Welcome to Third Grade!
Thank you to all of the families who took the time to attend the November conferences. The school-home connection is vital to the success of each student and we are looking forward to continued collaboration throughout the remainder of the school year.
The beginning of the second trimester has been a busy one! In reading, we have shifted from fiction stories to nonfiction reading. The students have begun to learn about how to identify the main idea and supporting details of an expository text. We have multiple methods for finding the main idea of a passage including looking for the “pop out sentence” or thinking “What is this section teaching me about?” To record their understanding, the students have been using various methods including “boxes and bullets” and talking across their hands to teach others the main idea and details. These important reading skills are a challenge at first, but these third graders are working extremely hard!
In writing, the students are in the beginning stages of writing informational books to teach others about a topic in which they are an “expert.” It is always interesting to see the range of topics from these third graders! A few topics this year include cheetahs, bicycles, Pearl Harbor, maple syrup, television, and bubble gum. Currently, the students are working on identifying their subtopics, gathering facts from both online and print sources, developing main ideas for each subtopic. Soon, they will be converting their thoughts and planning into actual paragraphs. Each student is working hard to show everyone what they know about their topic.
In math, we have taken a brief hiatus from multiplication to study area and perimeter. The students are able to measure area by counting the square units in a figure or using an area model to multiply the length and width. They can identify the perimeter by counting the units around the outside of a figure or by adding each side of the figure together. Using these foundational skills, the third graders are also working on determining the missing side length of a figure if they know the total perimeter. After the winter break, we will be returning to multiplication to discuss strategies to help us to solidify our basic facts. We will begin our units on division once we have concluded multiplication.
Enjoy a safe and happy holiday season with your loved ones!