The 3rd grade curriculum is based on the California State Common Core Standards.
In third grade, students continue to develop strategies to effectively use language. Students learn to become strategic readers. More complex reading comprehension skills are learned. Third graders should be able to read to learn, rather than be learning to read. Third graders continue to learn and practice the steps of the writing process. Proper grammar, spelling, and the mechanics of writing are taught to enable students to proofread and communicate more effectively. Third grades also learn to be authors of expository text and fictional text. In addition, students will be expected to have Accelerated Reader goals and track their progress. Accelerated Reader is a computer based reading comprehension and incentive program.
Third graders are expected to master fact families in addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division. They continue developing strategies for multi-digit addition and subtraction problems. Learning multiplication facts through the 12s is a goal this year. Mastering number sense and place value is a must. They must understand how to apply mathematics applications using larger numbers and numbers less than 1 (fractions)!! Most of our 3rd grade teachers are fortunate to have been trained in Cognitively Guided Instruction; a critical thinking and problem solving approach to mathematics.
The third-grade curriculum focuses on the physical, earth, and life sciences. In the physical sciences, students study the properties and states of matter. Earth science focuses on the Solar System and the relationship between the sun, moon, and Earth. In life sciences, students explore how plants and animals adapt to various habitats.
The social studies curriculum in third grade reviews the concept of community. A unit on Santa Ana gives students knowledge about the city in the areas of geography, government, history, and business. Students participate in activities that teach them skills in geography, problem solving, and study skills.
Students also study the regions of the United States and California. In their study of the regions of the U.S. and California, they learn how geography, climate, and natural resources have impacted the development and history of the areas. The regions are compared to one another. Students extend their skills in geography, problem solving, and study skills. Included in this study are Santa Ana's native people, geography, regions, history, and government. Students also expand their understanding of core democratic values.
Media and Technology
Third grade is a busy year in the media center. Students begin to use the computer card catalog to find their AR books. They practice searching by author, by title and by subject. Students will also have time in the computer lab using ST Math. They are also expected to learn the basics for creating a slide show.
In third grade, students learn the basics of piano. The music specialist builds their musical knowledge-base through learning songs, musical notation, and vocabulary.
Third-grade students continue to work on gross-motor skills, spatial awareness, and body control. At this
level, there is an increased emphasis on cardiopulmonary fitness, muscular strength, and endurance. Students are encouraged to run or do continuous movement activities to increase their pulse rates. We will continue to promote the KROC (Kids Run Orange County) as it gives students a long term goal related to their physical health and fitness. We would appreciate parental participation in this fitness program.