Lower School Curriculum » Third Grade

Third Grade

 3rd Grade Art

“How very drab the lives of our children would be
If they looked, but did not see
Touched, but did not feel
Listened, but never took a curtain call.”
Wilson Riles

Art concepts taught at the Solomon Schechter School of Queens, consist of: Line, shape, form, color, pattern, texture, space and composition.
Introduction to Art begins with drawing lines to form a turtle and a school bus. The children transpose their drawings to clay, where it becomes a three dimensional piece of art. From kindergarten through the 8th grade, drawing continues, consisting of gesture, contour drawing of heads, hands and body, one point perspective to optical illusions.
Throughout the grades, students will be exposed to painting, paper mache, collage, wire sculpture and clay. All children will view the art of the following artists: Marc Chagall, Pablo Picasso, Georgia O’Keeffe, Vincent Van Gogh, Claude Monet, Henri Matisse, Joan Miro and Henri Rousseau.
3rd Grade Computer Science

All classrooms are equipped with multiple computers and a printer. Most of our classrooms have a Smartboard, an interactive whiteboard that turns your computer and data projector into a powerful tool for teaching and presenting.

The library has a computer center which allows our students the ability to do research through the software on the internet, create signs and write reports.

Our Computer Lab is equipped with twenty-seven flat screen multi-media computers, a printer and a scanner. Through the generous contribution of the Gruss Life Monument Fund, our students are able to have access to numerable enrichment materials in Math and English.
3rd Grade English Language Arts

Language Arts - Literacy in third grade encompasses reading, writing, and oral communication. Students are given opportunities to express their thinking and ideas in a small group setting, whole classroom, and on a one to one basis with their peers as well as their teachers.

Writing - Using the Writing Workshop Model, students are shown that writing is a multi-step process. They learn to generate their own ideas through brainstorming and journal writing. The students will then compose a “sloppy copy” of their writing, and using peer editing and conferencing time, they will make corrections to their piece. Throughout this process, the students develop editing and revision skills, and when the piece is corrected, they will publish their writing for their final copy. Students are then given the opportunity to sit in the Author’s Chair and read their work aloud to their peers. The students keep their work in a portfolio that they keep throughout the school year. At the end of the year, the students choose their favorite piece of writing to submit for publication in the school magazine. By the end of third grade, the students are able to write several paragraphs about their topic of choice. They are able to use the conventions of grammar, spelling and word usage to make their writing detailed. The students receive instruction in grammar in a small group setting based on their weaknesses and strengths.

Reading - Once the students’ reading levels are established, the students read and interpret various types of literature. The students will not only develop a basic understanding of the piece, they will make deeper connections to the text and a better understanding of it by making text to self, text-to-text, and text-to- world connection to the literature. In addition to this, students are asked to make predictions, draw conclusions, make inferences, and set a purpose for the story. Students also begin to read a variety of genres of literature independently and sharing their learning with their peers through written reports, artwork and oral presentations.
3rd Grade Judaic Studies

Hebrew Language Arts - In third grade the children are reading simple texts fluently and with comprehension. They are conjugating personal pronouns and using time related prepositions. Their use of the past tense extends to select irregular verbs, and the future tense is also presented. Classes are conducted in Hebrew, and the children respond in Hebrew. A special unit focuses on study skills.
Chummash - Torah study continues in the third grade with the stories of Abraham and Isaac and Jacob in the book of Breisheet – Genesis. The children sharpen their skills of reading Chummash, deciphering the text, and learning to ask critical questions and think on their own of the meaning and relevance of the text for their lives.

Holidays - In third grade the children review and expand prior knowledge to about and themes and customs associated with the holidays, and the historical background. They learn greetings associated with different holidays, and how to prepare for the holiday. Jewish themes like Mitzah, happiness, visiting the sick, the Jewish calendar, the Ten Commandments etc. are integrated in the curriculum. General themes like the water cycle in nature are also taught in Hebrew. A model Seder celebration is one of the highlights of the curriculum.

SHABBAT - The children learn about Shabbat through biblical references, and historical stories about Shabbat as it was celebrated through the ages.

ISRAEL - The children begin learning the geography of the map of Israel, and the principles in the Israeli Scroll of Independence.

Tefillah (Prayer) - The children attend a daily Minyan together with fourth and fifth graders. In addition to reciting and singing the prayers, they are introduced to the meanings behind the words, and how the prayers relate to their lives. In addition, a special Tefillah class is conducted weekly which reviews correct reading of the prayers, and offers opportunities to share their feelings and personal meanings of the prayers. Some of the third grade highlights include blessings before and after certain foods, the Ashrei prayer, Aleinu, and the bedtime Shma
3rd Grade Mathematics

The students continue to develop a foundation for their mathematical understanding in Grade 3 through the content strands of numbers and operations, algebra, geometry, measurement, and data analysis and probability. The students will gain mastery of their addition and subtraction facts, develop a deeper understanding of place value (up to the hundreds place), and develop their vocabulary of mathematical words and concepts. Students will enhance their comprehension of time and money, as well as recognize similarities and differences in geometric shapes. Students will also use manipulatives (when appropriate) to help them with their problem solving skills. The concepts of multiplication and division are explored, and the students begin to master their basic facts in these concepts. Students begin to conceptualize their understanding of geometry and apply their knowledge to real world problems, such as perimeter, area and volume. Students learn how to use the strategies of guess and check, drawing a picture, estimation, solving the simpler problem, and too much information, to help them with problem solving.
3rd Grade Music

The Music Curriculum combines Hebrew/Israel and American songs while learning the fundamentals of music theory, musical instruments, and musical compositions. Many of the vocal selections are integrated with the holiday curriculum.

The Music Curriculum in the Third Grade introduces the children to more songs, and their study of music theory becomes more complex. They learn to read notes on the treble clef, and move toward complex integrated rhythms using eighth and sixteenth notes. They also learn a unit on string instruments of the orchestra.
3rd Grade Physical Education

Physical education continues to be a favorite of all our students. The PE program is designed to develop lifetime activities in order to keep their bodies strong and healthy. Social skills, positive self concepts, cooperative and team play all provide a strong basic foundation. The 3rd grade PE curriculum provides our students with a deeper understanding and knowledge of game strategies, rules and cooperative team play. Students will attain competency in a variety of physical activities and proficiency in a few select complex motor and sport activities. Students will improve their cardiorespiratory endurance, flexibility, muscular strength and body composition throughout the PE program. Students will demonstrate safe, personal and social behavior while engaged in physical activities. They will understand that physical activity provides the opportunity for enjoyment, challenge, self expression and communication.
3rd Grade Science

The goal of the Solomon Schechter School of Queens science program for all grades is to utilize children’s natural curiosity and excitement about the world to encourage the development of scientific thinking, exploration and discovery. The curriculum is designed to develop science literacy by merging science content and concepts with science processes (questioning, communicating, gathering and making sense of data).
The science specialist provides children with a wide range of scientific experiences and opportunities to help them develop their skills in using scientific tools/technologies and scientific processes. In our newly constructed state of the art science laboratory, children are involved in hands-on activities that expand their knowledge of scientific methods and concepts, as well as develop their science inquiry skills such as:
• Making careful observations
• Hypothesizing
• Developing appropriate tests and understanding variables
• Recording observations and data
• Evaluating data
The science laboratory is equipped with a Smartboard which is utilized to enhance and bring to life the science specialist’s lessons and experiments.

The Grade three curriculum is designed to be an extension of concepts and skills learned in Kindergarten through Grade two. Children begin to develop a greater awareness of the nature of science through research, communication, the use of information technology and cooperative learning.

The following topics are studied in Grade three:

• Stages in the life cycles of animals and plants
• Changes in animals and plants as they mature
• Inherited traits
• Ways that animals and plants survive

• The needs of living things in relation to their environments
• How living things adapt to their environments, change them and respond to them

• Properties, states and changes in matter
• Forms of energy and how heat energy moves and changes matter
• Forces and machines

• The physical features of the Sun and Moon
• The rotation and revolution of Earth and the Moon
• Planets of the solar system
• Earth’s seasonal changes
• Eclipses

• The importance of air, water and land
• Renewable, nonrenewable and inexhaustible resources
• Uses and protection of Earth’s air, water and land
• Forces that change Earth’s surface
• Properties of soils
3rd Grade Social Studies

Students engage in a variety of experiences to examine the world around them and begin to see themselves in this setting. They read about the different communities of the world through the use of trade books and textbooks, as well as the use of current events material such as Scholastic News and newspapers. Students begin to develop an understanding of other communities, and how geography, location, and its government impact that society. Students also learn about important historical events that happened in the history of the United States. The students learn to access information on their own through a variety of resources.

Students are introduced to world maps and globes. They learn to identify the continents, and oceans, and can locate them in the correct hemisphere. They are introduced to cardinal directions, intermediate directions, and they learn to interpret a variety of maps.