Quaker Ridge students are encouraged to "Read with their minds on fire!"   Third graders learn to apply a variety of reading skills in many different ways.

         We start out learning to choose just right books.  There is nothing like the joy of reading "a just right book", one that is matched just for you.  Use the five finger rule to find one.  Books that have 1-5 words on a page that you might stumble over or have difficulty with are just right for you if they are on your interest level.  If you know every word on the page, it's okay to read the book when you are tired or just want to read an old favorite.  Then you might enjoy an every word book and read it over and over again.  Challenging books should be read only occasionally (3% of the time). In fact, a parent might read aloud a challenging book to a third grader.  Often it is better to put a challenging book aside for a few months, because it might actually become a just right book. The biggest growth will occur if you read JUST RIGHT BOOKS!
         It is exciting to help children develop fluency, build stamina, read passionately, and become independent readers. Students learn to love reading while building their decoding and comprehension skills.
    Balanced Literacy in 3sh
    Our reading program will consist of various components:
    * Read alouds
    * Reading Logs
    * Word Study
    * Building a Community of Readers
    * Just Right Book Choices
    * Reflection
    * Recommendations
    * Assessment
    * Accountability
    * Fluency
    * Sense of Meaning
    * Author Study
    * Buddy Reading
    * Guided Reading
    * Shared Reading
    * Comprehension Strategies
    * Genre Study
    * Independent Reading Time
    * Engagement
    * Turn and Talks with Partners
    * Book Clubs
    Genre for Reading Logs
    * Animal Fiction
    * Realistic Fiction
    * Science Fiction
    * Mystery
    * Nonfiction (information books)
    * Series books
    * Biography
    * Poetry
    * Historical Fiction
    * Folktales, Legends, Myths
    Ways to Respond to Books
    * Questions I have on lined post its
    * Predict what will happen next
    * Envision parts of the story
    * Describe characters and discuss/diagram their relationships
    * Summarize the story (In the beginning, then, next, after that, in the end)
    Ways to Respond to a Lesson
    * Today I have learned...
    * My biggest success today has been...
    * Today I tried to...
    * A question I still have is...
    * What went well was...
    Conversational Moves - Students are learning to respond to literature in the following ways:

    Sharing Our Thinking and Building on an Idea:
    •    I think/I believe/I feel…
    •    I agree/I see it differently…
    •    I learned

    Opening up Possibilities:
    •    Maybe it could be…
    •    But what about…

    Questioning Each Other:
    •    Why do you think that?
    •    Can you say more about that?
    •    Can you give an example from the text?

    Reacting to the Text:
    •    I'm concerned…
    •    I can't believe…
    •    I admire…

    Questioning the Text:
    •    I wonder why…?
    •    Why did/Why didn't…?
    •    How could/How couldn't…?
    *    What if...?


    Write the title, author, and chapter number.  Write five sentences that sum up the chapter.  Begin each one with the following words:
    1) In the beginning...
    2) Next...
    3) Then...
    4) After that...
    5) In the end...
    That's it! Reread what you have written and edit your writing for complete sentences, spelling, capitalization, and punctuation.
    Possible Prompts for Reading about Characters
    * Think about a character in your book.  ______ is ______because ____________.
    * Think about what you know about your character so far.  She's/he's ______(doing/saying). 
    This shows me she's/he's________________________________.
    * In this book, the main character's feelings change.  First, she's/he's ______ because __________.  Then later, she's/he's _____________  because   _____________________.
    * Characters make choices in stories.  Think about the choices your character has made.  She/he could have _________ but instead she/he ___________________. This makes me think that she’s/he ___________.

    * Characters don’t always act the same across a book.  Sometimes my character is ________________.  For example, _______. But other times, she/he ________.  For example,______________. This makes me think __________.

    * Characters will change as the story progresses. As you read, be on the lookout for how they are changing. In the beginning, my character was _______ but as the story continues, I think my character could be changing.  By the end, she/he ________ because _____________.

    *  Writers don’t always tell us about our character’s personality/feelings.  Other times, the author shows us through our character’s actions and words. For example, it says ______.  Then there are places in the story where it doesn’t say this, but it shows this________.  For example, ___________. 
     Tell me what has really stuck in your mind so far (what seems important): 
     Explain why that part seems important:  
     Where does the story take place? What kind of place is it?  
     Tell me what you know about the character so far: 
     At this point in the story (or an important part the reader mentioned), what do you imagine the 
    character might be feeling and why?  
     Tell me about any themes or issues that you are noticing: 
     Are there any lessons so far that you think the character is learning or could learn?  
     How would you describe this genre and what do you know about it?  
    Reading Aloud 
    Miscues (Mistakes)
     * Flexible word-solver        
     * Reads in phrases rather than word by word 
     * Miscues make sense 
     * Miscues fit the syntax or structure of the sentence   
     * Miscues look similar to words in the text    
    * Listen for how a child reads aloud. It may simply the newness of the text. Give them a chance to pre-read or rehearse, or ask them to go back and pick a favorite page to read to you.  
    * Responds to punctuation by changing his/her voice 
    * Reads dialogue with phrasing and expression 
    * Reads in phrases rather than word by word 
    * Changes voice to mark shifts in mood or tone 
    * Changes voice to reflect  meaning and understanding
    spelling- use Quick Word book, then Have-a-Go, High Frequency Lists
    * punctuation
    * complete sentences
    * capital letters
    * paragraphs

    Transition Words/Phrases to help us in our Writing:
    In the beginning, then, next, later on, in the end
    one bright morning, in order, soon, as, suddenly, respectfully, all of a sudden, 
    that way, so, for a while, but, because, each morning, after that, from, one by one, now, some, where, before long, surely, many, at last, please, if, unseen, just then, finally, for, softly, at last, 
    however, nevertheless, still, despite that, nonetheless, even so
    Other Words for Said:
    explained, added, asked, called, agreed, answered, claimed, proclaimed, communicated, shouted, screamed, yelled, screeched, began, bellowed, spoke, snapped, growled, replied, answered, cried, sang, admitted, howled, spat, told, squeaked, muttered, pleaded, begged, says, trembled, spit out, admired, ignored, thought, mumbled, lied, exclaimed, wondered, quoted, insisted, yowled, reported, repeated
    Post it for:
    * Character Descriptions
    * Predictions
    * Questions/Wonderings
    * Connections (Text to Self, Text to Text, Text to World)
    * Envisioning
    Reading Nonfiction independently and in partnerships is a great way to work on fluency as well as deep reading.  Stop frequently as you move through the text and discuss important noticings with one another.  Use the following list to find great places to stop and post-it:
    * (OMG) I can't believe that moment!
    * (LOL) That is so funny!
    * I never knew that...
    * I wonder why...
    * That reminds me of ....
    Extend each other's ideas with conversational prompts such as:
    * I agree with... 
    * I disagree with... because... 
    * Another example is... 
    * To add on... 
    * Where do you see evidence of that?
    * On the other hand...

    Use your envisionment skills to describe details of a place, including how it is different from places you've lived in, visited, or have read about. 

    Notice new details.  Use post-its and stop.  Talk with a partner about what you've learned.
    Nonfiction Readers Read with Power 
    * We rev up our minds before reading.
    * We read text features & think, "What will the text probably say?
    * We see these features, seeing what others pass by
    * We especially pay attention to the important features.  What are the different parts of it?
    * We ask, "How is the text organized?and use the text features to answer those questions.
    * We think, "What do I already know about this topic?" We let the answer help us build expectations for what the text will say. 
    * Then we read with power, pausing to ask, "Is this fitting with my expectations?"
    * We read getting a sense of the main idea and supporting details.  When our minds are full, we pause and recollect what we've read, thinking of the boxes and bullets. 
    * Sometimes after we've developed a bit of expertise on a topic, we teach others what we have learned.  To do that, we use an explaining finger, gestures, actions, and sometimes we make comparisons to help convey what we want to say.
    We notice things, and talk or write about them to grow ideas.
       - "I think the author is trying to say..."
       - "Whoa! This is different than I expected because..."
       - "This text can change my mind because..."
       - "The important thing about this is..."
     Talking and Thinking in Response to Our Texts
       * I can picture how this goes...
       * The weird thing about this is...
       * This makes me think that...
       * But I wonder...
       * So, again, the idea is that...
       * It is important to notice that...
       * This reminds me of...
       * You are probably asking.... I think perhaps one answer might be...
       *  I used to think..., but now I am realizing...
       * My ideas about this are complicated. On the one hand, I think.... But then again, I also think... 
     Craft and Structure in Informational Text
    Writers use special tools to help them do their jobs.  Writers use words in special ways.  For example, words in bold print or in a box in a passage stand out to help readers find information.  Writers can also provide word clues to help readers figure out difficult words.  Some words tell opinions to help readers know how the writer feels about a topic.  All of these word tools help readers search for and use information in a passage.  
    You can use word clues to figure out new words and use special parts of the text to look for information.  You'll see that understanding how writers view their topics can help you build your own views about what you read.
    Check to see if you know how to:
    * look for word clues to help find the meanings of new words.
    * use special parts of a passage, such as titles and headings, to find information.
    * use special parts of a passage, such as side bars, key words, and hyperlinks to find information.
    * discover how a writer thinks or feels about what they have written.
    * decide how you think or feel about what you've read. 
    * explain how a passage is organized. 
    Poetry Elements
    * Important and powerful  words, phrases
    * Mood or tone, emotions, feelings, how does the poem makes you feel
    * Envision or picture in your mind, images, illustrate in journal
    * Compare (What's the same? What's different?)
    * Repetition of words, phrases, lines, and/or stanzas 
    * Rhythm 
    * Rhyming words
    * Lines, stanzas
    * Author's purpose 
    * Titles, big ideas,
    * "Speaks to you" , you can identify with poem, you connect to it 
    * Narrative - tells a story, Information - 
    * Form poems - acrostics, shape, haiku, diamante,  couplet, sonnet, limerick, 
    Author/Illustrator Websites:
    Julie Salamon, Cat in the City  http://www.juliesalamon.com/cat-in-the-city/ 
    Michael Albert
    Natalie Kinsey-Warnock
    Linda Sue Park
    Brian Pinkney
    Patricia Polacco
    Ted Scheu, the Poetry Guy
    Roni Schotter
    Shel Silverstein
    Shel Silverstein's Official Site
    Joanna Hurwitz

    Scholastic Books and Authors for Kids
    Scholastic Student Activities
    Word Sorts and Other Games
    Suggestions for Parents to help your child in reading

    A fun event will be World Spelling Day in March.  We will start practicing in February.  Each person will have a user name and password.  Special thanks to Mr. Calvert who will be able to help us to register our entire class as well as the other second and third grades.  
    Click here to take our Read Aloud Project Survey.
    To learn more details about the district's balanced literacy program, press Balanced Literacy.  At this link you can also download a copy of Scarsdale's Balanced Literacy Guide.