May 1, 2019
Dear Third Grade Families:
It was a pleasure seeing many of you at our recent celebration around Brazil!
We are so proud of our third graders for their diligence and perseverance during the recent ELA Exam and recent preparation for the Math exam on the horizon.
Some Celebratory Moments in April…
Social Studies: We celebrated a day in the life of Brazil. Students worked in cooperative learning groups researching and cleverly teaching an audience about their assigned topic. They integrated technology in a thoughtful manor and conveyed their thinking outside the box. There was food, sights and sounds of Brazil that made us feel as though we had boarded a plane to South America!
Writing: We have been working collaboratively with our research clubs around a shared topic. Students are excited about comparing and contrasting the two animals they have studied in an informative poster.
Reading: We have been learning how to take notes as researchers and use text features to support our explanations.
Our Math Unit: We spent the last few weeks deepening our understanding of concepts introduced earlier in the year, and even touched on a few new skills including the read, draw and write problem solving strategy.
Author Skype with writer, and conservationist Michael Patrick O’Neill. We learned about story telling through photos, and how Michael approaches writing picture books and articles differently. Students were amazed how drones have enabled this author to capture incredible images in the dark of the night.
STEAM project: Students participated in an Amazon Rainforest Shelter Challenge. It was an incredible experience for all, as students pondered how to construct a shelter that could exist against the elements.
Looking Forward To The Month Ahead…May
Reading: Social Issues Book Clubs: We will soon transition from our research clubs to a unit where students can read books to teach them how to live their lives. Students will learn to interpret and determine themes–work that will be hugely important for them next year and beyond. You may be asking yourself, “What do we mean when we say ‘social issues,’ exactly?” The term “social issues” refers to issues that affect a lot of people, not just one person or one character. Some of the issues may include: fitting in, bullying, peer pressure, poverty, homelessness, racism, etc.
Writing: Fairy Tales Once Upon a Time: Adapting and Writing Fairy Tales, a unit in which students write adaptations and original fairy tales. One of the major goals of the unit is to teach our writers how to craft well-structured narratives. Another major goal of the unit is to support our writers in using precise language to capture a moment, an image or an emotion. But above all, this unit aims to help students develop a storyteller’s voice. The work they learn to do in this unit will be the foundation for much of their narrative writing in fourth and fifth grades.
Math: Classifying Shapes: Following the math exam, students will deepen their understanding of geometry by sorting and classifying new polygons, measuring angles, and applying their knowledge of area to new shapes and figures.
Social Studies: Exploring China~ Students will work in cooperative learning groups to study a Chinese province. They will research their assigned province and together, the group will derive a fun, creative way to teach others. In technology they will create “Listicles” (A “listicle” is an article made of a list, usually with some kind of extra detail to each item.) that will include food, transportation, geography, landmarks, language etc. found in that particular provence. These lists will be designed to attract visitors to their province.
We will continue to use a variety of resources including videos, online resources and picture books to support this valuable work. Third graders read folktales and fairytales to learn customs passed down through generations. A few parents have generously offered their time and expertise to support this study with a dumpling making workshop and history lesson. We also plan to have a workshop with The China Institute.
Class Trips: We have an upcoming class trip to Symphony Space on May 22nd for their Asia performance. Stay tuned for more details.
Leslie And Kate