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Third Grade

Language Arts

Third grade is an important year for children. Students learn to read grade level texts with fluency and confidence. They will apply word-learning strategies to make sense of multi-syllable words. Those experiences will help them read increasingly difficult stories and books written to build knowledge of the world around them. With daily vocabulary learning and writing experiences, they will compose clear sentences and paragraphs on a range of topics. Third grade students will:

  • Spell grade level words correctly and use resource aids like dictionaries to clarify meanings.
  • Read closely to find main ideas and supporting details in a story.
  • Read stories and poems aloud fluently, without pausing to figure out what each word means.
  • Distinguish the literal and nonliteral meanings of words and expressions like, “something’s fishy”, or “cold shoulder”.
  • Compare and contrast themes, settings, and plots in stories written by the same author.
  • Compare the most important points and key details presented in two books on the same topic.
  • Write opinions or explanations and develop topics with facts and details.
  • Write stories that establish clear sequences of events and describe actions, thoughts and feelings of characters.
  • Conduct short research projects to build knowledge about various topics.


Students will apply their reasoning and skills in the field of mathematics and will extend this knowledge to other aspects of their life. Students in third grade will:

  • Develop an understanding of multiplication and division within 100.
  • Develop an understanding of fractions, particularly unit fractions.
  • Understand rectangular arrays and area and how they connect with multiplication and division.
  • Describe and analyze two-dimensional shapes.


Science engages students in enjoyable, active learning experiences. Science instruction should be as thrilling an experience for a child as seeing a rainbow, growing a flower or holding a toad. The science curriculum allows students to experience the joy of doing science while learning both skills and concepts. In third grade, students will:

  • Apply scientific processes, communicate scientific ideas effectively and understand the nature of science. • Understand that the shape of Earth and the moon are spherical and that Earth rotates on its axis. • Understand that organisms depend on living and nonliving things within their environment. • Understand the relationship between the force applied to an object and resulting motion of the object. • Understand that objects near Earth are pulled toward Earth by gravity. • Understand that the sun is the main source of heat and light for things living on Earth.

Social Studies

Social Studies provides students an opportunity to learn about themselves, their community and the world. As students engage in social studies, they learn about civic competence in addition to various cultures, history, geography, and economics. Third grade students will:

  • Analyze how geography influences the location and development of communities and cultures.
  • Examine factors that shape a community, such as culture and the environment.
  • Explore and apply principles of civic responsibilities, including the study of peoples’ rights and responsibilities and the role of government.

Information Technology

In a world where technology is playing an ever increasing role, it is necessary for students to learn how to access and use technology to accomplish a variety of tasks. Third grade students will: 

  • Learn keyboarding and word processing skills.
  • Create a simple multimedia product using technology tools.
  • Use technology tools and the Internet to find information and discuss appropriateness and validity of sources.
  • Discuss basic issues related to responsible use of technology and safety on the Internet.
  • Learn to keyboard using proper technique.

Fine Arts

Learning the elements of art is an important part of expressing creativity. Students learn abstract thinking, expression, quality work and problem solving when engaged in the arts. Kindergarten through third grade students will:

  • Draw simple textures using line, dots and shapes while recognizing the variations of patterns.
  • Understand and use colors.
  • Listen to signals and respond to movement and directions.
  • Move to a steady beat, change tempo, recognize simple rhythms and patterns.
  • Use dramatic games to enhance listening, imitation, pretend and cooperation.
  • Practice voice, movement, diction and expression.
  • Experience improvisations, puppetry, props and costumes.

Healthy Lifestyles and Physical Education

Research shows that healthy, fit kids learn best and that exercise has a positive impact on brain chemistry and function. In third grade, students will:

  • Learn about substance abuse prevention, disease prevention and HIV/AIDS education.
  • Understand nutrition, fitness and community health.
  • Understand human development, relationships and violence prevention.
  • Describe, participate in and assess personal health-related fitness.
  • Demonstrate personal and social responsibility in an activity setting.
  • Participate and apply rules in a variety of activities.

Library Media

Providing students with information-processing and problem-solving skills is an increasingly important role of the school library in today’s society. Students use the library to find reading materials for enjoyment and for information. Third grade students will:

  • Appreciate and respond to children’s literature.
  • Locate sections in the school library and learn the Dewey Decimal System.
  • Use the online catalog to find a book by keyword or author and locate a fiction and nonfiction book by title and call number.
  • Use the Big Six information problem-solving process, retrieve information from a table of contents and learn basic note-taking skills.
  • Analyze, question and think critically about media.