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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

October 9th, 2017 – Quarter 1 Ends

Good Day Families!

This week we will conclude the first quarter of the school year.  I don’t understand how time has flown by so quickly!  Even with a shortened week, we will have spelling words from Unit 2, Week 2 of our curriculum.  The kids will learn about immigration, and understand how/why so many people have immigrated to America.

The next time you’re at school, please stop by the bulletin board outside the third grade pod, as our completed U.S. Flag Mural is on display.  It’s really neat to see, especially in person.  So many kids decorated their section with flags and symbols  from around the world.  It’s a nice way to honor those immigrants that have come to America for opportunity and to help build our country.

In Math we’ll continue our seemingly endless pursuit of mastering multiplication and division facts.  We’re also using our Intervention section of the day to practice subtraction.  It’s a nice review of what they learned last year, as well as a refresher before we practice addition and subtraction in a few short weeks.

Thanks to all of you that ordered in our first Scholastic book order!  I was able redeemed points for $25 worth of free books for our classroom library!  I have a bad feeling the books won’t arrived before fall break, so the kids may have to wait until next week to received their order.  I’ll keep you posted!

I hope you and yours are doing well…have a great week!

Eric Wachter

October 2nd, 2017 – October Already?

Good Morning Families!

It’s hard to believe October has arrived!?  How we are already into week 8 of school is beyond me.  I guess when you’re having fun, time truly does fly by!

This week we will begin Unit 2 in Literacy.  It will be a nice return to normalcy, of sorts, as we had so much testing last week.  We will have spelling this week, so expect a practice list coming home Monday evening.

In Math, we’re working our way through all the numbers from 0-10, and practicing multiplication and division.  This week we’ll explore 8s and 7s, as well as continue to practice word problems.

Don’t forget Picture Day is on Wednesday.  If you have any picture order forms, send them with your child this week and I’ll make sure they get turned in.

And finally, our first Scholastic Book Order is due on Wednesday, if you choose to order any books.

Thanks for reading and I hope you have a great week!

Eric Wachter

September 25th, 2017 – Testing, Testing, Testing!

Good Morning Families!

This week your kids will wrap up Unit 1 in Reading, and Unit 1 in Math.  The reading test is loooooong, so we break it up over several days this week so it’s more manageable.  There will be no spelling words this week due to the test, so your kids will have a bit of a break!  In Math, our Unit 1 test will take place on Monday and Tuesday, which means we will not have homework those two evenings.  With all the testing they’ll be doing this week, I’d say they deserve that break!

Hard to believe we are already into week 7 of the school year!  I just wanted to say how pleased I am with the progress of the class so far.  This group of kids is perhaps the kindest and friendliest group I’ve ever had the pleasure to teach.  Our “problems” have been very minor, and are outweighed by so many wonderful moments it’s hard for me to count.  This is clearly a credit to you all, and you should be so proud of your children!  Thank you so much for all you do.

Have a great week!

Eric Wachter