Chapter 128. Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills
for Spanish Language Arts and Reading and English as a Second Language
Subchapter B. Middle School


Statutory Authority: The provisions of this Subchapter B issued under the Texas Education Code, §§7.102(c)(4), 28.002, 28.005, and 29.051, unless otherwise noted.


§128.17. Implementation of Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills for Spanish Language Arts and Reading, Middle School, Beginning with School Year 2009-2010.

(a)  The provisions of §128.18 of this subchapter shall be implemented by school districts beginning with the 2009-2010 school year.

(b)  Students must develop the ability to comprehend and process material from a wide range of texts. Student expectations for Reading/Comprehension Skills as provided in this subsection are described for the appropriate grade level.

Figure: 19 TAC §128.17(b)

Source: The provisions of this §128.17 adopted to be effective November 26, 2008, 33 TexReg 9465; amended to be effective February 22, 2010, 35 TexReg 1463.


§128.18. Spanish Language Arts and Reading, Grade 6, Beginning with School Year 2009-2010.

(a)  Introduction.

(1)  The Spanish Language Arts and Reading Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS) reflect language arts standards that are authentic to the Spanish language and Spanish literacy, not mere translations from English. The Spanish Language Arts and Reading TEKS are organized into the following strands: Reading, where students read and understand a wide variety of literary and informational texts; Writing, where students compose a variety of written texts with a clear controlling idea, coherent organization, and sufficient detail; Research, where students are expected to know how to locate a range of relevant sources and evaluate, synthesize, and present ideas and information; Listening and Speaking, where students listen and respond to the ideas of others while contributing their own ideas in conversations and in groups; and Oral and Written Conventions, where students learn how to use the oral and written conventions of the Spanish language in speaking and writing. The standards are cumulative--students will continue to address earlier standards as needed while they attend to standards for their grade. In sixth grade, students will engage in activities that build on their prior knowledge and skills in order to strengthen their reading, writing, and oral language skills. Students should read, write, and be read to on a daily basis.

(2)  Research consistently shows that literacy development in the student's native language facilitates learning in English (Collier & Thomas, 1997; Cummins, 2001). Students can develop cognition, learn, and achieve best when they can understand the language of instruction (August, Calderon, & Carlo, 2003). Students who have strong literacy skills in their primary language can be expected to transfer those skills to English and progress rapidly in learning in English. Although English and Spanish look very similar on the surface (i.e., similar alphabets; directionality; cognates) the conventions of each language presuppose the reading process in that language. Consequently, systematic instruction in the appropriate sequence of skills is critical. For this reason, the Spanish Language Arts and Reading TEKS reflect language arts standards that are authentic to the Spanish language and not mere translations from English.

(A)  Spanish, as opposed to English, has a closer letter-sound relationship and clearly defined syllable boundaries. The syllable in Spanish is a more critical unit of phonological awareness than in English because of the consistent phoneme-grapheme correspondence. Syllables are important units for Spanish because of their strong effect in visual word recognition (Carreiras et al., 1993) and their major role in predicting Spanish reading success. In addition, Spanish presents a much higher level of orthographic transparency than English and does not rely on sight words for decoding. This orthographic transparency accelerates the decoding process and the focus quickly moves to fluency and comprehension. Spanish uses frequency words that are identified by the rate of occurrence in grade appropriate text and used to build on fluency and comprehension. However, in English, "sight" words are used because of words that are not decodable such as "are" or "one." In Spanish, decoding issues are not as prevalent as issues of comprehension. These specific features of the Spanish language will influence reading methodology and development.

(B)  Spanish instruction maximizes access to English content. Students with strong literacy skills in Spanish phonemic awareness, phonics, vocabulary, and reading comprehension can be expected to transfer those skills to English. The "transfer" of knowledge and skills from one language to another refers to the metalinguistic and metacognitive processes and awareness that students gain in developing literacy in two languages. Current research on bilingual instruction (e.g., August & Shanahan, 2006; Genesse et al., 2006) shows how students use native literacy knowledge when learning to read and write in another language.

(C)  The effective transfer of skills transpires as students develop their metalinguistic skills and as they engage in a contrastive analysis of the Spanish and English languages (Cummins, 2007). Transfer matters occur within fundamentals of language that are common to Spanish and English; within fundamentals that are similar, but not exact in both languages; and in fundamentals specific to each language and not applicable to the other language. The strength of learning through formal instruction in Spanish determines the extent of transfer in English (August, Calderon, & Carlo, 2000; Slavin & Calderon, 2001; Garcia, 2001). In other words, for transfer to occur, comprehension of the "rules" and the realization of their applicability to the new language specific tasks are necessary.

(D)  The concept of transfer necessitates the use of both languages in which both (Spanish and English) co-exist with flexibility. As a result of working within two language systems, students' metalinguistic and metacognitive skills are enhanced when they learn about the similarities and differences between languages. This is reliant on the type of bilingual program model being used (See Texas Education Code, §29.066).

(3)  To meet Public Education Goal 1 of the Texas Education Code, §4.002, which states, "The students in the public education system will demonstrate exemplary performance in the reading and writing of the English language," students will accomplish the essential knowledge, skills, and student expectations at Grade 6 as described in subsection (b) of this section.

(4)  To meet Texas Education Code, §28.002(h), which states, "... each school district shall foster the continuation of the tradition of teaching United States and Texas history and the free enterprise system in regular subject matter and in reading courses and in the adoption of textbooks," students will be provided oral and written narratives as well as other informational texts that can help them to become thoughtful, active citizens who appreciate the basic democratic values of our state and nation.

(b)  Knowledge and skills.

(1)  Reading/Fluency. Students read grade-level text with fluency and comprehension. Students are expected to:

(A)  read aloud grade-level text with accuracy, expression, appropriate phrasing, and comprehension; and

(B)  use prosody when reading aloud grade-level text based on the reading purpose and the nature of the text.

(2)  Reading/Vocabulary Development. Students understand new vocabulary and use it when reading and writing. Students are expected to:

(A)  determine the meaning of grade-level academic Spanish words derived from Latin, Greek, or other linguistic roots and affixes;

(B)  use context (e.g., cause and effect or compare and contrast organizational text structures) to determine or clarify the meaning of unfamiliar or multiple meaning words;

(C)  complete analogies that describe part to whole or whole to part (e.g., motor:carro como aire: ____ or carro:motor como llanta: ____); and

(D)  use a dictionary, a glossary, or a thesaurus (printed or electronic) to determine the meanings, syllabication, spelling, alternate word choices, and parts of speech of words.

(3)  Reading/Comprehension of Literary Text/Theme and Genre. Students analyze, make inferences and draw conclusions about theme and genre in different cultural, historical, and contemporary contexts and provide evidence from the text to support their understanding. Students are expected to:

(A)  infer the implicit theme of a work of fiction, distinguishing theme from the topic;

(B)  analyze the function of stylistic elements (e.g., magic helper, rule of three) in traditional and classical literature from various cultures; and

(C)  compare and contrast the historical and cultural settings of two literary works.

(4)  Reading/Comprehension of Literary Text/Poetry. Students understand, make inferences and draw conclusions about the structure and elements of poetry and provide evidence from text to support their understanding. Students are expected to explain how figurative language (e.g., personification, metaphors, similes, hyperbole) contributes to the meaning of a poem.

(5)  Reading/Comprehension of Literary Text/Drama. Students understand, make inferences and draw conclusions about the structure and elements of drama and provide evidence from text to support their understanding. Students are expected to explain the similarities and differences in the setting, characters, and plot of a play, including original works in Spanish, and those in a film based upon the same story line.

(6)  Reading/Comprehension of Literary Text/Fiction. Students understand, make inferences and draw conclusions about the structure and elements of fiction and provide evidence from text to support their understanding. Students are expected to:

(A)  summarize the elements of plot development (e.g., rising action, turning point, climax, falling action, denouement) in various works of fiction;

(B)  recognize dialect and conversational voice and explain how authors use dialect to convey character; and

(C)  describe different forms of point-of-view, including first- and third-person.

(7)  Reading/Comprehension of Literary Text/Literary Nonfiction. Students understand, make inferences and draw conclusions about the varied structural patterns and features of literary nonfiction and provide evidence from text to support their understanding. Students are expected to identify the literary language and devices used in memoirs and personal narratives and compare their characteristics with those of an autobiography.

(8)  Reading/Comprehension of Literary Text/Sensory Language. Students understand, make inferences and draw conclusions about how an author's sensory language creates imagery in literary text and provide evidence from text to support their understanding. Students are expected to explain how authors create meaning through stylistic elements and figurative language emphasizing the use of personification, hyperbole, and refrains.

(9)  Reading/Comprehension of Informational Text/Culture and History. Students analyze, make inferences and draw conclusions about the author's purpose in cultural, historical, and contemporary contexts and provide evidence from the text, including culturally relevant texts, to support their understanding. Students are expected to compare and contrast the stated or implied purposes of different authors writing on the same topic.

(10)  Reading/Comprehension of Informational Text/Expository Text. Students analyze, make inferences and draw conclusions about expository text and provide evidence from text to support their understanding. Students are expected to:

(A)  summarize the main ideas and supporting details in text, demonstrating an understanding that a summary does not include opinions;

(B)  explain whether facts included in an argument are used for or against an issue;

(C)  explain how different organizational patterns (e.g., proposition-and-support, problem-and-solution) develop the main idea and the author's viewpoint; and

(D)  synthesize and make logical connections between ideas within a text and across two or three texts representing similar or different genres.

(11)  Reading/Comprehension of Informational Text/Persuasive Text. Students analyze, make inferences and draw conclusions about persuasive text and provide evidence from text to support their analysis. Students are expected to:

(A)  compare and contrast the structure and viewpoints of two different authors writing for the same purpose, noting the stated claim and supporting evidence; and

(B)  identify simply faulty reasoning used in persuasive texts.

(12)  Reading/Comprehension of Informational Text/Procedural Texts. Students understand how to glean and use information in procedural texts and documents. Students are expected to:

(A)  follow multi-tasked instructions to complete a task, solve a problem, or perform procedures; and

(B)  interpret factual, quantitative, or technical information presented in maps, charts, illustrations, graphs, timelines, tables, and diagrams.

(13)  Reading/Media Literacy. Students use comprehension skills to analyze how words, images, graphics, and sounds work together in various forms to impact meaning. Students will continue to apply earlier standards with greater depth in increasingly more complex texts. Students are expected to:

(A)  explain messages conveyed in various forms of media;

(B)  recognize how various techniques influence viewers' emotions;

(C)  critique persuasive techniques (e.g., testimonials, bandwagon appeal) used in media messages; and

(D)  analyze various digital media venues for levels of formality and informality.

(14)  Writing/Writing Process. Students use elements of the writing process (planning, drafting, revising, editing, and publishing) to compose text. Students are expected to:

(A)  plan a first draft by selecting a genre appropriate for conveying the intended meaning to an audience, determining appropriate topics through a range of strategies (e.g., discussion, background reading, personal interests, interviews), and developing a thesis or controlling idea;

(B)  develop drafts by choosing an appropriate organizational strategy (e.g., sequence of events, cause-effect, compare-contrast) and building on ideas to create a focused, organized, and coherent piece of writing;

(C)  revise drafts to clarify meaning, enhance style, include simple and compound sentences, and improve transitions by adding, deleting, combining, and rearranging sentences or larger units of text after rethinking how well questions of purpose, audience, and genre have been addressed;

(D)  edit drafts for grammar, mechanics, and spelling; and

(E)  revise final draft in response to feedback from peers and teacher and publish written work for appropriate audiences.

(15)  Writing/Literary Texts. Students write literary texts to express their ideas and feelings about real or imagined people, events, and ideas. Students are expected to:

(A)  write imaginative stories that include:

(i)  a clearly defined focus, plot, and point of view;

(ii)  a specific, believable setting created through the use of sensory details; and

(iii)  dialogue that develops the story; and

(B)  write poems using:

(i)  poetic techniques (e.g., alliteration, onomatopoeia);

(ii)  figurative language (e.g., similes, metaphors); and

(iii)  graphic elements (e.g., capital letters, line length).

(16)  Writing. Students write about their own experiences. Students are expected to write a personal narrative that has a clearly defined focus and communicates the importance of or reasons for actions and/or consequences.

(17)  Writing/Expository and Procedural Texts. Students write expository and procedural or work-related texts to communicate ideas and information to specific audiences for specific purposes. Students are expected to:

(A)  create multi-paragraph essays to convey information about a topic that:

(i)  present effective introductions and concluding paragraphs;

(ii)  guide and inform the reader's understanding of key ideas and evidence;

(iii)  include specific facts, details, and examples in an appropriately organized structure; and

(iv)  use a variety of sentence structures and transitions to link paragraphs;

(B)  write informal letters that convey ideas, include important information, demonstrate a sense of closure, and use appropriate conventions (e.g., date, salutation, closing);

(C)  write responses to literary or expository texts and provide evidence from the text to demonstrate understanding; and

(D)  produce a multimedia presentation involving text and graphics using available technology.

(18)  Writing/Persuasive Texts. Students write persuasive texts to influence the attitudes or actions of a specific audience on specific issues. Students are expected to write persuasive essays for appropriate audiences that establish a position and include sound reasoning, detailed and relevant evidence, and consideration of alternatives.

(19)  Oral and Written Conventions/Conventions. Students understand the function of and use the conventions of academic language when speaking and writing. Students will continue to apply earlier standards with greater complexity. Students are expected to:

(A)  use and understand the function of the following parts of speech in the context of reading, writing, and speaking:

(i)  regular and irregular verbs (past, present, future, and perfect tenses in the indicative mode;

(ii)  non-count nouns (e.g., cardúmen, jaulía);

(iii)  predicate adjectives (Ella es inteligente.) and their comparative forms (e.g., muy, más);

(iv)  conjunctive adverbs (e.g., consecuentemente, además, de hecho);

(v)  prepositions and prepositional phrases to convey location, time, direction, or to provide details;

(vi)  indefinite pronouns (e.g., todos, juntos, nada, cualquier);

(vii)  subordinating conjunctions (e.g., mientras, porque, aunque, si); and

(viii)  transitional words and phrases that demonstrate an understanding of the function of the transition related to the organization of the writing (e.g., por el contrario, además de);

(B)  become familiar with regular and irregular verbs in the present and past tenses in the subjunctive mode (e.g., que haya, que hubiera);

(C)  differentiate between the active and passive voice and know how to use them both; and

(D)  use complete simple and compound sentences with correct subject-verb agreement.

(20)  Oral and Written Conventions/Handwriting, Capitalization, and Punctuation. Students write legibly and use appropriate capitalization and punctuation conventions in their compositions. Students are expected to:

(A)  use capitalization for:

(i)  abbreviations;

(ii)  initials and acronyms; and

(iii)  organizations;

(B)  recognize and use punctuation marks including:

(i)  commas in compound sentences;

(ii)  proper punctuation and spacing for quotations and em dash; and

(iii)  parentheses, brackets, and ellipses (to indicate omissions and interruptions or incomplete statements); and

(C)  use proper mechanics, including italics for titles of books.

(21)  Oral and Written Conventions/Spelling. Students spell correctly. Students are expected to:

(A)  spell words with more advanced orthographic patterns and rules, including:

(i)  words that have a prosodic or orthographic accent on the last syllable (palabras agudas) (e.g., feliz, canción);

(ii)  words that have a prosodic or orthographic accent on the second-to-last syllable (palabras graves) (e.g., casa, árbol);

(iii)  words that have an orthographic accent on the third-to-last syllable (palabras esdrújulas) (e.g., último, cómico, mecánico); and

(iv)  words that have a prosodic or orthographic accent on the fourth-to-last syllable (palabras sobresdrújulas);

(B)  mark accents appropriately when conjugating verbs in simple and imperfect past, perfect, conditional, and future tenses (e.g., corrió, jugó, tenía, gustaría, vendrá);

(C)  spell words with:

(i)  Greek roots (e.g., tele-, foto-, grafo-, metro-);

(ii)  Latin roots (e.g., spec, scrib, rupt, port, dict);

(iii)  Greek suffixes (e.g., -ología, -fobia, -ismo, -ista); and

(iv)  Latin derived suffixes (e.g., -able, -ible, -ancia);

(D)  correctly spell words containing hiatus and diphthongs (le-er, rí-o, quie-ro, vio);

(E)  differentiate between commonly confused terms (e.g., porque, por qué; tampoco, tan poco; mediodía, medio día; quehacer, que hacer);

(F)  use spelling patterns, rules, and print and electronic resources to determine and check correct spellings; and

(G)  know how to use the spell-check function in word processing while understanding its limitations.

(22)  Research/Research Plan. Students ask open-ended research questions and develop a plan for answering them. Students are expected to:

(A)  brainstorm, consult with others, decide upon a topic, and formulate open-ended questions to address the major research topic; and

(B)  generate a research plan for gathering relevant information about the major research question.

(23)  Research/Gathering Sources. Students determine, locate, and explore the full range of relevant sources addressing a research question and systematically record the information they gather. Students are expected to:

(A)  follow the research plan to collect data from a range of print and electronic resources in Spanish (e.g., reference texts, periodicals, web pages, online sources) and data from experts;

(B)  differentiate between primary and secondary sources;

(C)  record data, utilizing available technology (e.g., word processors) in order to see the relationships between ideas, and convert graphic/visual data (e.g., charts, diagrams, timelines) into written notes;

(D)  identify the source of notes (e.g., author, title, page number) and record bibliographic information concerning those sources according to a standard format; and

(E)  differentiate between paraphrasing and plagiarism and identify the importance of citing valid and reliable sources.

(24)  Research/Synthesizing Information. Students clarify research questions and evaluate and synthesize collected information. Students are expected to:

(A)  refine the major research question, if necessary, guided by the answers to a secondary set of questions; and

(B)  evaluate the relevance and reliability of sources for the research.

(25)  Research/Organizing and Presenting Ideas. Students organize and present their ideas and information according to the purpose of the research and their audience. Students are expected to synthesize the research into a written or an oral presentation that:

(A)  compiles important information from multiple sources;

(B)  develops a topic sentence, summarizes findings, and uses evidence to support conclusions;

(C)  presents the findings in a consistent format; and

(D)  uses quotations to support ideas and an appropriate form of documentation to acknowledge sources (e.g., bibliography, works cited).

(26)  Listening and Speaking/Listening. Students will use comprehension skills to listen attentively to others in formal and informal settings. Students will continue to apply earlier standards with greater complexity. Students are expected to:

(A)  listen to and interpret a speaker's messages (both verbal and nonverbal) and ask questions to clarify the speaker's purpose and perspective;

(B)  follow and give oral instructions that include multiple action steps; and

(C)  paraphrase the major ideas and supporting evidence in formal and informal presentations.

(27)  Listening and Speaking/Speaking. Students speak clearly and to the point, using the conventions of language. Students will continue to apply earlier standards with greater complexity. Students are expected to give an organized presentation with a specific point of view, employing eye contact, speaking rate, volume, enunciation, natural gestures, and conventions of language to communicate ideas effectively.

(28)  Listening and Speaking/Teamwork. Students work productively with others in teams. Students will continue to apply earlier standards with greater complexity. Students are expected to participate in student-led discussions by eliciting and considering suggestions from other group members and by identifying points of agreement and disagreement.

Source: The provisions of this §128.18 adopted to be effective November 26, 2008, 33 TexReg 9465.


Last updated: February 23, 2010

For additional information, email rules@tea.state.tx.us.