Tag Archives: mapping

Dec. 2 Weekly Update

It has been a few weeks since our last weekly update. Flu bugs (even for me) and portfolio preparations have taken up a bit of my blogging time, but we have continued to be very busy in our classroom! Following our November break we dug into our research on dinosaurs and wrote some fact-filled reports. Students used a variety of media and print sources for their research: online websites, nonfiction books, and our classroom bulletin board display. We then transitioned into our first novel study by reading the first two books in the Dinosaur Cove series and doing a novel study booklet for the second book. We tied this into our Daily 5 work on “schema”, which is accessing all of our background knowledge to make connections to new text. The next time you sit down to read a new book with your child, please ask what his or her schema is for the book. As writers, we have learned how to focus on one main idea and add supporting details, and we are now focusing on effectively organizing those ideas and details. In math, we have been building up our skills with number concepts through the use of base-ten blocks. We reviewed 2-digit numbers and we are now transferring that knowledge to 3-digit place value. We are also working on pre-algebra skills by finding the “mystery number” in a variety of equations, again with the use of manipulatives to help us visualize our thinking. We wrapped up our mapping unit in social studies (check out your child’s wonderful treasure map in the portfolio!), and we are now exploring the lives of four children from different communities around the world.

Thank you to all of the parents who came in to chat about your child’s progress and to celebrate their achievements in their portfolio. I am looking forward to seeing the rest of you in the week ahead.

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Oct. 21 Weekly Update

This week in math we continued our work on geometry. We know all about polygons (2D shapes), so that is helping us to explore 3D solids. We also made “fact family triangles” to examine the relationship between adding and subtracting. Try rolling two dice or flipping two cards and then have your child show you the two addition and two subtraction sentences that can be made from your numbers.

We added two new elements to our Daily 5 literacy program: “Word Work” (a word wall spelling practice task), and “sticker stories” (a writing format). Both of these were met with a lot of enthusiasm, so be sure to ask your child for details!

Now that we have wrapped up our science unit, we have moved on to a unit in social studies. For the next few weeks we will be learning all about mapping. Students will be introduced to the parts of a map, understanding relative location, hemispheres on the globe, and the continents and oceans. This will prepare us for our study of communities around the world.

A special activity this week was our presentation on Friday for Diwali, the Hindu festival of lights. A speaker from Central Alberta Refugee Effort (CARE) spoke to all of the grade 3 classes and showed a slideshow about Diwali celebrations in India. Your child can tell you all about making diyas, coloring rangolis, and the significance of henna tattoos. The actual date of Diwali this year is on October 26th, so check back next week for a new Smilebox showcasing some of our fun with Diwali celebrations.

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