3rd Grade: Specials Spotlight

Second Quarter 2016-2017

Exploratory Team

The teachers of these exploratory classes are committed to inspire the creative genius in all students through art, technology, library media, music, counselor and physical education.


Wow, how is the school year already halfway over?! I can’t believe it! Second quarter in P.E. was packed full of great stuff. The third graders spent some time second quarter practicing and perfecting their throwing and catching skills with activities such as Perfect Pass, Mat Ball, and Monster Ball. We also got to practice using footballs in different ways. It was fun to watch the students learn and progress with their football skills! An important part of P.E. is setting goals for ourselves. I shared with the students some of the goals I have set for myself, as well as for them, and how those goals motivate me to always try my hardest. The students then got to create a goal for themselves that is relevant to P.E. or physical activity. It is so exciting to see them so motivated about something! Their goals are all so great and I know with hard work they can all achieve them! We will be working towards our goals as the school year progresses. The second quarter was also filled with a few holidays, which called for some super fun themed activities! Some student favorites were Pumpkin Patch, Thanksgiving relay, Feed the Reindeer, and Sleigh Ride. The words for this quarter were nutrition, courtesy, goals, humility, helpfulness, and grateful. This school year has already been so fantastic and I can’t wait for the rest of it! Here’s to 2017!


We have been so busy and second quarter has flown by. In guidance lessons we have become masters at starting class with a zones of regulation check in. The students start by saying “I feel _______________, I’m in the ____________ zone. This allows the students to identify how they are feeling and if they are focused and ready to learn. This process allows students who are not feeling ready to learn the opportunity to use strategies to help them regain their focus and regulate their emotions. We also spent several weeks learning to have growth mindset. A growth mindset is understanding our brain and how it works. Having a growth mindset helps us to realize we can learn anything with effort, hard work, time and a positive attitude. We also just started our Too Good for Drugs curriculum.

We will continue working with this program through third quarter. Each grade level has its own standards. Third graders join Otto Matic the robot as they continue applying the decision making model and learn to set reachable goals. Otto teaches children how to make decisions, learn and think on their own while they learn to identify and manage stress and communicate effectively.


In third grade this quarter we finished up our research on our president. Students learned how to find and download a free Power Point template from the internet. We created slides and added in our titles, notes and keywords. Next quarter we will add our pictures and present to our friends.

We were able to add in a little coding time if we finished. The Hour of Code activities taught us how to create a sequential program, how to use a loop, and a little debugging. The kids really loved competing against one another to see who could solve the most problems.


We had a great beginning of the quarter with our musical, “Spaced Out”. I was so very proud of the amazing job your students did with this show! It was so much fun to put together! After the performance, we did some reflecting and self-evaluation of our performance with “3 Stars and a Wish”. Students had some wonderful thoughts on what went well and what should be considered for next year’s performance. We worked on some listening skills this quarter, too. 3rd graders listened to This Land is Your Land and wrote and drew about what they think makes our country special. We also listened to some music from The Nutcracker and learned a few fun facts about the composer, Peter Tchaikovsky. Students learned a new type of accompaniment pattern on the barred instruments called a “cross-over bordun”. We used this accompaniment with a Halloween story, Shake Dem Halloween Bones, and later with a Hanukkah song, “Burn Little Candles”. We also spent quite a bit of time talking about the form of music and how we label the sections of a piece. Terms such as introduction, interlude, and coda should now be familiar, along with an understanding of and ability to identify AB and ABA form. To finish off this quarter, we spent some time learning Winter Holiday songs for the school-wide sing-a-long! In the next quarter, look for information about recorders!! I am excited to teach 3rd graders all about reading the notes on the music staff and playing their very own instrument! To finish off this quarter, we spent some time learning Winter Holiday songs for the school-wide sing-a-long! I hope everyone had a wonderful Holiday Break! I’m looking forward to some fabulous music making in 2017!


As a class, we have talked about our 3rd-grade field trip in February to the symphony and Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art. During second quarter, we have been doing projects that relate to musical instruments from the symphony and mythical creatures. All of these projects support and lead up to our trip. Students created prints of musical instruments and 3D relief sculptures in the style of Pablo Picasso. Third grade did a great job learning to print and overcoming challenges to their structures. In the last week we began talking about mythical creatures and design possiblities for a ceramic project in January.


In our library classes this quarter students were very excited to get to start “self-checkout.” Students created their own library cards which they use when checking out materials. They have been very responsible about checking to be sure they returned their books before checking out new ones. They can place books they wish to have held for them until the following day in a designated spot. Students practiced using our Destiny Library Management System on both laptops and iPads. They learned how to search for books in the catalog, place holds, and check their account information. They found a book they were interested in, checked to see if it was available, then located the book on the shelf using the call number. Students can also look up books from home with this link: http://destiny.usd232.org/ . The William Allen White program is in full swing, and students are busy reading the nominees. If the reading log that was sent home earlier this year has been misplaced, a copy can be found on my website at http://riverviewlibrary.weebly.com/

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