Important Dates in January

Sorry, I am a little late with this post….

Wednesday, January 23 – SCC Pita Pit hot lunch

Monday, January 28 – Fortunately The Milk week 3 answers are due to the library

Tuesday, January 29 – No classes for students

Thursday, January 31 – Grade 3 classes are going skating 1:00 – 2:15

Great Reading Partners

A big thank you to Mrs. Hamilton. The time she volunteers in our classroom is a great help and very much appreciated by all of us in 3C. Our reading experience this morning would not have been the same without her.

Reading Challenge

Our school has challenged Lake Vista School to a reading contest. For the next two weeks, we will keep track of our reading minutes and tally them up at the end of the competition. Record forms will be sent home on Monday. Check out the video to learn more.

Follow us on Twitter

Our class is on Twitter. It is an easy way to provide you a quick peak at what our day in the classroom is like. Here is a tweet from today. I have not used it for a while so I hope this link below works how I think it should.

Addition and Subtraction Unit Update:

Here is a quick overview of what we have been practicing so far in our Addition and Subtraction unit.  We have been reviewing some of these strategies and other number facts since the beginning of the year, but now addition and subtraction will be our main focus for a while. 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.  Thanks for reading this post.  There will be more to come in the future as we work our way toward building multiple strategies for solving 2 and 3 digit addition and subtraction problems.

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.

Prodigy Math

If your child is using Prodigy Math at home it is important for you to know that the program is giving them another placement test right now. I have reminded the students that some of the test may be easy and some may be tough, but they just need to do their best and try to enjoy the challenge.  If they get help with the tough parts, the program will place them too high for their current skill level and it will become frustrating. If they are having a tough time with some questions at home please remind them to do their best rather than help them while they are completing the placement test. During other regular Prodigy assignments/activities I hope you have a chance to explore it together and have some great mathematics conversations.

New Math Unit: Addition and Subtraction

Our class started a mathematics unit on addition and subtraction.  Your child will develop strategies for adding and subtracting whole numbers by using addition charts, mental math, estimation, Base Ten Blocks, place-value mats, and pencil and paper.

In this unit, your child will:

  • Recall basic addition and subtraction facts
  • Identify and apply relationships between addition and subtraction
  • Add and subtract 2-digit numbers
  • Use mental math to add and subtract
  • Estimate sums and differences
  • Add and subtract 3-digit numbers

The ability to use a variety of strategies to add and subtract leads to the development of a strong sense of number.  I will post the strategies that we are learning as we move through the unit.

Student Blogs:

The student blogs are now operational. If you have questions, the “Blogging 101” tab at the top of this class blog should answer them. If you have further questions please feel free to email me. The students are already sharing their learning and other written creations on their blogs. It is nice to see them so excited to write. Feel free to comment on their posts. Please remember to only use first names and don’t include any other personal information. It is easy for all of us to forget this rule. I will make sure I look them over carefully before approving them.

If you have an opportunity to help edit a post or two at home that would be very helpful. Punctuation and proper sentence structure often disappear even more when the kids start typing. Having an adult edit and submit one of their posts goes a long way in showing them what it should look like.

I wish you could subscribe to your child’s blog so that you get an email each time they post. Unfortunately that option is only available for our main class blog. I will try to have the kids write a note in their planner when they have a post they would like you to read.

Learning New Vocabulary:

We know that writers need a lot of words in order to make their writing interesting. There are many ordinary words we can choose from. These words are helpful, but there are many other words that may be more interesting to those who read our writing. We call the ordinary words ‘single scoop’ words. Like a single scoop of ice cream, they are good, but they leave us wanting more. We call more amazing and descriptive words ‘triple scoop words.’ They leave us feeling a lot more entertained and satisfied.

To help us become inspired word collectors we read The Boy Who Loved Words. Selig, the main character loves to collect amazing words and he is passionate about sharing them. Once we were finished enjoying the book, the students worked with a partner to find ‘triple scoop’ words they can use instead of always using the ‘single scoop’ words we use every day. The thesaurus in the dictionary app on our ipads is a very helpful tool for this activity. Thanks to Adrienne Gear for the ideas she shares in her Writing Power resource for teachers.