Grade 3 Curriculum
Ongoing Curriculum: Literacy skills, daily French and English language review, reading comprehension and fluency, writing process, poetry, spelling, math fact drills, mathematical probability, mathematical problem solving, penmanship, key boarding.
September: Introduction to proofreader’s marks, statements and questions, capitalization and punctuation, commands and exclamations, characters, setting, plot, spelling: short vowels and CVCe words, graphing, how to use a French/English and English dictionary, how to ask French questions and use complete sentences, electricity, Second Step: safety and empathy. Finding places on a map, and we’ll study communities.
October: Subject and predicates, complete sentences, fragments, run-on sentences, compound sentences, electricity, two-dimensional geometry, problem solving, addition & subtraction math fact drills, looking at masculine/feminine and proper nouns, Second Step: continuing with empathy, the parts of our bodies and their functions, line and shape in art, and reading about famous places in the United States.
November: Common and proper nouns, singular and plural nouns, possessive nouns, commands and exclamations, continue geometry, and look at parts of a set, metric system, rounding numbers, look at noun articles, fact and opinion. Second Step: impulse control, and continue with line and shape in art. Exploring features of land and water
December: Sentence combining with nouns, keeping my body fit, multiplication, review French plural nouns, Second Step: impulse control. Community: diversity and different cultures.
January: Action verbs present-tense verbs, commas in dates and places, subject-verb agreement, rocks and minerals science unit, multiplication and division, estimation of prices, Second Step: anger management, study color, learn about immigrant migration to the United States.
February: Mardi Gras, finish rocks and minerals, multiplication and division, weight, estimation. Homophones, verb tense (English), Second Step: complete anger management, study color, learn about map keys and draw simple maps. Famous people who helped the community.
March: Verbs, division, write negative sentences in French, area model of fractions, medicines and other drugs, life in other countries.
April: State benchmark testing in reading and math, plant growth and development, possessives, figurative language, descriptive writing, poetry in French, conjugating the verb être (to be) in French, measurement, perimeter and area, learning about scale. What an economy is and how it works.
May: Pronouns, contractions, state benchmark testing in reading and math, continue plant growth and development, finish fractions, conjugating the verb avoir (to have) in French, writing paragraphs in French, avoiding alcohol and tobacco, orient oneself using simple maps, space and form 3-D paper sculpture, global trade and the affects on our community.
June: Sentence combining with adjectives and adverbs, comma usage, words with suffixes, probability, conjugating the verb faire (to do, make), Greek root words, writing a magazine article, health in the community, create various maps, public services in our community and how they work.
A classroom newsletter will be available on the first school day of each week. It includes weekly curricula activities, upcoming events, and general information. A paper copy is sent home with your student upon request. Please let us know immediately if you are not receiving this information.
Home Folders and Agendas
Students have a home folder to transfer important papers to and from school. Folders should always come to class and go home each day. Items in the pockets are for your review and sometimes require a signature. Remove papers daily to help your child stay organized and allow them to begin homework as soon as it is received.
Specialist Schedules & Recess
Physical Education takes place on Mondays and Tuesdays. Be sure that children wear appropriate footwear on these days. Recesses are typically at 10:00 a.m., 11:20, and 1:00 or 1:30 p.m. Lunch begins at 11:40 a.m.
Homework & Expectations
Homework is given on the last school day of the week and is due at the end of the following week. An exception is the Weekly Reading Chart. If there is no school on Friday, the chart is due the first day of the following week.
Each week your child should bring home a weekly reading chart (try to read 20 minutes per day) and math assignment. French spelling words are sent home every other week. At times there will be additional homework that goes along with a unit of study. Later in the year, students may also receive writing homework. These additional assignments will follow the same schedule as above and will be mentioned in the weekly newsletter. You can also check the top of assignments for due dates.
Late work is discouraged. We ask that students turn in their work by the due date. Please help create good habits by encouraging your child to get work in on time. Also, timely work makes our lives simpler—we do not need to track down missing assignments, make additional copies, etc. If directions are unclear on any assignment, give us a call or send an email.
Students will feel less stress if they are encouraged to complete a portion of their homework each evening to commit the concepts to memory. Waiting until the last minute usually causes frustration and tears, and difficulty remembering the concept later.
Star of the Week
Each child is scheduled to be the “Star of the Week” at some point throughout the year. A child can share anything about his or her life with words and pictures. Each student will fill out a “Star of the Week” poster and return it to school the Monday they are scheduled to present. Students can mention their favorite book, color, vacation, etc. The “Star of the Week” students for the upcoming week are posted on our website under the link “Star of the Week” with the date they are expected to present their poster.
Mystery Reading is a way that instills a life long love of learning and reading into each of our students’ lives. If you wish to be a “Mystery Reader” in our class please sign up for a date on the sign up sheet in Mme. King’s room. We will invite “Mystery Readers” into our room on select Fridays throughout the year at 9:40. The “Mystery Reader” for the week will e-mail Mme. King 5 clues about themselves to be revealed to the students throughout the week. On the final day the “Mystery Reader” will appear and read a story to the whole class. There are select dates available for both the red and blue classes throughout the year.
If you know your child will be absent, please let the office know. We do our best to relay your messages, but the office is responsible for excusing absences. If your child has a long-term illness or injury, please contact us.
To avoid hurt feelings, we do not allow birthday presents or invitations to be passed out to children during school hours. This includes passing items out in the breezeway before and after school. Thank you for your support of this policy.
If you would like to recognize your child’s birthday at school, please let us know 24 hours in advance. We can reserve five minutes at the end of the school day. No food, including candy, is to be distributed.
We give out small prizes to children for the reading and math incentive programs and are always willing to take donations to use as rewards. Remember, one person’s junk is another third grader’s prize. We also love chapter books from 2nd to 5th grade levels (French books too). The school secretary will be happy to give you a tax receipt for any items of value.
During field trips students will be transported in school busses. We encourage you to chaperone, but regulations stipulate that siblings may not accompany us.
This year we are using the art curriculum, Art Connections. This series provides instruction in the use of line, shape, color and textures in the world of art as well as the world around us. The program encourages exploration, creativity and self-expression. You are invited to our hallway gallery to see our masterpieces.
French Language Arts
We will use a variety of materials to cover French language arts. Students use a program called Arrimage—a comprehensive curriculum that contains reading, writing, speaking, and even singing. The children will complete worksheets, learn poems, and have many opportunities to play with the language in order to master pronunciation.
The program also emphasizes communication and self-expression in French. To help reach this goal, students work on acquiring vocabulary, vocabulary and more vocabulary. Students also learn idioms and everyday French expressions. Children are required to speak only French in the classroom beginning in December or January.
Students will enhance their French language arts program by using iPods to give them more opportunities to hear French at home by recording stories, songs, and vocabulary. The iPods must be returned at the end of the school year.
The third grade health text focuses on safety, nutrition, and fitness. We also cover germs and white blood cells as mandated by the state for AIDS prevention.
Students will use a variety of French textbook this year to be sure their education is closely aligned with the new Oregon state math benchmarks. We will also occasionally use activities from a book called Mathland which program compliments the French text very nicely, but the students do not have a book from which to work. However, Mathland does an excellent job of introducing concepts through exploratory work, and the French texts provide students with the opportunity to apply what they know and practice for mastery. The French books also helps students with their French skills, because they will have to read story problems and answer them in French.
Students are tested at the beginning of each unit to determine if they already are at a third grade mastery level. If that is the case, then we provide that student with enrichment opportunities in the form of work sheets, problem solving activities advanced textbook work, and various projects. This way, students have an opportunity to broaden their skills and apply math to a variety of situations.
Math Problem Solving
Math problem solving is addressed in French class and students have problem solving homework assignments that are written in English. There will be systematic instruction on how to solve a mathematical story problem and how to clearly explain our thinking and reasoning. The curriculum was developed by Oregon educators to meet the needs of students taking the Oregon Statewide Problem Solving Assessment.
Student assignments are to be neatly written in manuscript penmanship. Writing is a form of communication. Sloppy work makes it difficult to understand the message. Please encourage neatness at home.
Students will be introduced to D’Nealian cursive penmanship in third grade. In grades K-2, students were taught D’Nealian manuscript, which if practiced correctly, prepared them to learn cursive. In the program, similarly shaped letters are introduced together. The cursive penmanship book will be moved forward to fourth grade since we will not finish it. We also focus on correct writing posture and pencil manipulation, which makes it easier to form letters. However, ingrained habits are difficult to change by third grade.
Reading is an important life skill that students will engage in during a significant portion of their English day. Our adopted language arts program that all grade levels are using is called Treasures. A few of its many components include vocabulary, grammar, fluency, and writing. All students will participate in a group activity that introduces a concept and/or skill, there will be practice and discussion, then students break into groups or “centers” for further practice.
Students will receive a word list to study from French class every other week. This list is provided to allow for extra practice. Students’ lists include vocabulary and high-frequency words that are used constantly in the classroom.
English spelling lists are compiled of words that each individual student struggles with. Most of this word study occurs in the classroom during our centers time and morning work.
We study science through our various themes as well as three important units. These units were developed by the National Science Resources Center and include: (1) Plant Growth and Development, (2) Rocks and Minerals, and (3) Electricity. Students will develop skills in observing, measuring and identifying properties, how to seek evidence, and recognizing patterns and cycles. Each unit includes many hands-on activities, and they have been an exciting addition to our science curriculum.
The third grade focus is on communities in which an understanding of citizenship and basic government processes are discussed. This includes a study of Lane County and the history of Eugene.
Writing & Mechanics
We use the Process Approach to Writing. The five steps of this approach include (1) prewrite; (2) rough draft, (3) revise, (4) edit, and (5) publish. All of these steps will be executed through the use of our classroom “Writing Workshop” center. We believe it is important for students to understand that a well-written story, letter, etc., requires more than a single attempt.
Sometimes creative ideas are more important than punctuation. Therefore, there will be times when students are only required to complete a portion of the above steps.
Please be aware that we do not correct all writing errors. Instead, we focus on the particular skills students have learned to date. Expectations increase as we move through the year. At the beginning of the year the focus is on ideas, writing between the margins, neatness, beginning capitalization, and ending punctuation. Paragraphing and supporting details become the focus later in the year.
This year students will learn how to touch –type or keyboard. We use the typing program All the Right Type to learn the home-row position, correct posture, and efficient keystrokes. If you are interested in having your child type at home, there is a fun, free, and silly keyboarding program on the web that students have enjoyed in years past. It is Dance Mat Typing: www.bbc.co.uk/schools/typing/