Term III

3rd Grade

Third grade is a milestone year, and this one has been marked with countless areas of achievement.  With Handwriting Without Tears, the students have made the transition from print to cursive.  The Open Court Reading series has helped strengthen each student’s comprehension, oral reading, spelling, grammar, vocabulary, and test-taking skills.  In addition, the supplemental reading provided opportunities for students to self-pace and complete long-term reading assignments.  With each novel, students developed essay writing skills.  Through each unit, students wrote and read expository, persuasive, personal narrative, and fiction writing.  Emphasis was placed on organization of thought and the understanding of what it takes to make a good paragraph and story. Within the social studies curriculum, students refined geography and map skills and investigated early American communities. Students learned about communities in Kentucky and colonial communities from hundreds of years ago.  Pilgrim, Pioneer, and Immigration units further enhanced students’ understanding of how communities develop, grow, and change over time.   The Everyday Mathematics program provided a structure for introducing new concepts and reinforcing skills within units on multiplication/division, fractions, measurement, and geometry.  The skills and concepts presented this year have prepared each child to go on to fourth grade with a strong and carefully nurtured academic background. 

Art

During the third term third graders learn to draw faces including self portraits. They observe the characteristics that make them unique. Students discuss caricatures and plan a fun picture of themselves in this method. They use a combination of media including paint, oil pastel and colored pencil. The next unit is figure proportion with warm and cool colors. Students learn the correct proportions of the figure and how to give it movement. They work on watercolor skills with this project. The final project is a collage using texture rubbing plates and imaginations. We review color contrast, gluing and cutting skills. With weather permitting we spend the last class sketching outdoors.

Computer

The third grade students continue to work in computer class to learn new skills. To improve Writers Guild books, young authors create title pages for their books using Word Art. Third graders continue to work in Typing Instructor, a software program designed to createafoundation of strong keyboarding skills. The students use keyboarding shortcuts to edit their documents.

Third graders complete an Ellis Island scavenger hunt on the Internet to connect with immigration lessons taught in the classroom. Web-based activities in which students collect information from the Internet via a set of links are designed to improve digital literacy skills.

Music

During the third term, the third graders show their understanding of good vocal technique and learn an impressive and challenging musical repertoire of songs for the capstone experience, Spring Sing.   In music theory, the students explore rhythm patterns and note names and compose a song for recorder.  Third graders continue to build individual student music folders, which include some of their music theory papers.   The life and music of Ludwig van Beethoven is the focus in music history this term.  The Recorder Karate program allows students to progress at their own rate and become quite proficient on the recorder.  How rewarding it is to watch these students grow musically during third grade.

PE

Throughout this trimester skill lessons in P.E. have focused on volleyball, badminton, and base games. Volleyball is an all-time favorite in all grades.  In the volleyball unit third graders practice all of the basic skills such as the serve, the set, and the basic bump pass. All students can master these skills with practice, and this is a game that can be enjoyed by all. The class sets up proper formations and will imitate actual games with small adjustments that enable the students to succeed and perform to their maximum potential. Students love net games, and badminton continues the basic skills of serving, setting up plays, and maintaining accuracy. Physical fitness activities are always present in every class, and students' cardiovascular endurance at TLS is very strong.

The inclusion of Spanish with P.E. has proven to be quite successful. Students can retain all information presented and can communicate well. Basic instruction and listening tools are all conducted in Spanish, and students respond with fluency and understanding.

Science

Third grade begins in term three with an extensive unit on geology and earth science.  The first experiment deals with plate tectonics and the theory of continental drift, but students quickly move on to rocks and the rock cycle.  After looking at the formation of Igneous, Metamorphic, and Sedimentary rocks, students learn how to identify and examine rocks more closely by studying the minerals contained within the rocks and observing their unique properties and characteristics.  Third graders complete their unit on geology by taking a brief look at paleontology and the amazing geologic history of the planet Earth.  With the remaining few weeks of the school year, students review some of their lessons on astronomy as they end an incredible year in science!

Spanish

Throughout the third term, third grade Spanish students explore various places related to la comunidad (the community). Using the vocabulary from this unit, students create and label illustrations of their very own community. Using their project, students begin to talk about where they go on various days throughout the week.  Students also add La granja (The Farm) to their repertoire of songs. Students end the year with a review of the entire year with a much anticipated game of Jeopardy a videogame version of TV game show version.