Third Grade Common Learning StandardsThe following standards offer a focus for instruction each year and help ensure that students gain adequate
exposure to a range of texts and tasks. Rigor is also infused through the requirement that students read
increasingly complex texts through the grades. Students advancing through the grades are expected to meet
each year’s grade-specific standards and retain or further develop skills and understandings mastered in
Key Ideas and Details
1. and answer questions to demonstrate understanding of a text, referring explicitly to the text as the basis for
2. Recount stories, including fables, folktales, and myths from diverse cultures; determine the central message,
lesson, or moral and explain how it is conveyed through key details in the text.
3. Describe characters in a story (e.g., their traits, motivations, or feelings) and explain how their actions
contribute to the sequence of events.
Craft and Structure
4. Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text, distinguishing literal from non-literal
5. Refer to parts of stories, dramas, and poems when writing or speaking about a text, using terms such as
chapter, scene, and stanza; describe how each successive part builds on earlier sections.
6. Distinguish their own point of view from that of the narrator or those of the characters.
Integration of Knowledge and Ideas
7. Explain how specific aspects of a text’s illustrations contribute to what is conveyed by the words in a story
(e.g., create mood, emphasize aspects of a character or setting).
8. 8.(Not applicable to literature)
9. Compare and contrast the themes, settings, and plots of stories written by the same author about the same or
similar characters (e.g., in books from a series).
Range of Reading and Level of Text Complexity
10. By the end of the year, read and comprehend literature, including stories, dramas, and poetry, at the high end
of the grades 2–3 text complexity band independently and proficiently.
Responding to Literature
11. Recognize and make connections in narratives, poetry, and drama to other texts, ideas, cultural perspectives,
personal events, and situations. a. Self-select text based upon personal preferences.
Key Ideas and Details
1. Ask and answer questions to demonstrate understanding of a text, referring explicitly to the text as the basis
for the answers.
2. Determine the main idea of a text; recount the key details and explain how they support the main idea.
3. Describe the relationship between a series of historical events, scientific ideas or concepts, or steps in
technical procedures in a text, using language that pertains to time, sequence, and cause/effect.
Craft and Structure
4. Determine the meaning of general academic and domain-specific words and phrases in a text relevant to a
grade 3 topic or subject area.
5. Use text features and search tools (e.g., key words, sidebars, hyperlinks) to locate information relevant to a
given topic efficiently.
6. Distinguish their own point of view from that of the author of a text.
Integration of Knowledge and Ideas
7. Use information gained from illustrations (e.g., maps, photographs) and the words in a text to demonstrate
understanding of the text (e.g., where, when, why, and how key events occur).
8. Describe the logical connection between particular sentences and paragraphs in a text (e.g., comparison,
cause/effect, first/second/third in a sequence).
9. Compare and contrast the most important points and key details presented in two texts on the same topic.
Range of Reading and Level of Text Complexity
10. By the end of the year, read and comprehend informational texts, including history/social studies, science,
and technical texts, at the high end of the grades 2–3 text complexity band independently and proficiently.
These standards are directed toward fostering students’ understanding and working knowledge of concepts
of print, the alphabetic principle, and other basic conventions of the English writing system. These
foundational skills are not an end in and of themselves; rather, they are necessary and important components
of an effective, comprehensive reading program designed to develop proficient readers with the capacity to
comprehend texts across a range of types and disciplines. Instruction should be differentiated: good readers
will need much less practice with these concepts than struggling readers will. The point is to teach students
what they need to learn and not what they already know-to discern when particular children or activities
warrant more or less attention.
Phonics and Word Recognition
1. Know and apply grade-level phonics and word analysis skills in decoding words.
a. Identify and know the meaning of the most common prefixes and derivational suffixes.
b. Decode words with common Latin suffixes.
c. Decode multisyllable words.
d. Read grade-appropriate irregularly spelled words.
2. Read with sufficient accuracy and fluency to support comprehension.
a. Read grade-level text with purpose and understanding.
b. Read grade-level prose and poetry orally with accuracy, appropriate rate, and expression on
c. Use context to confirm or self-correct word recognition and understanding, rereading as
The following standards for K-5 offer a focus for instruction each year to help endure that students gain
adequate mastery of a range of skills and applications. Each year in their writing, students should
demonstrate increasing sophistication in all aspects of language use, from vocabulary and syntax to the
development and organization of ideas, and they should address increasingly demanding content and sources.
Students advancing through the grades are expected to meet each year’s grade-specific standards and retain
or further develop skills and understandings mastered in preceding grades.
Text Types and Purposes
1. Write opinion pieces on topics or texts, supporting a point of view with reasons.
a. Introduce the topic or text they are writing about, state an opinion, and create an organizational structure
that lists reasons.
b. Provide reasons that support the opinion.
c. Use linking words and phrases (e.g., because, therefore, since, for example) to connect opinion and reasons.
d. Provide a concluding statement or section.
2. Write informative/explanatory texts to examine a topic and convey ideas and information clearly.
a. Introduce a topic and group related information together; include illustrations when useful to aiding
b. Develop the topic with facts, definitions, and details.
c. Use linking words and phrases (e.g., also, another, and, more, but) to connect ideas within categories of
d. Provide a concluding statement or section
3. Write narratives to develop real or imagined experiences or events using effective technique, descriptive
details, and clear event sequences.
a. Establish a situation and introduce a narrator and/or characters; organize an event sequence that unfolds
b. Use dialogue and descriptions of actions, thoughts, and feelings to develop experiences and events or show
the response of characters to situations.
c. Use temporal words and phrases to signal event order.
d. Provide a sense of closure.
Production and Distribution of Writing
4. With guidance and support from adults, produce writing in which the development and organization are
appropriate to task and purpose.
5. With guidance and support from peers and adults, develop and strengthen writing as needed by planning,
revising, and editing.
6. With guidance and support from adults, use technology to produce and publish writing (using keyboarding
skills) as well as to interact and collaborate with others.
Research to Build and Present Knowledge
7. Conduct short research projects that build knowledge about a topic
8. Recall information from experiences or gather information from print and digital sources; take brief notes on
sources and sort evidence into provided categories.
9. (Begins in grade 4)
Range of Writing
10. Write routinely over extended time frames (time for research, reflection, and revision) and shorter time
frames (a single sitting or a day or two) for a range of discipline- specific tasks, purposes, and audiences.
11. Create and present a poem, narrative, play, art work, or personal response to a particular author or theme
studied in class.
Speaking and Listening
The following standards for K-5 offer a focus for instruction each year to help ensure that students gain
adequate mastery of a range of skills and applications.
Comprehension and Collaboration
1. Engage effectively in a range of collaborative discussions (one-on-one, in groups, and teacher-led) with
diverse partners on grade 3 topics and texts, building on others’ ideas and expressing their own clearly.
a. Come to discussions prepared, having read or studied required material; explicitly draw on that
preparation and other information known about the topic to explore ideas under discussion.
b. Follow agreed-upon rules for discussions (e.g., gaining the floor in respectful ways, listening to others
with care, speaking one at a time about the topics and texts under discussion).
c. Ask questions to check understanding of information presented, stay on topic, and link their comments to
the remarks of others.
d. Explain their own ideas and understanding in light of the discussion.
e. Seek to understand and communicate with individuals from different cultural backgrounds.
2. Determine the main ideas and supporting details of a text read aloud or information presented in diverse
media and formats, including visually, quantitatively, and orally.
3. Ask and answer questions about information from a speaker, offering appropriate elaboration and detail.
Presentation of Knowledge and Ideas
4. Report on a topic or text, tell a story, or recount an experience with appropriate facts and relevant,
descriptive details, speaking clearly at an understandable pace.
5. Create engaging audio recordings of stories or poems that demonstrate fluid reading at an understandable
pace; add visual displays when appropriate to emphasize or enhance certain facts or details.
6. Speak in complete sentences when appropriate to task and situation in order to provide requested detail or
Conventions of Standard English
1. Demonstrate command of the conventions of standard English grammar and usage when writing or speaking.
a. Explain the function of nouns, pronouns, verbs, adjectives, and adverbs in general and their functions in
b. Form and use regular and irregular plural nouns.
c. Use abstract nouns (e.g., childhood).
d. Form and use regular and irregular verbs.
e. Form and use the simple (e.g., I walked; I walk; I will walk) verb tenses.
f. Ensure subject-verb and pronoun-antecedent agreement.*
g. Form and use comparative and superlative adjectives and adverbs, and choose between them depending on
what is to be modified.
h. Use coordinating and subordinating conjunctions.
i. Produce simple, compound, and complex sentences.
2. Demonstrate command of the conventions of standard English capitalization, punctuation, and spelling when
a. Capitalize appropriate words in titles.
b. Use commas in addresses.
c. Use commas and quotation marks in dialogue.
d. Form and use possessives.
e. Use conventional spelling for high-frequency and other studied words and for adding suffixes to base words
(e.g., sitting, smiled, cries, happiness).
f. Use spelling patterns and generalizations (e.g., word families, position-based spellings, syllable patterns,
ending rules, meaningful word parts) in writing words.
g. Consult reference materials, including beginning dictionaries, as needed to check and correct spellings.
Knowledge of Language
3. Use knowledge of language and its conventions when writing, speaking, reading, or listening.
a. Choose words and phrases for effect.*
b. Recognize and observe differences between the conventions of spoken and written standard English.
Vocabulary Acquisition and Use
4. Determine or clarify the meaning of unknown and multiple-meaning word and phrases based on grade 3
reading and content, choosing flexibly from a range of strategies.
a. Use sentence-level context as a clue to the meaning of a word or phrase.
b. Determine the meaning of the new word formed when a known affix is added to a known word (e.g.,
agreeable/disagreeable, comfortable/uncomfortable, care/careless, heat/preheat).
c. Use a known root word as a clue to the meaning of an unknown word with the same root (e.g., company,
d. Use glossaries or beginning dictionaries, both print and digital, to determine or clarify the precise meaning
of key words and phrases
5. Demonstrate understanding of word relationships and nuances in word meanings.
a. Distinguish the literal and nonliteral meanings of words and phrases in context (e.g., take steps).
b. Identify real-life connections between words and their use (e.g., describe people who are friendly or
c. Distinguish shades of meaning among related words that describe states of mind or degrees of certainty
(e.g., knew, believed, suspected, heard, wondered).
6. Acquire and use accurately grade-appropriate conversational, general academic, and domain-specific words
and phrases, including those that signal spatial and temporal relationships (e.g., After dinner that night we went
looking for them).