Welcome to Third Grade

Hello and welcome to third grade at SJNCS! Third grade is an exciting year, and I love watching my students become more independent learners. The growth I see in third grade is tremendous!

Meet Mrs. Rushing

I began teaching at St. John Neumann Catholic School in 2009 and have been a third grade teacher for nine years. I received a marketing degree from the University of Tennessee and, after working several years in the business world, followed a call to elementary education. After completing a K-6 licensure program through South College, I began teaching at St. John Neumann Catholic School. I then received a M.Ed. in Elementary Education from the University of Tennessee, Chattanooga.

I met Todd, my husband at the University of Tennessee. We currently live in Lenoir City and attend All Saints parish. Our son Tyler will begin second grade at SJNCS this year and keeps us very busy with scouts, baseball, soccer, and basketball. We also have a big, old dog named Bear.

I am truly blessed to be teaching in such a wonderful community with supportive staff and exceptional children and love working at a school centered in faith. I look forward to dealing with the challenges and opportunities each school year offers.

What We're Learning This Year


Third grade math emphasizes problem-solving skills. Students will extend knowledge of place value up to 1,000, learn rounding and estimation, and begin to understand fractions. In third grade, students will gain fluency of addition and subtraction to 1,000 and master their multiplication and division facts. Geometry includes two-dimensional shapes and types of angles. We will introduce area, perimeter, and volume. Students will measure using fractional parts of units and learn to compare weights, capacity, and temperatures. Students will learn elapsed time and be able to find the values of collections of coins and bills.

Reading/Language Arts

Students in third grade will continue to develop phonics skills and will learn to decode words with common prefixes and suffixes. Fluency is developing with sufficient accuracy to support comprehension of fiction and nonfiction texts.

Third grade students demonstrate command of Standard English when writing and speaking and can explain functions of nouns, pronouns, verbs, adjectives, and adverbs in general and their functions in a sentence. Students will understand the conventions of Standard English capitalization, punctuation and spelling when writing. Students will determine the meaning of unknown and multiple meaning words and phrases based on grade level content readings and demonstrate understanding of figurative language, word relationships, and word meanings.

In writing, third grade students develop opinion pieces on topics that they have introduced and can support with a concluding ending. They learn to gather information to support their writing with facts, definitions and details using linking words to connect ideas. Narrative writing is developed through effective techniques, descriptive details and sequencing of events. Development and organization to produce writing with appropriate task and purpose are strengthened. Students continue to plan, revise and edit their writing using technology and/or paper/pen. Students also build knowledge about topics through research and technology. Notetaking and outlining are introduced in Grade 3 as a source of gathering information on sources and sorting evidence into provided categories. Students write routinely for both extended and shorter time frames to produce a range of tasks, purposes, and audiences. Students are taught speaking and listening to become effective communicators. This promotes comprehension and collaboration. Students will learn to present opinions, knowledge, and ideas.


Third grade students will use the scientific method of investigation and understand the use of technology in science. Students will learn how matter can be observed, measured, described, and changed. They will investigate the causes and effects of magnetic force and learn how energy is transferred. In life science, students will learn how organisms survive in their environments and react to changes in ecosystems and how organisms acquire their unique characteristics. Students will investigate earth and space learning the physical properties of the planets, weather and climate, and the effects of natural disasters.

Social Studies

Third grade social studies focuses on geography and culture beginning with the United States and expanding across the globe. Students will also explore economics, civics, and government. Project-based learning allows students to explore the world.


Students will explore, profess and reflect on our Catholic faith defined in the Creed and Church doctrine. They are led to recognize the presence of Christ and enter into communion with Him through participation in the Liturgy and Sacraments of the Church. We will discuss moral formation and cultivate a respect for all life. Students will experience and engage in prayer to deepen their relationship with God and the Church. Third grade students will participate in Catechesis of the Good Shepherd in our school atrium which promotes relationship between God and child.

Friday Folders come home each Friday. please check and clean out your child’s Friday Folder each week.