News From Room 2108

Mr. Donnellon's Newsletter

General Classroom News: The Odds & Ends

Dear Third Grade Parents,

Thank you for taking the time to meet with me for Parent/Teacher Conferences this past month. It was a pleasure to meet with you and share a little bit about your child's school life and performance in the classroom. Remember, on evenings where your child has little or no homework, students are always encouraged to work on Raz-kids (all students' reading levels have recently been adjusted), Think Central (students can use the games to reinforce concepts taught in class and work on math facts), and Typing Web (this is a program to increase typing skills and performance). Students use these programs weekly at school and are able to log in independently. If you or your child experience any difficulty using these programs at home, please contact me.


With Winter Break only a week away, I would like to take this opportunity to wish you a healthy, relaxing, and restful break and warm wishes for the Holiday Season!

Curriculum Connection

Reader's Workshop: Informational Reading: Understanding Expository, Narrative, and Hybrid Text

In this Informational Reading unit, third graders strengthen their skills in understanding expository, narrative, and hybrid informational texts.


Concept 1: Readers determine importance and synthesize when reading informational

text; readers learn strategies that help them determine the main idea and

supporting details and fit all the text together as they become "experts" on

the topics they are reading about.


Concept 2: Readers determine text structures and synthesize when reading

informational text; readers use their knowledge of the way informational text

is organized to notice descriptive, chronological, comparison, cause and effect

and problem and solution structures within and across sections of text.


Concept 3: Readers fit text together to teach others; readers learn strategies for

overcoming the challenges of solving unknown words and their meanings

and fitting that learning into the text for understanding.


Concept 4: Readers will learn ways to differentiate and read narrative informational,

hybrid informational, and expository text. Readers learn that similar strategic

work is required for understanding all types of informational text.

Writer's Workshop: Informational Writing: Personal Expertise

All informational text has one thing in common-each of them expects the writer to teach readers about a topic. Given this correlation, this unit engages students to create an engaging information book about a topic of their expertise. In the subject of writing, the writer can only engage readers in a topic if the writer him/herself is engaged in that same topic. It becomes particularly important to write about self-selected topics of great personal interest in order for us to focus on the appropriate structures of information writing. Later in the school year, in the second information writing unit, students will be expected to also participate in research during their writing projects.

Mathematics Workshop: Measurement, Time, and Graphs

In unit 3, students explore customary and metric measurement, time concepts, and graphing. Students extend their measurements skills for length, capacity, weight, and mass. They measure lengths to a quarter inch, and add, subtract, multiply, and divide measurement to solve problems. Students learn to tell time to the hour, half hour, quarter hour, five minutes and one minute, as well as find elapsed time. Students represent time on a clock as well as number line and use these models to solve problems. Additionally, this unit presents opportunities to explore categorical data displayed on tables, pictographs, bar graphs, and line plots. In grade 3, students' work with data and time is closely related to fraction concepts, computations with the four operations, and the number line.

Social Studies: The History of Michigan

In this third unit, students learn to think and work like historians. Students examine primary and secondary sources associated with a historical event and then ask several questions such as: What happened?, When did it happen?, Who was involved?, and Why did it happen? In this unit, third graders will be studying Cause and Effect relationships and begin to create a chronological timeline to the events that shaped Michigan.

Word Study