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Mrs. McCormick

Email: 
smccormick@amherst.k12.va.us
Phone: 
434-946-9700
Classes Taught: 
3rd Grade

 

 

 
                         Dear Parents:
 
Welcome back to a new school year! My name is Mrs.McCormick and I will be your child’s 3rd grade teacher. I am eager to get to know your child and I look forward to having a fun year of learning together. This is the first year that your child will be taking the Virginia SOL Tests. We will work very hard together to prepare for these assessments throughout the year.
 
 This will be my 7th year teaching 3rd grade. I love being a teacher and cherish each student in my class. I believe that with confidence, a good attitude,  and hard work, each student will have a very successful year. With each new year I look forward to building relationships with my students and teaching them the skills they need to be successful in life and school.
 
 We will partner together in order to ensure your child has a successful 3rd grade year! Please do not hesitate to contact me, should you have any concerns or questions. You may reach me by phone (946-9700), however, the quickest way to reach me during the school day is by e-mail at: smccormick@amherst.k12.va.us.
  
Sincerely,
 
Mrs. McCormick
3rd Grade Teacher
 
 
Class Requirements
 
 
 
 
   Supply List

 

 1.     Book bag/backpack (1 count)

2.    Colored Pencils (1 package of 12 count)

3.    Glue Sticks (1 package of 6 count)

4.    Wooden #2 Pencils (2 packages of 20 count)

5.    3-Ring Pencil Pouch (2 count)

6.    Scissors (1 pair)

7.    Tissues (1 box)

8.    1-Subject Spiral Notebooks (6 count: 1 red, 1 blue, 1 green, 1 yellow, 1 purple, and 1 student choice)

9.    Plastic Poly Folders with pockets (6 count: 1 red, 1 blue, 1 green, 1 yellow/orange, 1 purple, and 1 student choice)

10.  Marbled Composition Notebook (1 count)

11.   2" Binder with clear pocket on front (1 count)

12.  Dry Erase Markers (2 packages of 4 count)

13.  Ziplock Bags (1 box of sandwich bags)

 

     

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Classroom Expectations
Rules:
•         Be a good citizen
–        We walk quietly in the hall.
•         Be responsible
–        Keep your hands, feet and objects to yourself. Do your homework without being reminded, take all supplies with you.
•         Be fair
–        We take turns and share.
•         Be caring
–        We treat each other as we would like to be treated.
•         Be respectful to everyone
–        We raise our hands and do not call out.
•         Be trustworthy
–        We tell the truth.
 
Expectations:
·         Keep assignments written in your agenda. Your parents are to sign your agenda and reading log each evening.
·         Homework is to be done and turned in on-time.
·         Neatness counts! Please do your best to make sure your work is neat as well as keeping your area clean (floor, desk, locker, etc.)
·         Complete all tasks to the best of your ability.
Consequences:
·         Warning
·         Laps at recess
·         Silent lunch
·         Note/Phone call home explaining your behavior
·         Visit the principal
 
**If your actions are causing a safety or bully issue, automatically, your parents will be called and possibly go to the principal.
 
 
 
 
Classroom Management
 

 

                              

Behavior Policy – Rewards and Consequences

 

 

**If for any reason I feel a child’s behavior and actions put anyone in danger, the student will be automatically sent to the principal’s office regardless of where they are on our behavior chart.**

 

Class Teamwork (Congratulations)

Part of being a class involves working together as a team.  When another adult in the building compliments our whole class for our behavior, we will receive a letter in the word “Congratulations”.  Once we have spelled the word….the whole class gets a treat!

 

HABIT Chart & Friendship Fridays

In addition to our Behavior Clip Chart and Class Teamwork, the 3rd Grade Team will be recording each student’s weekly HABITs to earn the opportunity to attend Friendship Fridays held each Friday during lunch.

 HABIT stands for Homework, Attitude, Behavior, Initiative, and Teamwork.  If a student completes homework each day, maintains a positive attitude, makes positive behavior choices, takes initiative, and cooperates with his/her classmates throughout the week, he/she will be able to attend Friendship Fridays. 

 During Friendship Fridays, students will be able to bring their lunch to the classroom, eat lunch with their friends, and join in on special fun activities during lunchtime.  Students who did not earn the opportunity to attend Friendship Fridays will eat lunch in the cafeteria.

 

  

Communication

 

One of my most important goals this year is to keep the lines of communication open with you.  If you have any questions or concerns throughout the year, please contact me via a note in your child's agenda, a phone call, or an e-mail (see my contact information below).  I check my email daily, so this is the most efficient way to contact me.  Sometimes students do not give me the parent’s note until they are walking out the door, or they may forget to give it to me altogether.  If I have not answered your question in a timely fashion, PLEASE contact me again!

 

Please contact the office immediately, if your phone number, address, or child’s emergency information changes.

 

Agenda

I will use the agenda to communicate to parents regarding missed homework assignments, or other issues that may have come up throughout the day.  If you have a note for me, please staple it to your child’s agenda on today’s page.  It is essential for you to check and sign your child’s assignments and agenda each day.  I appreciate your support in this matter!

 

Weekly Newsletter

I will send home a weekly newsletter with information about what we are studying for the week, as well as strategies you can use at home to reinforce what we are learning in class. It will also include any upcoming events.  Please check your child’s Monday folder for the newsletter on Mondays.  If your child comes home and says they do not know what they learned, you can ask them about the general topic listed in the newsletter! 

 

Monday Folders

Your child’s graded papers will be returned on Mondays in your child’s Monday Folder.  Please look through your child’s papers.  In addition, any important school-wide communication papers will be sent home in the Monday Folder.  Please be sure your child returns his/her Monday Folder to school on Tuesday.

 

Contact Information for 3rd Grade Team

Mrs. Samantha McCormick  |smccormick@amherst.k12.va.us

Mrs. Keri Jones kjones@amherst.k12.va.us 

 

Grading

 

  Grading Scale

This year the students are given letter grades.   Keep this chart handy to check your child’s progress. 
Students’ grades can be checked on PowerSchool.
 
CES Grading Scale
98-100     A+
95-97 A
92-94 A-
89-91 B+
86-88 B
83-85 B-
80-82 C+
77-79 C
74-76 C-
71-73 D+
68-70 D
65-67 D-
64- Below F
 
             

Weight of Assignments in Grade Book

Reading

English

Spelling

Math

Science

Social Studies

Tests – 40%

Quizzes – 25%

Classwork – 25%

Homework – 10%

Tests – 40%

Quizzes – 25%

Classwork – 25%

Homework – 10%

Tests – 60%

Classwork – 30%

Homework – 10%

Tests – 40%

Quizzes – 25%

Classwork – 25%

Homework – 10%

Tests – 40%

Quizzes – 25%

Classwork – 25%

Homework – 10%

Tests – 45%

Quizzes – 25

Classwork - 20

Homework – 10%

 

PowerSchool Parent

PowerSchool’s Parent Portal gives parents and guardians real-time information including attendance, grades, school information, and student course requests. The PowerSchool Parent Portal is a valuable tool, helping you stay well informed of your student’s academic progress and attendance.

 

**I will be updating grades on Power School weekly, if not sooner.**

 

Access PowerSchool Parent: http://sis.amherst.k12.va.us/public/

Parent Single Sign-On Quick Reference Guide: http://www.amherst.k12.va.us/docs/SAO/Parent_Single_Sign_On.pdf

Parent Single Sign-On Video: http://www.youtube.com/v/Yk9UBBJ4BP8?fs=1&hl=en_US&

   

Class Routines

 

 

 

Morning Routine

Each morning, students will go to the restroom/water fountain on the way to class!  Students MUST be in my classroom by 9AM.  Once they arrive in class, students will get everything they need for the day out of their backpack and hang their backpack and jacket on the hook under their number.  Once unpacked, students will take out their homework folder and put it on their desk ready to be checked or turned in.  Then, students will open their agendas to today’s date and write down their homework assignment for tonight.  After writing down homework, students will begin morning work that has been assigned on the Smart Board.  If the student is prepared for the day and completes the morning work assignment before class starts, he/she may pick out 2-3 books from the classroom library to read during the day.

 

WILDCAT Binder

The WILDCAT Binder is our way of staying organized at home and at school. It is a 3-ring binder that contains valuable information always at our fingertips.   WILDCAT stands for Weekly Information, Learning, Daily Communication, & Assignments Tool.  This is where your child will keep his/her agenda, pencil pouch, reading log, homework folder, word study notebook, and other important information.  Please make sure your child brings his/her WILDCAT Binder to and from school every day!

 

Homework Policy

I believe homework is an essential part of a child’s education.  It is valuable because it is an important tool in developing independent thought, self-direction, and self-discipline.  Homework can assist in the student developing good work habits and time management, as well as reinforcing the skills taught in class.

 

Homework will typically be assigned on Monday through Thursday nights.  However, students should read every day, including weekends.  The students will have math, reading log, and science and social studies flash cards to study each night.  Students are required to read a minimum of 20 minutes per night (please sign your child’s reading log located in the WILDCAT Binder every night).   When we begin learning multiplication, the students should also be practicing their math facts each night.  

 

Homework should take approximately 45-50 minutes to complete, give or take, depending on each individual student.  At times, the students will be working on larger projects, which may need to be finished at home.  I will never give homework on a subject that has not been covered in class.  For those nights when homework does not take as long, we encourage you to have your child to read for a bit longer, write a letter to a friend, write a journal entry, or anything else to help support what we are learning at school.

 

Your child will keep track of their homework assignments in the agenda (located in the WILDCAT Binder). Students will be responsible for writing down their assignments each morning during morning work.  Please sign the bottom of the agenda each day after your child’s homework had been completed

 

Late & Missing Homework: If your child has not turned in their homework the following day, he/she will have the opportunity to work on the missing assignment during silent lunch/recess.  If the assignment is turned in late, points will be taken off.  However, if your child does not turn in a homework assignment, he/she will receive a grade of 0 (zero) for the assignment.  Because homework is worth 10% of your child’s grade, it is extremely important for your child to always complete homework in a timely manner!

 

Word Study

Your child will be bringing home a collection of spelling words weekly that have been introduced in class. Each night of the week your child is expected to do a different activity to ensure that these words and the spelling patterns are mastered. These activities have been modeled and practiced in school, so your child can teach you how to do them at home.  Generally, word sorts will be introduced on Mondays and tested on Fridays. Each Monday in class the students and I will sort the words correctly, and they will write that correct sort in  their Word Study notebook as a reference for you.  Please do not let your child use this page when working on their homework!  This is a reference for you to help your child with my word study activities.

 

Weekly Word Study Homework

Please be sure your child puts today’s date at the top of each page in their Word Study Notebooks.

Please see the Word Study Homework attachment at the bottom of this page. Your child also has a detailed explanation for each night's word study homework located in their word study homework notebook, and a blue pamphlet was also given to you on registration night.

 

Absences & Make-Up Work

It is important for your child to be at school daily. However, we understand that there are times when they will have to be away from school. In the event that your child is absent, please call the school and notify the office, and upon return to school provide a written excuse of his/her absence.  Your child will receive his/her missed work upon their return to school, unless you have made other arrangements for the pickup of materials. The student has 5 days to make up missed work.

 

Topics of Study

Please refer to your child’s weekly newsletter regarding what specific skills we are currently working on.

 

This nine weeks, we will be studying:

Reading:

  • SOL 3.1abcde:  Use effective communication skills in group activities (listen, ask/respond to questions, explain, use appropriate language, and increase vocabulary)
  • SOL 3.3a:  Apply word-analysis skills when reading regular/irregular vowel patterns (ou/ow, oi/oy, oo, aw)
  • SOL 3.4a: Use knowledge of homophones to understand unfamiliar words
  • SOL 3.4cd: Use context clues and language structure to clarify the meaning of unfamiliar words
  • SOL 3.5acdehijklm: Comprehension of fictional texts (set purpose for reading, make/confirm predictions, compare/contrast, author’s purpose focus on entertain, problem/solution, main idea/supporting details, comprehension, differentiate between fiction and nonfiction, and reading with fluency/accuracy)

Language Arts:

  • SOL 3.8: Cursive writing
  • SOL 3.9abeg: Focus on narrative writing (identify audience, prewrite, organize, and revise)
  • SOL 3.10abcdj: Edit writing for correct grammar, capitalization, punctuation, and spelling (complete sentences, transition words, “I” in compound subjects, verb tense, and spelling sight words)

Math:

  • SOL 3.1abc: Place value six-digit numbers, rounding 9,999 or less, comparing whole numbers between 0-9,999 with symbols and words
  • SOL 3.2: Addition and subtraction fact families
  • SOL 3.4: Solve and estimate addition and subtraction of two whole numbers 9,999 or less with and without regrouping
  • SOL 3.17abc: Collect and organize data to construct line plots, picture graphs, and bar graphs, read and interpret graphs

Science:

  • SOL 3.1 ab: Scientific Method, observations and predictions
  • SOL 3.2abcd: Simple machines and compound machines
  • SOL 3.6abcd: Ecosystems (aquatic and terrestrial)
  • 3.10c: Effects of fire, flood, disease, and erosion on organisms

Social Studies:

  • SOL 3.1: Contributions of ancient Greece and Rome
  • SOL 3.4: Greece & Rome Map Skills (locate, describing the physical and human characteristics, and adaptations)
  • SOL 3.7: Producers in ancient Greece & Rome, used natural resources, human resources, and capital resources in the production of goods and services
  • SOL 3.5abe: Map Skills (continents, oceans, equator, prime meridian, hemispheres, letter-number grid systems)
  • SOL 3.6: read and construct maps, tables, graphs, and/or charts.

 

Links to SOLS & ACPS Pacing Guides

VA Standards of Learning (SOL):

ACPS Pacing Guides http://www.amherst.k12.va.us/pages/sao/CIA_pacing-guide.php

VDOE SOL Practice Items http://www.doe.virginia.gov/testing/sol/practice_items/index.shtml

Understanding SOL Scores & Reports http://www.doe.virginia.gov/testing/scoring/index.shtml

SOL Practice http://www.solpass.org/

 

 

Other Important Information

Birthday Celebrations

If you would like to bring treats to celebrate your child’s birthday, please do so during lunch.  Again, we have lunch at 11:55 AM.

 

ACPS Meal Prices

Elementary breakfast:  $1.00

Elementary reduced price breakfast: $0.30

Adult breakfast:  $1.30

 

Elementary lunch:  $2.05

Elementary reduced lunch: $0.40

Adult lunch:  $2.85

 

Milk:  $0.50

Ice Cream:  $0.75

 

(Free and reduced information is available if it applies to your situation.)

 

Parent Volunteers

Chaperones and volunteers must complete a background check prior to serving as a chaperone or volunteer. There is no charge for the background check: however, results of the check can sometimes take several weeks. Therefore, you should complete the background check well in advance of scheduled field trips or activities you wish to chaperone or participate in as a volunteer.  For more information, click here: http://www.amherst.k12.va.us/pages/sao/calendar_hr.php

Please also consider joining our PTO (Parent Teacher Organization).  For more information, click here: http://ces.amherst.k12.va.us/?q=content/pto

 

ACPS Parent Resources:

http://www.amherst.k12.va.us/pages/parents/parent-student.php

 

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