School#: 212 678-2829
For Writer's Workshop each day, students are taught a writing strategy and try it out independently in their writer's notebooks or on drafting paper. In our first unit, “Crafting True Stories”, students are writing narratives about one small moment in their lives. They have learned to use different brainstorming techniques to find ideas for true stories/seed ideas. Writers are working on distinguishing between a reporter and storyteller’s voice, and using craft techniques to improve their pieces. Through revision, these stories will be filled with action, dialogue, descriptions and sensory details. In third grade, writers use a checklist as a tool for self-assessment and goal setting. Goals for all third grade writers include: telling a story bit by bit, setting up the reader in the lead, using transition words, organizing writing into paragraphs, crafting a meaningful ending, using appropriate spelling, writing with correct punctuation, and bringing a story to life (dialogue, action, details and feeling). After developing these pieces and editing, authors will publish their narrative stories.
Our current Reading Unit is Building a Reading Life. We pull out all the stops in an effort to help all of our students become avid readers. We wear a love of reading on our sleeves, help students continue to fashion their identities as people who care about reading, create a social life that revolves around shared books and, above all, we help students develop a sense of personal agency about their reading lives, taking responsibility for becoming the kinds of readers who not only make sense of books but also let books change their lives. Meanwhile, we continue to support children in strengthening their reading behaviors—helping them to self-select books that are just right in level and interest, collect and study data about their reading rates and volume, and push themselves to read with increasing stamina, fluency, and volume. We will continue reading Stone Fox by Gardiner. Through this read aloud, students will learn about the complex beautiful relationships between Little Willy and Grandfather and Little Willy and Stone Fox. Students will converse about the themes of determination, loss and family.
In Math we begin the year by building on students’ fluency with addition and knowledge of arrays. As students notice patterns, they let go of longer addition sentences in favor of more efficient multiplication facts. Students move toward understanding familiar repeated addition in the form of array models, which become a cornerstone of the module. Students use the language of multiplication as they understand what factors are and differentiate between the size of groups and the number of groups within a given context. Study of factors extends the study to division. Students understand division as an unknown factor problem, and relate the meaning of unknown factors to either the number or the size of groups Students become aware of a fundamental connection between multiplication and division that sets the foundation for the rest of the module. Students use the array model and familiar skip-counting strategies to solidify their understanding of multiplication. They become fluent enough with arithmetic patterns to “add” or “subtract” groups from known products to solve more complex multiplication problems. They apply their skills to word problems using drawings and equations with a symbol to find the unknown factor. This culminates in students using arrays to model the distributive property as they decompose units to multiply. Consistent skip-counting strategies and the continued use of array models are pathways for students to naturally relate multiplication and division. Students will apply the tools, representations, and concepts they have learned to problem-solving with multi-step word problems using all four operations. They demonstrate the flexibility of their thinking as they assess the reasonableness of their answers for a variety of problem types.
Our first Social Studies unit is called Countries Around the World, Starting with our Country: the USA. In this unit students are learning about various regions of the United States and study how they are similar to and different from each other. This unit is meant to launch children into a year of studying what life is like in far away places. Students will be researching places that they know a lot about as well as places, peoples and cultures that they might not have heard of before. During this unit and throughout the year students will be learning diverse note-taking strategies such as sketching, boxes and bullets, timelines etc. Studying far away places with diverse mediums such as text, videos, photos, maps, books, graphs and artifacts will immerse students in learning about what life is like in those places.Ms. Emily
Thank You for Reading!