School Year Highlights: 3rd Grade

From the Desk of Sandra Fritcher, Lower School Principal:

We just think the Lower School is the very best.  Teachers and staff work together each day to create the most wonderful learning environments possible.  Activities are planned to reinforce instruction in a way that excites the students and keeps them engaged in learning.  For the next few weeks, teachers are going to share with you some highlights of the different grade levels.  This week, Mrs. Newsom and Mrs. Brown are going to share third grade highlights.  Enjoy!

Why Third Grade at Brook Hill

If you ask a third grader what is great about third grade, the first answer you will hear is “recess.” Yes, we do have recess.  But if you talk to them a little more, you will find they really like third grade because, for the first time, they are beginning to feel like grown-ups. The work is more serious, but also much more interesting. We are reading about things we never knew existed, and we are finding stories that make us laugh out loud. The math problems make us think as we solve problems that can really happen. Multiplication and division are fun, as well as a challenge to learn. We also learn cursive handwriting which allows us to show off our artistic talents.

We have experienced several field trips that only third graders get to do. One was to the Immigration and Naturalization ceremony in downtown Tyler, where we witnessed persons from other countries become United States citizens. Our Mission project this year was to raise 100,000 pennies to help the Bullard Mission House and Clinic. With that project, we learned about place value, money, and budgeting, as well as giving to a good cause.  Once we visited the Mission House, we discovered they needed much more than our donation, and so we also organized a clothing and food drive. Along with the project, we have been to the bank to count our pennies in the bank’s big counting machine, and we will also go shopping to purchase items needed at the Mission House. We have even been invited to be honored guests at their grand opening.

This year, we also visited the American Freedom Museum several times to learn about the Presidents of the United States, measurement, and inventions.  It’s a really fascinating place to wander about, but Mrs. Bynum makes it super entertaining with her tours. So we stick to the tours and Mrs. Bynum so we can learn everything we can while we are there.

Speaking of inventions, we are currently working on the annual Invention Convention, in which we create our own inventions.  We have studied and read about George Washington Carver, who invented numerous ways to use the peanut.  We read a biography about him and about another important person, and then gave a report. We also wrote a research paper about another important inventor. In addition, we read about many different inventors and inventions to get ideas for our own creations. We found this project/study very absorbing and educational!

In Bible, we have learned about the lives of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Joseph, and Daniel. We also learned about character traits such as honesty, courtesy, and integrity.  Our third grade chapel program was about Abraham and his willingness to trust and obey the Lord, even when he didn’t see how God could provide the things he had promised. Chapel is one of our favorite times of the week when we come together and worship God in song and prayer. The programs are always terrific, and the students who perform are great! Mr. Pierce’s energy and spirit lead us to a joyful week in the presence of the Lord.

Science was really fun this year, too.  We learned about physical science like motion, speed and force, the solar system, stars and constellations. Did you know our sun is really just one of billions of stars in our solar system? We even built models of the solar system. They turned out really well. Our classes also enjoyed the earth science section about rocks and how they are formed. We were given a big book by a parent from the book fair called Rocks and Minerals and Gems. The pictures were spectacular. It showed all kinds of rocks. Around Christmas, we discussed the human body where we talked about bones, muscles, the nervous system and the brain, as well as how to stay healthy. We realized we are a pretty healthy bunch. We learned that we need to be sleeping about 10 or 11 hours every night because our bodies are growing and changing so fast, and we learned to always wash our hands. We are about to study plants, although we have already learned a lot about them throughout the year. We even planted seeds and when they came up, some of us started a garden to raise tomatoes, squash, and petunias for the summer in our own yards.

Needless to say, we have much more we could talk about, but mostly we can say that third grade is fun, busy, challenging, and the days go by quickly.  We look forward to fourth grade, but third grade will always be a special time in our lives, and we will remember what a wonderful year we have had in third grade at the Brook Hill Lower School.