English Language Arts – Grades 6-8

Historic newspaper articles provide excellent material for use in lessons geared toward meeting Oregon Common Core State Standards for English Language Arts (ELA) within the realm of Social Studies. Below is a list of applicable Grades 6-8 ELA standards and lesson plans geared towards each – lessons are ideal for integrating reading, writing, and literacy with U.S. History, the Reconstruction Period, and other related topics covered in Grades 6-8. Though these lesson plans focus on Grades 6-8, they are adaptable for all grades 9-12.


(Reading in History/Social Studies, Science, and Technical Subjects)

ELA.RH.6-8.1 Cite specific textual evidence to support analysis of primary and secondary sources. 

ELA.RH.6-8.2 Determine the central ideas or information of a primary or secondary source; provide an accurate summary of the source distinct from prior knowledge or opinions.

ELA.RH.6-8.3 Identify key steps in a text’s description of a process related to history/social studies (e.g., how a bill becomes law, how interest rates are raised or lowered).

ELA.RH.6-8.4 Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text, including vocabulary specific to domains related to history/social studies.

ELA.RH.6-8.5 Describe how a text presents information (e.g., sequentially, comparatively, causally).

ELA.RH.6-8.6 Identify aspects of a text that reveal an author’s point of view or purpose (e.g., loaded language, inclusion or avoidance of particular facts).

ELA.RH.6-8.7 Integrate visual information (e.g., in charts, graphs, photographs, videos, or maps) with other information in print and digital texts.

ELA.RH.6-8.8 Distinguish among fact, opinion, and reasoned judgment in a text.


(Speaking & Listening)

ELA.SL.6-8.1 Engage effectively in a range of collaborative discussions (one-on-one, in groups, and teacher-led) with diverse partners on grade 6 topics, texts, and issues, building on others’ ideas and expressing their own clearly.

ELA.SL.6-8.3 Delineate a speaker’s argument and specific claims, distinguishing claims that are supported by reasons and evidence from claims that are not.

ELA.SL.6-8.4 Present claims and findings, sequencing ideas logically and using pertinent descriptions, facts, and details to accentuate main ideas or themes; use appropriate eye contact, adequate volume, and clear pronunciation.

ELA.SL.6-8.6 Adapt speech to a variety of contexts and tasks, demonstrating command of formal English when indicated or appropriate. (See grade 8 Language standards 1 and 3 here for specific expectations.)


(Writing in History/Social Studies, Science, and Technical Subjects)

ELA.WHST.6-8.1 Write arguments focused on discipline-specific content.

ELA.WHST.6-8.2 Write informative/explanatory texts, including the narration of historical events, scientific procedures/experiments, or technical processes.

ELA.WHST.6-8.4 Produce clear and coherent writing in which the development, organization, and style are appropriate to task, purpose, and audience.

ELA.WHST.6-8.5 With some guidance and support from peers and adults, develop and strengthen writing as needed by planning, revising, editing, rewriting, or trying a new approach, focusing on how well purpose and audience have been addressed.

ELA.WHST.6-8.6 Use technology, including the Internet, to produce and publish writing and present the relationships between information and ideas clearly and efficiently.

ELA.WHST.6-8.7 Conduct short research projects to answer a question (including a self-generated question), drawing on several sources and generating additional related, focused questions that allow for multiple avenues of exploration.

ELA.WHST.6-8.8 Gather relevant information from multiple print and digital sources, using search terms effectively; assess the credibility and accuracy of each source; and quote or paraphrase the data and conclusions of others while avoiding plagiarism and following a standard format for citation.

ELA.WHST.6-8.9 Draw evidence from informational texts to support analysis, reflection, and research.

ELA.WHST.6-8.10 Write routinely over extended timeframes (time for reflection and revision) and shorter timeframes (a single sitting or a day or two) for a range of discipline-specific tasks, purposes, and audiences.

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