Friday, March 27, 2015

Math and Science Week of March 30th-April 2nd

Parents,

Important Dates this week:
Friday-Good Friday (no school)

Welcome to the 4th nine weeks of 3rd grade!  The kids and I are in a great groove and working hard.  In Math this week we will start the week off with a 2D Test on Polygons and Non-Polygons.  Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday we will talk about one line of symmetry, two lines of symmetry, and multiple lines of symmetry.  We will create things with symmetry as well as draw lines of symmetry on certain objects.  The kids will also work in groups and study each letter of the alphabet, drawing and agreeing among their peers how many lines of symmetry each capital letter has.


On Thursday we will begin our study of three dimensional shapes.  We will become more familiar with terms such as base, faces, vertices, and edges.  We are categorizing our 3-D shapes into 3 categories.

This first category is 3-D figures that have curved surfaces like the sphere, cylinder, and cone.



The next category are prisms such as the cube, triangular prism, and rectangular prism.  Prisms are prisms simply because their faces are either rectangular or square.



The last category we are studying is Pyramids like the square pyramid, the rectangular pyramid, and the triangular pyramid.  Pyramids are simply named by whatever their base is.  Pyramid faces are always triangular with a point at the top:


PLEASE STUDY MULTIPLICATION FAST FACTS WITH YOUR CHILD EVERY NIGHT FOR 7 TO 10 MINUTES.  THIS WEEK WILL BE FOR A GRADE :)

In Science, We have moved on to weather.  Last week we focused on Weather tools and the students and I made a flip chart together of 9 major tools that meteorologists use to predict the weather.  They are as follows:

1. Weather Balloons

2. Thermometer
3. Barometer
4. Hygrometer
5. Anemometer
6. Wind Vane
7. Rain Gauge
8. Weather Satellites
9. Weather Radars/Maps

Each child has also been assigned a specific city in the United States and are monitoring and logging the weather of that city for the next ten days.  This week we will be finishing up studying the tools that meteorologists use to predict weather and begin our study of the water cycle.  Important vocabulary for the water cycle would be:


1. Evaporation
2. Condensation
3. Water Vapor
4. Precipitation
5. Run-Off
6. Accumulation



Thanks for reading,

Ms. S

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Math and Science Week of March 23-27

Parents,

Welcome back from Spring Break!  I hope the break finds you relaxed and refreshed and ready to get back into this rat race!

In Math we will begin to study Polygons and 2D shapes. All students will receive a hole punched sheet with all the shapes that they will be required to know.  2-D shapes will be on the front and 3-D on the back.  This sheet will be put into their green binder that they bring home everyday.  We will be studying the 3 requirements a shape needs in order to be a polygon.

Polygons must be: 1. Flat, 2. closed, 3. and have straight sides.

Here's a fun song about Polygons:
THE POLYGON SONG

All students will need to recognize circles, ovals, triangles, squares, rectangles, rhombuses, parallelograms, trapezoids, pentagons, hexagons, and octagons.  We will be focusing on certain vocabulary such as sides, vertices, and parallel lines.  At the latter end of the week we will focus on congruent shapes what what congruent means.  If two shapes are congruent, it means that they are exactly the same size and same shape.  Students will understand that congruent shapes can be flipped, turned, or upside down, yet they are still congruent.  Next week we will merge into learning about 3-D shapes.

Fast Facts are starting back this week but will not be a grade.  Please study with your child 7-10 minutes every night.


In Science we finished up our Natural Resources unit, and will be moving on to the study of weather and weather tools.  The kids will become familiar with weather balloons, wind vanes, thermometers, barometers, anemometers, hygrometers, rain gauges, and weather satellites.  The kids will become familiar with weather and how exactly meteorologists use the tools mentioned above to make some predictions about what our weather will be like tomorrow.  The kids will closely monitor our weather here in Houston as well for the next ten days.

Important things this week:
Monday-counselor lesson on Monday
Thursday-10:50 awards ceremony in DC for 3rd nine weeks

It's going to be a great week back!
Love,
Ms. S

LA and SS March 23-27

READING
This week we will review main idea.  Students will read from nonfiction texts and determine the main idea of sections of text.  We will work to have fun while reviewing using this rap to keep us on track!  

Mrs. Henley has worked with us the last two weeks to help us see how our reading strategies apply to the genre of standardized tests.  She will be with us for a final lesson this Friday.

A reading passage will come home on Monday.  Please encourage your child to practice the suggested reading strategies as he or she works through that reading.  The passage is due on Friday.  Children have 20 minutes of nightly reading everyday this week.


WRITING
This week we will begin a new genre of writing.  We will work to consume examples of fun and practical procedural texts.  After spending an hour and a half over spring break helping Isabella put together Leo Friends, there's a new reality for me on the importance of well written and illustrated procedural texts!
Mrs. Bolton, our WITS instructor, will be with us on Tuesday as we continue to add to our writer's tool box.  We all love the energy and new ideas she brings to our instruction and learning.  

SPELLING
New spelling words will go home on Wednesday.  The spelling homework menu is due on the following Tuesday (3/31) and the test will be on that Wednesday (4/1).  If you need support with spelling, please email me.  If you child looses his or her spelling words, please look at the spelling spiral as we write them down as part of our lesson on Wednesdays.

SOCIAL STUDIES
We will move into a new unit of study for the 4th 9 weeks.  We will focus on Economics.  Yes, you read it correctly.  This week we will focus on some big ideas in economics: needs, wants, spending and saving.  This time of year it always becomes very clear which families discuss money with their children.  Please use the next few weeks to talk to your children about how you decide when to spend and when to save your money.  Discuss with them reasons you have a savings account.  Help reshape their cries for what they "need" and discuss what are our REAL needs and wants.

HOMEWORK
Thank you for supporting good study and reading habits at home. 

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Update for 3/9-3/13 from Mrs. Ford

READING
This week we will finish up our review of inferring with fiction texts and move into thinking about how to create a summary of a fiction text.  We will introduce a strategy called CPR.  Students will learn that there are some necessary elements to include in a summary- characters, problem, resolution.
 
WRITING
Your children have written some FABULOUS expository essays.  This week we will finish up revising and editing these pieces so we can publish them to share with you at Publisher's Picnic.
Mrs. Bolton, our WITS instructor, will be back with us this week.  We all love the fresh new ideas she brings to our instruction and learning.  

SPELLING
The spelling homework menu is due on the following Tuesday (3/10) and the test will be on that Wednesday (3/11).  If you need support with spelling, please email me.  If you child looses his or her spelling words, please look at the spelling spiral as we write them down as part of our lesson on Wednesdays.

SOCIAL STUDIES
All third graders will take a quiz on 3/10 on the inventors, scientists and founding fathers we have covered over the last few weeks.  Please encourage your child to bring home his or her social studies journal.  They have been working hard to complete guided notes on each historical figure.  You can also reference the Social Studies Links page on this blog for more information.

HOMEWORK
Thank you for supporting good study and reading habits at home. 

Sunday, March 1, 2015

LA and SS 3/2-3/6

READING
Your kids have done a great job reviewing nonfiction features over the last few weeks.  Last week we reviewed the concept of theme in reading.  What lesson or message does a book teach us?
This week we will work on reviewing inferring.  Our biggest challenge this week will be to have students work to find text evidence to support their inference.
WRITING
Your children have written some FABULOUS expository essays.  This week we will learn some new and revisit some old revision techniques as we prepare to finalize our essays.  We will have them published and ready to share with you at Publisher's Picnic.
Last week we had a great time on our WITS field trip to the Menil.  We responded to the art and poetry we were able to take in at this unique venue.  I was so proud of how well the kids were ready to try anything that they author's put in front of them.  Their writing from our WITS experiences will get turned into a published collection that we will also make sure is take home ready by Publisher's Picnic.
SPELLING
Spelling lessons start back this week.  Please look for NEW words to come home on Wednesday.  The spelling homework menu is due on the following Tuesday (3/10) and the test will be on that Wednesday (3/11).  If you need support with spelling, please email me.  If you child looses his or her spelling words, please look at the spelling spiral as we write them down as part of our lesson on Wednesdays.
SOCIAL STUDIES
We are finishing up our study on the Story of America.  Students will create a project on the inventors and scientists we have covered over the last few weeks.  Then, we will finish the week with a look at our founding fathers.  All third graders will take a quiz on 3/11 on the inventors, scientists and founding fathers we have covered over the last few weeks.  Please encourage your child to bring home his or her social studies journal.  They have been working hard to complete guided notes on each historical figure.  You can also reference the Social Studies Links page on this blog for more information.
HOMEWORK
Thank you for supporting reading at home.  Your child will bring home a letter and data report sheet from our Practice STAAR Benchmark this week in the Tuesday Newsday folder.  My big focus with this data is that I want your children to notice what they have learned this year.  Then, we will work together to help them keep learning and working on reading concepts that they struggled with on the benchmark.  Many of them have been focused on the score.  I'm less concerned with scores, and more concerned with learning.
One area that most kids struggled in was endurance.  If you look at the last 8-10 questions on the benchmark, they started missing more and more questions.  I've stressed in class the importance of reading at least 20 minutes each night and will appreciate your support at home.  The letter coming home will have question prompts for you to use with your child after they read each night.

Friday, February 27, 2015

Math and Science Week of March 2-6

Hi Parents,

Happy Boosterthon week!  What does that all mean?  I don't know either, it's my first Boosterthon!  We will  just figure it all out together.

This week in Math we are starting with the fraction quiz.  The field trip day last week pushed us back a bit and we had to alter our plans.  Tuesday and Wednesday we will begin with fractions on a number line.  You will see something similar come home for HW this week.  Fractions on a number line in it's simplest form looks like this:


This is when we in introduce students to what a mixed number is.  A mixed number is a whole number WITH a fraction.  In 3rd grade, students must be able to understand a number line being divided into 2,3,4,6,and 8's!  Thursday and Friday we will introduce the Metric Measuring System.  Students will measure lots of things around the room in centimeters and become familiar with the words millimeter, centimeter, meter, and kilometer. 

We will have a fast facts test on Friday as well as a Problem of the Week.  

In Science we will be continuing to learn about Natural Resources and conservation.  Your child SHOULD have a Natural Resource flow chart in their red hw folder to study.  It was brought home on Thursday night last week.  They will need to be able to fill out a blank flow chart on their own by this coming Friday the 6th, as well as know why do we use wood for houses, cotton for clothing, etc...  What does renewable/non-renewable mean?  Why conserve?  What are the three R's?  There will be a few multiple choice questions that they will be responsible for answering on this short quiz. 

Here is a video/song about the three R's that's fun and catchy!



Let's take care of earth.

Love,
Ms.S

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Math and Science Week of February 23rd

Parents,

Wow!  What a busy week last week all crammed into four days!  This week we will also have another field trip.  Our WITS program that has been teaching our kids to write will be taking us to the Menil museum.  It will be a neat experience for the kids for sure.

In Math this week we will still be working on fractions.  Monday and Tuesday we will work on making equal fractions, Wednesday and Thursday we will use our knowledge of fractions to compare them.  The students will have pictorial models in order to make a decision of greater than, less than, or equal to.  On Friday, we will have an all encompassing test on fractions.  The pictures below will explain how students make equal fractions and compare fractions in 3rd grade.

      


There will be a Problem of the Week due on Friday as well as a fast facts test grade that will go in the grade book.

In Science we are learning about Natural Resources (renewable and nonrenewable).  This week we will take common things like a cheese sandwich and/or a teddy bear and break down what the objects are made of and whether the materials are renewable or non-renewable.  We also will discuss how this applies to conservation and the Three R's, Reuse, Reduce, and Recycle.  We will discuss ways to conserve and discuss how we can take care of our earth.

Important things to remember about this week:
Tuesday-Book Fair Dinner
Wednesday-Donuts in the morning sponsored by the Dad's Club
Thursday-WITS field trip
Friday-Go Texan Day

Love,
 Ms. S