Thursday, October 20, 2016

It seems hard to believe that we are already approaching the close of the first marking period. Parents will be invited to attend a parent / teacher conference in mid-November to discuss their student's strengths and identified areas for growth. You can expect to see a sign-up scheduling sheet come home next week.

The class was fortunate to have our first 4 Winds workshop of the school year this week. Scarlett McDermott and Beth Harper led the class in an investigation of the processes of erosion. Students watched a puppet show, participated in stations modeling erosion forces, and were involved in a design challenge to mitigate the effects of water erosion on the landscape. It was a great and highly engaging session.

Please remember to help ensure your child reads for a minimum of thirty minutes a night on weeknights and completes a Reading Log entry. The yellow log is then returned to school on Fridays for a quick review by Ms. Bahlenhorst.

In math, third graders are beginning to explore the concept of perimeter (the distance around the outside edge of a shape) and learn the skills associated with accurately determining a shape's perimeter. This involves understanding how to use measuring tools appropriately and the difference between U.S. standard units (inches, feet, yards, etc.) and metric units (centimeters, meters, etc.).

Students were introduced to three different ways they can determine a word's meaning from context clues when reading.

  1. antonyms or contrasts as clues
  2. synonyms or definitions as clues
  3. examples as clues
We are sneaking up on completing the final drafts of our small moment stories. Today we used whisper phones (ask your child what these are and how they work) to check for meaning. Tomorrow we'll look at how to write an ending, and then students will begin the final phase of editing prior to publishing.

In science we've been working on the idea of the shared life cycle of all organisms (birth, growth, reproduction, death). Additionally, we've zoomed in on complete and incomplete insect metamorphosis (change). The class played some matching and card games to help them understand and memorize the different stages of metamorphosis.
  • Incomplete Metamorphosis--egg, nymph, adult
  • Complete Metamorphosis--egg, larva, pupa, adult
Finally, our read aloud Jeremy Thatcher, Dragon Hatcher is wrapping up this week. Ask your child to give you a summary of the important parts of the book in order. This is an important skill we'll begin working on in the near future. It's something you can practice, too, at home. Students should think about who the main character is, what the big problem or issue in the story is, how the main character goes about solving the problem, and the overall resolution at the end. You can even practice this skill with TV shows.

Playing the Go Bug! metamorphosis game 
Matching metamorphosis game

More life cycle work
4 Winds wind erosion
4 Winds water erosion
More water erosion

Engineering a way to prevent erosion in 4 Winds

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