Third grade is often the year we notice children losing the sense of wonder of young childhood and the powers of innocence and imagination that go with it. They are also growing stronger in their development as individuals. Adults may notice the children becoming more critical and beginning to question and test at home and at school. The magic of young childhood fades and they may feel separated or isolated from their environment, even experiencing boredom for the first time.
As the children in the third grade enter their ninth year, they start to see the world differently. A nine-year old can feel herself growing up, separating from her parents, and becoming part of the outer world. The child becomes more independent, and begins to question all that was previously taken for granted. This can be a time of loneliness and insecurity as well as a time of new self- confidence. Using the common core standards, the third grade curriculum is designed to meets the child’s new interests and concerns at this age.
Language Arts: Paragraph writing, dictation and letter writing are key elements introduced this year. Spelling, capitalization, punctuation and the introduction of the parts of speech are included in our Grammar work. All work is done using text from ancient legends and creation stories from many cultures. This enable the child to connect to the world and begin to build an appreciation for the differences in many cultures.
Math: The child begins to develop a basic awareness of practical applications of mathematics. Measurement of all types is covered: length, weight volume, money, and time. All of these measurement systems are put to use in practical activities. In the study of time, money, and measurement, the historical background of the methods, tools, and practices is taught imaginatively before modern methods are explained.
Social Studies and Science: The curriculum provides the student with the opportunity to learn about three essential, practical requirements for all of humankind—how we work with nature to provide ourselves with food, clothing, and shelter. This need for the child of this age to experience providing for the basic necessities of life is met in the curriculum through the hands-on study of farming, gardening, food preparation, house-building, and making clothes from all over the world.
Music: The third-grade child is ready to experience the complexity and structure of the full diatonic scale. After two years playing the pentatonic flute, the third grade child learns how to play a soprano recorder.
Art: Painting, drawing and modeling beeswax are weekly activities that sharpen the child’s powers of observation and expression. Artistic work is integral to every academic block and pervades the curriculum.