Welcome to our class website! I am so excited to be working with the Grade 3 students this year. Please check in here for classroom updates. We'll also post photos here of some of the hard work we're doing in class. Looking forward to a great school year!

Mrs. Brennan

November 22 - Classroom Update

posted Nov 22, 2018, 9:57 AM by Jennifer Brennan

It's been a busy month of November! A few important notes:
  • I'm posting lots of photos of things we're doing on my Twitter account. If you haven't already done so, you're invited to follow me at             @MrsJBrennan
  • The cold weather has arrived! Make sure your child comes to school each day dressed to play outside. They will be out 3 times per day      unless the temperature drops below -25 degrees Celcius. 
  • It's always a good idea to have an extra pair of socks and mitts in their bags, as these items can be quite soggy after lunch recess. Be        sure to label everything so we can make sure it gets back to you!
  • December will be a busy month with lots of special activities. A list of dates will be sent home next week. You are invited to join our class on Tuesday, December 18 from 11:00-12:00 for a fun Christmas STEAM activity.
Here's a few things we've been working on and some notes on where we're heading going into December.

Religion/Family Life
We began this month with All Saints' Day, and the children have had an opportunity to learn more about a saint of their choice. They created Google drawings with a partner to share what they've learned. You can view these by logging into your child's Google account. We've also been learning about Mary and about the rosary, including the different Mysteries we reflect on when we pray in this way. A goal we have this year is to pray a decade of the rosary together as a whole school on the last Friday of each month. We've done this once already. Going forward we will be learning about the stories and seasons of Advent. In Family Life we're wrapping up the first theme with a focus on what makes us unique. A note will be coming home with more information about Theme 2 - Living in Relationship.

Language Arts
The children have really enjoyed the book we've been reading for the Global Read Aloud project, A Boy Called Bat. We've mailed our pen pal letters to our friends in North Carolina who are also reading the book, and we've posted responses to various questions and reflections on Padlet where we got to see what other classes in North America have been thinking about the story. We've continued to work on descriptive writing, with a new focus on molding our writing into complete paragraphs which include a topic sentence, supporting details and a closing sentence. Paragraph writing is new to Grade 3, so we'll be spending lots of time on this. This ties in with our new reading focus of finding the main idea and supporting details in texts that we read.

Students have been engaged in a variety of hands-on, problem solving tasks as they develop their understanding of addition and balanced equations. We've also been working on skill practice with a main focus on the following strategies: using base ten blocks to add, adding up in friendly chunks using a hundreds chart, adding using place value and adding using the standard method. I sent home some examples of these 4 strategies along with a copy of the interview sheet we signed at parent-teacher interviews. You can add these strategy examples to your child's homework folder. We will continue to work on subtraction strategies next week, and will be doing a short quiz before moving forward. Our next area of focus will be 2-D Geometry, where the students will look to describe, sort and compare polygons using geometric properties such as side lengths, parallel sides and types of angles (right angle, greater and less than a right angle).

Visual Art
The students used different materials to create beautiful poppies for Remembrance Day. This week we've been looking at the work of an Indigineous artist named Roy Henry Vickers, and looking at how he uses art to tell stories. We are also using his work to continue to explore art elements such as foreground, middle ground and background as well as identifying and creating a line of horizon.

Our next unit on Strong and Stable Structures will begin in December with some fun STEAM challenges and building tasks.

In our health unit we are talking about making healthy choices. Our discussions will touch on substance use and misuse (medecine, energy drinks, etc.), staying safe in various situations (at school, at home and in the community), what factors contribute to good oral health, and using a decision making process to help make good choices.

October 29 - Classroom Update

posted Oct 29, 2018, 1:08 PM by Jennifer Brennan   [ updated Oct 30, 2018, 12:54 PM ]

It's been a busy few weeks and the children are really looking forward to Halloween! Here are a few important notes:

1) This week I will be sending home a folder with some sample assessments from the first 8 weeks of school. This is meant to give you a window into some of the things we've been working on. At this point in the year, most of the work will have descriptive feedback (strengths and next steps) rather than a formal level. Please sign and return this folder to school when you receive it.

2) Progress Reports are coming home tomorrow. There will also be information about how you can book an interview with me.

3) I've created a Twitter account in the hopes that it will allow me to share photos and quick updates about some of the things we're working on more easily and frequently. Please follow me at @MrsJBrennan

Here are a few things we've been working on this month:


We've been working on the reading strategy of visualizing to help us understand what we are reading. This is also a strategy that helps us with our descriptive writing. We've been coming up with lots of different adjectives to describe what we visualize, and then use these words in our writing. We've also worked on describing using comparisons, such as "The jacket was as colourful as a rainbow." 

We've also been reading a book called A Boy Called Bat as part of the Global Read Aloud. Several classes in our school are reading the same book, as well as classes from all over the world! We've teamed up with a class from North Carolina who are also reading the book. We've had a Skype session with them alsready, and we've written some pen pal letters to share some interesting facts about Ottawa with them. 


We've been working on representing numbers using Base Ten Blocks. This helps us to work on place value concepts. We've started by working with numbers up to 100, and later in the year we'll review this again with numbers up to 1000. We've used these blocks to show a number in many different ways. For those of you who may be unsure about what a Base Ten Block is, here's a picture for you!

We'll be moving forward after this with addition and subtraction up to 100. This is a great time to play some of the number fluency games from the homework folder, as this will be very helpful for the students.


We've wrapped up our unit on forces. The children have had a wonderful time working on experiments that explored forces such as magnetism, friction and gravity. They've continued to work on making a hypothesis (a prediction), then conducting the experiment and comparing their hypothesis to the results.

Religion/Family Life

We prayed a decade of the rosary together as a whole school on Friday. This year we plan to do this every last Friday of the month.

October 12 - Homework folders going home today

posted Oct 12, 2018, 11:22 AM by Jennifer Brennan

As discussed at Program Night, your child is coming home with a homework folder that includes some ideas for math and language activities. There is a notebook inside the pocket folder to use as needed (ex: for word work). A deck of cards and some dice are all you need for some tech-free math fun! The reading comprehension questions can be done orally with your child. Word work activities can be based on any words that come up in your child's reading, or any words of interest to them.

There is no deadline for these activities. Other ideas will come home throughout the year. The purpose is to give those who want homework some suggestions and to allow you to establish a homework routine that fits in with your families' busy schedules. There are also many links on this website that your child is welcome to try whenever he/she chooses.

Reading remains the priority and should be happening every day. You have all received information for signing in to Raz Kids, which is on the inside cover of your child's agenda. If you would like any guidance in choosing an appropriate reading level for your child on Raz Kids please let me know.

I have also included a label in your child's agenda which has his/her Gmail address and password, our class website address, and the login information for a new math game called Zorbits. A second copy of this information is on the inside cover of the homework folder.

If you have any questions, please let me know!

October 9 - Classroom Update

posted Oct 9, 2018, 12:54 PM by Jennifer Brennan

I hope you and your families enjoyed the Thanksgiving long weekend! Here are some important notes for this week:

  • Our Thanksgiving mass will take place tomorrow at 1:30. Everyone is welcome to join us.
  • Picture Day is Thursday. Our photos will be taken as soon as we come into the school at 9:15, so please be sure to be on time!
  • Thursday is also our first Swim to Survive session. Make sure you bring your swimsuit, towel and goggles if needed. The bus will be picking us up at about 9:55. We will be in the pool from 10:30-11:30 and will return to the school for lunch.
Here are a few photos from some of our activities over the last two weeks:

The children had a wonderful time during the Terry Fox Run!  

Mrs. Proulx read the book Stolen Words to us on Orange Shirt Day. The children enjoyed the story of a grandfather who had lost his indigineous language, but was beginning to find it again with the help of his granddaughter.

We've been learning about linear measurement, and have been using benchmarks to help us estimate. 1 cm is about the width of a little finger. One student below found that his tooth is about 1 cm wide. We also went on a metre hunt around the school, and discovered that a 1 m is about the width of the classroom door. We've also been using what we've learned to make some estimates using the website estimation180.com. They're getting much better at explaining their estimates!


Septemeber 26 - Classroom Update

posted Sep 26, 2018, 1:11 PM by Jennifer Brennan

It's been a busy first month of school! This Friday will be our Terry Fox Run. If you haven't had a chance to make a donation yet, we encourage you to do so using the following link: http://www.terryfox.ca/StDominicSchoolOrleans.

Here's a few of the things we've been working on so far:


We have started the year by writing recounts, and have worked to use graphic organizers to help us plan our writing. We are working on the reading strategy of Making Connections, where the students will connect things from a text they are reading to a personal experience, another text they have read, or to something else in the world. We've also looked at some strategies for spelling past tense verbs in our word work.



In math we began the year with sorting and classifying objects, and have moved on to counting strategies. At this point in the year, Grade 3s are working to skip count forwards by 2s, 5s and 10s by starting at any number (ex: count by 10s - 3, 13, 23, 33, etc.). We're learning to use 100s charts, number lines and other tools to help us with this. We had a chance to participate in some centre activities, and also used our Dash and Sphero robots to help us count on number lines. The students had a blast!




We've begun with a unit on Forces, which includes discussions about forces of nature. We've been looking at tornados as we discuss the events in the Ottawa area from the last week.

Phys Ed/ Health

Our beginning units are centred on fitness activities in the gym, and looking at healthy eating.

Religion/Family Life

Unit 1 in our Religion program is "Our Catholic Community". Unit 1 in our Family Life program is "Created and Loved By God". We've also begun a combined Religion/Media Literacy unit "Samaritans on a Digital Road", where the students are learning about being good citizens online.

September 14 - Update

posted Sep 14, 2018, 12:55 PM by Jennifer Brennan

Hi everyone! It was so nice to see so many of you last night at Program Night. For those of you who were unable to make it, I have sent home the handouts in your child's agenda. I have also placed a copy under the "CLASS DOCUMENTS" link. Please don't hesitate to contact me with a note in the agenda or a phone call if you have any questions.

One thing we talked about last night is the new Board policy that requires all volunteers with the school to complete a "VULNERABLE SECTOR CHECK" with the Ottawa Police. This can include anything from field trips, Scientists in Schools workshops, etc. If you are thinking you may like to volunteer at some point during the year it would be a great idea to get this done now. You can complete it online, or if you'd like to do it in person the school can provide you with a letter where the fee for this will be waived. Our class' first field trip will be coming up on Thursday, October 11, where we will be participating in the first of three sessions of the Swim to Survive Program. More information and permission forms will be coming home next week.

One question that came up last night was for parents who already have a records check completed, but have an electronic rather that a paper record of this. Mrs. Proulx has said that those parents are welcome to forward their electronic copies to the following address: dominic@ocsb.ca

Thank you so much!

1-6 of 6