Thursday, September 30, 2010
In reading we used the National Geographic to identify text features common to non-fiction text (table of contents, bold print, diagrams, maps, chart, index, etc.) Then the students identified sensory images that were used by the author who wrote the article called Lively Lizards. Additionally, the students continued working on their writing pieces...many have completed their final draft! After that, the children completed any unfinished work from the week. During this time, I continued conferencing with individual students on their writing pieces.
Following lunch and indoor recess, the children went to the computer lab for a lesson with Mrs. Rose, the media specialist. When they return to class, Mrs. Howard will conduct a lesson about organization.
Wednesday, September 29, 2010
Today we had many students asking good questions which has left me with the feeling that a lot of good learning was done today!!
In math we practiced rounding three digit numbers to the tens and hundreds. I worked with a small group on this skill, while the other students worked independently. There is a rounding worksheet for homework.
At the beginning of our reading block there was a school wide code blue/code red practice drill. This is simply an opportunity for students to learn the procedure in the event of an emergency. The students did well and nobody seemed worried or stressed!
After that I introduced a long term, at-home, required project...a paper bag book report. I reviewed the assignment sheet (which is in their home folders and needs to be signed by you tonight) AND I showed them an actual example. I feel pretty certain that the students have a clear picture in their head of what is expected. They are due on Tuesday, October 26.
Then I introduced a new word of the week (pact - an agreement) and handed out a worksheet that will help the children "get to know" their National Geographic magazines. The students worked on these assignments and their personal narratives as I met with students individually to conference with them on their writing pieces. Therefore, we did not meet in reading groups today.
I have to say, though, that I found the conferences to be quite productive AND I saw lots of great writing skills!!
Following lunch and recess the students went to PE. When they return we will clarify the difference between geographical characteristics and resources in social studies.
Tuesday, September 28, 2010
In math we reviewed rounding two digit numbers to the nearest ten. I believe that most kids own this concept, now. So tomorrow we will round three digit numbers to the nearest ten and numbers to the closest hundred. Additionally, today, I worked with a small group on solving three digit subtraction with regrouping problems. There is a TWO sided worksheet for homework.
We began reading by learning about the editing and conferencing process for our writing workshop. Basically, there is a two-sided worksheet (checklist) that guides the students through self and peer editing and conferencing. While I met with reading groups the students worked on their rough drafts, began the editing and conferencing process and previewed our first National Geographic.
A word about the magazines...these have been purchased, by the school, for each student. They are to be kept in the reading section of their binder. If an issue is lost, we can not replace it. However, students will still be expected to completed any assigned work that pertains to it. SOOOO...please help your child remember to keep it in their binder!
Blue: We continued reading Abuela's Weave but the group was struggling with it. I collected the book and we will begin a new, more appropriate book, tomorrow.
Green: We reviewed their unknown words from homework. Then we read and discussed the story. For homework they need to reread the story and identify the problem and solution by placing a sticky note, labeled either "p" or "s" in the text.
Red: We shared our pictures from homework and reread page 32 noting what needed to be added to our work. Then we continued reading the story. For homework the students need to read pages 32-45 and identify who is moving...this can be jotted in their planner!
Following lunch and recess we will complete our science activity (solving the crime) from yesterday. Then Mrs. Howard will stop by to discuss the SGA election process with the entire third grade.
Anyone interested in volunteering between 11:30 and 12:45, please contact me. This would involve keeping students on task during independent work time during our reading block. Thanks!
Monday, September 27, 2010
In math we reviewed the steps for rounding numbers to the nearest ten. The students took notes in their math journals but we did not have time for independent practice. Therefore, tonight's homework is a review of subtraction with regrouping.
The quizzes from Friday were scored this morning and will be coming home this evening.
In reading we read the story Flossie and the Fox. It is a SUPER story that is very entertaining. Ask your child about it! We reviewed the story elements and identified the plot. Then the students were to write a new ending to the book in their RRJ. They had done a similar assignment, with the substitute on Friday, so I was looking forward to seeing their work. Unfortunately, many students did not write a new ending. Instead they wrote about the plot! We will work on following direction and making sure that responses match the assignment!!
While the students did their RRJ assignment, practiced writing the letters f, p and j in cursive and corrected spelling in their RRJs, I met with reading groups.
Blue: We began reading Abuela's Weave. Tonight they need to reread up to the post-it note (this is the beginning of the story) and draw a picture and write about the beginning of the story in their RRJ.
Green: The group received a new book. Tonight they need to preview the book and list any unknown words. Just a reminder, unknown words are words they either don't know how to pronounce or they do not know the meaning.
Red: Discussed predictions for what will happen next. Then we continued reading. Tonight the students need to read pages 28-32 and draw a picture of the backyard (as described on page 32) in their RRJ.
Following indoor recess, the students went to art. When they return, we will use their knowledge of fingerprints to solve a "crime".
Thursday, September 23, 2010
In math we reviewed three digit subtraction when multiple regroupings are needed. Then the students wither worked independently on a worksheet or met in a small group. One small group worked on subtraction with regrouping. Another worked on identifying the rule for a numeric pattern and using the rule to extend the pattern. We will have a quiz tomorrow that will cover place value, subtraction with regrouping and numeric patterns. There is a pattern worksheet for homework.
A quick word about independent math work...students who are not meeting in a small group will typically be given a worksheet to complete independently. These worksheets, for various reasons, my not be completed in entirety. It is not my intention to have the students work on these at home...that would almost appear to be a punishment I do send home the unfinished worksheets so that you can see what they are working on and how they are doing.
To begin reading I reviewed the expectations for written assignments, again. Then I modeled a well-crafted response for yesterday's RRJ assignment. I made sure to point out issues I had seen in student work and clarify how to improve these areas. Then we read the story Library Lil and discussed and charted the plot.
While I met with reading groups the students wrote about the plot of Library Lil in their RRJs. They also completed a proofreading page in their spelling packet. After that they worked on any unfinished work such as the word of the week, cursive and their rough draft. If they had nothing else to do, they worked on correcting the spelling in their RRJ assignments and then read quietly.
Blue: We didn't meet today. We will review the list of unknown words in class tomorrow.
Green: We reviewed words with -ious to clarify sound and meaning. Then, after posing couple of comprehension questions, we discussed the difference between decoding (word calling) and reading for comprehension. Tonight they should reread up to the sticky note...work on fluency and phrasing.
Red: To activate our prior knowledge we discussed challenges that families face, such as, divorce, death, new babies, etc. Then we began reading the story Talk About a Family. Tonight the children need to reread about to page 17 and tell an adult about Mr. Parker.
Following lunch and recess the students visited the media center. After that, Mrs. Howard will conduct a lesson about organization.
Wednesday, September 22, 2010
In math we continued solving 2 and 3 digit subtraction problems with and without regrouping. I also gave an "exit card" for numeric patterns. This will give me extra data for pulling small groups and planning for whole group instruction! After that, the entire class practiced solving three digit subtraction problems using white boards. Then some students worked independently on a practice worksheet while others met in small groups. One group worked on place value and another group worked on solving subtraction problems that require regrouping. There is a subtraction worksheet for homework.
We began reading by discussing class expectations regarding the quality of work that is completed during independent work time. Then I modeled a well written response for yesterday's in-class RRJ assignment. After that we discussed what a plot of a story is...the problem, solution and events leading from the problem to the solution. Next, I read the story Brave Irene and we charted the plot.
While I met with reading groups the class wrote about the plot of Brave Irene in their RRJ. They also worked on their personal narrative rough draft, created a cartoon for our new word of the week (drowsy), practiced writing the letters r and s in cursive, and corrected misspelled words in their RRJ.
Blue: We practiced writing high frequency words on white boards. Then I gave them a synopsis of their next book, Abuela's Weave. For homework they need to preview the book and list any unknown words on the sticky note that is posted on the front cover of their book.
Green: We continued reading and discussing their Richard Wright book. Tonight they need to reread the entire story up to the sticky note. I realize some of this is repetition but my purpose for this assignment is to work on reading fluency.
Red: We reviewed their written homework from last night (identifying a character trait for Minh and using specific details from the book to support it). Unfortunately, all but one student did an inadequate job. So we discussed the expectations for written RRJ assignments and I told them to redo this assignment tonight. I am hoping to get much different results!
Following lunch and recess the students will go to PE. When they return we will share their group posters from yesterday and then learn about the "experts" categories for these words...this will review the three types of resources (human, natural and capital) and introduce physical and human characteristics.
Tuesday, September 21, 2010
In math we reviewed subtraction with regrouping. I also gave the students an exit card...just a brief, one problem, check-in to see where their knowledge is with a specific skill or topic. Today's exit card was on place value. I will use this data to create small groups.
Speaking of small groups, we had two today. One used base ten blocks to regroup and then find the difference with two digit subtraction problems. The other worked on place value.
Tonight's math homework is a subtraction worksheet.
We began reading by discussing story elements (characters, setting, problem and solution). Then I introduced a t-chart with the problems I had already suffered today (LOL!!!)...headache, being thirsty, etc. The students identified solutions to my problems...take aspirin for my headache, drink a diet coke for my thirst, etc. This helped me cement the idea that in a story the solution must match the problem.
Next we read the story The Empty Pot and the students and I charted and discussed the problems and solutions in the story. When they went back to their seats, the students chose one problem to write about in their RRJ.
During independent work time, the students also completed their personal narrative rough drafts and sorted spelling words according to whether they had the long e or long a sound.
I met with reading groups:
Red: We reread their story and discussed character traits for Minh. Tonight, in their RRJ, they need to identify a character trait for Minh and use details from the story to support the trait.
Green: We shared their base words and suffixes and discussed any incorrect words. Then we began a new book. Tonight they need to read up to the sticky note, in their book, and get a parent signature int heir planner.
Blue: We shared the student's homework responses about their deepest wish. Some were great...others, not-so-much. We will definitely be working on written responses! For homework they need to reread their book and get a parent to sign their planner.
Following lunch and recess the students will work in small groups to create categories for a bunch of social studies words they will be given. They can group the words any way they wish but each group much have a rule.
We will end the day with a DVD about crime lab science.
Monday, September 20, 2010
In math we reviewed addition and subtraction in terms of parts and wholes; part + part = whole and whole - part = part. This led us nicely into practicing the steps of subtraction...most importantly the fact that we had to start at the TOP when we subtract because that is what we have. The students then worked independently on a subtraction worksheet while I met with a small group and practiced identifying the rule and using it to extend numeric patterns. There is a subtraction worksheet for homework.
We began reading by listening to the story called Everglades and identifying how the setting is important to the story. The students then worked independently on the following items; listing words, from their reading group books, with the long "a" and long "e" sound in their RRJs and using their storyboard to write a rough draft. I met with reading groups.
Blue: Practiced writing high frequency words on white boards and then finished reading and discussing Amelia's Road. For homework they need to draw a picture of their deepest wish and write about it in their RRJ.
Green: We discussed base words and suffixes and then identified words with suffixes in their reading group book. Tonight they need to reread their book and list 3-5 more words with suffixes, from their boo, in their RRJ.
Red: Needs to reread their reading group book and get a parent signature in their planner...we did not have a lot of time to meet in group. I will meet with this group first tomorrow!
Following lunch and recess the class will go to art. When they return we will define natural, human and capital resources. They will then identify the resources that are needed for their hobby as being one of the three.
Friday, September 17, 2010
After the quiz I taught the class how to play hundred's chart tic tac toe. This will become another anchor activity that they can do when they are finished with their class work.
We began reading by listening to the book Where the River Begins. Our purpose for reading was to chart words and pictures the author used to strengthen the sensory images in his reader's minds. After that, the students each chose an object (either their own or one I provided) and completed a graphic organizer using vivid words to describe each of the 5 senses. They then used the organizer to help them write a descriptive paragraph about their object. When they completed that task, they moved on to any other unfinished work from the week. I met with reading groups.
Red: We reviewed their word list from homework and then read and discussed the book.
Green: We shared their responses from homework last night and identified what made an answer good. We also suggested ways to improve responses.
Blue: We reviewed the RRJ responses from homework and discussed being more specific...overall, I was disappointed. Then we read another page in their book.
Following lunch and recess the class went to music. After music we will use cocoa powder to dust for fingerprints!
Thursday, September 16, 2010
This morning, in math, we reviewed numeric patterns and subtraction with regrouping. Then the class worked independently while I met with small groups. One group worked to comprehend the process of identify the rule for a numeric pattern and then using that rule to extend the pattern. Another group worked on ordering two and three digit numbers. Tonight there is a numeric patterns worksheet. We will have our first quiz tomorrow, too.
After math, we proceeded to our newly formed reading classes. In my class we began by reading two "stories" about aliens. One story was brief. The other was much longer due to its inclusion of many vivid and descriptive words and phrases (one student called these "exciting" words...LOVE that!). We discussed the use of sensory images in writing and the benefits to both the reader and the writer. Then, I introduced a new planning sheet for writing personal narratives.
While I met with reading groups, the students worked independently on drawing a picture to go with the more descriptive Aliens story, completing a planning sheet for their next writing piece and practicing the letters "h" and "k" in cursive.
Blue: Scanned the book and listed unknown words. Then we reviewed their unknown words and began reading Amelia's Road...it is a story about the daughter of an immigrant worker. For homework, the students need to reread the book, up to the sticky note, and answer the question, "Do you feel sorry for Amelia? Why/ why not?" in their RRJ.
Green: Scanned the text of A Good Dessert and listed unknown words. We reviewed the words and read the entire book. For homework the students need to reread the book and write about how Stan and Carmen changed in the story, in their RRJ.
Red: This group went last today and therefore didn't get as much of my time...I will meet with them first tomorrow! They need to read their book for homework and list any unknown words on the sticky note that is on the front cover.
Following lunch and recess, the children visited the media center. When they return, Mrs. Howard will conduct a lesson called, "All About Me!" with them.
Wednesday, September 15, 2010
This morning in math we reviewed the two steps needed to extend a numeric pattern. The students took notes in their math journals and then attempted to sue those notes to complete their independent work. While I did see some progress, I noted that many continued to struggle. Across the class, many students are experiencing challenges when faced with a subtraction problem that requires regrouping. So, tomorrow, we will review that skill. Tonight there is a place value worksheet. Also, the students will take their first place value quiz on Friday.
After math, students went to their newly assigned reading class. Since this was the first day with a new reading class, I spent time reviewing expectations and class routines. While we did not get to reading groups today, I felt the time was well spent. We will begin reading groups tomorrow!
We did read the story Miss Rumphius and identify character traits for the main character, as well as, discussing how she changed from the beginning to the end of the story. The students wrote about a character trait in their RRJ. Additionally, the students worked with a new word of the week, "immense" and they practiced writing the lower case letters "l" and "b" in cursive.
Following lunch and recess the students went to PE. When they return to the classroom we will identify fingerprint patterns on a worksheet. This will help to ensure that we are all on the same page.
Monday, September 13, 2010
In math we began exploring methods to identify and extend a numeric pattern. I am teaching the children that they need to identify then apply the rule, using these ideas:
- Decide whether the pattern is increasing or decreasing.
- Circle the first two numbers in the pattern.
- Subtract the smaller number from the larger number (big # - small #), that tells you the rule
- If the pattern is increasing, then you ADD the rule...if it is decreasing subtract the rule
- To extend the pattern, after you identify the rule, go to the last number in the pattern and apply the rule
While the children worked independently on a worksheet that practiced identifying and extending patterns, I met with two small groups. One group worked on writing four and five digit numbers in standard form. The other group practiced using the ideas above to identify and extend numeric patterns. There is NO math homework tonight.
On Wednesday, the students will be assigned new reading classes based upon the data we have gathered through our informal assessments and the MAP-R. Therefore, I did not meet with reading groups today but I DID focus on independent work expectations. I spent time reviewing how the expectations for independent work time would be communicated to the class (via the white board) and then ensuring that they followed the directions.
Prior to this, of course, we engaged in two whole group lessons; a reading lesson, focusing on identifying character traits and using details from the text to support them, and a writing lesson, listing possible topics for personal narratives. We read the book Koi and the Kola Nuts for the reading lesson. Today I Feel Silly was the book used for the writing lesson.
Following lunch, recess and art, we will identify the resources required for our hobby and categorize them as human, capital or natural.
Please make sure your child reads for at least 15 minutes and completes the reading log in his/her binder.
Reminder: No School tomorrow due to Primary Election Day
Friday, September 10, 2010
In math we reviewed place value and continued creating the greatest and smallest number possible when given 4 digits. I also introduced two anchor activities to the class. Anchor activities are on-going activities (for lack of a better word) that students can choose between, when they are finished with their assigned work, that help practice and strengthen math skills.
After that, the students worked on two worksheets independently, while I met with two small groups. One groups practiced using cards and base tens blocks to create the greatest and least possible number. The other group used base ten blocks and white boards to practice writing four digit numbers in expanded form.
We began our reading block by brainstorming words that describe Sponge Bob...yes, you read that right! As the students suggested ideas, I listed them on a chart...one side was for character traits and the other was for physical attributes. This allowed us to use a character we are all familiar with to develop a lengthy list of both. Then we identified how character traits and physical attributes differ.
Next we began reading Nate the Great on the Owl Express. As we read we identified character traits (NOT physical attributes) for characters in the story and evidence to support it.
Before going to lunch and recess, the children worked independently on writing the cursive letters u, w and e. They also worked on a crossword puzzle and other unfinished work. I caught up with some of the testing that I had not quite finished...OOPS!
Currently, the students are enjoying lunch, recess and music. When they return we will finish sharing the symbols for their hobbies that they drew on Wednesday. Then we will discuss what exactly a resource is and make a list of resources needed for each of our hobbies.
I am sending home two Scholastic book order forms. If you choose to order, the completed forms and a check are due back no later than next Friday, September 17.
Wednesday, September 8, 2010
In math we worked on creating the largest and smallest possible numbers when given a set of four digits. Unfortunately, we did not get to small groups. We had to take some extra time reviewing procedures and routines. I am hopeful that Friday will be much smoother!
We began reading by finishing out realistic fiction lesson from yesterday. Then we discussed procedures and routines as related to independent work time when I am working with small groups. The students learned about the "issue bin"...a place where they can leave notes for me when I am busy with a small group.
We also learned about Word of the Week....a program we will use to learn a new vocabulary word each week...this week's word is strive (to try very hard). AND we began our instruction of cursive handwriting with the lower case i and t.
After all of this, the students worked independently while I met with a reading group.
Following lunch recess and PE, the students returned to class and we had social studies. We chose a hobby drew a symbol for that hobby. Then we began guessing each other's hobbies. We will continue this on Friday!
No homework tonight...no school tomorrow...
Also, Friday is NFL day...wear your favorite team's jersey or shirt!
Tuesday, September 7, 2010
We did not have school yesterday, due to Labor Day and we will not be in school on Thursday, due to the Jewish New Year. On top of that, all third grade students took the MAP-R (more about that, in a few minutes) this morning AND we have an assembly this afternoon. Therefore, we have been and will be making many adjustments to our schedule! BUT that's how we roll...
Our math class was shortened this morning so that Mr. Vogel's homeroom could be ready to take the MAP-R. So, we did not get a chance for small group instruction. Instead, after our warm up, we worked with partners to list at least 10 different 4 digit numbers using the digits 6, 1, 8 and 3. Tomorrow we will use out lists to identify how to create the largest and smallest possible numbers given a set of digits. There is a place value worksheet for homework.
After math, my homeroom saw a Power Point about the MAP-R assessment. This is a self adjusting reading assessment that all third, fourth and fifth graders take three times a year. The assessment is done completely on the computer, in the computer lab. As students answers questions correctly, the computer automatically provides more challenging questions. For students who struggle, the questions get easier. This provides another piece of data that we use for planning and instructional purposes.
Prior to going to the lab for the MAP-R, the students reviewed the characteristics of realistic fiction. Then we set up a concept map in their RRJ (reading response journal). Next, the students listened to the story Thundercake by Patricia Polacco and worked with their table group to identify one assigned aspect of realistic fiction (characters, setting, problem or solution) and how it was represented in the story. We will share these tomorrow.
Before going to lunch and recess, the entire class went to the computer lab to begin the MAP-R. They did not complete it in time, so they will finish it directly after recess.
We will end the day by going to a cultural arts assembly.
I am hoping to assign reading in their reading log tonight...but I may run out of time...check your child's planner!!!
Friday, September 3, 2010
This morning in math we reviewed writing 4 and 5 digit numbers in standard, expanded and word form. Then we practiced comparing numbers using <,>, or =.
I met with two small groups. One practiced writing 4 and 5 digit numbers in expanded form. The other identified the value of a digit in a larger number.
After math, I continued the informal reading assessments. The students worked with Mrs. Arul and Mrs. Hepner to create and define an understanding of the realistic fiction genre. Then they completed their base line personal narrative.
Following lunch and recess, the students went to music. When they return to the classroom, they will take fingerprints from their right hand and identify the main pattern in each.
Remember there is no school on Monday and Thursday of next week!!!
Thursday, September 2, 2010
In math we continued writing numbers in standard, expanded and word form but increased to 4 and 5 digits. While the students worked independently I met with two small groups. One worked on reading and writing 4 and 5 digit numbers in expanded notation. The other worked on identifying the value of a digit in a 4 or 5 digit number. The students need to complete their classwork for homework...some have one worksheet, some two!
After math, I continued my informal reading testing. The rest of the class worked with Mrs. Arul and Mrs. Hepner (the reading specialist) to make connections to text (and write about it!) using the book Ira Sleeps Over. Then they chose a topic and created a graphic organizer for their first personal narrative.
Following lunch and recess the students visited the media center. When they return to class, I will assign a written homework assignment. They will be writing a letter to me. There will NOT be a reading log assignment this evening...but I still encourage every student to read every night...regardless of whether they are required to mark it in their log!!
We will end the day by taking our own fingerprints, using pencils and tape, and identifying the patterns in our prints.
Wednesday, September 1, 2010
After our math warm up, identified three basic ways to write numbers...standard form (376), word form (three hundred seventy-six) and expanded form (300+70+6). While the students worked independently on some worksheets, I was able to pull small groups. One group worked on applying a new strategy for subtracting numbers. There is a worksheet for homework that reviews odd/even and the hundred's chart.
After math, the students practiced making connections to text using the Tomie DePaola book, The Art Lesson. The purpose is to recognize that when we connect to text it actually strengthens our comprehension. Students wrote about their connections in their reading response journals (RRJ). I continued the informal reading testing.
Following lunch and recess the class will go to PE. When they return I will assign reading homework (read for 15 minutes and get a parent's signature) and hand out a reading log. This log should be kept in the reading section of their binder.
Then we will finish our science lesson that we did not get to yesterday. The students will share what they know about fingerprinting and we will read about the history of fingerprinting. If time allows, we might even begin to make some prints.
Remember that Back to School Night is tomorrow night at 7pm.
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