6th Grade Science

6th Grade Science is a blast!  The curriculum lends itself to lots of hands-on experiments, investigations and activities.  My intention and goal is for your child love science this year.  I hope my enthusiasm and passion for the subject is contagious in the classroom!
6th grade science topics include: 

Scientific Investigation, Reasoning, and Logic

This strand represents a set of inquiry skills that defines what a student will be able to do when conducting activities and investigations. The various skill categories are described in the “Investigate and Understand” section of the Introduction to the Science Standards of Learning, and the skills in science standards 6.1 represent more specifically what a student should be able to do as a result of science experiences in sixth grade. Across the grade levels, the skills in the “Scientific Investigation, Reasoning, and Logic” strand form a nearly continuous sequence of investigative skills. It is important that the classroom teacher understand how the skills in standard 6.1 are a key part of this sequence (i.e., K.1, K.2, 1.1, 2.1, 3.1, 4.1, and 5.1). The sixth-grade curriculum should ensure that skills from preceding grades are continuously reinforced and developed.

Force, Motion, and Energy

The strand focuses on student understanding of what force, motion, and energy are and how the concepts are connected. The major topics developed in this strand include magnetism; types of motion; simple machines; and energy forms and transformations, especially electricity, sound, and light. This strand includes science standards K.3, 1.2, 2.2, 3.2, 4.2, 4.3, 5.2, 5.3, 6.2, and 6.3.


This strand focuses on the description, physical properties, and basic structure of matter. The major topics developed in this strand include concepts related to the basic description of objects, phases of matter (solids, liquids, and gases especially water), phase changes, mass and volume, and the structure of classification of matter. This strand includes science standards K.4, K.5, 1.3, 2.3, 3.3, 5.4, 6.4, 6.5, and 6.6.

Living Systems

The strand begins in second grade and builds from basic to more complex understandings of a system, both at the ecosystem level and at the level of the cell. The concept of kingdoms of organisms and a general classification of organisms are also presented. The other major topics developed in the strand include the types of relationships among organisms in a food chain, different types of environments and the organisms they support, and the relationship between organisms and their nonliving environment. This strand includes science standards 2.5, 3.5, 3.6, 4.5, 5.5, and 6.7.

Interrelationships in Earth/Space Systems

The strand focuses on student understanding of how Earth systems are connected and how Earth interacts with other members of the solar system. The topics developed include shadows; relationships between the sun and Earth; weather types, patterns, and instruments; properties of soil; characteristics of the ocean environment; and organization of the solar system. This strand includes science standards K.7, 1.6, 2.6, 3.7, 4.6, 4.7, 4.8, 5.6, and 6.8.

Earth Resources

The strand focuses on student understanding of the role of resources in the natural world and how people can utilize those resources in a sustainable way. An important idea represented in this strand is the importance of managing resources. This begins with basic ideas of conservation and proceeds to more abstract consideration of costs and benefits. The topics developed include conservation of materials, soil and plants as resources, energy use, water, Virginia’s resources, and how public policy impacts the environment. This strand includes science standards K.11, 1.8, 2.8, 3.10, 3.11, 4.9, and 6.9.

For more information about the curriculum and pacing guide, visit the Harrisonburg Public Schools' science webpage: http://web.harrisonburg.k12.va.us/science/

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