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Testing, Testing, 1-2-3-4

September 2, 2019

I hope that you all enjoyed this absolutely gorgeous weekend!  I finally checked Whetstone Mountain off of my peak list and I got to go with one of my former third graders turned Senior!  Woohoo! 



 Here's a little ditty about what's going down in third grade this week:


The reason the title of this post is Testing, Testing 1-2-3-4 is because there is A LOT of assessment happening this week.  While I'd prefer teaching over testing any old day of the week, these assessments are necessary to see where each student is currently and of course to demonstrate growth over the year.  PLEASE do your best to be sure your cutie is getting a good night's rest, a nutritious breakfast and is on time and present.


Now here's the kicker, I'm asking you to make sure your child is at school and I'm missing Thursday and Friday next week to be the Maid of Honor in my little sister's wedding. Fortunately, we'll be done assessing by Thursday.


Also, Back to School Night is scheduled for Thursday at 5:00pm.  There will be a presentation in the MPR and then classroom visits.  I will be in Michigan, so won't be there.  I will leave the classroom open and will ask Mrs. Hensley or another staff member if they can be there.  


Assessments aside, here is what we'll be doing in each subject area:




Right now, we are establishing how to actively listen.  This includes sitting up, listening attentively, nodding appropriately and tracking/looking at the speaker.  This thread runs through all subject areas. We will also be delving into our first math unit which is all about math tools, time and multiplication! Also, it is my hope to send our online math login information this week.


We will also be taking our online MAP Math and Reading Assessments.  To learn more about what these are, click here.




Our class has just finished our first unit of reading, which focuses on building the reading community. Students talked about what they like to read, heard and read stories, and discussed those stories with partners and with the class. They compared two stories by a single author and explored using illustrations to make inferences about stories.During the first unit, the students also practiced the social skill of listening carefully to others. Listening well to others is a skill that helps students learn and become active members of the reading community.


Here are some ways to build your child’s reading life at home:

  • Make weekly trips to the local library to borrow books.

  • Set aside a time to read together every day.

  • Stop every so often while reading aloud to ask your child what he or she is thinking about the story.

  • Model good listening by paying attention to your child when the two of you discuss a story.

    Your child might also be interested in keeping track of the books you read together. Your child might choose to record each book’s title, the author’s name, and a few comments about the book.

    Reading and discussing books is one of the most important gifts you can give your child. I hope reading together every day can be an enjoyable time for you and your family.



Our class has just finished the first unit in writing as well, which focuses on motivating and inspiring the students as writers. They heard and discussed examples of good writing, learned about the writing practices of professional authors, and wrote freely for increasing lengths of time about topics that interest them. During the first unit, the students practiced the social skills of listening respectfully to the thinking of others, sharing their own thinking, and showing interest in and appreciation for others’ writing. These skills are helping the students build a supportive writing community.  


Students also learned that if they share their writing in OUR class, you get to stand on the desk and use a mic! So needless to say, there was a LOT of sharing going on!


In Unit 2, each student will select a piece of writing he or she drafted in Unit 1 to revise and publish.


In the meantime, here are some ways to support your child’s development as a writer:

• Ask your child questions about the writing he or she is doing in class, such as: – How do you get ideas for your writing?
– What kinds of things do you want to write this year?
– How do you want to improve as a writer this year?

• Show your child that you value the written word by setting aside time to read and discuss stories, poems, articles, and other types of writing together.





Our first unit is LIFECYCLES!  We will have the introduction to this unit on our field trip NEXT MONDAY September 9th.  Yay!


Thank you all so much for everything you do!


Enjoy the last few hours of this weekend and we'll see you bright and early on Tuesday morning!








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