3rd Grade Team



Degrees and Certifications:

Lara Gino

My name is Mrs. Gino.  I am excited to join the Parkwood team as a 3rd grade teacher.  I’m coming from the Meridian Park Kindergarten Program and have taught several grades over my 15+ years of experience. I moved to Shoreline four years ago from Los Angeles.  Outside of school, I enjoy spending time with my husband and two boys, reading, and playing board games.  I believe that the relationships we build will help us all reach high expectations. I am looking forward to getting to know you and our community.  I know we will grow and learn together.



Degrees and Certifications:

Dianne Hertzberg

It is very exciting to be starting a new school year, and we are pleased to announce that you have TWO teachers this year!  Mrs. Hidano and Mrs. Hertzberg will work together as a team, and we are both excited to get to know you.  We are starting this year in a completely different way than ever before.   Get ready to have fun and become an amazing learner, because we will all work together to  Z o o m into the very best year EVER!   

Mrs. Hertzberg will be your teacher from the start of school to the end of December.   She has taught for 25 years, and 15 of those years have been at Parkwood.  She got her teaching credential at the University of Toronto, with further studies at the University of San Francisco.   You may have heard that she retired last year.  Well, that only lasted for 1 month and 21 days!   She just couldn’t stay away from Parkwood! After all, who wouldn’t want to be at Parkwood?  It is the best school in the universe!  Mrs. Hertzberg  has taught every age group from Junior Kindergarten to sixth grade, but third grade is her very favorite!  At home, Mrs. Hertzberg loves spending time with her husband and family, as well as with her cat Mikey who is the star of her world famous math lessons called “Math With Mikey.”   Watch for a sequel coming soon.  She loves photography, reading, orcas and learning how to protect our environment. 



Degrees and Certifications:

Vanessa Hidano

Mrs. Hidano has been teaching for 10 years.   She taught 4th grade for 6 years in Bellevue, and she has been at Parkwood for the last 4 years as a 5th grade teacher.   She has always wanted to teach third grade, so she jumped at the chance to teach you!   We can look forward to having visits from her over the next few weeks, and then she will start teaching full time in January.  When she is outside of school, she  loves spending time with her husband, cuddling her new baby and her five year old, reading, cooking and having adventures outdoors.  




Degrees and Certifications:

Kristin Mesler

Hi, 3rd graders!  This is Miss Kristin Mesler and I am so glad that you are going to be in my class this year!  I am looking forward to building a great classroom community that is supportive, challenging in all the right ways,  and full of important activities and lessons.  Our class will also have chances to blend with Mrs. Rasmussen’s 2nd/3rd/4th grade students.  This makes our community and friendships even more rich! This is my 14th year at Parkwood teaching 3rd grade and my 28th year of teaching.  I have also taught 4th & 5th grades and Music throughout my teaching career.  Believe it or not, I taught overseas in Saudi Arabia (3 years) & Bahrain (3 years) and I have had 8 months of Arabic, 6 ½ years of French, and 3 years of German.  Lake Forest Park Elementary School (8 years) is where I started in Shoreline and I have also taught at Highland Terrace for 1 year. This summer was full of meetings with my family on the lawn with everyone 6 feet apart or more!  We celebrated my sister’s, my aunt’s and my brother’s twin boys’ birthdays with masks!  I was able to play the piano, draw my pictures, and read fabulous books that inspired me in quarantine. I absolutely love third grade and I’m so looking forward to meeting everyone!


    We love teaching our 3rd grade Parkwood Panthers! It’s a year of academic learning, growth in social skills & relationships, and becoming the true leaders of our primary children.  Students will be enthusiastically engaged while developing deeper and more complex skills in language arts, math, science, and social studies. We will make connections across these various subjects in our curriculum, build on skills learned previously, and apply our learning in real-world situations!

    In third grade we follow the Common Core State Standards, however we have specifically targeted some skills that are more critical for math success for this year and the years beyond. Please help us help your student by ensuring that they are experts in the standards below:

    3rd Grade Math Essential Standards

    1. Add and subtract within 1,000, using strategies based on place value.
    2. Solve Multiplication and Division problems within 100.
    3. Show that a fraction is an equal part of a whole.
    4. Show that some fractions are the same size as others even if they have different names and they will be able to compare and order fractions.
    5. State the properties of 4-sided shapes and figure out their perimeter and area.
    6. Tell time to the minute and solve problems about elapsed time.
    7. Measure using rulers using the American Standard System and the   Metric System.

    Bridges in Mathmatics is our math curriculum. It is aligned with the Common Core State Standards.

    Our math curriculum includes geometry, a focus on patterns, as well as connections to real life math experiences. We emphasize problem-solving strategies, which prepare students to solve higher level thinking problems. Communicating mathematical thinking is also a point of emphasis in our instruction.  In third grade, students will learn to tackle mathematical problems and persevere in solving them.  

    Our main objectives for our students in reading are to become independent and fluent readers. Our students learn to apply a variety of decoding and comprehension skills, as well as an increased vocabulary, to understand and enjoy what they read!

    We will work in class to practice these skills (phonics, vocabulary, fluency, and spelling) while reading a variety of texts (fiction, nonfiction, poetry). The main resource we use to support our  curriculum is called Wonders. Students read a variety of stories and texts to practice comprehension skills, strategies and fluency throughout the year.


    Our writing program emphasizes:

    • Narrative writing.  (Story writing)
    • Informational Writing (Nonfiction research and reports, writing about science, social studies and  nonfiction topics, step-by-step explanations of how things are done.)
    • Opinion Writing (They will express their opinions about a variety of topics and back up those opinions with reasons why they think the way they do.)
    • Ongoing writing about their reading, science and math.

    In addition to the essential standards, we focus on building a community of writers where students share their ideas. We use children’s stories to highlight key aspects of writing to get students talking passionately about their writing!  

    Writing will also be integrated throughout the day in all areas of the curriculum, especially in science, social studies, and health.

    We have three  Carolina Science Kits for the school year that follow the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS). 

    The science units we explore are::

      -    Rocks and Minerals (Earth Science)

    -    Plant Growth & Development (Life Science)

      -    Sound (Physical Science)

    Social studies helps our students develop into responsible citizens and appreciate a wide variety of cultures.

    Social Studies in 3rd grade includes:

    • Geography and mapping skills
    • Historical events and timelines
    • Native Americans & their environments


    *Culminating event of our Social Studies Unit on Native Americans.

    *Usually the beginning of June

    We have regular classroom meetings featuring routines and themes taken from the Second Step curriculum. These meetings serve as a supportive and safe place for our students to learn new social and emotional learning strategies and to ask for help in solving problems.

    Second steps includes a variety of lessons that help foster social and emotional learning. Some of the concepts include, compassion, empathy, friendship, kindness, self-control, community, and to be an individual who is aware of themselves and those around them.