Sunday, September 2, 2012

SUNDAY SCHOOL: Tips for Teaching Third Graders

Third graders are terrific!  They're starting to understand teamwork and learning to cope with change and problem solving and will be very enthusiastic about team projects.  Be ready for them to begin challenging fair and unfair behaviors.

Third Graders (8 year olds)...
  • Are full of energy and often seem in a hurry.
  • Enjoy working in groups, usually within their own gender.
  • Adjust well to change.
  • Have learned to recover from mistakes.
  • Are very concerned with fairness.
  • Can focus for short periods but need attention breaks.
  • Do better with shorter assignments than longer ones.
  • Can use things easier than words to explain themselves.
  • Become even more interested in organizing things logically and finding out how they work.
  • Enjoy handwriting, drawing, and crafts.
  • Listen well.
  • Tend to exaggerate.
  • Have a lot of ideas.
For Sunday School teachers of third graders this means you should find more ways to let them work with mixed gender groups.  Let them tell each other what they thought of a story or idea.  When reading the Bible, use their developing sense of logic to make sense of the story.  Perhaps break the parts of the story apart in strips and and have them logically put the pieces together.  Allow them to draw pictures or make posters of their thinking.  They find learning about other people interesting so talk not only about the characters of the Bible but also of their cultures.

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