Grade 3

Leslie Carlson

Leslie Carlson

Welcome to 3rd Grade

Welcome to the third grade information page. Here you will find a sampling of curriculum and thematic units to be discovered this year. I hope it sounds interesting to you. I am sure you will have a great time learning in third grade.

Here is a list of some thematic units we will work with during the school year:

  • Whales
  • Geography
  • Author studies
  • Solar System and Astronomy
  • Folk tales
  • Magnets and Electricity
  • Animals
  • Early Settlers
  • Weather
  • Communities
  • Map Skills

Do some of these units sound interesting to you? There will be lots of activities to do and books to read on each theme. You will create a few projects and write reports based on what you are learning.

Sometimes you will work with a friend, and many times you will be working on your own. I promise you will not be bored. I won’t give you any work that is too hard.


In third grade students are reading to learn rather than learning to read. All the basic reading skills have been taught, and students will use them to read with more fluency, comprehension and expression. It is a time to refine and strengthen skills in reading, writing, speaking and listening. Students develop a stronger sense of language by learning about similes, metaphors, characterization, personification, imagery and expanded vocabulary. They develop an understanding about reading for different purposes. They read for pleasure, to get directions, and gather information. This is accomplished through exposure to a variety of books such as legends, fables, historical fiction, contemporary fiction, biographies, and informational resources.

Reading across all subject areas is further developed in third grade. More focus will be placed on reading nonfiction as we begin to prepare students for future academics. Third-graders need to be taught all of the conventions of nonfiction to assist with their understanding. They will improve on their research skills by learning to use an index, glossary, appendix, captions, diagrams, charts, and graphs to find information on a selected topic.

Of course we continue learning skills for decoding new words. Understanding the use of suffixes, prefixes, root words and homophones are just a few of the strategies that help reading become automatic. Using the context of words and dictionary skills will also improve reading automatcity.

Students will be engaged in shared reading, guided reading, independent reading, and literature circles to meet their reading goals. By the end of third grade, your child should be able to do the following things:

• Read fluently with expression and comprehension
• Self-correct
• Determine the pronunciation and meaning of words using phonics
• Blend and segment phonemes in more complex words
• Read for extended periods of time
• Identify major elements of text including characters, setting, conflict and resolution
• Find main ideas and supporting details of text
• Recognize irregularly spelled words automatically
• Identify author’s purpose
• Demonstrate the ability to read independently for learning, information, communication and pleasure
• Use reference materials like: dictionaries, glossaries, thesauruses and an index
• Develop richer vocabulary in written work
• Understand the use of simple figurative language including metaphors, similes and idioms
• Draw conclusions and summarize main points
• Use word identification strategies for unknown words
• Recognize elements of text structure
• Know common synonyms, antonyms, homophones, suffixes and prefixes as well as root words.


Students at this grade level write for a variety of audiences. They learn to write letters, personal reflections, observations, essays, reports, and narratives in order to communicate to their audience. Using techniques such as conferencing, feedback, reflection and revision students will be able to produce final drafts of written products. By the end of third grade, your child should be able to do the following things:

• Understand that different purposes require different formats and styles of writing
• Demonstrate the ability to write on assigned of selected topics
• Demonstrate that voice matches the purpose of their writing
• Organize ideas into basic sentences and paragraphs using prewriting, drafting, revising editing and critiquing strategies
• Understand the structures of sentences and paragraphs by writing declarative, exclamatory, and interrogative sentences
• Demonstrate a command of appropriate English spelling conventions and basic language mechanics
• Understand the basic features of narrative writing, including characters, setting, conflict and resolution
• Create a clear, understandable storyline with a beginning, middle, and end
• Edit for appropriate use of nouns, verbs, pronouns, adjectives, and verb tenses
• Write with frequency including in-school, out-of-school and during the summer


The mathematics curriculum has several main topics that are covered throughout the year. These include: arithmetic and number concepts, function and algebra concepts, geometry and measurement concepts, statistics and probability concepts and communication concepts. Mathematics topics are connected to each other and tied into the students’ everyday experiences.

At this level students are developing the ability to see major mathematical ideas and make connections and discoveries for themselves. By the end of third grade, your child should be able to do the following things:

• Recognize that there are many ways to solve a problem
• Use multiplication and division to solve problems
• Explore operations with fractions
• Count and add money
• Use calculators to find number patterns
• Find missing numbers and symbols in equations
• Recognize patterns in multiplication
• Measure objects to find perimeter, area and volume
• Use geometric terms to classify shapes
• Draw figures that are congruent to a given figure
• Develop concepts of perimeter of polygons and area of rectangles
• Tell time by five minute intervals
• Identify and write a 3-digit number
• Explain even and odd numbers and the differences between them
• Show the relationship between basic operation of addition and subtraction, and multiplication and division.
• Demonstrate proficiency with multiplication facts to 5
• Solve problems that involve time
• Conduct a survey
• Make and interpret graphs and charts
• Solve problems by collecting data and formulating an answer
• Carry out simple probability experiments


This year in science, our students will be engaged in three main science strands that support our standards-based curriculum. These include life sciences, physical sciences and Earth& space sciences.
Each strand is accompanied by specific skills that are taught in relation to that strand. By the end of third grade, you child should be able to demonstrate the following things:

• Observe and identify animals using simple classification keys
• Identify major body structures of common animals
• Describe and compare life stages of animals
• Describe how plants and animals depend on each other
• Develop a simple food web for plants and animals
• Explain how physical characteristics of an animal relate to its survival
• Identify environmental issues which impact an animal’s survival
• Identify and demonstrate complete simple circuits using batteries, bulbs, wires and switches
• Identify simple conductors and insulators of electricity
• Observe and understand the interaction of magnets with various objects
• Recognize that the Earth’s gravitational force pulls any abject towards it
• Explain how scientific tools help to gather data about weather
• Describe weather changes and patterns
• Demonstrate an understanding of the solar system
• Observe patterns of stars
• Identify the phases of the moon
• Discuss the observational tools used for investigating particular phenomenon
• Describe the work of astronauts

Social Studies

Children in the third grade explore many different topics that include our community, The New England states, early settlers, map skills and local government. By the end of third grade, your child should be able to do the following things:

• Discuss the roles of local government officials
• Explain what it means to be a citizen
• Understand basic information about the historical background of their community
• Identify, label and understand basic facts about the New England states
• Locate important geographic features of New Hampshire
• Identify different types of maps
• Understand lines of longitude and latitude
• Label blank world maps with the seven continents and four major oceans
• Locate physical features on a map
• Discuss how land use in our community has changed and why
• Discuss people and events that are part of U.S. history
• Use basic research skills to investigate historical people and events
• Understand the migration of people
• Use a timeline to identify major events in local history

We have a lot to accomplish over the next ten months. Third grade will be packed full of learning and discovery. I know we are all up for the challenge.

Please let me know if you have any questions about the curriculum and I will do my best to answer them.

Contact Leslie Carlson

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