3rd Grade Curriculum


  • continuation of 2nd grade curriculum
  • emphasis on value in painting
  • further exploration of primary, secondary and tertiary colors with introduction to several color schemes, particularly monochromatic and analogous color schemes
  • emphasis on contour drawing, gesture drawing and shading
  • exposure to art of Japan, Africa, Mexico and Pakistan
  • woodworking emphasis on transportation design and function
  • pottery -- continued exposure to hand-building techniques with emphasis on the slab method
  • theme-based projects relating to classroom social studies units

Language Arts

  • writing workshop model, covering persuasive writing, narrative writing, graphic novels, fairy tales, and informative writing
  • five stages of the writing process
  • meaningful peer conferences and teacher conferences to edit/revise writing; use of different graphic organizers
  • composition -- sentence and paragraph structure, poetry formats
  • grammar -- nouns, pronouns, adjectives, verbs, adverbs, conjunctions, subject and predicate
  • capitalization, punctuation, spelling and vocabulary
  • oral language -- sharing oral reports, poetry, creative writing, current events, drama
  • letter writing, fiction and non-fiction writing, free-writes, and journalism
  • integration with social studies and science


  • focus on a wide variety of literary forms including Aesop’s Fables, how and why stories, and tall tales, acting out some of these tales
  • expanded use of online library catalogue with introductory lessons on search engine strategies


  • primary mathematics
  • place value and computation
  • intensive study of multiplication and division
  • math facts
  • extensive word problem-solving -- developing and applying strategies
  • exploration of real-life application of math
  • visual thinking problems
  • geometry
  • time and money
  • measurement
  • fractions and decimals
  • integration with social studies and science
  • data/graphing/statistics


  • continued review of the concepts of beat, rhythm, music notation, dynamics, tone color and form
  • explore sound in music
  • introduce the recorder
  • explore the music of South Africa, Japan, Mexico and Pakistan using songs, dances, singing games, instruments and literature which prepare students for their class cultural fair
  • celebrate the coming of spring and summer as the students explore the history of Medieval England and prepare the ribbon and stick dance, and sing the May Day Carol for the Revels assembly
  • involvement in the Lower School chorus which explores the foundation of good choral singing; the Lower School chorus sings at the Veterans’ Day, Thanksgiving/Grandfriends’, Holiday and Fine Arts Night assemblies
  • encouraged to participate in the Artist-in-Residence program

Physical Education

  • advanced movement experiences
  • alternative non-competitive, non-eliminating games, emphasis on group cohesiveness
  • extensive work in the affective learning domain
  • appreciation of athletic performance, positive learning experiences, self-actualization
  • small group skill acquisition units -- individual competencies, group goal-oriented tasks
  • seasonal sport instruction
  • gymnastics, dance
  • physical fitness awareness
  • elementary group problem-solving


  • reading workshop model, covering character study, mystery, fantasy, social issues, historical fiction, and non-fiction
  • understanding themes/big ideas within a novel or unit
  • individualized reading instruction
  • decoding strategies and inferencing
  • making personal and text-to-text connections
  • emphasis on comprehension strategies, written responses to literature, and vocabulary development
  • shared class read-alouds, whole class reading, small group reading, partner reading, and book clubs
  • independent reading for pleasure at “Just Right” level
  • current events
  • integration with social studies and science


  • life science -- marine life
  • earth science -- oceanography and meteorology, global warming, climate change
  • physical science -- sound
  • acid rain
  • elementary engineering -- Lego machines

Social Studies / History

  • geography -- map skills, world map, and continents
  • focus on different groups of people and cultures around the world, like Mexico, Japan, South Africa, Pakistan, India
  • current events -- TIME Magazine for Kids, Weekly Reader and newspapers
  • study skills -- content reading strategies, fact-finding, note-taking, report writing
  • cooperative group work -- projects
  • field trips to Waltham Family School and Wayland Islamic Community Center
  • Cultural Fair (class assembly)
  • cultural visitors
  • Understanding Differences program
  • social-emotional learning curriculum
  • All Working at Racial Equity (AWARE) curriculum


  • through gestures, acting in mini-skits, and retelling and writing stories, students practice producing language in a natural way
  • while the emphasis is primarily on listening and speaking, students begin more formal instruction in grammatical structures and gain more practice in reading and writing in Spanish
  • vocabulary is non-thematic and revolves around the stories told in class
  • cross-curricular ties include art projects, songs, a country study of Mexico, a Mexican legend, and saving the rainforest


  • academic technology skills
    • keyboarding skills
    • file and folder management, both in the cloud and locally
    • understand and recognize file extensions
    • introduction to email and appropriate use
    • format documents using word-processing software
    • learn shortcut keys (copy, paste, print, quit)
    • research using online databases and teacher-selected websites
    • create digital presentations to share research or convey an idea
    • create digital portfolio to showcase learning
    • spreadsheets to organize and graph data
  • programming/robotics
    • structural engineering LEGO sets - focus on motorization/gears
    • basic programming/coding skills
  • engineering/CAD skills
    • computer-aided design (CAD) 3D design and print
    • design LEGO cars
  • digital citizenship
    • security: Strong Passwords
    • safety: Talking Safely Online
    • connected culture: Exploring Tone in Online Communication
    • respecting creative work: Citing Sources