November 3: 1st Quarter ends
November 14-15:  Fall Conferences 

Instructional Reading Update: Our first theme was "How America Began" and we read informational articles. Students learned about our founding fathers, the Declaration of Independence and our Constitution.  We read about Ben Franklin, John Adams, Thomas Jefferson and George Washington and how newspapers back then were very different than our newspapers today.   This week we started our next theme: "Family Fun".  This theme focuses on fictional stories, character traits and 1st person/3rd person narration. Our focus areas as we read have been:  figuring out the main idea and key details, learning author's point of view, comparing and contrasting and summarizing what we've read, making inferences, just to name a few! 

Independent Reading Update:  We've learned how to pick a "good fit book" using the "I PICK" steps: I choose the book, I have a Purpose and Interest in the book I'm choosing, I must be able to Comprehend what I read (remember it and understand it) and I must Know most of the words in my book. After students have read their good fit book, they take an AR (Accelerated Reader) quiz on their iPad.  When they pass a quiz, they earn points.  Every student has a point goal to meet by the end of this quarter (November 3rd) which was determined by their STAR Reading assessment taken the 2nd week of school. Students are to be reading their good fit books daily; at school and at home (15-20 minutes-this is their homework). Books should go home and be returned daily in their Take Home Folder. The "Book It" program started this month: Pizza Hut will give every child a free pizza if they read the required minutes (240) for the month!  Wow! Get a free pizza for doing reading homework! Thank you Pizza Hut for valuing good reading habits. Parents: PLEASE ENCOURAGE READING AT HOME DAILY!  

Science Update:  We learned about the purpose of our skeletons and our muscles.  Our next focus will be our Digestive System. Have your third grader tell you about the banana activity!

Writing Update:  We have moved on to learn how to write a friendly letter to a pen pal.  Everyone has a letter-writing guide and the writing process steps to follow as they draft their first letter. Final copy is ready to be mailed!

Spelling Update: Each week new words are introduced using a particular "sort" pattern.  New word lists are sent home every Friday (typically) for students to look over before Monday's lesson.  Please make sure your child studies his/her word list every night before Friday's test.  Our brains need repeated practice to learn/remember long term these spelling patterns.