Your child has probably been using some form of computer for years now, playing memory games, looking at pictures and just generally having fun with technology. In first and second grades, the Internet entered the equation with guided lessons. This year, your child will find out what the Web can really do.
No longer just an instrument of fun and imagery, the Internet will become a place for research -- for finding answers to any questions you have. Third graders will learn how to efficiently use search engines and how to determine which Web sites are credible sources of information and which aren't. They'll use online resources for research projects. Some might even learn to type.
Your third grader will experience technology as "information technology," opening up a whole new world of access to knowledge. It might make you seem a bit less all-knowing, but the ability to find answers independently is a priceless one that will affect how your child learns, works and experiences the world for the rest of his or her life.
Who knows, your third grader might end up teaching you a thing or two about technology, because these lessons will be coming home every day in the form of homework -- about 30 minutes per night this year. So clear off the kitchen table, and remember: Help, don't do!
For more information on third grade, including ways you can support your child's learning at home, check out the links below.
Author's Note: 5 Incredible Things You'll Learn in Third Grade
Third grade is an academically challenging year, and my research revealed a trend toward even greater challenges of late. Perhaps in response to high-pressure government standards, some elementary schools have been assigning a lot more homework (and some are assigning none at all -- but that's less common). There have been reports of young students coming home with hours of work to do, and while I only touched on this briefly in one of the back-to-school articles, it's worth looking into further if your child's homework level seems extreme, as many education experts recommend against the trend.
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- Learning Guide: Third Grade. Ladies Home Journal. (June 26, 2012) http://www.lhj.com/relationships/family/school/learning-guide-third-grade/
- Third Grade: What Will They Learn? Family Education. (June 26, 2012) http://school.familyeducation.com/elementary-school/assessment/56219.html
- Preparing for Third Grade. Scholastic Parents. (June 26, 2012) http://www.scholastic.com/resources/article/preparing-for-3rd-grade/
- Schools no longer required to teach cursive starting this fall. Fox59. June 30, 2011. (June 28, 2012) http://www.fox59.com/news/wxin-cursive-writing-schools-no-longer-required-to-teach-cursive-beginning-this-fall-20110630,0,7533627.story
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