Welcome to My Class

Welcome to my class

Dear Parents,

My name is Veronica Najas and I am your child’s Third Grade English teacher. I earned my Bachelor of Arts Degree in Psychology at Marquette University in Milwaukee, Wisconsin and my Master’s Degree in Elementary Education from the University of Alabama-Tuscaloosa. This is my tenth year at the American School of Quito and my fourth year in third grade.
My Teaching Philosophy
"I've come to the frightening conclusion that I am the decisive element in the classroom. My personal approach creates the climate. My daily mood makes the weather. As a teacher, I possess a tremendous power to make a child's life miserable or joyous. I can be a tool of torture or an instrument of inspiration. I can humiliate or humor, hurt or heal. In all situations, it is my response that decides whether a crisis will escalate or de-escalate and a child humanized or dehumanized." Haim Ginott
I believe learning is best when it takes places in a safe environment where students are encouraged to take risks and are empowered to explore their different abilities. I have high expectations for each student but respects their interests and different learning styles. In our classroom you will see cooperative learning, hands on activities, whole language instruction and small and large group instruction. I also think differentiating instruction is a key element in education because not every child learns in the same way.
Our Language Arts program will be literature-based combining reading and writing workshops. Our activities will include shared reading, reading logs, class discussion, journal writing, and oral expression and learning centers.
Our Mathematics program will be explored through the use of concrete materials, didactic games, projects and mini lessons.

Third Grade Basics
Language Arts: journal writing, sentences and paragraphs, spelling, vocabulary, nouns/verbs/adjectives, pronouns, reading, book reports, oral communication and writing projects. 

Math: addition, subtraction, multiplication, patterns, word problems, measurement, and geometry, fractions and place value.

Social Studies: map skills, research skills, economics and Africa.

Science: parts of plants, classifyng animals, living things grow and reproduce, Earth’s Crust, protecting Earth’s resources, Matter and Mixturer

I will assign homework on Tuesdays and Thursdays. If your child was not able to complete his/her homework please write a note in the agenda to explain the reason why.

Your child is expected to read everyday for 15 minutes and you MUST sign their reading log everyday.

Your child must do his own work. We have discussed what plagiarism is and the consequences for plagiarism.

Behavior Expectations
The basic rules for our third grade classroom are respect others, work quietly and always try your best. Students are required to always be prepared and bring their materials to class. Students are aware of the classroom rules and these are made with them in order to ensure that all students have the best possible opportunity to learn. Positive behavior is always rewarded and praised, however if your child is unable or unwilling to cooperate you will be immediately informed of the problem and the consequences. 

It is very important that we communicate throughout the year about your child. Please feel free to contact me if any problems arise or if you have any questions about your child’s academic or social development throughout the year. My email address is vnajas@fcaq.k12.ec. I check my email on a daily basis so please email me at any time.