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Monday, February 6, 2012

Week of Feb. 6, 2012

We are back on track. I had a technical glitch last week and was unable to post. Thanks for understanding.

This Tuesday, your child will be taking a practice STAAR test in math. The test will be timed. Your child will have four hours to complete the exam.

February will be an exciting month for us in 3rd grade! As I'm sure your children have been telling you, we have been studying chocolate extensively! This is in preparation for our annual 3rd grade project in which we make and sell chocolate to aid a charity of our choosing. Our annual event will take place this Feb. 7, 2012.

This year our proceeds will benefit the Zalur people who live on the Congolese border in northeastern Uganda. They are an agrarian society in the highlands of Africa. Many of the school children there had never seen a book! Mrs. Gabriel, our librarian, traveled there last summer with a group who opened 24 libraries in the area! If you'd like to know more about the project we are supporting, please check out their website at The purpose of this project is to gain a deeper understanding of economics. We're learning about economic problems such as scarcity, supply and demand and division of labor. To complement this project, we've been studying the skill of persuasive writing in language arts.

On February 14, we will hold our class Valentine's party. I invite you to join us. Again, please make sure that you have registered as a volunteer before you arrive. A list of names from our class in order to address Valentine’s will be placed in our homework folder shortly.

February will also bring about our first unit on fractions. This is a crucial skill that our students need to grasp. We will be naming and identifying fractions, using concrete models and pictures to compare and order fractions and to determine equivalencies. At home, notice and name fractional parts of wholes and sets throughout your daily lives. The kitchen is a great place to tie fractions to measurement and demonstrate to students a real-world application of these math skills--and an excuse to bake at the same time!

In science, we have begun our study of the solar system. We will integrate the reading strategy of determining importance in science. Your child will read various genres about our solar system and learn to select important facts from their reading.
Keep practicing multiplications facts with your child! I will be adding some helpful links soon.

In the next few weeks, we will also begin our study of biographies. I highly encourage your child to begin reading this specific genre. As a third grader, your child will present a report and dress up as their chosen historical figure. The person your child selects must be deceased and have made a contribution to society. Sports figures will not be permitted. I encourage you to begin having conversations with your child, in order to help them select a person to research.

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