Third Grade Curriculum & Academics

STUDENT/TEACHER RATIO:• 20:1
SPIRITUAL & SOCIAL
BIBLE:• Third graders learn to live the Bible, as well as know the Bible.
• Learn Biblical doctrines.
• Study Old & New Testaments.
• Learn a weekly Bible verse.
• Teachings of Scripture are incorporated into each subject as students learn to apply biblical truths to real-life learning and develop Godly character.
• Textbook: Following Christ, Grade 3 (BJU Press).
SOCIAL:• Emphasis on Christian character development & Biblical conflict resolution.
• Students are encouraged to incorporate Christian character into their daily lives and acknowledge it in others.
• Our school-wide focus is on demonstrating and maintaining a positive mental attitude.
• Focus on further developing students’ group & independent study habits, organizational skills, as well as instilling academic and social responsibilities is a key component to third grade that will serve students through their school years and beyond.
CHAPEL:• 35-45 Minutes, 1 Day a Week (With all elementary student body).
ACADEMICS
MATHEMATICS:• Primary objectives & emphasis include addition, subtraction, regrouping, multiplication, division, & place value of whole numbers.
• Study decimals, fractions, money, measurement, basic geometry, probability, and problem solving.
• Supplemental hand-on activities include Mad Dog Math, manipulatives, & games to help students grasp mathematical concepts.
• Textbook: Go Math (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt).
• Special Activities: ACSI Math Olympics.
LANGUAGE ARTS & READING:• Reading program is designed to promote students not only to learn to read, but to read to learn. We will use strategies that provide a supportive environment to excite, encourage, and engage students in the art and love of reading.
• Open Court reading anthologies help to inspire students by presenting a diversity of genre-realism & fantasy, poetry & biographies, historical fiction & folktales.
• Phonics, sight word recognition, sentence structures, use of context vocabulary development, and comprehension are all emphasized in our program.
• Open Court is a very balanced literacy program that includes shared, guided, and independent reading.
• Third Grade also incorporates several literature novels into the reading program.
• Emphasis on writing clear, coherent & focused sentences & paragraphs that develop a central idea, while demonstrating a command of English grammar, sentence structure, spelling, punctuation, capitalization, & penmanship.
• English grammar, usage & mechanics taught & mastered.
• Directed spelling instruction that strengthens reading & writing skills through phonetic patterns & vocabulary study.
• Textbooks: Open Court Reading Program (SRA/McGraw-Hill), Comprehension & Language Arts Skills, Spelling & Vocabulary Skills, English/Grammar-Houghton-Mifflin, Spelling (ACSI) Easy Grammar Grade 3, by Wanda C. Phillips, Ed.D.
• Special Activities: ACSI Speech Meet.
HANDWRITING:• 100 minutes of reading per week.
• Introduction of proper cursive handwriting using the correct strokes, shapes, sizes, and slant required.
• Mastery of cursive handwriting will result in all work being completed in cursive handwriting by the completion of third grade.
• Textbook: Handwriting, Grade 3 (Zaner-Bloser).
SOCIAL STUDIES: • A California Standards based hands-on curriculum which enables third grade students to research local American Indians, the history of Orange County, and our local city and community from a Christian perspective.
• Third grade students investigate their role as an American citizen, as well as discover important national landmarks, symbols, and American heroes.
• Students participate in valuable map skill lessons that enable them to read, question, and interpret various types of maps.
• Textbooks: California Department of Education & Geography Daily Skills, Grade 3 (Evan Moor).
• Special Activities: Rawhide Ranch, The Reserve at Rancho Mission Viejo, & Native American Field Trips.
SCIENCE:• ACSI Purposeful Design Science Program centers on the acknowledgement that the world in which we live belongs to God, Who created & upholds it.
• Students can perceive a degree of the amazing complexity & orderliness of God’s world through scientific inquiry.
• Concrete learning experiences in the science lab enrich the students’ knowledge of the creation & will affirm their faith.
• Emphasis on the study of the different Ecosystems, Rocks & Soils, Properties of Matter, Laws of Motion, Electricity, Magnets, the Human Body, & the Solar System.
• Textbooks: Purposeful Design, Grade 3 (ACSI).
HOMEWORK:• 30 minutes per night.
ENRICHMENT CLASSES
COMPUTER:At Grace we love to have fun with technology. During our weekly sessions in the computer lab, we explore technology and teach students to use it in a fun, safe, and responsible way. Whether the kids are learning math facts, studying insect life cycles, or completing a research project, we use technology to enhance the classroom experience.
• Increase keyboarding proficiency.
• Microsoft Excel, Microsoft Word, Microsoft PowerPoint.
• Expand on the features of previously learned program.
• Computer coding.
• Internet navigation and safety.
SPANISH:Our Spanish curriculum is an interactive curriculum using mainly music, games and fun activities to make learning a positive experience. Our curriculum also includes a Christian program in Spanish. This involves activities such as coloring and some workbook activities to reinforce Christian principals and to express God’s love. The students will also learn some Sunday school and Christmas songs throughout the year.
• 3rd to 6th graders will expand on already acquired basic listening & communication skills & build on vocabulary they already know.
• Students will learn to write simple phrases & compose a simple letter.
• The teacher will introduce simple verb construction & practice creating phrases.
• Students are exposed to a range of action verbs taken from the Verbos flash cards.
• Some grammar will be introduced, such as past, present, & future; however, goal is not to overwhelm students with grammar, but to encourage them to acquire good pronunciation, comprehension, & communication skills by the time they complete elementary school.
• As with 2nd grade, curriculum includes learning The Pledge of Allegiance, learning Bible verses, & read Bible stories in Spanish to reinforce Christian principals & to express God’s love in Spanish.
ART:Our Art Program focuses on the basic elements and principles of Art encompassing past and present artists with various styles and techniques. Each student will create their own Art portfolio with the collection of all their art work throughout the year. Students use sketchbooks every class for design, practice, discovery, and exploration. Each month is dedicated to a specific artist, skill or theme, and creative projects are varied according to the grade level. It is believed that Art develops critical thinking and problem solving skills that will empower students throughout their lives. Our goal is to expose and educate students to appreciate the diversity in all art forms. Every year we build upon the skills and introduce new medium and tools.
• Students are introduced to tints, shades, & neutral colors.
• Works include color mixing, cityscapes, & seascapes.
• En-capture life, rhythm, & movement to be able to describe elements in art work.
• Identify artists from their community, country, and state.
LIBRARY:The main objectives of our Library Program are to encourage students to develop a love of reading, teach students how to access information in any library setting through the Dewey Decimal System, help students select books appropriate to their age and reading levels based on Lexile reading scores, & to provide opportunities to build reading comprehension through the Reading Counts Program.
• Dewey Decimal system, parts of a book, Fiction & Non-Friction, & Literary genres.
• Learn to write book reviews, peer reading, & research skills.
• Develop reading comprehension.
MUSIC:In our Music Program, students will learn the art of performance as they prepare for two or more performances during the year. Through performing, students will gain self-confidence, stage presence, plus musical and theater experience. Students will be taught how to audition and will play theater games to develop skills. During the rehearsal process for the spring musical, students learn to project, acting, & re-acting. Students will also begin the foundation on which they will build, year after year, the tools needed in which to learn how to read music. These tools include, identifying rhythms, notes, & dynamic markings. The process by which they will learn is mostly playing musical games and activities. In addition, students will learn how to properly sing, including breath control. Students will also learn to identify different styles of music in addition to instrument identification.
Third grade has an additional weekly recorder class. Students are reinforcing the knowledge gained in second grade, reading notes and building on that. They learn fingering, breath control, and dynamics and note values. The curriculum is called “Recorder Karate.” This is a highly motivational system, that after students have mastered a song they are tested. If they pass, they earn a belt in the fashion of earnings belts in karate.
PHYSICAL EDUCATION:The Physical Education Program focuses on fitness and health concepts, skill development and sportsmanship. The goal is to provide each student the tools needed to lead healthy and active lifestyles with a positive attitude.
• Continued focus on developmental skills with a variety of simple ball games as well as the introduction of different sports.
• Presidential Fitness Program.

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