June has passed us by! I hope you are enjoying the first week of summer holidays and managing to keep cool in this heatwave. 🙂
I would like to send out a big thank you to all of you parents for your support in our Grade 3 year together. I absolutely loved working with your children and I always find it a privilege to learn as much from them as they ever could from me. I wish each and every one of them the best of what this world has to offer!
To you and your family, have a safe and happy summer holiday. ❤
A final slideshow:
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It is only January 7th and yet we are on day 4 of the new year together! It was great to see so many smiling faces back in class last week. This week we are wrapping up our Jan Brett author study. We read many of her books in December and I’m so happy to see that the kids are still interested in her books after the break. In this theme we have been focusing on story elements (setting, characters, problem, solution) and on comparing and contrasting stories. The students love to find out that Jan Brett gains inspiration for many of her stories from books she read as a child. It helps us as young writers to know that we can take a published book and change some elements to create an entirely new story that is all our own! Here is a link to a Wallwisher we worked on before Christmas telling about our favourite Jan Brett books:
Jan Brett Wallwisher
We are now up to four of our five “dailies” in our Daily 5 literacy program. Students are able to choose from Read to Self, Read to Someone, Listen to Reading, or Work on Writing during each of our rounds. We have two or three rounds each morning, as well as some literacy mini-lessons on reading strategies and writing skills. We also enjoy a teacher read-aloud each day with a book from our featured theme. (This month, it’s Mrs. Brokenshire’s favourite – a Jan Brett author study!!) Here is a look at our Daily 5 in action:
Brrr! What a chilly week! We worked hard to stay warm this week by keeping busy in the classroom. We wrapped up our poetry mini-unit by writing a few more original pieces. We learned about the difference between volume and pitch in science, and even played a round of sound charades. This led to a discussion of what makes some sounds pleasant while others may be considered unpleasant. We continued to look at fractions as equal parts of a whole and began naming different kinds of fractions (halves, thirds, fourths, etc.) Students have been practicng effective organization techniques with their writing topics and have become very good at writing “bold beginnings”, “mighty middles” and “excellent endings”. They have also enjoyed sharing their pieces with a partner to get some peer feedback.
Happy New Year! New year = new things to learn about! This week we began several new units of study including our second poetry mini-unit in language arts, a unit on fractions in math, and a science unit on “Hearing and Sound”. We also reviewed our anchor charts in Daily 5 literacy so that we could exercise our “muscle memories” and recall the correct ways to work independently in reading, writing, and word work activities. 14 new words were posted on the word wall over the break, and we practiced spelling them and relating them to many other words that use their spelling patterns. We were especially excited to welcome our inline skating instructor to our gym classes this week, and we look forward to having another skate time with Kenny next week. Thank you to all the families who came out to enjoy our “Family Inline Skate Night” on Friday!
What a busy week we had! We continued our study of author/illustrator Jan Brett’s work by looking at how she comes up with her story ideas. As writers, we learned that we can retell folktales and fairy tales, we can model a new story from one that another author has written, or we can carry on in a new book the story of a favourite character we previously wrote about. It is great to see the children realize that “real authors” go through the same stages of the writing process as we do here in our classroom. In math, we used our knowledge of estimating sums to help us add 2-digit numbers and rationalize whether or not our answer is reasonable based on our estimates. We are currently using a 100’s chart to add, but this leads into the mental addition outcome of our grade 3 curriculum. It’s amazing to see how quickly the students are able to make this shift into mental calculations! In social studies, we explored our traditions and celebrations as Canadian citizens, and compared them to those of the four focus children we are studying from communities around the world. Of course, one favourite JS McCormick tradition is our annual Christmas concert, and what a splendid job our grade 3 classes did this week at ours. I know that none of us will get “Nuttin’ for Christmas” because we have all been so very good this year! Three more days of fun and learning at school, and then it is time to enjoy some of our favourite family traditions at home during the holiday season.