What Language Arts Are Taught In Seventh Grade?

Written by Dan

As a parent, it can be tough to keep track of everything your child is learning during their time in school. You may have heard about seventh-grade language arts class and wondered what it entails. Well, you’ve come to the right place!

In this blog post, we’ll cover everything you need to know about seventh-grade language arts classes: common skills that they cover, how to support them in their studies at home, and other useful information for parents looking for guidance. So let’s dive in and explore one of the most essential components of middle school education !

Overview of Language Arts in Seventh Grade 

Seventh grade language arts is crucial in developing a student’s literacy and communication skills. It focuses on enhancing reading, writing, listening, and speaking abilities and building critical thinking and analytical skills. The curriculum engages students in diverse texts and genres, encourages creative expression, and fosters an appreciation for literature.

Reading Comprehension

In seventh grade, students are exposed to various literary genres, including fiction, non-fiction, poetry, and drama. They delve into complex themes and develop their ability to analyze texts, identify main ideas, and make inferences. Students also work on expanding their vocabulary and improving their fluency in reading.

Key reading comprehension skills covered in seventh grade include:

  • Analyzing plot, setting, and character development
  • Identifying themes and making connections between texts
  • Understanding literary devices, such as metaphor, simile, and personification
  • Comparing and contrasting different perspectives and cultural experiences


Seventh-grade writing focuses on developing coherent, well-organized, and engaging compositions. Students learn to write various types of essays, such as narrative, informational, and argumentative, using appropriate tone, style, and structure. Emphasis is placed on proper grammar, punctuation, spelling, and the use of transition words and phrases to create a smooth flow.

Key writing skills covered in seventh grade include:

  • Crafting strong thesis statements and supporting arguments with evidence
  • Developing well-structured paragraphs with topic sentences and supporting details
  • Using descriptive language and sensory details to enhance narratives
  • Revising and editing drafts to improve clarity, coherence, and overall quality

Listening and Speaking

Effective communication is an essential component of seventh-grade language arts. Students participate in group discussions, debates, and presentations to develop their listening and speaking skills. They learn to listen actively, ask relevant questions, and express their ideas clearly and persuasively.

Key listening and speaking skills covered in seventh grade include:

  • Engaging in active listening and providing constructive feedback
  • Presenting information and arguments in a clear, organized manner
  • Using persuasive techniques and evidence to support claims
  • Adapting speech to different contexts and audiences

Developing Reading and Writing Skills 

Seventh grade is crucial for students to develop their reading and writing skills further. As they transition from elementary to middle school, the expectations for their academic abilities increase significantly. To ensure success, students need to have a strong foundation in reading comprehension and writing proficiency.

Here are some tips and strategies to help seventh graders improve their reading and writing skills:

1. Encourage Independent Reading

One of the best ways to develop reading skills is by encouraging students to read independently. Provide a variety of age-appropriate books, magazines, and online articles that cater to their interests. This will help them stay engaged and motivated to read regularly.

2. Teach Critical Thinking and Reading Comprehension Skills

To improve reading comprehension, teach students to ask questions while they read. Encourage them to analyze the text, make predictions, and draw connections between their reading and their experiences. This will help them become more active readers who think critically about what they read.

3. Focus on Vocabulary Development

Expanding a student’s vocabulary is essential for improving both reading and writing skills. Introduce new words in context and provide opportunities for students to use them in writing exercises. Make use of vocabulary-building tools like flashcards, word games, and online resources to keep learning engaging and fun.

4. Develop Writing Skills through Varied Assignments

Give students opportunities to practice different types of writing, such as persuasive essays, narrative stories, research papers, and journal entries. This will allow them to develop a range of writing skills and become more versatile writers. Provide clear guidelines and expectations for each assignment, and offer constructive feedback to help them improve.

5. Teach Grammar and Sentence Structure

Strong grammar and sentence structure are essential components of good writing. Teach students the rules of grammar and provide them with exercises to practice these skills. Encourage them to revise their writing, focusing on improving sentence structure and clarity.

6. Utilize Peer Editing and Collaboration

Working with peers can be an effective way for students to improve their reading and writing skills. Organize group activities that involve reading aloud, discussing texts, and collaborating on writing projects. Encourage students to provide constructive feedback to each other, helping them become more critical and thoughtful readers and writers.

7. Incorporate Technology

Leverage technology to enhance the learning experience. Use online tools and resources to help students practice reading and writing skills, such as digital libraries, grammar checkers, and interactive writing platforms. This can make learning more engaging and accessible for students who may struggle with traditional methods.

8. Establish a Supportive Learning Environment

Create a classroom environment that encourages open communication, collaboration, and mutual respect. This will help students feel more comfortable sharing their ideas and asking for help when needed. Be patient and understanding, and offer individualized support to students who may need extra assistance.

Key Components of Grammar and Usage Instruction

  1. Parts of Speech: In seventh grade, students should be able to identify and understand the eight parts of speech: nouns, pronouns, verbs, adjectives, adverbs, prepositions, conjunctions, and interjections. They should also be introduced to more complex grammatical concepts such as gerunds, infinitives, and participles.
  2. Sentence Structure: Students should learn how to construct various types of sentences, including simple, compound, and complex. They should understand how to use coordinating and subordinating conjunctions and the proper placement of commas and other punctuation marks.
  3. Punctuation and Capitalization: Seventh-graders should be able to use punctuation marks correctly, including commas, semicolons, colons, apostrophes, quotation marks, and parentheses. They should also understand the rules for capitalizing words, including proper nouns, titles, and the first word in a sentence.
  4. Agreement: Students should be able to identify and correct subject-verb and pronoun-antecedent agreement errors. They should also understand the importance of consistency in verb tense and voice.
  5. Modifiers: Seventh-graders should learn how to use adjectives and adverbs correctly to modify nouns and verbs. They should be able to recognize and correct misplaced and dangling modifiers.
  6. Vocabulary Development: Expanding students’ vocabulary is essential to grammar and usage instruction. Teachers should introduce new words and encourage students to use them in their writing and speaking.
  7. Proofreading and Editing: Students should develop the skills to proofread and edit their work, identifying and correcting errors in grammar, usage, punctuation, and spelling.

Teaching Strategies for Grammar and Usage Instruction

  1. Direct Instruction: Teachers can use direct instruction to explain grammar rules and demonstrate correct usage through examples and non-examples. This approach can be particularly helpful for introducing new concepts or reinforcing previously learned skills.
  2. Interactive Activities: Engaging students in interactive activities such as group discussions, peer editing, and games can help them apply grammar and usage concepts fun and collaboratively.
  3. Writing Practice: Encourage students to practice their grammar and usage skills by incorporating them into their writing assignments. Teachers can provide feedback and guidance to help students improve their writing over time.
  4. Error Analysis: Have students analyze and correct errors in grammar and usage in sample sentences or paragraphs. This activity helps students develop their proofreading skills and reinforces their understanding of grammar rules.
  5. Online Resources: Utilize online resources, such as grammar websites and apps, to supplement classroom instruction. These tools can offer additional practice and reinforcement for students who need extra support or enrichment.

Literature Appreciation and Analysis 

Literature appreciation and analysis in seventh grade is crucial to a student’s education. It helps them develop critical thinking skills, enhances their creativity, and broadens their understanding of the world. At this stage, students are introduced to more complex literary works and are expected to analyze and appreciate various aspects of literature, such as theme, character development, plot, and symbolism.

1. Reading Comprehension

In seventh grade, students are exposed to various literary genres, including fiction, non-fiction, poetry, and drama. They learn to identify a text’s main idea, supporting details, and themes. As their reading comprehension skills improve, they become better equipped to understand and interpret complex literary works.

2. Literary Elements

Seventh-grade students are taught to recognize and analyze various literary elements within a text. These include:

  • Plot: The sequence of events in a story.
  • Setting: The time and place where a story takes place.
  • Characters: The individuals who participate in the action of a story.
  • Conflict: The struggle between opposing forces that drives the plot.
  • Theme: The central message or lesson in a story.

3. Character Analysis

Seventh graders delve deeper into the study of characters in literary works. Throughout the story, they learn to identify character traits, motivations, and changes. This helps them better understand the characters’ actions and how they contribute to the work’s overall theme.

4. Analyzing Literary Techniques

Students also learn to identify and analyze various literary techniques used by authors to enhance their storytelling. These include:

  • Foreshadowing: Hints or clues about future events in the story.
  • Imagery: Descriptive language that appeals to the senses.
  • Symbolism is using objects, characters, or events to represent abstract ideas or concepts.
  • Irony: A contrast between what is expected and what actually occurs.
  • Point of view: The perspective from which a story is told.

5. Appreciating Different Perspectives

Literature appreciation in seventh grade also involves understanding and appreciating different perspectives, cultures, and historical contexts. Students are exposed to literary works from various time periods and regions, allowing them to gain insight into diverse beliefs, values, and experiences.

6. Developing Writing Skills

As students analyze and appreciate literature, they also improve their writing skills. They learn to write coherent and well-structured essays, expressing their thoughts and opinions on various literary works. This helps them develop their critical thinking abilities and communication skills.

Vocabulary Building

Seventh grade is a crucial year for students transitioning from elementary to middle school and facing new academic challenges. One essential skill that needs to be honed during this time is vocabulary building. Developing a strong vocabulary helps students excel in their language arts classes and enables them to communicate effectively in all subject areas.

Why Vocabulary Building Matters

A robust vocabulary is vital for several reasons:

  1. Reading comprehension: A rich vocabulary allows students to understand complex texts better, which is critical as they encounter more advanced reading materials in middle school and beyond.
  2. Writing skills: A broad vocabulary enables students to express their thoughts and ideas clearly and concisely in writing assignments.
  3. Critical thinking: Understanding the nuances of different words helps students develop critical thinking skills essential for problem-solving and decision-making.
  4. Communication: Articulating thoughts and ideas effectively is a foundational skill for success in school and life.

Strategies for Vocabulary Building in Seventh Grade

There are several effective methods to help seventh-graders build their vocabulary:

1. Reading

Encourage students to read diverse materials, including fiction, non-fiction, newspapers, and magazines. Exposure to various genres and topics naturally introduces them to new words and help them learn their meanings through context.

2. Word Lists

Provide students with age-appropriate word lists tailored to their grade level, and have them practice using these words in sentences. Regularly reviewing and expanding these lists will ensure continuous vocabulary growth.

3. Flashcards

Flashcards are a time-tested method for memorizing new words. Have students create flashcards with the word on one side and its definition, along with an example sentence, on the other. Encourage them to review the flashcards daily.

4. Word Games

Incorporate fun word games into the classroom or at home, such as crossword puzzles, word searches, and Scrabble. These games are enjoyable and help students learn new words and reinforce their understanding of existing ones.

5. Context Clues

Teach students how to use context clues to determine the meaning of unfamiliar words they encounter in texts. This skill will enable them to expand their vocabulary independently while reading.

6. Root Words, Prefixes, and Suffixes

Introduce students to common root words, prefixes, and suffixes, and help them understand how these components can change a word’s meaning. This knowledge will allow them to decode unfamiliar words more easily and enhance their overall vocabulary.

7. Set Goals

Encourage students to set personal vocabulary goals, such as learning a certain number of new words each week. Track their progress and celebrate their achievements to keep them motivated.

Public Speaking and Debate Skills

Importance of Public Speaking Skills

Public speaking is an important skill that helps individuals effectively convey their ideas, opinions, and knowledge. In seventh grade, students can benefit from learning public speaking skills in the following ways:

  1. Boosts Confidence: Speaking confidently in front of an audience can improve a student’s self-esteem. This newfound confidence will carry over into other aspects of their lives, such as academics and social interactions.
  2. Enhances Communication Skills: Learning how to present ideas clearly and concisely is crucial for effective communication. Developing these skills in seventh grade can help students become better communicators in both their personal and professional lives.
  3. Promotes Critical Thinking: Public speaking encourages students to think critically about their ideas, arguments, and evidence. This skill is essential for success in various fields and industries.
  4. Supports Academic Growth: Public speaking skills can help students excel in their schoolwork by enabling them to present their thoughts and knowledge more effectively during class discussions and presentations.

Importance of Debate Skills

Debate is a competitive and structured form of argumentation that helps students develop essential skills, such as research, critical thinking, and persuasive communication. Here’s why learning debate skills is crucial for seventh graders:

  1. Fosters Analytical Thinking: Debating requires participants to analyze complex issues, evaluate evidence, and develop logical arguments. These skills can help students excel in their academic pursuits and future careers.
  2. Encourages Active Listening: In a debate, participants must listen carefully to their opponents’ arguments and respond accordingly. This skill can improve students’ ability to understand and respect different perspectives.
  3. Teaches Persuasion Techniques: Debating helps students learn how to persuade others by using logical reasoning, evidence, and compelling arguments. This skill is valuable in various aspects of life, including professional and personal relationships.
  4. Develops Emotional Intelligence: Participating in debates allows students to manage their emotions effectively, as they must remain calm and composed during heated discussions. Emotional intelligence is a crucial skill that can help individuals navigate challenging situations in life.

How to Develop Public Speaking and Debate Skills in Seventh Grade

To help seventh graders develop public speaking and debate skills, teachers and parents can:

  1. Organize Classroom Activities: Incorporate group discussions, presentations, and mock debates into the curriculum. These activities will provide students with opportunities to practice their skills in a safe and supportive environment.
  2. Encourage Participation in Clubs and Competitions: Many schools have debate clubs or public speaking competitions. Encourage students to join these clubs and participate in local, regional, or national events.
  3. Provide Constructive Feedback: Offer constructive criticism and praise to help students improve their skills. Encourage them to reflect on their performance and identify areas for growth.
  4. Use Online Resources: There are many online resources available, such as tutorials, videos, and articles, that can help students learn and practice public speaking and debate techniques.

Seventh grade language arts classes are full of learning and exploration – what a great way to start middle school! Not only do these classes teach vital literacy skills, but also allow for creativity and collaboration. It’s an important time for students to bridge the gap between elementary and high school learning while working on communication, comprehension, writing, speaking, grammar and reading.

What’s more, there is still plenty of room for fun in language arts classes – from book discussions and essay writing to collaborative projects and presenting in front of classmates. So if you’re entering seventh grade this year or know someone who is, let them know that language arts will be a key part of their learning journey! And don’t forget to check out our other articles — they could prove useful for anyone interested in seventh grade language arts topics. Until next time!

About The Author

I'm Dan Higgins, one of the faces behind The Teaching Couple. With 15 years in the education sector and a decade as a teacher, I've witnessed the highs and lows of school life. Over the years, my passion for supporting fellow teachers and making school more bearable has grown. The Teaching Couple is my platform to share strategies, tips, and insights from my journey. Together, we can shape a better school experience for all.






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