Mrs. West

Hello My Name Is...

Mrs. West

Mrs. West

I have been a third grade teacher at Benton Elementary for over 20 years.  I graduated from Lawrence High School, as well as the University of Maine at Farmington.  When I'm not at school, I enjoy watching my son play hockey and baseball and my daughter dance onstage. 

Third grade is always very busy and we learn about a variety of topics.  The following gives a quick snapshot into my third grade classroom.

Field Trips Third graders get very excited about field trips and we have 3 within our curriculum. Maine State Museum and State House In Social Studies, we learn about Maine, as well as government. This trip gives us a chance to learn more about our state, as well as see where our state government happens! Margaret Chase Smith Library Again, we learn about Maine, government, and also famous people from Maine. Margaret Chase Smith fits the bill here! This trip is jam packed with information about her life and all she accomplished. Wolf's Neck State Park This trip ties to the science curriculum and is an outdoor trip. Therefore, hopefully the weather will cooperate. On this trip we learn about animal habitats.

Reading

During reading, the class will work on all aspects of reading including reading strategies, vocabulary, and comprehension.  Your child will read independently each day, as well as be read to during shared reading.  I also utilize small guided reading groups, buddy reading, and written activities to help with comprehension.  The children will learn how to record the books they have read and respond to their reading in a Reader’s Notebook.

I will begin and end the year by completing a reading assessment with each student called the Developmental Reading Assessment (DRA 2).  This assessment will inform me as to what your child’s independent reading level is, as well as what skills I need to work on with your child.


Writing

This year, we will be using a writing program that incorporates the Common Core writing standards.  This program will focus on three genres in writing:  narrative, informational, and opinion writing.  It will also utilize the writing workshop model. Students will work to develop organized writing pieces with detail.


Math

We are now entering our fourth year using Envision Math, which is aligned with the Common Core.  If you are not familiar with the Common Core, it is a U.S. education initiative that seeks to bring diverse state curricula into alignment with each other by following the principles of standards-based education reform. The initiative is sponsored by the National Governors Association (NGA) and the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO).

With the Envisions math program, we will work on numeration, number sense with addition and subtraction, place value, multiplication, division, fractions, 2-D shapes, time, perimeter, area, liquid volume and mass, and data.

There is a short homework assignment each day with this new program and I always encourage practicing math facts for a few minutes each day.

Word Study (spelling)

We will be studying high frequency words from the third grade word list, as well as words from a core strategy lesson.  I will introduce a strategy mini lesson each week, and the students will study a word list comprised of words from the strategy lesson, as well as 2 – 4 high frequency words.  

Students should bring home a word list to study on Mondays.  Tests are on Friday.


Social Studies

This year for social studies we will work to strengthen our mapping skills, by studying the State of Maine in depth. We will take our time to study many aspects of Maine including the government. We will also study economics and Milton Hershey’s role as an entrepreneur.  


Science

This year we are adopting a new science curriculum. Through this curriculum students will work concepts such as life cycles, habitats, magnetics, and the weather.