The First Week of Third Grade

Third grade! Yay!

I survived the first two weeks of third grade and finally have the time/energy to tell you a little bit about it. I won't be going into total detail, so please leave a comment if you have a question!

The first read aloud for third grade was How to Be Cool in the Third Grade. It was great and opened up the opportunity for discussions about bullying, "being cool," and friendship. The kids loved it so much that they gave it a standing ovation when we finished it on Friday!

On the first day, we read The Crayon Box That Talked. Then students completed this (very challenging) team building activity that required them to build a tower of cups without touching them. Afterwards, we discussed kind and respectful language and made an anchor chart called "Meaningful Conversations." (See below.)

One of my favorite back to school books for teaching respect and responsibility for actions is called What If Everybody Did That? I find myself referring to the book ALL YEAR LONG by asking students that question in order to redirect their behavior.

After reading the book, students write on sticky notes how they might apply our classroom rules.

Two first week traditions that I continued were All About Me Four Corners and the Me & We Book.

I updated my four corners game over the summer so that it ended with this encouraging slide. Students read it with me and I read it to them because I wanted them to know - from day 1 - that they are so loved.

The Me & We Book is a tradition that I learned from my team during my first year of teaching. Students always love it! We turn the pages into a class book that they can read all year long.

We read The Important Book and talked about how our unique qualities make us important. This discussion ended with students writing autobiographical writing samples and gave them ideas for their Me & We Books. We also used The Important Book as our first mentor text for Jivey's mentor sentences.

On the first day that we switched for math classes, I introduced myself using my interactive math about me chart. Then, students made their own using a matching freebie by Create Teach Share called Figure Me Out. I allowed them to use sticky notes to make them look like mine, and I love how they look on my math board! They'll be perfect for parents to check out during Curriculum Night.

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Later in the week, I introduced each of the Daily 5 centers. Practicing independent reading s=and building stamina is so important to start right away! The kids loved listening to "The Greatest" by Sia as they picked out books and found comfy reading spots.

Towards the end of the week, we set long term goals for the school year. (Look for a product coming soon to my TPT!) We talked about growth mindset by reading Giraffes Can't Dance and watching the Class Dojo "Big Ideas" series about the power of YET.

Other than those major activities, the rest of the time was spent teaching and practicing classroom procedures, organizing our supplies, and learning how my classroom runs. It was a great, smooth week.... but I am glad it's over! This group of students has figured out the routine quickly, which has made the transition to a new grade much easier for me.

Other books I read throughout the week:

Spaghetti in a Hot Dog Bun

Chocolate Milk Por Favor

What If Everybody Did That?

The Juice Box Bully

The Important Book

Miss Malarkey Leaves No Reader Behind

My Mouth is a Volcano 

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What are your favorite activities for the first week of school? Let me know in a comment below!

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  1. hello kristin everything is just amazing. you did a great job

  2. Hi! I just found your blog. Absolutely wonderful!!! I'm teaching 2nd grade. Is there a way for me to access your wonderful information from last year?

    1. Hi! Here's my post from last year:


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