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Every student who graduates from Monticello Academy will demonstrate:

Academic competency and motivation

  • Demonstrate knowledge
  • Strive to learn and perform progressively throughout the school year
  • Work independently
  • Integrate and apply learning effectively
  • Work collaboratively


  • Demonstrate self-expression on assignments
  • Know and understand about different artists who impact our community and world

Healthy individual habits

  • Maintain a healthy and active lifestyle
  • Understand about balance

Innovative technological literacy

  • Fluent in current computer technology software
  • Understand technology in relation to worldwide communication
  • Utilize computer for research 
  • Develop appropriate interaction with technology in the classroom

Emotionally strong lifelong learning

  • Seek new knowledge
  • Develop life skills (cultural awareness, conflict resolution, and accept responsibility)
  • Accept responsibility

Virtuous, involved, and responsible citizen

  • Demonstrate a sense of community
  • Respect the rights of others
  • Make a difference in society

Effective and literate communication

  • Utilize spoken and written communication
  • Demonstrate literacy
  • Communicate effectively


Amelia Fishpaw

Third Grade.png
Curricular Overview

At Monticello Academy, we believe in academic excellence as well as the emotional and social development of a student.  Most of the core academic curriculum that we implement in our program is based on the California State Standards, the Common Core Standards, and the Next Generation Science Standards as well as Monticello curriculum. 


Every year, our curriculum is gauged in accordance to the educational level of each individual class as they progress from one grade level to the next.  Our differentiated curriculum will vary year-to-year depending on the developmental ability and level of the upcoming grade.  This overview will allow you to have a general understanding of what your child will learn throughout the school year. The curriculum plans, as described below, are subject to change.


Our science and social studies will focus on grade level information.  Our math and language arts curriculum is at about a fourth grade level. We are considered at grade level with writing; however, the program we use is advanced. 


Language Arts 


Writing: To teach writing we use a curriculum called Write Steps. This is a Common Core aligned program, and it is implemented from kindergarten through fifth grade at Monticello Academy. Write Steps allows us to track each student’s writing progress throughout the academic year. It will also allow the students to review, revise, and edit previous work as we learn new skills in each writing unit.  I will be conferencing with students one-on-one or in small groups to track progress and set individual goals.


The Write Steps Program is a “Writer’s Workshop” model that focuses on the 6-Traits of Writing, which are Ideas, Organization, Voice, Word Choice, Sentence Fluency, and Grammar Conventions. There is a continued writing focus on the areas of Pre-Writing, Researching & Inquiry, Drafting, Revising, Proofreading, and Publishing. We also utilize Bloom’s Taxonomy, which is a way to classify the learning objectives set for students into the areas of Creating, Evaluating, Analyzing, Applying, Understanding, and Remembering.


Write Steps is taught three days a week in third grade. We will focus on various types of writing, including personal narrative, opinion, informative/explanatory, and research writing. Write Steps breaks up the writing process into manageable parts, and helps students become better revisers and editors.


Grammar: Grammar will be taught using the Language Arts & Reading: McGraw Hill, Grade 4 Level textbook.  The lessons in the text teach students principle rules and mechanics of the English language and provide a constant review of skills learned.  These skills focus on Sentences, Nouns, Verbs, Adjectives, Pronouns, and Adverbs & Prepositions. Grammar worksheets and assignments are graded on accuracy, organization, and neatness.  Daily writing assignments that tie to our chapter book reading assignments will provide a consistent method for students to practice their grammar mechanics skills. Weekly or bi-weekly grammar tests are given, and will fall on varying days of the week.  These tests are graded on accuracy. 


Reading: Students will complete daily reading with worksheets that focus on comprehension, grammar, and presentation.  We will have Individual and/or Group Reading every day and I will be circulating to review and assess with students.  I have planned that we will read “Because of Winn Dixie”, “Pippi Longstocking”, “Polar Bears Past Bedtime”, “Mr. Popper’s Penguins”, and “James & The Giant Peach” as a class. These books provide a basis for excellent discussion points, grammar mechanic/spelling/vocabulary study, comprehension, and creative writing. In addition, students will read various stories from our McGraw Hill Reader and respond through a variety of written worksheets. The students will participate in many assignments and activities for these novels.  Some of the writing assignments that come from our chapter book studies include single-page worksheets or graphic organizers. Students will be responsible in class for brainstorming, writing rough drafts, editing, and final written work based on the analysis of characters, cause and effect scenarios, sequencing, and short summaries.  Throughout the year I will also read some chapter books, short stories, and non-fiction books to the children just for enjoyment and additional learning.


The students will each be given a personal Journal that we will use throughout the year (both in-class and for some homework assignments) for responding to literature, math concepts, science & social studies topics, and many interests we investigate throughout the year.


We have a wonderful Chapter Book Library in our classroom, with books available for check-out by the students. (These books may be kept in students’ desks, but not taken home.) There is also a large collection of picture books, short story books, and research books. We will be reading a variety of short story/picture books this year that focus on such topics as friendship, understanding self and others, adventure, leadership and responsibilities, courage and honor, growth mindset, and prejudice and tolerance.


Reading comprehension worksheets are graded on comprehension, grammar, and presentation. The journal entries are graded on a point-basis and an emphasis on creativity and self-expression.  The journals present an opportunity for students to focus on their thoughts and feelings about reading, rather than on grammar rules.  Reading assessment is based on areas such as phonemic awareness, fluency, expression, and phrasing. 


Spelling &Vocabulary: The third grade spelling lists will focus on phonetic sounds and blends.  Frequently the spelling words will be chosen from the books we are reading in class. 


Spelling lists will consist of 15 spelling words. Spelling practice is done in class each day as part of the language arts routine.  The tests for these words will be given each Friday. Students are tested on the correct spelling of each spelling word; the words are dictated to students in a sentence. Spelling homework is given Monday through Wednesday, with Thursday being a night for review.


Vocabulary Words are taken from the Wordly Wise curriculum (4th grade level).  The lists consist of 15 words, and will be studied for two weeks before a test is given. There will be a variety of exercises/worksheets done in class to assist students in the mastery of the words. The packets will primarily be completed in the classroom during the first semester. There will be some vocabulary homework given in the form of using the words in a sentence or copying the definitions. Vocabulary tests will be given every other Friday; students are responsible for knowing the definitions of the words, but not the spelling.


Spelling words will be listed on the Homework Sheet each week. Students will be given a list of vocabulary words and definitions every other Monday to keep in their binder.  The spelling words are also listed on the web page.


Spelling and Vocabulary homework assignments are graded based on accuracy, neatness, and overall presentation; the spelling and vocabulary tests are graded based on accuracy.  The Vocabulary Packets are graded on in-class participation and completeness, as well as accuracy.


Please note, the above is reflective of the 1st semester. In the second semester, students will have a new list for spelling and vocabulary every week.  They will work from just one combined list for each week as well, so that they will be responsible for learning the spelling of the words as well as the definitions of one set of 15 words each week.


Handwriting: The goal for handwriting is that your child will be writing legibly and neatly. We will practice cursive on a weekly basis in class in the 1st semester. During the second semester, there will usually be two - four cursive homework assignment per month.  The students will be printing assignments and practicing cursive on worksheets at the beginning of the year; towards the end of the year we will have transitioned to more cursive writing, such as on all spelling assignments.


Students will progress with cursive writing at their own individual paces.  The standard that I have in my classroom is for neat writing, which includes organization, cleanliness (presentation of the assignment), and an acceptable size of letters (not too big…not too small).  If a student is more comfortable with printing rather than cursive (and writes neater when printing), it is acceptable.  I feel that it is important to have students master the neatness part of writing through printing before becoming too stressed about cursive. We will still practice cursive, but if assignments are neater in printing, I feel that this is the way to proceed.




We use the Saxon Math, Grade 4 Level textbook.  Our math curriculum contains lessons based on:

  • number sense
  • algebra and functions
  • measurement and geometry
  • statistics, data analysis, and probability
  • mathematic reasoning


Each section of the textbook focuses on 3 or 4 of the concepts mentioned above. Math will be taught with lecture from the text, in-class text assignments and worksheets, and math games and manipulative tools.  Math homework (given daily, Monday through Thursday) will consist of text assignments or worksheets that correlate to the assignment taught that day in class.  Math assignments given from the text (in-class and for homework) will be done on a specific math worksheet form, which assists with organization for the student and ease of grading for the teacher.


Each day a new or review concept is presented through lecture and on the white board with examples. Students will then complete an assignment from the textbook with teacher assistance. I tend to work many math problems on the board with student participation, as well as allowing some guided practice and independent work for the students. During math class, students are able to ask many questions and get help with all problems and examples in order to gain a very good understanding of all math concepts presented. As stated above, daily coordinating homework then allows each student more independent practice of all concepts taught in class.


To reinforce multiplication skills, we will focus on a set of multiplication tables each month. For example, we will begin in September with a focus on the 2’s table, and move to the 3’s table in October. We will complete some fun and hands-on multiplication projects to display on our “Math of the Month” bulletin board, and complete games and drills based on the multiplication tables.  We will also complete seasonal based mini math projects and create colorful line and bar graphs and tables throughout the year. We “look for math all around us” as we explore all areas of curriculum during our school year.


In-class math assignments from the textbook are typically worth between 8 - 15 points, and they are graded based on completeness, organization, and neatness, as well as accuracy. Homework assignments for math consist of 8 problems from the text book with a corresponding points system for accuracy, completeness, and neatness.


Cumulative math tests are given after completion of every 5 lessons (beginning after the 10th lesson). The tests will fall on different days of the week, but will be announced in advance.  The tests are designed so that there is a lag time between new concepts being presented and testing being completed.  For example, the test given after lesson 10 will only include concepts presented through lesson 5. In this way, students will have time to practice and master concepts before they are presented on a test.  We will also complete in-class reviews before the tests as well.  Math tests are graded on accuracy.

Students are required to show all work on math assignments and tests.


Please note, math test answers are worth multiple points for each part of the answer (i.e. dollar sign, decimal point, a.m./p.m., etc.) In this way, a math test with 20 questions may end up being worth up to 40 or 50 points. I am very thorough when grading to explain how many points were deducted for a particular question and the total amount of points possible, etc.




We are excited to be working with our new science program this year. We have moved to a program called Carolina Science Online, which uses the NGSS standards for learning.  This is a hands-on, inquiry-based curriculum that focuses on STEM and experiments to help students learn.  This is a new program that Monticello Academy is adopting for our kindergarten through fifth grade classes. 


In third grade, we will be covering three main topics: Force and Interactions, Life in Ecosystems, and Weather and Climate Patterns.  The students will do different experiments throughout the weeks to gain a better understanding of the above topics. 


The students will also be introduced to notebooking in third grade.  This will provide the students a place to collect and record their data and to show what they have learned.  The concepts and techniques learned in third grade for notebooking will be built on in fourth and fifth grade in order to prepare the students for middle school science. 


Science Fair: The Science Fair exhibition is scheduled to take place on Friday, March 8, 2019.  Our class will be completing a project in the classroom, and the bulk of the work (research, experiments, and poster making) will take place in class rather than at home. Each student will be required to write a formal report and to participate in the presentation of the project. There will be time given in class to write the formal report, but it may be necessary for some students to use time at home to finish writing their final draft of the report.


History -Social Studies


Our third grade history program uses MacMillan/McGraw-Hill Publishers, Our Community, Grade 3 Level textbook. We will be focusing on Communities, as well as map skills and geography. The units include ideas about how communities use problem-solving skills, natural resources located in communities, early Native American communities, and how inventions have shaped and changed communities. It further explores how migration has changed communities, life in a farming community, as well as ideas about local and global economics and trade.  The students will explore local, state, and federal government systems as well. Students learn about these topics through reading, class discussion, and various worksheets and writing assignments. These assignments are graded on participation, accuracy, completeness and neatness.  Important historical figures are researched and discussed throughout the year, and the students enjoy making portraits of a variety of important Americans using different artistic techniques.


The students will gain an understanding of world and United States geography, and complete map skills worksheets regarding map scales, intermediate directions, grid maps, and transportation maps. 


Students will be required to complete a vocabulary review assignment for the Social Studies Vocabulary Terms. The students will be required to write each vocabulary word and definition, and these vocabulary assignments will be graded on accuracy, spelling, neatness, and overall presentation.


There are chapter and unit written assessments given which focus on vocabulary, comprehension, and geography skills.  We will complete thorough reviews for each test, and the tests will be announced in advance. Tests are graded on accuracy.


We are learners with outcomes,

We learn with each and everyone.


A is for academic competency,

C is for creativity.

H is healthy lifestyle habits

Washing hands, and munching carrots.


Innovative stands for I.

Learning computers is easy as pie.

E is for emotionally strong.

That is how we sing our song.


We are virtuous and involved

And participate when we’re called.


At Monticello we ACHIEVE,

effective communication's what we believe.