Actually, that particular year was a good one for me. The next 4 years stunk pretty bad though.
My eldest daughter started the third grade last week, and she came home that day declaring, "MOM, I'm going to LOVE the third grade!"
Now, is it just me, or is school changing since I went? It probably is, and that's okay. It's a good thing. My daughter is to bring in a snack each day (we NEVER had food outside of lunch unless it was someone's birthday), they have what she calls a 20-minute dance off on Friday if no one gets in trouble that week (very ingenious idea... but I definitely don't recall dancing in school!), and they have "take home" folders that are neatly labeled by the teacher (do you remember ROCKIN' AWESOME trapper keepers??? Things of the past evidently...)
The coolest thing about third grade though is what they LEARN. It's a pivotal time in their little brains because they skip from simple addition and subtraction to MULTIPLICATION! They are actually expected to spell correctly instead of just sounding out phonetically. Their writing should have key elements like description, organization, and answer the who, what, where, when, why, and how.
Oh, and let's not forget. They start being graded by A, B, C, D, or F, not just E S N.
Yes, third grade is the beginning of the "big time."
As a writer, when reviewing the posted curriculum, my eyes skimmed the page until I got to the "writing" section. And SHOCK! I found my daughter was to learn things very similar to what I need to work on in my writing! Maybe I DO need to go back to 3rd grade.
- Use a variety of prewriting strategies such as:
- Write key thoughts and questions, record reactions and observations and group related ideas (aka research!),
- Construct graphic organizers to group ideas for writing e.g., webs, charts, graphs, diagrams, illustrations (this should make all you plotters giddy),
- Write for an audience,
- Select a focus in writing.
- Show evidence of drafting and rewriting (LOOK! REWRITING!)
- Include editing in written work (for us grownups... aka spellcheck... okay more than that but...)
- Evaluate own and other's work (CRITIQUE GROUPS!)
- Experience numerous publishing opportunities (Traditional or self, that tis the question!)
- Write expressively using original ideas, reflections, and observations (NO cliche's, woohoo!)
See? I think we should all go back to the third grade!
Discussion: If you had to repeat one grade, which one would it be and why?