Mrs. Eshelbrenner and Ms. Simpson teach third grade. Each classroom teacher leads the instruction in academic subjects in her classroom. Reading and math specialists may also work with individuals or small groups of students when needed.
The third grade reading program uses a combination of phonetic-based instruction and a sight word program. Reading is taught in a whole-group, small group or one-to-one setting. Phonics is taught through the Lindamood-Bell program and the SPIRE program. The SRA basic reading series, Scott-Foresman My Sidewalks on Reading Street, and novel studies are used in reading instruction. Third grade is the year when the students begin to make the transition from learning to read into reading to learn. All students receive reading fluency training with a reading specialist.
Third graders apply the writing process to many assignments throughout the year. They are responsible for research projects as well as shorter writing assignments. Some of these assignments include letter writing, postcards, book reports, poetry, short stories, descriptive paragraphs, narrative writing, informational writing, and other creative writing projects. Students will enjoy daily journal writing. They learn the importance of different types of writing. Writing skills are developed across the curriculum.
Oral language and memory skills are practiced through reciting weekly memory work.
The Sitton Spelling Program is used for spelling instruction. This program ensures a student’s discovery of spelling skills and concepts through word collection and analysis. It also develops a student’s spelling mastery of high frequency writing words with the help of formative assessment. Each student works on an individualized list of words.
Third graders will be introduced to cursive writing through the Handwriting Without Tears program. The use of cursive is incorporated into the students’ daily writing.
The students divide into three or four groups for math instruction. Saxon math provides the basis of the third grade math program. The Saxon curriculum is supplemented with computer software, manipulatives and interactive SMART board activities. Students work individually with a teaching assistant on building their math fact fluency.
The third graders will learn about communities past, present, and future. They will complete a unit of study on the community of Dallas and its history and will also participate in a biography research project.
Students will be exploring life science through the study of nutrition and health. During their earth science unit, they will study weather and its effect on the earth. The physical science unit focuses on simple machines. The science curriculum is enriched with the use of Scholastic News, hands-on presentations from High Touch and High Tech and several exciting field trips.
The third graders participate in at least one community service project each year. The projects change from year to year depending on identified needs in the community.
Third grade students receive additional instruction in the following areas:
P. E.-3 days a week
Tech Lab-2 days a week
Art -1 day a week for an hour
Drama: Once a year, a representative from the Dallas Children’s Theater works with the class for 10 sessions to create an original drama production, which is performed for the parents.