3rd Grade News

Week of January 4th

STEM - Simple Machines

This was a big week for 3rd graders in STEM. We had the opportunity to visit Herr's Snack Factory to see simple machines in action. We identified a screw, many inclined planes, wheels and axles galore, and even a lever! Each simple machine was part of a subsystem used to make work easier for the employees of the factory. We learned that 2 people are able to operate all of the machinery required to make pretzels, thanks to simple machines!

Unfortunately we weren't able to take pictures along our tour, but the following day we set out to build simple machines of our own in the classroom. They will be part of systems we create to move a bag of potatoes a certain distance. Before that, students will learn how to measure force using a spring scale, and will record the amount of force required to move the potatoes without simple machines. This way they will be able to see for themselves just how much a simple machine can make work easier!

Maddie, Grant, and Michael are helping to build a single pulley

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Students didn't miss a beat, and got right back to multiplication strategies after break. We have learned how to use repeated addition, equal groups, and arrays to model multiplication. Each of these strategies can be used to help students figure out a multiplication problem they aren't familiar with. We also learned how to use tree diagrams and tables to determine the number of combinations of a given set of objects.

Students will review these strategies on Monday and will take their Chapter 4 Test on Tuesday. I will send their review home on Monday for practice.

Guided Reading

This week our focus in guided reading groups was drawing conclusions, or making inferences about what we read. Often, an author does not include all of the details about how a character might think or feel. It is up to the student to use their background knowledge and context clues from the story to draw conclusions about characters and events that the author may have left out. You can practice this skill at home by asking your child how a character feels and what clues they used to form their response. You can also ask your child questions about events or decisions you've made. For example, if they ask for a snack and your response is no, their immediate reaction is to get upset or continue to ask. Throw them off by having a conversation about the reason for your response. Not only will it help them with drawing conclusions or making inferences, but it may help them understand your decision better!
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  • We go outside for recess each day the temperature is above 32 degrees. Please make sure your child has appropriate gear to be outside. Thank you!
  • 1/19 - Field Trip to the Franklin Institute - Spirit shirts & brown bag lunch. We have plenty of chaperones. Thank you to everyone who volunteered to spend the day with us!
  • The week of 1/25 is Great Kindness Challenge week. In lieu of our monthly Kind Club meetings, 3rd grade will help facilitate events for our school, our teachers, and our families!