Can English Lessons Improve Grades in Other Subjects?

can English lessons improve grades in other subjectsEnglish may be a single subject, but the skills children learn within English classes are important for success in their other subjects at school as well as Common Core tests. By taking English lessons to develop reading, writing, and speaking skills, your child’s grades in other subjects can also improve!

How English Lessons Can Help Improve Grades

All Subjects

All school subjects involve presentations and/or writing papers. Improving English skills will help students know how to deliver effective speeches through strong speaking skills as well as develop fluent, supported papers using writing skills.

Don’t believe me? Here are some examples.

Social Studies/Geography/History Class

What do most people struggle with most in history class? Reading assignments and essays. Read these chapters, read this book, explain what caused a war, or write and present a persuasive argument based on a famous leader’s point of view. Students in history classes might have to do any of these assignments – or all of them and more.

Here are a few ways English lessons can help with that:

  • Critical Reading Skills and Comprehension
    • Can students read historical documents or history books? More importantly, can they understand what they read?
    • Comprehension is also vital for reading a map or using a compass.
  • Writing Skills and Knowledge of Forms
    • Knowledge of different types of writing can help students better understand historical documents.

Anything that is related to reading and writing is related to English Language Arts skills, and history classes involved more reading and writing assignments than almost any other class (with the possible exception of English Language Arts).

That means that if your child is struggling with history, English lessons might actually help your child not only better understand the reading assignments but also better express that understanding.

Math Class

Most people do not think math and English have anything in common, but guess again. For example, for many students, word problems are one of the most dreaded types of questions.

English lessons can help with this:

  • Critical Reading Skills and Comprehension
    • Can your student grasp what word problems are asking?
    • Is your student able to sort through unneeded information to find the key details using the CUBE method?
  • Writing Skills
    • Students will frequently be asked to write how their answers were found.

By utilizing English lessons, instead of your child dreading word problems because they don’t know where to start or what the question is asking, they will have the confidence in how to clearly read for useful information and direction. They will gain knowledge in how to clearly demonstrate how they solved the problem as well with developed writing skills.

Science Class

Science class is not only about experiments, it actually involves using English skills, as well. Sometimes your student may have to read through complicated lab directions or have dense reading material.

Here is how English lessons can help:

  • Vocabulary
    • By reading outside of the classroom, your child will be exposed to new vocabulary. Gaining a rich vocabulary will aid student’s understandings of academic words like hypothesis, life cycle, carnivore, etc. These English skills will help with challenging reading.
  • Writing Skills
    • Your student may be asked to design an experiment of their own. Knowing how to put thoughts into words is necessary when designing experiments.
  • Critical Reading
    • If they aren’t designing their own experiment, they will be participating in one. Correctly following written directions during science experiments is imperative for accurate results and safety.

Your child can even benefit in science class from English lessons. Instead of being uncertain of what vocabulary words mean or what an experiment is asking of them, they will clearly understand what is happening in class.

As you can see, English skills are not solely used in English/Language Arts classrooms. The skills learned in English class transfer into all subjects your child takes. So, English lessons will not only strengthen your child’s English skills, but also improve their performance in other classes as they apply English skills to tasks in classes like social studies/history/geography, math, and science. 

How have you seen English skills used in other school subjects? Are there certain English skills your student could improve on with English lessons?

Author: Sarah B., Writer and Teacher at A Grade Ahead.

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