Step into the shoes of a zoologist, building engineer, or marine biologist. By Third Grade, science students are beginning to understand how to create hypotheses and carry out experiments or design testing to complete more complex real-life challenges. Students experiment with STEM bins, tackling engineering projects and using materials to problem-solve and recreate natural and man-made structures. Third Grade scientists learn about local organisms and ecosystems. Special units include a study of bats, owls, and their offspring as well an examination of the marine habitat in Narragansett Bay.
Third Grade students are increasingly independent in their studies as they begin to undertake multi-step problems and read and comprehend complex chapter books. Students read books both cooperatively as a class and independently, with frequent discussions to check comprehension, discuss character and plot developments, and identify new vocabulary.
In third grade, students also take on new writing challenges, incorporating independent research into their non-fiction topics and pairing writing with the creation of dioramas, maps, and artwork. Students write well-researched reports as part of the lower school social studies project. Working together with First and Second Graders, Third Grade students thoroughly research a topic, such as “Amazing Americans.” Teachers turn this content into a choreographed play. Each student has an individual speaking part, with Third Graders taking on more significant leadership roles.
Math skills continue to build in Third Grade. Problems becomes more advanced, multiplication facts are mastered, and long division is introduced. These critical math milestones will help students in their study of fractions, ratios, and geometry as they progress to Fourth Grade and beyond. In this creative and active learning environment, growing Third Grade minds swiftly absorb new knowledge and skill sets. Pennfield’s small class sizes and dedicated faculty are able to make this unique learning experience enriching for every student as an individual.