English Language Arts — 3rd grade
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The English language arts umbrella encompasses five key areas:  reading, writing, listening and speaking as well as language.  These foundational skills are essential components for later academic, social, and economic success.  
Our reading program reflects a robust approach to literacy that includes whole class, small group, and individual instruction.  A balance of fine children’s literature and a variety of informational texts is used to further develop reading skills and to promote a high level of comprehension.  In this comprehensive, literacy-rich environment, we present students with texts and tasks that are interesting and enjoyable.  Students will interpret and analyze reading materials and demonstrate their understanding through discussion and written response.  Through the reading workshop, students will develop a sense of independence with self-selecting “just right” books.  Higher-level thinking skills are emphasized through inference, prediction, sequencing, analyzing, and drawing conclusions. 
Reading selections will expose young readers to various genres as well as the writing styles of particular authors. Through instruction, modeling, and daily practice, students will learn to craft clear and coherent pieces of varying lengths.  Young writers will focus on expository, persuasive, and narrative writing across all content areas.  Additionally, students will understand the process of researching a topic through consulting multiple sources, note-taking, organizing, drafting, editing, revising, and publishing. 
Listening and Speaking
Speaking and listening skills have never been more important.  The ability to express ideas clearly is an essential part of all facets of life.  Likewise, the skill of being a thoughtful, engaged listener is a critical component of literacy.  Fostering a group of confident speakers and thoughtful listeners remains an important third grade objective.  Throughout the school year there are many opportunities for both formal and informal presentations and academic discussions.
Students will be expected to demonstrate knowledge of language and its conventions in reading, writing, listening, and speaking.  This will include the ability to determine the meaning of unknown words or multiple meaning words. Grammar and spelling instruction will focus on conventions and spelling patterns pertaining to our units of study. Students will build word families from roots and apply affixes to expand vocabulary and word usage. Beyond memorization, a deeper understanding of word-building is emphasized.