Cookies and Conversation

We’re planning to have a relaxing time for the children to decorate a cookie and sit and talk with their peers in both third grade classes.  Please take a look at the sign up genuis to see if you’re able to supply something for this fun activity happening later this month.  Just click on the link below: 

Also, we’re still in need of regular lightbulbs.  We appreciate all donations!

Watersheds and Writers

     Boy did we have fun learning about watersheds one morning.  Groups of students created hills, valleys and wetlands in a small tub.  Then we added different kinds of simulated pollution to see where it collected after a rainstorm.

        We collected our polluted water and checked it’s pH this afternoon.  Then we learned how our water gets filtered so it is safe to drink.  Our day ended with everyone writing a one act play that had a central message for us to figure out.  Look how busy all the playwrights were!  

Science Fun

       Today we explored what an aquifer is. Many of us realized we have our water supplied by a well that depends on that water.  The children observed what happened to ground water as they watched it rain on my model, and also created their own models.  Later, we added “pollution” to see where it went.  It was fun to make a hypothesis and then learn from our data.  What made it even more fun was the safety goggles.

Each group built their own model.
Students are busy writing their hypotheses.
We observed pollution  of surface water seeping into the aquifer.
They are writing a conclusion about what our data showed.

Detective Duties

     We ended our day, Friday afternoon, by reviewing the difference between fact and opinion.  Then the students were put on crime fighting teams with each team getting a different case to crack.  The children created their own detective names, and then, using the background information as well as what their witnesses said, they had to determine which statements were fact and which were opinion.  

Thinking hard
Talking about the facts
Jotting down notes of the case
Looking at witness statements

Gathering facts

             After students looked at the facts, they figured out who did the crime by looking at all the suspects that fit the facts they gathered.  All detective teams were successful and earned their badge.

One serious detective
This is a fun group of clever detectives.

The children had so much fun solving their cases that they asked to do it again during station time next week.


Tuesday, Oct. 29th.  Water Cycle poster and paragraph project due

Friday, Nov. 2   No school for students

Wednesday, Nov. 7-Friday, Nov. 9 Conferences and Early dismissal at 1:30 


Dear Parents and Guardians,                                       

          Every year Penn Manor School District assists families in need with Thanksgiving and Winter Holiday meals.  We would like to make this process more uniform across the district. We will be collecting the food listed below between October 29th and November 9th. Third graders are asked to donate canned green beans.

          If your family is able and willing to provide more than is listed above and would like to make a monetary donation, please send the amount you choose by check to your child’s school secretary by November 9th.  Make your check payable to Penn Manor Family Fund and on the memo line write “Holiday Food Basket.”

Reading nonfiction

    As part of our unit on understanding how to determine the main idea of nonfiction texts, students worked alone or with a partner to read sections of Aero and Officer Mike.  They were assigned one of the headings in the story.  After reading that part of the text, they taught the class about the main idea and supporting details in that part of the passage.  Using the microphone made it more fun, and some of your children definitely like it!

Field Trip Fun

     We were very lucky to have a day filled with sunshine for our field trip.  Everyone had fun with our lessons at Cherry Crest Farm.  We started learning about corn and the many products made from the crop, which included seeing popcorn on the cob before it was popped in the microwave. 

After that, we moved on to a lesson about honeybees.  We learned about the three types of bees in the hive, and how they pollinate flowers to turn into fruits and vegetables that we eat.  We even got to see a real working hive!

On to the barnyard for fun seeing many farm animals.  We were able to feed some of our popcorn to the goats.  Our next stop was a lesson about milk and how butter is made from heavy cream. The children made their own butter by shaking the cream until it solidified.  We hopped onto the big wagon for a ride around the farm where we learned about the dairy business.

     After lunch, everyone had a chance to explore the activities like the slide, bounce pillow, slingshot, and ball park.  It was a time of laughter for everyone.

Our final stop for the day was Lancaster City.  Many of the children had never been there, and had fun exploring some of the historic sites.  We saw the Fulton Theater, Central Market, soldier and Sailors Monument, LNP museum, and Thaddeus Stevens’ House to name a few of our stops.  We also had fun searching for boot scrapers, busybodies, and fire insurance markers.  Thank you to our PTO for helping to make this day of learning possible!

Run-on Sentence Relays

        We’ve been learning about sentence structure, and most recently were identifying run-on sentences.  Today we reviewed how to fix run-on sentences by working in teams.  Each team was given a poorly written sentence about squirrels that they had to either make into two separate sentences, or add a comma and a conjunction to join related ideas into one sentence.  As they got them correct, they collected paper acorns and their next sentence card.  The winning team was awarded the most candy “acorns.”  I don’t have pictures to share, but it was a fun way to end the day and practice grammar.  Ask you child to tell you about it.

Morning in the Garden

         This morning we had a fun time in the garden with Mrs. Horst, from the Edible Classroom.  Students were put in two groups and switched stations halfway through our time outside. 

At one station, the students cleaned a raised bed by pulling old plants and weeds out of the soil.  Then they filled buckets with new soil. then poured it into the bed so it will be ready for planting in the spring.  The new soil was made from composted leaves that had decayed and decomposed.  The soil was dark and full of nutrients to help new plants grow,

     At the other station, students stirred the compost piles and discovered how to remove seeds from old plants and save them for next season.  In this way, you can have new crops and flowers without having to buy seeds.

      We’re so lucky to learn by discovery and activity in our school garden!