When working in Deaf Education, we would always see kids who were struggling in first and second grade, but were able to keep up with their peers.  However, third grade would hit and the gap between delayed and typical seemed to become as wide as the Grand Canyon overnight.  If you didn't know it, third grade is typically the year that everything becomes more abstract and more difficult.  If you have a child who is struggling to stay afloat, you may want to beware of what is to come.  Make sure you get your child the extra support that he/she needs.  That could come in the form of summer school, extra work at home (prescribed by the teacher or found here), special education support, tutor, etc.  The possibilities are endless!

I googled 3rd grade standards and found this at www.education.com.  Here is what you can expect from the third grade:
  • Reading:  Read with understanding and fluency, Understand the meanings of synonym/homonym/antonym, Use graphic organizers, Identify the main idea of a passage, Summarize, and have a larger sight vocabulary
  • Writing:  Communicate through writing, Write to inform or persuade others, Identify nouns/verbs/adjectives/adverbs in a sentence, Write compound sentences, Write across the curriculum (meaning in all subjects - including math, science, social studies, etc)
  • Math:  Add and subtract large numbers (probably without manipulatives unless that is a stipulation in an IEP), Know basic multiplication and division facts, Place value in the number system, Rounding, Graphing, Understanding basic probability and statistics

As you can see, the concepts become much more abstract.  You are no longer simply adding apples in one tree to apples in another tree and using counters to represent the apples.  The kids are expected to understand place value, borrowing, multiplication and division!  You are no longer simply sounding out words.  You are figuring out meaning within a context.  

Even if your child is a typically developing 2nd grader, expect for 3rd grade to become more of a challenge and make sure you can be there to help your child along.  The success your child feels in third grade will follow him/her into fourth grade and beyond!

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