondary School
Throughout Sixth Class the children will focus on some key skills that will be crucial when they move on to secondary school. They will be incorporated into their everyday subjects throughout the year. Some examples of these skills are:
- Maths: reading and following a timetable.
- Homework: giving specific due dates for work to be completed by.
- SPHE: talking about secondary school and change.
- Oral Language: Teach key words for specific subjects such as Home Economics, Metalwork (Materials and Technology), Business Studies, etc.
Suggested books for children in sixth class.
Children’s Books Ireland also issues Reading Guides to newly published books every year, arranged by theme and age.