October/ November News:
Students completed Unit 1 and are now working on multi-step number models. The children are also practicing basic multiplication and division facts. Additionally, students will continue to work with partners and in small groups to explore, create, and solve multiplication and division number stories.
We are excited to continue our work with the character study in Unit 2. Through our class shared book, we are creating mental movies in their minds, using their schema to make deeper connections, and using clues embedded in text to help us make strong predictions about the characters we meet in the text. Students are also meeting with their reading partners to discuss their thinking as it relates to the characters in their books. Through the aid of sticky notes, the students are able to “stop and jot” their thoughts and note when their characters begin to change. The children are using the Work of Readers model as a guide to strengthen and document the changes that their characters make from the beginning of the story to the end.
The students in third grade are finishing up their first piece of the year. They are so proud of their personal narratives that describe an experience that is a turning point moment in each of their lives. The children have learned to write about the scenes leading up to this moment by using a story mountain to organize their thoughts. The strong feeling of the turning point moment is "stretched out" so that the reader can truly understand the feeling of this experience. Once described, the children were encouraged to express the lesson learned from this experience and this was also included in their personal narratives. We celebrate each student's writing by displaying the writing pieces for classmates to read and respond with positive comments and praise.
We are excited to begin our next writing piece, as the third grade students will be penpals with third grade students in Japan. These students live in a community that is modeled after the Radburn Community with streets built around the school, so that children can walk to school without having to crossing streets. During this instruction the students will also be learning about the parts of a letter, while also practicing and applying skills learned in our grammar and spelling lessons, as well as Writer’s Workshop. Once we send our letters to our friends in Japan, we will have great anticipation of receiving our responses.