Welcome to Ms. McKeever’s third grade! You can reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Monday – Computers
Tuesday – Spanish
Wednesday – Spanish & Music
Thursday – Art
Friday – Gym (wear gym uniform and sneakers)
March 3, 2017
Dear Third Grade Families,
I hope you enjoyed your February break. This week we celebrated Mardi Gras on Fat Tuesday and began to think about Lent and what we will be giving up. We attended mass on Ash Wednesday and the First Friday.
In Reading/Writing, we began the week by using the questions and graphic organizers we did over break on Arctic Animals to write an essay including information about the animal and where it lives, a description of what it looks like, what it eats, its predators, and how it adapts to its environment. We also learned about Life in the Arctic. Unlike Antarctica, people live in the Arctic. Native Americans settled there thousands of years ago. They wear big parkas made of animal fur, hunt for food, and live in homes made of animal skin or igloos temporarily when traveling. They use dog sleds to get from place to place. While they are widely known as Eskimos, they prefer to be called by the name of their group like the Inuit. We wrapped up our unit on Antarctica and the Arctic and I have posted the students’ work outside the room. Please have a look whenever you are in the building! Then we began our unit on China. We looked at a map and identified the landforms and water features and learned some facts about it.
Our Daily Five routine continued and we looked at irregular and regular verbs in the past tense. While regular verbs add –ed for the past tense, there are many irregular verbs that do not follow this pattern. For example, are -> were, bring -> brought, eat -> ate, sleep -> slept, etc. I noticed on the HW that students may still be struggling with some of the irregular verbs so we will continue to review them in class. In addition, we looked at spelling words with r controlled vowels –ur and –ir. We also looked at a new format for reading responses. In your child’s reading response notebook you will find a sheet with different steps they are to take when writing their responses. Instead of writing the title and author at the top of the page, students are to now write that in the first sentence. Please remind them to underline the title! Please refer to the sheet glued in their notebook to ensure they are following the format. They all completed a sample response in class so you can refer to that as well.
In Math, we finished Chapter 7. We used strategies for solving two-step word problems. Students should ask themselves:
We also learned the order of operations for solving equations with more than one operation. Students must first multiply or divide (whichever comes first from left to right) and then add or subtract (whichever comes first from left to right.) The graphic below is a more accurate representation of PEMDAS. Be wary when teaching this to your child as it often gets misinterpreted. Also, keep in mind that we will not be using parentheses or exponents so they don’t need to know that. The Chapter 7 test will be on Monday and will be similar to the review we did in the workbook. We have finished volume 1 of the workbook so students can keep that home and will be getting volume 2 to use for the remainder of the year on Monday. Enjoy your weekend! Thanks for all of your support.
We had another short week, and it was a busy one! In Reading and Writing we continued learning about the Aboriginal Australians. Then, we synthesized our knowledge in a clear, cohesive piece of writing with a topic sentence, details, and closing sentence. We are working on organizing our thoughts and ideas in a logical way and explaining the details we include in our writing so that our reader isn’t left with unanswered questions. I have also finished November independent reading assessments. The students have already shown great improvement! The next assessment will take place in January. Lastly, we brainstormed things we are thankful for in the spirit of Thanksgiving. Then, we used a graphic organizer to plan for an essay about what we are thankful for using examples to support our ideas.
For word work this week, we went over nouns. A noun is a person, place, or thing. We practiced identifying nouns in sentences. We also distinguished between common nouns and proper nouns. A proper noun names a particular person, place, or thing and gets capitalized while a common noun does not.
In Math we took the test and a performance task to show what we learned in Chapter 3. I was very impressed with the grades on the chapter test. However, the results of the performance task were a little less . Students need to work on showing their work and using strategies to understand word problems. Then, we began chapter 4. In chapter 4, we will begin to learn strategies for solving multiplication problems. We began by multiplying with the factors 2 and 4 using doubles. For example, for 4 x 8, you can do 2 x 8 = 16 and then double the product 16 + 16 = 32. We also skip counted by 2s. With factors 5 and 10, we can skip count, use a number line, or a bar model. With factors 3 and 6, we can skip count, use 5’s plus one (ex: 6 x 3 = 5 x 3 + 3), use doubles (3 x 2 = 2 x 2 + 2), or a multiplication table. Students should have a multiplication table in their math workbook for reference. While it is encouraged to use while students are still learning their multiplication facts, it is my hope that eventually they won’t need to. Please be sure your children are practicing their multiplication facts working towards mastery. Mastery is when they can answer the problem in 3 seconds or less.I have sent home a packet of flash cards based on an initial assessment of their multiplication facts. Students should cut them out, write the answers on the back, and use them at home for practice. The Friday after Thanksgiving break, we will have our first timed quiz.
In Religion, we reviewed Chapter 2 and took a short test. Then, we began Chapter 3 by reading a story from the bible about how Jesus performed a miracle by bringing back Lazarus from the dead. We discussed the meaning of the following quote made by Jesus to Lazarus’s sisters after his death. He said, “I am the resurrection and life; whoever believes in me, even if he dies, will live, and everyone who lives and believes in me will never die.”
As a reminder, please be sure to go over the assessments that were sent home today. The Math test and performance task need to signed and returned ASAP.
The Alley Pond Environment Center (APEC) Trip slip and money are due no later than Monday. Thank you for your continued support. Have a great weekend!
Dear Third Grade Families,
Halloween has come and gone! The year is going by quickly! We are already in the third month of school. In the next few weeks, I will be reassessing students’ reading levels. Now let’s have a look at what we did in class this week.
In Reading and Writing we focused on the Social Studies concept physical environments around the world. We learned what an environment is, and that you can describe an environment’s climate. We built on our knowledge of the continents and oceans, discussing how the continents were once part of a large supercontinent known as the Pangea. Alfred Wegener found evidence of this by looking at the fossils and rock found on the continents. We saw how the continents fit together by doing a fun activity where we put the pieces together like a puzzle. Through continental drift caused by the movement of
tectonic plates in the Earth’s crust, the continents have shifted to where they are now and they are still moving!
We also learned about different landforms and water features including mountains, hills, plains, valleys, canyons, volcanoes, islands, peninsulas, plateaus, rivers, lakes, and oceans. We took notes and made a flipbook that will be on display in the classroom. We enjoyed sharing our background knowledge and making connections to what we already know about land and water. We are working on taking notes in a clear and organized way and referring to those notes when answering questions.
Lastly, we addressed an important grammar/spelling rule. Words that end with –y, must be replaced with –i and –ed for the past tense (carry -> carried) or–es for plural (berry -> berries).
In Math we continued Chapter 3 on multiplication. We learned how to multiply using jumps on a number line, repeated addition, and a bar model. Over the weekend I sent home a sheet with the multiplication tables for students to begin practicing from 1-12. Write your initials once they have mastered a multiplication table. Eventually we will be taking
timed multiplication fact quizzes, just like we did with addition facts. It is important that students begin to memorize their facts as it will help them in the future with division and multi-digit multiplication!
In Science, we took our first test on Chapter 1: Plants. Please review this
with your child.
-Friday, November 11 –NO SCHOOL, Veteran’s Day
-Monday, November 14 –NO SCHOOL, Professional Day
-Thursday, November 17 – Picture Retake Day
– Thursday-Friday, November 24-25 – NO SCHOOL, Thanksgiving
Thanks for reading! Have a great weekend! ~Ms. McKeever