Third grade is an exciting year of transition for the learner. It is a time to strengthen basic concepts and take these concepts a step further. Third graders are eager to please and organize their worlds. By providing a positive learning environment, students can become more confident, both socially and academically, thus enabling them to take academic risks. There is the dawning of a bigger world and the ability to handle multiple variables emerges.
While being intellectually curious, children at this age can be highly competitive and critical. Therefore, positive self-esteem and respect are promoted in the classroom, and cooperation is a yearlong theme in third grade. Students work in cooperative groups throughout the year. Each child is unique, and the goal is to enhance each child’s strengths and improve areas that may need to be further developed. A variety of teaching strategies are used to meet the different learning styles of students.
In third grade, the students continue to develop their reading and writing skills with the use of the Reader's and Writer's Workshop model. Students are encouraged to continue to develop critical thinking skills, especially from various viewpoints with the exposure to good literature and by writing back and forth to pen pals throughout the year.
Writing is integrated throughout the curriculum. Grammar and spelling concepts are addressed in textbooks and also in the student’s writings. The students learn and write about various types of writing including narrative, expository, and opinion writing to name a few.
Math is taught using Singapore Math. Using the model drawing process for problem solving is introduced and mastered on a developmentally appropriate scale. All four operations are used in extensive problem solving. Decimals are introduced along with computation with money and fractions. Third grade math focuses on mastery of the primary basic operations and offers enrichment activities before moving on to the challenges of extended and new concepts in fourth grade. Real life math reveals to students how math is important in their everyday life.
Social Studies units presented in third grade focus on communities and include geography, Coronado history, Native Americans, the early settlers, immigration, and strengths of our country today. Many enrichment activities are provided in the social studies program.
Children learn by doing. Science is best understood when students participate in experiments and activities. Use of the Next Generation Science Standards supplies the students with background information and hands-on activities which are provided to reinforce concepts that are presented. The main units of study for third grade as part of the Mystery Science curriculum include: Animals Through Time, Power of Flowers, Stormy Skies, and Invisible Forces.
Specialty teachers provide instruction in Art, Music, PE, Spiritual Nurture, and Spanish.