Spelling List for Feb. 12th-16th

The spelling rule this week is when a root word ends in y preceded by a consonant, they y is changed to i, unless the ending begins with an i. The last two words in the list are from our most commonly misspelled word list.

  1. baby
  2. babies
  3. fly
  4. flies
  5. happy
  6. happiness
  7. pretty
  8. prettiest
  9. pay
  10. paid
  11. bought
  12. heard

Pink Shirt Day:

Bullying is a major problem in our schools, workplaces, homes, and online. Over the month of February, and throughout the year, Pink Shirt Day aims to raise awareness of these issues, as well as raise funds to support programs that foster children’s healthy self-esteem. Warman Elementary will be selling Pink Shirt Day bracelets at the school office for $2.00 each. On February 28, 2018, we encourage everyone to practice kindness and wear pink to symbolize that you do not tolerate bullying.

Valentine’s Day:

We will celebrate Valentine’s Day by giving everyone in the class a card.  We will be making a mailbag or box of some kind at school and the students will deliver their Valentine’s Day cards on Wednesday, February 14th. If students would prefer to make cards rather than buy them, I have some templates they can use. I will have the students make a class list so no one is missed.

Skating Reminder:

We are going skating again tomorrow afternoon. If the weather ends up to cold for us to walk over I will send out a blog post as soon as I can. I don’t want any of my wonderful volunteers waiting for us if we are not going to make it there.

Addition and Subtraction Unit Update:

Sorry Folks, this is a long one! I usually send this information out in sections as we work through it, but I dropped the ball on that one this year. My apologies. Right now we are working on two digit subtraction and will be working with three digits soon.

Here is a quick overview of what we have been practicing so far in our Addition and Subtraction unit.  The best way for you to see how your child is doing with these concepts is to have a conversation about them and do a few practice examples together

1. Doubles and Near-Doubles Addition Facts:   We spent quite a bit of time practicing our doubles facts as a class and individually.  We focus on doubles because they are often easy to learn and can be a helpful mental math strategy for solving other addition facts that are close to the double. Students practiced solving “near doubles” equations and explaining the strategy as clearly as they can.

Example: (students are asked to show that they can use both of the possible doubles to solve each problem)
I know 6+6=12
6+8 is 2 more.
So, 6+8=14


I know 8+8=16
6+8 is 2 less.
So, 6+8=14

2. Making 10:
Example: To solve 6+8  we may think: Take 2 from the 6, leaving 4.  Add 2 to the 8 to make 10, then add the 4 to get 14.

Or, use an adding a 10 fact like the example below.

We know 10+6=16.
8+6 is 2 less.
So, 8+6=14.

We have also been practicing our addition facts that make 10.

3. Related Addition and Subtraction Facts (Fact Families):
Example: If we know 7+6=13 we also know 6+7=13, 13-6=7, 13-7=6.  Using “fact family” knowledge is often most useful for students to solve subtraction equations by thinking of the related addition fact.

4. Estimating Sums: We use the following three strategies to help us build mental math skills.

1. Add only the digits in the tens place.

So, 59+23 is estimated to be 70.

2. Take one number to the closest 10.

So, 59+23 is estimated to be 73.

3. Take both numbers to the closest 10.

So, 59+23 is estimated to be 80.

We focus on learning the strategies and practice deciding which strategies gives the best estimate based on the numbers presented in the problem.

5. Three Digit Addition:

We continue to work hard at maximizing our learning about numeracy while exploring addition and subtraction of three digit numbers. The students have many strategies for working with three digit number equations.  The samples below are examples of some of the strategies we have been working with. Please keep in mind that these are just basic examples and individual students will often take apart and re-construct the numerals in unique ways that match their understanding of numbers. When this happens it is often a very good sign that they are good mathematical thinkers. There is a big difference between blindly following steps to get the correct sum and being able to make efficient adjustments to strategies based on the problem that is presented.  


300 + 200 = 500 (add the hundreds)
60 + 50 = 110       (add the tens)
8+7 = 15                (add the ones)
500 + 110 = 610
610 + 15 = 625

Another Variation

500  (add the hundreds)
110   (add the tens)
15    (add the ones)

For both addition and subtraction some students need to build/draw base 10 materials to help them visualize what is happening to solve three digit problems.

6. Subtraction:

Subtraction is always one of our biggest challenges in grade three mathematics.  If a student’s understanding of place value is somewhat shaky, the mental calculations required for three digit subtraction can be difficult.  In these instances it is often tempting to teach the more traditional vertical procedure of borrowing/trading that many of us learned in school.  This is without question a very valuable strategy for completing quick calculations, but that is not always our goal at school.  Providing students with opportunities to work with numbers in a manner that will hopefully help them fill in their number sense ‘gaps’ is one of my greatest goals.  I find that if I teach the students to use the more traditional strategy right away, they are able to memorize the procedure and get the correct answers without necessarily understanding place value.  Using other strategies offers me a lot more insight into their thinking. They can show me how wonderful it is or, where the breakdown in their understanding may be.  Most of the strategies I focus on come from the mental math strategies used by the students in our class.  I help them refine these strategies and find ways to record their thinking, but it is a team effort.


Counting on:


Counting back:



402-100= 302 (subtract the hundreds)
302-20= 282    (subtract the tens)
282-8= 274       (subtract the ones)

So, 402-128=274


I hope this was helpful.

Spelling List Feb. 5th-Feb 9th:

Spelling Rule: Words ending in silent e. Drop the e when adding a suffix or ending that begins with a vowel. The last two words are from the 100 most commonly misspelled word list.

1. write
2. writing
3. change
4. changed
5. use
6. using
7. love
8. loving
9. manage
10. manager
11. many
12. decided

Tower Building Fun:

The excitement has been building and the big day has finally come. It is tower building day! Today, the students are putting their science knowledge to use and building straw towers as a final project for our structures and materials science unit. Thousands and of straws and many meters of tape are being sacrificed for the cause, but it is well worth it. It is great to see how well everyone is cooperating and listening to each others ideas. I don’t often let them choose their own partners for projects, but this time I decided to let them choose. They listened very carefully to me as I explained why I often choose their partners (people feeling left out, etc.). After our discussion they were surprised that I was going to let them choose who they would work with. Many thought it was not a good idea even though they really wanted to finally be able to partner up with their closest friend in class. I told them that I trusted that they would look after each other. The partnering process went very well. A few little ones who were certain they may be ignored were pleasantly surprised that they were not forgotten. The kids made their teacher very proud to say the least.

You have wonderful children and I am really enjoying watching them have so much fun. It is going so well that I typed this post during the day!

Here are a few pictures to help you get a sense of the joy, cooperation and learning that is going on today.