Third Grade News

December 8, 2015 - January 11, 2016

Reminders: All School Program on Friday, December 18

  • Students come to school as usual
  • Performances are at 8:30 a.m., 10:30 a.m. and 1:00 p.m.
  • Performances 1 and 2, please park in the north field and enter through Cook Gym.
  • Performance 3, please park in the north field and enter through the auditorium.
  • Only students performing in the third performance at 1:00 p.m. need backpacks and lunches.


This month, we are studying traditional literature. We will read many versions of Cinderella, Little Red Riding Hood, and Beauty and the Beast. We will discover the predictable story structure in each classic tale, while also looking at how the stories differ across cultures. We will also explore the values and ideals that the cultures, settings, and authors advocate through their stories. At the end of the month, we will look at modern "fractured" fairy tales. These stories, like Jon Scieszka's The True Story of the Three Little Pigs, often feature the villain defending his actions and explaining how the classic story really isn't a fair interpretation.

In writing class, students will use their knowledge of the Cinderella story to write their own versions. We've studied the Cinderella story structure: a character who is treated badly, wants to go to a big event, is helped by a magical figure, meets an important person, loses something, and then lives happily ever after. Students will use this structure to write soccer Cinderellas (a lost cleat?), dog Cinderellas (everyone is headed to the Westminster Dog Show!), alien Cinderellas, underwater Cinderellas, and so much more!

We hope you have a restful and fun-filled Winter Break! Please encourage your child to continue reading chapter books for at least 20 minutes each day.


During the winter break please be sure your child practices multiplication facts. We have worked on strategies for learning the facts during our All School Program schedule and will begin multiplication Mad Minutes when we return to school in January.

Also in January we will begin our work with really big numbers and decimals. The major concepts to be conveyed during this study are:

  • Recognition of numbers to the hundred millions as well as decimals to the thousandths place
  • Read, write, compare and order whole numbers and decimals
  • Use whole number and decimals in real life contexts

One concept that is very important to the understanding of decimals is recognition of what is representing the whole or one. This is an idea that we will stress in class in order to promote understanding. If you see that your child is confused when working at home on decimals, please ask if they can identify the “whole” of the problem they are working on. You might suggest they remember that 100 pennies equals the whole dollar, just as hundredths can equal one whole thing.

Special Area Classes

Spanish with Maestra Guadalupe

Third graders are currently finishing their unit on Family and House to continue with School and Workers. The two essential questions for their new unit of study are: Who works in our school? And, What are some of the classrooms in our school? Some of the key vocabulary they will use this time is: teacher, classroom, media center, librarian, bathroom, office, playground, nurse, clinic, P.E., music, etc. They will practice this new unit and its vocabulary in context. They will also practice conjugating the verb To BE-SER and There is/are. ¡Gracias!

Physical Education with Mrs. Ritz

The New Year will find Physical Education focusing on volley skills. Third and Fourth graders will experience lead-up games to Volleyball. The underhand serve along with the underhand and overhead volley will be highlighted. We’ll play cooperatively but also add a bit of competition to our activities.

Reminder! Athletic shoes are required for participation in P.E.

Art with Mrs. O’Krent

Third grader students recently explored China's the magnificent treasure of the terra cotta army of soldiers. Believed to be some of the largest clay sculptures from the ancient world, these soldiers are life-size and 8,000 in number. In January, students will explore techniques in working with clay as they create their own clay soldier. Ask your child how these soldiers were discovered.

Drama with Mr. Peck

With the Chinese and Water poems now complete, Third Grade moves on to the Native American Plays. Your student was assigned their role way back in September and should be memorized by their return to school after the Winter Break. The performances will take place in late January/early February, depending on the speed of the classes. More details will follow in future e-newsletters. E-mail Mr. Peck if the Drama Resource Guide has been misplaced.

Music with Ms. McCollough

Lamplighter Singers Starts in January!

All 3rd and 4th graders are invited to join the choir in January 11, 2016. Rehearsals will be on Mondays from 3:00-3:30 p.m. in the music room. I hope to see our largest group yet! If you should have any questions, please feel free to email me at

Social Emotional with Miss Wiedman
Third grade lunches with Miss Jill began on Monday. Students will have lunch in her office in groups of six. A wide variety of social emotional and self-management topics will be covered, such as being independent, initiating and maintaining a friendship, and/or managing time.


Thursday, Dec. 17 Crazy Hat and Sock Day in Grade 3

Friday, Dec. 18 All School Program 8:30 a.m., 10:30 a.m. and 1:00 p.m.

(pizza lunch will be delivered to Group 3 students at 11:30 a.m.)

Dec. 21 - Jan. 1
Holiday Break - No School

Monday, Jan. 4
School Resumes

Tuesday, Feb. 9
Valentines Day at Lamplighter

Wednesday and Thursday, Feb. 10-11
Conference Days - No School

Friday and Monday, Feb. 12-15
Winter Break - No School

Tuesday, Feb. 16
Lamplighter Night at the Perot 5:30-7:30 p.m.

Ask Your Child...

  • What are some interesting things you have learned about China?
  • Which version of Cinderella did you enjoy the most? Can you summarize the plot?
  • What specific qualities make a story a Cinderella story?
  • What are some useful multiplication strategies?

Third Grade Teachers

Leslie Bledsoe - Math (yellow and blue) - - ext. 321
Lauren Hardage - Math (red and green) - - ext. 319
Nick Leggatt - Literacy (yellow and blue) - - ext. 320
Becky Walker - Literacy (red and green) - - ext. 420