What are 3rd Graders Like?

What are Third Graders Like?

Common Developmental Characteristics of 8 year olds

Adapted from YARDSTICKS: Children in the Classroom Ages 4-14 by Chip Wood, Northeast Foundation for Children

Enthusiastic and imaginative, eight year olds often love big challenges, but lack the work skills and patience to complete their plans.  Children this age need adult help to know their limits and work through the steps to reach their goal.

  • love group activities and cooperative work
  • prefer playing with peers of the same gender
  • like to talk and explain ideas
  • good sense of humor
  • adjust well to change; bounce back quickly from mistakes or disappointments
  • full of energy; play hard, work quickly, and tire easily - do better with several short play breaks than one long one
  • eyes able to focus well on objects near and far
  • may have growth spurt
  • limited attention span; short exercise breaks help concentration
  • better control of eyes and hands allows cursive writing and copying from the board
  • industrious, impatient, and full of ideas; often take on more than they can handle
  • listen well but may not always remember what they've heard
  • getting good at handwriting, handcrafts, computers, and drawing
  • excited but also nervous about exploring the broader world
  • may give up when things are hard but soon want to try again
  • interested in rules, logic, and fairness
Understanding developmental stages can help you support your child's learning at home and in school. Enjoy your child at every age!