The primary goal of the third grade language arts curriculum is to develop fluency, accuracy, and creativity in oral and written communication. The language skills of listening, speaking, reading, and writing are the basic tools of learning across the curriculum. The Language Arts are taught as an integrated discipline rather than as isolated skills. Language instruction is directly related to the life experiences of the student.
Third graders review basic phonics and decoding skills and then move on to more difficult and irregular sound/symbol patterns, syllable division and dictionary study. As skills are reviewed, maintained, and expanded, students develop higher levels of thinking, including the comprehension of literal, inferential, and evaluative reading material. Students will distinguish fact from opinion, synthesize ideas and information, and demonstrate these skills in a comprehensive written response.
Students will be exposed to a variety of selections to encourage a lifelong enjoyment of reading. Stories, poems, and books are shared and read aloud in class. Good literature serves as a springboard for student writing. Writing is taught as an on-going process from prewriting to publishing. The writing program creates a balance between personal and practical writing.
In addition to specific reading and writing development, emphasis is placed on study skills, work habits, organization, independence, and responsibility.
The mathematics curriculum is based upon the assumption that math is best taught as computation skills and as critical thinking skills. Students are provided experiences that promote both practice of basic math skills and construction of meaningful insights into mathematics problem-solving and constructs.
The curriculum is guided by seven learning goals that state that students will:
- Be actively involved in learning mathematics;
- Develop reasonable accuracy in computation;
- Think and communicate mathematically;
- Feel confident in their mathematical ability;
- Think critically and construct their own problem-solving plans;
- Use technology while solving problems;
- Experience mathematics as realistic, fun, and connected to their own lives.
Third grade students review basic phonics and decoding skills and then move on to more difficult and irregular sound/symbol patterns, syllable division, and dictionary skills. As skills are reviewed, maintained, and expanded, third grade students have the opportunity to develop higher levels of thinking skills, including comprehension of literal, inferential, and evaluative reading material. Students will distinguish fact from opinion, synthesize ideas and information, and demonstrate these skills in a comprehensive written response.
Students will be exposed to a variety of reading selections to encourage a lifelong enjoyment of books for educational and recreational purposes. In addition to specific reading development, emphasis is placed on study skills, work habits, organization, independence, and responsibility.
The Social Studies curriculum encompasses geography and American history. During the geography unit, the students develop map and globe skills as they explore, in depth, the design and components of globes and apply what they have learned to maps. They learn to use different types of maps, and develop competence using an atlas as a resource.
The students explore American history beginning with the Ice Age migration of people to the Americas and concluding with the American Revolution. They learn to interpret time lines and organize events sequentially while focusing on the impact of historical events on subsequent events and the motivations of people. They also learn to recognize the principles on which our country was founded as they learn about the actions of colonists prior to the American Revolution.
The third grade science curriculum encompasses life, physical, and earth science. The students engage in hands-on activities that require them to work cooperatively with classmates. A major emphasis of these activities is on developing process skills that are critical to science. The students observe; hypothesize; predict outcomes; experiment; record data; use diagrams, graphs and charts; and draw conclusions. Subject areas include the senses, the rudiments of scientific method, states of matter, measurement, the dynamics of sound, climate, seasons, the water cycle, plant responses and activities, food chains and webs, predator-prey relationships, the carbon dioxide-oxygen cycle, transpiration, populations and communities, adaptations, ecosystems, structure of the earth, plate tectonics, rocks and minerals, and the rock cycle.