Saturday, September 14, 2013

Book Nooks, Pink Slips, and QR Codes

In Grammar and word study, our unit on the sentence has us discerning between fragments and sentences. The kids enjoyed Flip Flop Fragments on the Smartboard and playing "What's the Scoop?


We explored the purpose and punctuation used in commands and exclamations. Here, Owin brainstorms a command to add to our sentence poster.


Allison adds her exclamation sentence to our poster.

In Reader's Workshop, we talked more about "just right" books and how much like shoes, books have unique purposes. Each of Mrs. Mack's shoes have a unique purpose, interest her, and fit her. We may read for the same purposes, but as unique readers, we must seek out "just right" books for ourselves. Mr. Mack's running sneaker surely wouldn't Mrs. Mack!


One of my favorite read alouds is Goldie Socks and the Three Libearians. Students made text-to-text connections as they read about Goldie Socks and her curious adventure in a cottage made of books. She used the "five finger" rule to find a "just right" book in a cozy book nook--Baby Bear's of course!


We are also building our independent reading stamina. We're looking forward to improving our 8 minute record next week.



Check out our newest book nooks!



In an effort to track our reading and ensure that we are balancing our reading diets, readers will track their reading using their Reading Record Logs and Genre Wheels.



Our first unit in Reader's Workshop (RW) focuses on launching RW, making connections, and exploring features of traditional literature in folktales, fables, and myths.

Our first fable is The Fox and the Stork. Fox invites Stork over for dinner but purposely serves him his meal in a shallow dish making it difficult for Stork to eat. What does Stork do in response? Ask your third grader how the story ends and what the moral, or lesson, of the fable is....

Charlie reads along with the class....

Nick records the characters, problem, solution, and moral in The Fox and the Stork.


Looking for a great app to enjoy fables at home? Here's one I love!

iPad Screenshot 1

Here, Sean, our birthday boy, helps Shea compare numbers using  <, >, or = symbols.

Here, Conor explains his skip counting on his math homework. We clarify any questions on homework before launching a new lesson.

Speaking of homework, it is a huge responsibility in third grade. Not Mom and Dad's-- but ours. :) If we don't have it, we're responsible for a pink slip (get it, Mom and Dad?) explaining why we don't have it. Time management is key, and homework should be a priority every night.

On Friday, mathematicians participated in a Math review gallery walk. They worked on problems very similar to ones they will see on Monday's test. Students took their books home to study Topic 1. (They will not be tested on the lessons entitled Greater Numbers and Making an Organized List.)

With clipboards in hand, mathematicians solved number line and place value questions with their peers. 

Here, Conor rearranges digits to create the smallest possible number. Notice, he put the one in the thousands place. That's surely wiser than a 7 in the thousands place! Great thinking, Conor!

We ended the week talking about the difference between watermelon ideas and seed ideas. Watermelon ideas are wide-ranging topics or big events such as a trip to New Hampshire or a pet dog. Seed ideas are the smaller topics that writers zoom in on like a visit to the water park in New Hampshire or a trip to the groomer with the dog. 

Next, we chose a seed idea and began to plan our writing with a web of details.

Writing and math activities using QR codes will soon be debuting in Room 16. What are QR codes? They're the black and white matrix barcodes that can be scanned on our class iPad minis for quick retrieval of math sums and differences for self-checking or for creative writing prompts. Oh the possibilities are endless!

Thanks to Ryan, one half of our Tech Support team, we had the desktop computers and iPad minis up and running this week!

What a week it was!

Next week we explore more fables and folktales, make connections, and begin Topic 2 in Math--Addition and Subtraction. Rest up! We sure will be busy!


  1. I love reading your blogs. Ryan and I read them together and talk about all the things you've done.