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3rd Grade is The Foundation

October 31, 2009

I was talking to some parents at the parent/teacher conference night.  Just chit chat really.  Then, someone said something, and I got on my soap box.  Won’t someone please take it away from me?  You would think by now, I would know better.  Oh well, there I went again.

I don’t remember the comment that started me , but off I went.  Don’t you realize how important 3rd grade is?  It and 7th grade are the two most pivotal grades.  That’s why I am so freaking out about making sure our son is getting it.  Everything they will learn in 4th-6th grade , the foundation happens in third!  Look at the curriculum.  It’s the same, they just keep adding more details.  If they don’t get these fundamentals now, they are in big trouble. 

The parent looked at me in complete astonishment.  Really?  Are you sure?  Yes!  I’ve taught 4th – 6th grades, I know the curriculum.  Look it up on the state website, check out the standards for yourself.  Gosh, I just never thought of that. 

I even argued with a fellow teacher the next day, a 3rd grade teacher.  We both agreed that 3rd grade was crucial.  Then she said, 7th was the next time they really introduced new concepts.  I said like what, she said algebra.  I said, even that just really comes down to addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division.  We ended up agreeing.  3rd grade is THE grade.  Now, I don’t feel quite like such a psycho worrying about my son’s grades and homework. 

Hey teachers out there, what grade do you think is crucial, and or a pivotal  turning point?  Just wondering?

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