The Third Grade Curriculum
"During the ninth year, the child takes a deep breath and draws itself out of the world in which he or she was united and goes into an inner soul space within the physical body. The world becomes an object, as the sense of Self grows stronger. The age of the dream is passing, and a new age that will one day culminate in the attainment of full waking consciousness begins to dawn. The Third Grade curriculum has a more realistic, practical quality than the first two grades." - Rudolf Steiner
BIBLICAL STORIES: The literary theme of the Third Grade is the Old Testament. These stories are an introduction to the history of the Hebrew people and also a picture of humanity's creation.
HOUSE-BUILDING: The children learn that the human body is our very first home. They experience how human beings construct houses out of materials they find in the area in which they live. The class studies houses from around the world.
FARMING: The class learns that the earth is a living, breathing being. Weekly, they attend Farm class.
LANGUAGE ARTS: The class copies paragraphs from the board that they use for reading, spelling and grammar study. Much more work is done taking dictations or creating their own compositions for their Main Lesson books. Daily work is done in speech formation through speech exercises, verses and poems. Spelling words are given weekly. The writing of business letters is introduced.
GRAMMAR: An introduction to the parts of speech - noun, verb, adjective and adverb - is given, along with the study of punctuation. The children also learn to diagram sentences.
READING: The children are encouraged to read at home every day, in addition to reading in school during main lesson and reading periods.
ARITHMETIC: Work with the four operations continues, and mental arithmetic takes on a more practical tone. The main theme of the year is linear measurement. Time, liquid and dry measure, and money are also studied.
PRACTICAL ACTIVITIES: The children learn to cook and bake, activities which appeal to the warm feeling life at this age, and simple projects of weaving, dying carding, and spinning wool are led.
PAINTING AND DRAWING: Basic color exercises are continued in painting, and some first attempts at allowing the form to arise out of the color are begun. Drawing with block crayons continues, with more complicated themes.
MODELLING: The class works with beeswax modeling figures connected to the main lesson work and the seasons.
HANDWORK: The third grade children are introduced to the crochet hook and they learn to create many practical items. Their main project is to create a hat for themselves. Knowing how to create the form without a pattern develops a sense of confidence in the material world. The Third Grade is also introduced to the practical arts of spinning and dyeing.
MAIN LESSON BLOCKS IN THE 3RD GRADE: Old Testament stories as beginning history; composition and grammar; study of practical life (farming, housing and clothing); long division, time, weights, measures and money in arithmetic.
Practical Activities: Baking, Cooking, Building, etc.
Farming: Field Harvest, Cover Crops, Wheat
Harvest and Planting, Field Planting
Painting: Colors, Forms
Spanish: Rhymes, 3-Part Songs, Games, Basic Writing, Telling Time
Handwork: Fiber Arts, Spinning, Weaving, Dyeing, Knitting
Music: Singing, Diatonic Flute, Violin
Reading with 7th Grade Buddies