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December 18th, 2017 – Merry Test Week!

Good Morning Families,

This week your child’s class will be finishing up a number of things to conclude the semester.  In Reading, we’ll take our Unit 3 Test.  In Math, we’ll also take our Unit 3 Test.  Lastly, in Writing the kids will be finishing up their research reports.  Basically, we’ll be putting the finishing touches on a lot of hard work!

Due to the exams, there will be no spelling list this week.  They will bring home a weekly reading homework this week, and I know my Math class will have a review homework today.  But, for the most part you can expect few assignments coming home due to all the testing.

I hope you all have a great week!

Eric Wachter

December 11th, 2017 – Feeling Thankful!

Good Morning Families,

This week your kids will wrap up Unit 3 in Wonders Reading (our reading program).  Normally each unit is six weeks long, but the calendar didn’t allow for that this year.  Therefore we combined weeks 3 and 4 last week, and this week will be week 5 in Wonders.  You can expect to see a spelling list and literacy homework come home with your child this evening.

In Math, we’re nearing the end of Unit 3, as well.  This week the kids will practice multi-step story problems, as well as explore larger numbers into the hundred thousands.

Lastly, our class received a new, wall-mounted document projector from LPS.  And, a couple of weeks ago we had a new audio system installed in the classroom, complete with four speakers in the ceiling.  I can’t express how great these additions have been!  Now, I can configure the class seats in a much more effective way, as I don’t have to dance around the annoying cart in the middle of the room!  The audio system has been a blessing, too!  I can truly reach more kids, more effectively during lessons and I barely have to raise my voice to make sure I’m heard.  I feel so thankful that LPS has committed funds to enhance our technology, and I am positive your children will benefit greatly from these new additions!

Thanks for reading and have a great week!

Eric Wachter

December 4th, 2017 – Character Counts!

Good Morning Families!

This week your child’s class will continue its march towards the end of the 2nd quarter.  We are in Unit 3, Week 3 of reading, which means your child will have a spelling list this week.  He/she will also have a Literacy Homework assignment coming home today.  Most kids are doing a great job returning those weekly assignments by Friday!  Thanks for your help at home in making sure they get done and turned in on time.

In Math we are still practicing addition and subtraction.  We delved into subtraction across zeros last week, which can always be challenging.  We also practiced several different strategies to solve problems.  Please know your child can use any strategy he/she chooses on their homework assignments.  As I tell the kids, we’re all trying to get to the same island when it comes to solving Math problems.  I don’t care if you swim, surf, boat or fly to that island…just get there!  🙂

Lastly, your child will have a “Bonus” homework assignment this week.  The 3rd graders are going to spend the next two weeks rotating from teacher to teacher at the end of the day to review the Six Pillars of Character.  In my room, I will review Citizenship.  I have a bonus homework assignment challenge that your child can choose to accept.  If they accept the challenge, they simply have to record good deeds they do at school, home and towards their friends.  So, if you see your child cleaning up their bedroom or taking out the trash without prompting, you can thank me later!  Ha!  🙂

Thanks for reading and have a great week!

Eric Wachter

November 28th, 2017 – Goodbye November!

Hello Families!

I hope you all had a great break from school and were able to enjoy some time with your families and friends.  It’s hard to believe that November is nearly over and the last month of second quarter is upon us!

This week your kids will return to normalcy with Literacy Homework and a spelling test from Unit 3, Week 2.  We’ll also have a normal week of Math, and you can expect some regular Math homework to come home, as well.

In Math, we’re continuing our practice of addition and will delve into subtraction later in the week.  We have also been practicing rounding numbers, which can be really tricky, at first.  Most kids are doing a great job rounding to the nearest ten in a two-digit number, or to the nearest hundred in a three-digit number.  Where it gets tricky is rounding to the tens or hundreds in three and four digit numbers.  Any extra practice at home with rounding is much appreciated!

Thanks for reading and have a great week!

Eric Wachter

 

November 20th, 2017 – Happy Thanksgiving and Pajama Day!

Good Morning Families!

I hope you are all well, and are preparing for a fun week of family and friends.  The holidays can be crazy, but I hope you get a chance to celebrate with your loved ones this week.

The kids are set for a fun week, as tomorrow is “Pajama Day!”  Collectively, the school has earned 30,000 blue coupons and having a chance to wear pajamas on Tuesday is their reward.  They are already wound up before break, so why not let them wear pajamas, right?  Ha!  I promise not to wear my U.S. Olympic Hockey pajamas from the 1980 gold medal winning team. 🙂

Being that it’s a short week, there will be no spelling and no literacy homework.  Both of those items will resume next week.

Last week, almost every child returned their literacy homework on time last week!  Woohoo!  Thanks so much for helping your child get used to that new, weekly assignment.  In case you haven’t explored the web page lately, there is a tab that lists our literacy homework assignments for each week.  You can even click on that week’s assignment and print off an extra sheet at home, if you need one!

Thanks for reading and have a fun week!

Eric Wachter

November 13th, 2017 – A Normal Week!

Good Morning Families,

Thankfully your child has completed the latest round of testing in third grade.  The MAP Tests are over, Unit Two tests in Math and Reading are over, and we have a normal week ahead of us.  Thank goodness!  🙂  However, please be on the lookout for a spelling list today, as we’ll resume spelling this week.

Starting with Unit Three in reading, your child will be bringing home a new Literacy Homework assignment.  This assignment will come home on Mondays, and won’t be due until Friday.  Of course, it can be returned early, but the idea is you have the entire week to work on it and bring it back by Friday.

The assignment will require an adult to read with the child for five, 1 minute reads to check fluency.  There are also a few comprehension questions, which require the child to answer each in complete sentences.  Lastly, the back side has a number of skill questions that will repeat from week to week.  This assignment is great practice for the big NeSA exams in the spring.  Thanks so much for your help getting your child into the routine of this new assignment!

In Math, we’ll tackle rounding numbers this week.  This can be a tricky concept, so any extra help at home is appreciated.  We’ll also keep exploring place value, and eventually move to addition and subtraction practice.

Thanks for reading and have a great week!

Eric Wachter

November 6th, 2017 – Canned Food Drive Week

Good Morning Families!

This week is “Canned Food Drive Week” at Arnold.  If you can spare a can to two, or any non-perishable food items, please send them to school with your child.  The food items will be used to compile holiday baskets for families in need.

Testing will continue this week with the MAP Test for Math.  That exam will take place Tuesday afternoon.  Unit 2 in Literacy has come to a close, so the kids will also take their Unit 2 Test this week.  We will spread that test out over a few days to lessen the stress of one big exam.  There will be no spelling this week due to the unit test.

Hopefully you had a chance to visit with your child about his/her report card.  I am so pleased with the progress of the class, and I hope you feel the same way about your child.  If you have any questions or concerns with their grades, please give me a call or shoot me an email.

Thanks for reading and have a great week!

Eric Wachter

October 30th, 2017 – A Spooktacular Week!

Happy Monday Families!

Halloween week week is upon us!  This week is always a fun week for kids…and adults, right?  🙂  As crazy as the kids can get, we do have a big week ahead in third grade.

In Math, we will take our Unit 2 Test on Thursday and Friday.  This will mercifully culminate our study of multiplication and division for the time being.  My Math class will have review homework on Monday and Wednesday, but I will not be “that teacher” and assign homework on Halloween.  🙂  We won’t have homework on the test days, either.

In Literacy, we’re nearing the end of Unit 2, also.  This is week 5 of our unit, which means the kids will have a spelling list coming home tonight.  Next week we’ll tackle our Unit 2 Test in reading.

Speaking of testing, on Friday the kids will take their first standardized test of the year in reading called the Measure of Academic Progress, or “MAP” Test.  This test is not based on concepts your child has been taught in third grade, but rather a  generic, wide range of concepts that all third graders across the country are learning.

I’m excited to see the results of this test, because the exam allows kids to “level up” with the questioning based on their answers.  In other words, if your child is answering a number of questions in a row correctly, the program will adjust and give progressively more difficult questions.  It truly should allow your child to “show what they know.”

Thanks for reading and please remind your child to share his/her extra Halloween candy with their teacher!  Ha!

Eric Wachter

October 24th, 2017 – Fall Conference Week

Good Evening Families!

My apologies for sending out this week’s email a little late.  I’ve been busy getting ready for conferences and finishing up report cards, and I keep forgetting to send out an update.  I already met with half of you this evening for conferences, and look forward to the the other half on Thursday!  I attached a copy of the conference times, and you can also find it under the conference tab of our class web page.

This week we’re in Unit 2, Week 4 in reading.  Hopefully your child brought home a spelling list yesterday.  If not, you can always look on the class web page and find the lists under the spelling tab.  We are practicing rereading this week, which is one of the more important and effective strategies practiced by good readers.  Our stories this week have some really confusing vocabulary, and it’s more important than usual to go back and reread confusing passages for clarity.  If you’re reading with your child at home, have them practice rereading when they come to hard parts of a story.  I promise it will help!

In Math, we’re continuing our seemingly endless journey of practicing multiplication and division.  We’re practicing lots of word problems, and two-step problems in particular.  Thanks so much for any help you can give with homework, as these problems can be tricky!

Thanks for reading and sorry for the late update.  Have a good rest of the week!

Eric Wachter

October 18th, 2017 – Welcome 2nd Quarter!

Good Morning Families,

I hope you all had a nice relaxing fall break.  The weather was fantastic, to say the least, so I hope you got a chance to soak in a little sun before Old Man Winter rolls into town.

This week we begin the 2nd quarter of the year.  We’ll continue with Unit 2 Week 3 in reading, but there will be no spelling due to the shortened week.

Next week are Fall Conferences.  Your child will be bringing home a conference time reminder this evening.  If the time listed does not work, please let me know and we can reschedule.  The times are also posted on our class web page, under the conferences tab.

Book orders did finally arrive, as well.  All of the books came in, with the exception of the “Diary of a Wimpy Kid” book.  Those won’t arrive until their national release on November 7th.

Thanks for reading and have a good rest of the week!

Eric Wachter