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Fundations®: Level 3

Build on basic skills, continue to study word structure, and focus on advanced spelling rules and morphology through a structured literacy approach.

Curriculum Overview

Students arranging their magnetic letter tiles on their letter boards.

Please note that Fundations Level 2 is a prerequisite for Fundations Level 3 due to the advanced nature of the Level 3 curriculum. 

Level 3 of Fundations builds on the essential components of structured literacy that were learned in Fundations Levels K–2 and progresses further into the study of word structure, focusing on advanced spelling rules and morphology. Teachers should combine Fundations with a wide variety of text experiences, and expose students to poetry and narrative and informational text.

By the end of Level 3, students will be able to:

  • Identify parts of words (syllables, basewords, suffixes)
  • Identify word structures such as vowels, consonants, blends, digraphs, digraph blends, trigraphs (tch, dge)
  • Identify all six syllable types: closed, vowel-consonant-e, open, r-controlled, vowel digraph/diphthong, consonant-le
  • Identify the “exceptions” to these six syllable types
  • Read and spell words with these unexpected vowel sounds (exceptions)
  • Segment syllables into sounds (phonemes) and divide multisyllabic words
  • Read and spell words with short and long vowel sounds
  • Read and spell words with r-controlled vowels (ar, er, ir, or, ur)
  • Read and spell words with vowel teams (ai, ay, ee, ey, ea, ei, eigh, ie, igh, oi, oy, oa, ow, oe, ou, oo, ue, ew, au, aw)
  • Identify schwa
  • Read and spell words with the unexpected vowel sound of schwa in unaccented syllables
  • Read and spell phonetically regular words
  • Read words with sound options for the grapheme representation
  • Spell words with options for the grapheme representation for sounds with use of a spell checker or dictionary
  • Read and spell words with additional sounds of a and ch, the suffix -ed, and the soft sounds of c and g
  • Read and spell words with ph, nge, nce, tion, sion, ture, tu, ti, ci
  • Read and spell words with silent letters (wr, rh, gn, kn, mn, mb, gh)
  • Read and spell words with suffixes, including most common Latin suffixes (-s, -ed, -ing, -est,
    -ish, -able, -ive, -y, -ful, -ment, -less, -ness, -ly, -ty, -er, -en, -es, -ous, -al, -ent, -an, -ward, -or)
  • Identify and know the meaning of most common Latin suffixes
  • Read and spell words with suffixes added to unchanging basewords (strongest)
  • Form and use regular and irregular plural nouns
  • Apply spelling rules for adding suffixes to basewords that change (sliding)
  • Read and spell contractions, reduce two words into a contraction, and identify the words from which a contraction was made
  • Read and spell Trick Words or targeted high frequency words
  • Read and know meaning of sound-alike words (homophones)
  • Determine and clarify the meaning of unknown and multiple meaning words (patient)
  • Use a known root word as a clue to the meaning of an unknown word with the same root
  • Construct simple, compound and complex sentences using vocabulary words using proper capitalization, punctuation, and incorporating coordinating and subordinating conjunctions
  • Apply correct punctuation and capitalization rules for beginning of sentences and names of people
  • Know meaning of targeted vocabulary words (Word of the Day) and different inflected forms of words when a known affix is added (confuse, confusing)
  • Form and use comparative and superlative adjectives, adverbs, and regular verbs
  • Acquire and accurately use grade-level conversational and general academic words
  • Identify real-life connections between words and their uses
  • Use sentence-level context as a clue to the meaning of a word or phrase (Home Support Packet)
  • Use knowledge of language and its conventions when writing and reading
  • Apply dictionary skills and consult reference material to check and correct spelling and to determine and/or clarify precise meaning of words
  • Use correct writing position and pencil grip for cursive writing
  • Write clear, legible cursive at an appropriate rate

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