Dear Third Grade Families,

Welcome back!  We hope everyone had a restful summer. We are looking forward to working with you and your child during this important year as an upper classman.

We began the year discussing third grade expectations and are empowering the students to be leaders of their own learning. We have enjoyed some getting to know you activities and students are beginning to settle into the routines and rigor that come along with third grade.

Students will each receive a green Home/School Folder that will be used to transport homework and notes. They will also receive a planner. Homework is given on Monday and returned by Friday. Until it becomes a routine, please ask your child if they have any ‘mail’ on a daily basis.  If you have a note for anyone in the school community, please put it in the green folder and it will be delivered as marked.  (This folder tends to get ‘full’ very quickly; students should not be keeping academic papers in this folder full time.  We will teach them how to manage their work but please feel free to remind them to stay organized!

During class we discussed that our expectation of the students is that they come to school prepared with the following:

  • Water Bottle
  • Reading text (novel /informational)
  • Planner
  • Subject Folders
  • Home/School folder (Green)
  • Readers/Writers Notebook
  • Completed Homework by Friday

On the horizon in the month ahead!

Reading: Building a Reading Life

This unit devoted to helping our third graders develop lifelong habits of being strong readers, including choosing books wisely and getting a lot of reading done, keeping track of how reading is going and addressing problems along the way, learning to talk about books with others, and applying on-the-run comprehension strategies to hold onto and synthesize all the parts of the text. We are teaching students to live lives as readers in the classroom and at home.

The comprehension skills that are highlighted in the unit include the foundational skills of envisioning, predicting and retelling, as well as strategies for tackling difficulties in texts. Students will have reading partners that are matched to a similar reading level.

 Reader’s Notebook

Student’s will learn the structure of a Reader’s Notebook. This structure in used throughout Lower Lab in grades 3-5. This is a place where all responses to reading will live. It is also provides an opportunity to log completed books and set, revisit and refine goals as readers.

 Writing: Crafting True Stories

This unit builds on the “small moment stories” that students have written in K-2. Students will learn to write with integrity in a Writer’s Notebook; inspired that these notebooks are something that professional writers use in order to live lives as writers. Student’s entries will range from a half a page to a page. They will learn strategies to generate narrative writing. They will have an opportunity later in this unit to draw on a repertoire of strategies they acquired earlier on to raise the level of their narrative writing.

The reading and writing units this month are aiming to do similar work. We want to invite students to live like real readers and writers. To help with this work, students will have separate reading and writing partners to support their work, discovery and growth.

Social Studies:

The overall subject is ‘countries around the world.’ We will study countries that are different in terms of continents, cultures, climates and governments. Specifically we will have an opportunity to study Brazil and China. These global studies will allow students to develop valuable research and inquiry skills through studying multiple texts, interpreting maps, data, and images and finally to continue building on note-taking strategies.

 During the next month we will begin our study of New Orleans. Students will have an opportunity to work in partners and small groups.


We are beginning the year with a brief review of addition and subtraction. We hope that students have secured automaticity of their addition and subtraction facts through 20.

In our first unit, students will gain an understanding of multiplication by using equal groups. Through mini lessons, partner work, and group investigations, students will understand the meaning of multiplication model arrays, and the inverse relationship between multiplication and division. Manipulatives will be used to support this important work.

Our Multiplication unit will culminate with an exciting investigation called Muffles Truffles. Your child will never look at a box of chocolate the same way!

We look forward to working together as a team to foster a love of learning!
Here’s to joyous beginnings!

Kevin and Leslie