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Third Grade Learning Goals

These goals are suggestions based on state standards. As always, each child learns differently and at a different pace, this is to act as a guide for subjects and also help with the order of presenting info to your learner. If your child needs a refresh or is missing some concepts, please refer to our Second Grade Learning Goals post to review.

3rd Grade Curriculum Overview

A typical third grade curriculum will promote mastery of multiplication and division as well as expand their understanding of reading and writing. Third graders will develop more complex skills as they get used to reading longer texts and read about different topics in social studies, science and language arts.

When researching third grade curricula, take the following into consideration:

  • Are the lessons fun and keep children engaged?

  • Are the concepts included helping children truly understand and meet their learning objectives?

  • How often are children assessed and how are they being assessed?

  • Is there plenty of opportunities for children to practice and reinforce skills?

  • Do the activities promote critical thinking and problem solving skills?

Math Objectives for 3rd Grade

In third grade, there are a number of math objectives that your child should achieve. Doing so will allow them to easily learn more complex concepts later. Practicing math facts in the early elementary years as often as possible will help them focus on learning these new skills and understanding more advanced concepts in the years to come.

This year’s math objectives include:

  • Gain the skills to do mental math

  • Multiply two-digit numbers

  • Divide two-digit numbers

  • Understand, compare and identify fractions

  • Interpret charts and graphs

Reading Goals/Objectives for 3rd grade

Now that phonics and reading skills are pretty much mastered, it’s time for your child to focus on their comprehension skills. Using the right strategies to break down text, ask questions, make inferences and summarize are all concepts that students will focus on this year.

The ideal language arts curriculum for third grade will help your child address these and many more objectives, including but not limited to:

  • Describe characters, identify the main idea and use supporting details.

  • Use context clues to understand what a word means.

  • Read and understand a variety of genres such as fiction, non-fiction, poetry, fables, etc.

Writing Goals/Objectives for 3rd grade

With the basics down, students are now moving on to writing longer, more detailed copy. This year, students will continue to grow their vocabulary and use these new words and phrases to make their writing as clear and concise as possible. A 3rd grade language arts curriculum will also help students with the writing objectives listed below.

  • The writing process: planning, drafting, revising, editing, publishing

  • Write longer text in chronological order using transition words

  • Write different types of text: opinion, informative, narrative, etc.

Grammar Goals/Objectives for 3rd Grade

Good writing isn’t possible without a solid understanding of grammar rules. This year, students will gain a deeper understanding of concepts that will help them communicate more effectively, both in writing and orally. Your language arts curriculum for third grade should teach your child how to:

  • Use proper punctuation, capitalization, and noun and verb forms (singular/plural)

  • Understand parts of speech, prefixes, suffixes, homophones, etc.

  • Know the different sentence types

Science Objectives for 3rd Grade

Making sure your third grader accomplishes their learning objectives for science is a must, otherwise, learning more complex concepts in the upcoming years will only prove difficult. Since homeschooling laws vary based on where you live, be sure to find out what your state’s homeschool requirements are when it comes to third grade science.

Typically, you’ll find that science objectives for third grade include the following:

  • Makes inferences about their observations, collects data and records information

  • Understands life cycles of both plants and animals

  • Knows the different processes (weathering, erosion) that shape Earth’s features

  • Understands how different organisms interact with their environment

Third graders start to develop the ability to ask scientific questions, plan and carry out simple experiments and start to develop hypotheses based on their observations.

Although science standards will vary by state, some of the concepts you can expect to see in any third grade science curriculum include:

  • Changes in motion caused by forces (gravity, friction)

  • Electricity and magnetism (conductors, insulators)

  • Weather and climate

  • Forms of energy (heat, light, sound)

  • Ecology (food chains, ecosystems, balance of nature, adaptations)

Social Studies Objectives for Third Grade

By the end of third grade, students should be well versed and knowledgeable on a number of social studies topics and concepts. A comprehensive third grade social studies curriculum should help your child meet this year’s objectives as well as prepare them for next academic year.

Some of the learning targets your student should achieve include:

  • Learn the 50 states and their capitals

  • Gain an understanding of economic concepts (banks, imports/exports/production of goods)

  • U.S. history, exploration, colonial life

  • Learn about the characteristics, way of life, and beliefs of various cultures such as vikings, Native Americans, etc.

Although the scope and sequence may vary, you’ll find that most 3rd grade social studies curriculum will generally be pretty similar and include lessons on the following:

  • How to read maps, geographic tools, terms, etc.

  • Earth’s features and locating specific places on a map

  • The similarities and differences of various cultures

  • Difference between rural, suburban, and urban regions

Check out more learning goals below:

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