Primary 3 Homework – Week from 20th February

Primary 3 Homework – Week from 20th February

Our topic on the North and South Poles is really taking off now as we think about what these amazing places are like and what kinds of animals can survive there.

Please see below my note on written subtraction methods.

Best wishes,

Mr Buchan



Pages from class books to be read at home will be written down in the grids as usual.

I am going to stop writing down when children have been heard reading aloud on these grids because it has proved impossible to keep this up to date. All the children are heard three times a week on average – sometimes twice or sometimes four times depending on what else is happening. From now on I will only write notes on the reading grids if there is something specific to raise. I hope that is OK.



More common words that people have been finding tricky.

taking                          cold

walked                         there

called                           their

Please could we practise them using our usual look, say, cover, write and check method and then write sentences using them?


As you help the children with columns subtraction, please be aware that there are some slightly different ways of doing these written sums and it will be helpful if we can all use the same method. For example, the way I was taught is different from what I would now teach. The reason is that the decomposition method (shown below) reflects most closely the underlying concepts of place value and subtraction. The other ways work fine but they can be a bit confusing for some children.


6 5                 Take 4 away from 5 to get 1 in the units column.

 – 3 4                 Take 3 away from 6 to get 3 in the tens column.


You can’t take 5 from 2, so you decompose the

  56 12                6 tens to become 5 tens and 1 ten moves across.

 – 3   5               You now have 12 minus 5 which gives 7 in the

___­__­              units column. In the tens column you then take 3

away from 5 which gives 2.


Our motto is:

          If it’s too big on the floor… steal one from next door.

This goes with other golden rules:

– Start with the units

– Never take the top number away from the bottom

– When you write a sum, line up the columns correctly


To practise at home:

43 – 22                     87 – 62                     63 – 28                   91 – 72

86 – 39                    364 – 226             506 – 262                544 – 245

Primary 3 Homework – Week from 13th February

Primary 3 Homework – Week from 13th February

Our homework will be a bit different this week because of the half-term days off. I hope everybody has a good break.

Best wishes,

Mr Buchan


Temperatures Around the World

In class we have been talking about the temperature each day, linking to our topic on the north and south poles. We have also been making globes to help us investigate why temperatures vary in different places and at different times of the year.

Please could you help the children to find out the temperature in some different places around the world? This information can be found online (e.g. BBC Weather) or in most newspapers.

In class we have talked about the seven continents. We have also considered how places are usually warmer if they are near the equator. We are starting to talk about “north” and “south”.

What I have in mind is a list of about 5 places with:

– the daytime temperature in oC

– which continent the place is in

– if the place is near the equator or north / south

E.g. Cairo (Egypt), Africa, 19oC, north of equator but quite near

It might be best to start with places the children have already heard of. Otherwise capital cities would be good to use.



I will not set a new Sum Dog challenge, but the children can still get good practice on this if they would like.

Aside from this, it is always helpful to practise our Learnits for Big Maths. If anybody needs replacement flashcards then please let me know.



We won’t have new class reading books this week.



I have picked out some words that lots of people in the class have been struggling with recently.

staying                        suddenly

dream                         doing

going                           thought


Please could we practise them using our usual look, say, cover, write and check method and then write sentences using them?

Primary 3 Homework – Week from 6th February

Primary 3 Homework – Week from 6th February

It was great speaking to parents last week with the drop-in session and then assembly. If anyone couldn’t make it or would like to follow up on questions, please do let me know any time.

Our main topic for the term will be the North and South Poles. We will begin by thinking about Earth as a spinning globe with an axis and orbit round the Sun. This will explain why the Poles are such special places, and so chilly!

Thank you for sending in wedding pictures. Any more would still be very welcome.

Thanks also to those who can help on the Vogrie Park trip on 5th May. We now have the adult help Mrs Duncan was hoping for. (Mrs Duncan is our P.E. specialist and will be running this trip.)

Best wishes,

Mr Buchan




This week we are continuing with subtraction. We will need a tiny bit more practice before starting on the columns method. Please have a go using empty number lines to solve:

25 – 14 =                     25 – 17 =                     43 – 24 =

43 – 29 =                     56 – 38 =                     132 – 66 =

An empty number line is just a line that you then write numbers and ‘jumps’ onto as a support to mental processing.

Thank you for your feedback about Sum Dog. I have set another subtraction challenge for this week. However, if you would like a break from Sum Dog, the following link will take you to a very useful game which allows you to set your own difficulty:



Pages from class books to be read at home will be written down in the grids as usual.



In class we have been thinking about when it is correct to use to, too or two. Confidence is growing on this, but a bit more practice will hopefully pin this down.

Use all three words (to, too and two) in sentences?



Please could we practise these words from our new topic using the look – say – cover – write – check technique. No need for sentences if you have had a go at to, too and two.

Earth                           sphere

orbit                            rotate

hemisphere                 equator


Primary 3 Homework from 30th January

Primary 3 Homework – Week from 30th January

We’re really looking forward to Friday’s assembly and showing all our learning about Scotland. It’ll be great to see you there if you are able to make it (11:45am).

In RME with Mrs Wallace the children are going to be learning about weddings. If you have any photos from family weddings it would be fun for the children to see some in class. Please don’t send anything too precious though! A copy or even a drawing of the photo would be absolutely fine.

Best wishes,

Mr Buchan




In numeracy this week we will have a final ‘exit pass’ to check understanding of the columns method for addition. I have been very pleased with how well this has been picked up.

After addition we are now moving on to subtraction. To start with we will go back to empty number lines to ensure solid understanding of this process. Then (next week) we will look at the written method for subtraction in columns, which people often find slightly trickier than the method for addition.

To get our brains fired up for all this, I have set a new Sum Dog challenge which is focussed on subtraction.

Please let me know if you need a reminder of login details or if you have been having any compatibility issues.



Pages from class books to be read at home will be written down in the grids as usual.



To help develop our VCOP, the children are each going to start a writing Swag Bag. This is somewhere they can write down great words or phrases that they come across, storing them up for whenever we are writing and they need some inspiration.

To get a few things in the bag, please could everyone try to find four ‘wow words’ this week? A wow word can be something we just like, or maybe a new word that we did not know before. They could come from reading online, story books or a newspaper. They could even come from something we hear.

If these four words are written into homework jotters they can then be copied across in class.



A few common words have been cropping up as common mistakes. Please could we practise these (look – say – cover – write – check) and then use them in sentences.

every                           everyone

come                           some

someone                     never

Parents Evening


This term our parents evening will be a drop in session.  Come along with your child and let them show you around their classroom and share their learning with you.  The class teacher will be in attendance for you to ask questions or chat to about next steps.

If there are any issues that you wish to discuss in a less public setting please make an appointment with the teacher outwith this event.

P3 Homework from 23rd January

Primary 3 Homework – Week from 23rd January

We are starting to get ready for our Scottish Assembly on 2nd February. Hopefully letters made it home last week about parents and family being able to come in and watch that.

Best wishes,

Mr Buchan



Everyone made a great start with Sum Dog last week, despite my mix-up! I have set a new challenge one for this week.

In class we are working on the “columns” method for addition.

4   3   9

+  3 1 2   5

    7    6   4

Our golden rules have been:

  • When you write out a sum, make sure the numbers are lined up on top of each other in the correct columns.
  • Always start working from the units.
  • When you are adding, don’t forget the numbers that have jumped over.
  • Sometimes you need to make another column to finish the sum.

Please could everyone practise examples at home?

45 + 23                35 + 16                 67 + 24                      38 + 45

354 + 233           263 + 364              58 + 76                    654 + 478



Pages from class books to be read at home will be written down in the grids as usual.


Scottish Poems

The children are doing very well learning their Scots poems. The school competition has moved back to Thursday 1st February, but our P3 heats will be on Thursday 25th.


Children who do not want to perform in front of an audience will not have to, but it is still important to learn and practise the poem as this is a useful skill to develop.



We are nearly finished working through the 100 most common English words. (You can search for Fry’s 100 to find out more.) For this week please could we practise:

shirt                             called

where                          were

threw                           through

dirt                              down

write                            running

As usual, please could the children work through the lists using our “look, say, cover, write and check” method, then use the words to write some sentences.

P3 Sum Dog Mistake and Update

I made a mix-up transferring the children across from P2 to P3 on Sum Dog.

The user names and passwords that came home yesterday (Tuesday 16th) were the wrong ones.

New ones have now been sent home. Apologies for the confusion.

Please use these new login details. The old ones may still work, but those profiles will not be participating in our class activities and challenges.

Again, if you ever need a reminder of your child’s details then please just let me know.

Apologies again for the mix up.

Mr Buchan

p3 Homework from 16th January

Primary 3 Homework – Week from 16th January

This term our spelling homework will change slightly, focusing on common words. We will still work through sounds in class. In numeracy we will finish probability and move back to addition and subtraction. Around the school Scottish month also continues. The children are making maps of the country and will learn some poems for a school competition.

Best wishes,

Mr Buchan



Learnits – New flashcards came home last week and the old ones are also still relevant.

Sum Dog – This is an online platform for practising maths skills. I am hoping it will be familiar to many of you from last year. Login details will come home today, but if you need a reminder at any point then just let me know.

Each week I will set a challenge on Sum Dog which focusses on relevant skills. The children will have a go in class this week, which should get them back in the way of it.

To access on a computer you login at To access on a tablet or phone you can either go through that site in your web browser or download the Sum Dog app. The new 3D app enables a few more games, but 2D should still work.



Pages from class books to be read at home will be written down in the grids as usual.


Scottish Poems

The children have all chosen one of three Scottish poems to bring home and learn. We will also practise these in class, with two from our class going forward to represent P3 in a school competition on Thursday 25th January.

While many of the children will relish this opportunity to perform, others may find it nerve-wracking! In class our practice will be non-threatening. No-one will have to recite in front of the class if they do not feel comfortable. Having said that, being able to memorise and recite something is a useful life skill, and so even if your child is not keen on the competition element of this, please do encourage them to learn and say their poem.



really                          swimming

we                               present

Edinburgh                 with

Highlands                  our

For practice: look, say, cover, write and check.