Dear Parents,

           My name is Alicia Alexander and I am thrilled to have your child this year! They are going to absolutely love 3rd grade. This will be my fifth year teaching 3rd grade at Madison Academy. 
        Your child will learn many new things. We will work together while learning about communities, geography, and economics.  We will investigate plant growth, changes in matter, and rocks and minerals in our science units.  In math, we will embark on a voyage of learning about new topics and new ways of thinking.  We will explore many different genres as we learn about ourselves as readers and writers.  During the year, students will learn to play the recorder in music class and much, much more!

          I would like to start the year by becoming partners with you in your child's education.  You can help begin this partnership by taking a few moments to describe your child.  How do you see your child as a learner and as a person?  What are your child interests? What are some goals you have for your child for third grade? What important things should your child teacher know to help him or her have a successful school experience?  Please jot down these ideas and send them through email (

          I look forward to working together to create a positive and productive school year.


                                                                                                 Ms. Alexander




Student A reads 20 minutes five nights of every week;
Student B reads only 4 minutes a night...or not at all!

Step 1: Multiply minutes a night x 5 times each week.
Student A reads 20 min. x 5 times a week = 100 mins./week
Student B reads 4 minutes x 5 times a week = 20 minutes

Step 2: Multiply minutes a week x 4 weeks each month.
Student A reads 400 minutes a month.
Student B reads 80 minutes a month.

Step 3: Multiply minutes a month x 9 months/school year
Student A reads 3600 min. in a school year.
Student B reads 720 min. in a school year.

Student A practices reading the equivalent of ten whole school days a year.
Student B gets the equivalent of only two school days of reading practice.

By the end of 6th grade if Student A and Student B maintain
these same reading habits,
Student A will have read the equivalent of 60 whole school days
Student B will have read the equivalent of only 12 school days.
One would expect the gap of information retained will have widened considerably and so, undoubtedly, will school performance. How do you think Student B will feel about him/herself as a student?

Some questions to ponder:
Which student would you expect to read better?

Which student would you expect to know more?

Which student would you expect to write better?

           Which student would you expect to have a better

           Which student would you expect to be more  
           successful in school....and in
 Source: U.S. Dept. of Education, America Reads Challenge. (1999) "Start Early, Finish Strong: How to Help Every Child Become a Reader." Washington, D.C.