English Language Arts
The third grade year theme is Friendship. Students read a variety of fiction and non-fiction, biography, suspense, poetry, and humor. In addition to the textbook students also read class sets of chapter books. Students learn the different skills used according to the purposes of reading: reading for aesthetic and personal response, reading for critical analysis and evaluation, and reading for acquisition, interpretation, and application of information. Students are introduced to figurative language. Student workbooks accompany the text and are used to develop vocabulary, grammar, and spelling skills.
Students build vocabulary that is specific to each discipline of academic study as well as general expressive vocabulary. Learning to write organized short paragraphs, the students will practice three of the five modes of composition: narration, description, and explanation. Students will also begin to observe parts of speech such as nouns and action verbs.
Students expand on the idea of individuals and how they are connected to a local community that extends to a global community. They examine local history as they begin to see themselves as members of a community. Students actively participate in the broader community through a variety of community service events such as the Youth Shelter Walk, singing at the Darling Inn retirement home, Simple Gifts in St. Johnsbury, Veteran’s Day, and other events as they arise.
A strong emphasis is placed on number sense using several concepts such as place value through the millions, rounding, and estimating. Students continue to build basic math functions of addition and subtraction while being introduced to multiplication and division and the relationships between each. Strategies for solving word problems are introduced using several methods that include but are not limited to identifying extra and missing information, checking for reasonableness, and working backwards.
Science: Combined Third and Fourth Grades
Students develop scientific skills and build enthusiasm for science through hands-on indoor and outdoor activities. Students conduct simple experiments, predicting, observing, drawing what they observe, and describing what they learn.
Students learn about the seasons and the movement of the earth around the sun. Students work with simple maps and learn about cardinal directions. They conduct simple experiments with safe household powders and liquids and work with the metric system measuring volume with graduated cylinders and length with centimeter rulers. In addition, students work with vegetables: planting seeds, caring for seedlings, and observing and drawing changes they observe.
Students are introduced to proper use of scientific tools including: microscopes, hand lenses, test tubes, beakers and graduated cylinders. While the skills focus is constant, content will rotate from year to year so students will not repeat subject matter in grades 3 and 4.
The Fine Arts
Students explore the vocabulary of art through guided art projects. They create a fine art reference book containing tools, vocabulary, images of representational and abstract art, art genre, and art media. As with all of our art classes, students learn both the craft of production and the scholarship of art history.