September 13, 2015 Update

Dear Third Grade Families,

What an amazing group of students you all have entrusted to us!  Each child has risen to the occasion and are quickly learning  the ropes of third grade.  Over the past few weeks they have learned the procedures for Daily 5, Writers’ Workshop, Work on Words (Spelling), and daily logistical expectations.

As we move forward it is very important that parents communicate with their child about challenges at school as well as successes.  We will be using specific language to communicate successes that support the child’s effort to encourage perseverance when working with complicated problems in math, longer writing assignments, and following multi-step directions.   This is called a “Growth Mindset”, which is the belief that hard work and effort can lead to success.


Readers’ Workshop:  Reading:  This week we are going to switch our focus to informational reading.  Students will be using Time for Kids to understand text features, to adjust their rate of reading for informational texts, and change their approach to vocabulary in informational reading.  We have four spelling groups, each with their own differentiated lists.  The core and content words include:  Core Words:  like, him, see, time, could, no, make, than, first, been.  Content Words:  silence, sound, vibration, tuning fork, vocal cords. Remember that all students are responsible for these.  Writers’ Workshop:  Last week and this week students have been completing writing samples in three forms of writing:  narrative, opinion, and informational.  I will be using these to guide instruction for writing this year.  We will continue to work on cursive handwriting and will return to keyboarding after the NWEA testing is done and the lab is free.


Spelling outside:  Sandwriting!IMG_1383

Math:  Last week we learned two strategies for addition:  Break-apart addition (partial sums) and using starter problems.  Students are keeping track of these strategies in their math notebooks if you would like to see them.   Students are anxious to use the traditional addition algorithm (stack and carry), so I will review that strategy and we can add it to our list.  This week we will work with distance riddles and play two games:  Collection Match and Crossing Over 100.

Science:  We will finish our unit on the properties of light early this week.  Our next unit is Sound.  Our investigations this week include understanding how sound varies, describing sounds, and reading informational texts.

This week is Spirit Week!

  • Monday:  spirit wear or green
  • Tuesday:  dress as storybook character
  • Wednesday:  crazy hair/crazy hat
  • Thursday:  Outside day
  • Friday:  Picnic day

Dates to Remember

  • 9/16     Early Release
  • 9/22     School Board Meeting, 7:00
  • 9/23     Farm to Table

Have a wonderful week!

Cynthia McGovern