Overview of Third Grade Curriculum:


Our focus during 3rd grade is to help students transition from learning how to read  to learning to better comprehend what they are reading.  There is a heavy focus on digging deeply into our reading and beginning to infer about the events in our text.  During the school year, students will be reading a variety of text from many different genres.  Students spend the majority of their day reading and discussing their reading across all our different academic areas.

Some areas of focus for fiction and nonfiction include

  • Asking and answer questions about a text
  • Determining the main idea or central message
  • Inferring how the character’s actions, thoughts, and feelings impact the text
  • Investigating information gained from text features
  • Comparing and contrasting the author’s or narrator’s points of view to your own
  • Determine the meaning of words and phrases used within the text
  • Reading a variety of third grade level text to build our knowledge in all subject areas



Third graders learn strategies and skills to write organized and structured opinion, informative/explanatory, and narratives pieces.  They understand and progress through stages in the process of writing (prewriting, drafting, revising, editing, and publishing).  Students learn proper mechanics, sentence formation and spelling.  Students write over extended time frames and shorter time frames and for a variety of purposes and audiences.  Students also learn conventions of Standard English for writing, reading, speaking and listening, as well as vocabulary acquisition and use.



Third grade math learning continues to focus on strengthening students’ numeric knowledge with the goal of helping students become more fluent and efficient math thinkers.  Some major areas of focus are:

  • Add and subtract numbers within 1,000
  • Telling time to the nearest minute and solving time word problems involving elapsed time within the hour
  • Use customary measurements to find length, weight, and capacity
  • Fluency of multiplication facts up to 10 x 10
  • Understanding the meaning of division and its relationship to multiplication
  • Investigating polygons and their attributes
  • Solving problems  concerning area of rectangles and perimeter of polygons
  • Understanding the meaning of a faction and where it fits on a number line
  • Comparing and finding equivalent fractions
  • Solving 1 and 2 step word problems involving addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division



Because of the great emphasis on literacy in third grade, much of the science and social studies curriculum is integrated into our reading and writing.

The science strands for third grade are listed below

  • Understand motion and factors that affect motion
  • Understand the composition and properties of matter before and after they undergo a change
  • Recognize how energy can be transferred from one object to another.
  • Recognize the major patterns of the earth/moon/sun system.
  • Understanding the human body (focus on bones and muscles)
  • Understanding how plants survive in their environments
  • Understand the different land forms of Earth

Social Studies:

The third grade standards of social studies are listed below:

  • Understand how events, individuals and ideas have influenced the history of local and regional communities.
  • Use historical thinking skills to understand the context of events, people and places.
  • Five themes of geography: Location, Place, Human environment interaction, Movement and Regions
  • Understanding how location affects a market economy
  • Entrepreneurship in a market economy
  • Local government
  • Citizenship
  • Diverse cultures

A more detailed explanation of the 3rd grade standards can be found on the North Carolina Department of  Public Instruction Site