3rd Grade English Language Arts

1) Reading Informational Text


  • Ask and answer questions to demonstrate understanding of a text, referring explicitly to the text as the basis for the answers (RI.1)

  •  Determine the main idea of a text; recount the key details and explain how they support the main idea.(RI.2)

  • Compare and contrast the most important points and key details presented in two texts on the same topic.(RI.9)

  • 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. (RI.10)


  • 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 (RI.3)

  • Determine the meaning of general academic and domain-specific words and phrases in a text relevant to a grade 3 topic or subject area.(RI.4)

  • Use text features and search tools (e.g., key words, sidebars, hyperlinks) to locate information relevant to a given topic efficiently (RI.5)

  • Distinguish their own point of view from that of the author of a text. (RI.6)

  • 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) (RI.7)

  • Describe the logical connection between particular sentences and paragraphs in a text (e.g., comparison, cause/effect, first/second/third in a sequence). (RI.8)

2) Reading Literature


  • Ask and answer questions to demonstrate understanding of text, referring explicitly to the text as the basis for the answers. (RL.1)

  •  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. (RL.2)

  • 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. (RL.10)


  • Describe characters in a story (e.g., their traits, motivations, or feelings) and explain how their actions contribute to the sequence of events. (RL.3)

  •  Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text, distinguishing literal from nonliteral language (RL.4)

  •  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.(RL.5) 

  • Distinguish their own point of view from that of the narrator or those of the characters  (Rl.6)

  • 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). (RL.7)

  • 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). (RL.9)

3) Foundational Skills


  •  Know and apply grade-level phonics and word analysis skills in decoding words. (RF.3) 

    • Demonstrate basic knowledge of one-to-one letter-sound correspondences by producing the primary sound or many of the most frequent sounds for each consonant.  

    • Associate the long and short sounds with common spellings (graphemes) for the five major vowels.  

    • Read common high-frequency words by sight (e.g., the, of, to, you, she, my, is, are, do, does).  

    • Distinguish between similarly spelled words by identifying the sounds of the letters that differ


  • Read with sufficient accuracy and fluency to support comprehension.  (RF.4)

    • Read grade-level prose and poetry orally with accuracy, appropriate rate, and expression on successive readings.  

    • Use context to confirm or self-correct word recognition and understanding, rereading as necessary. 

4) Language


  • Determine or clarify the meaning of unknown and multiple-meaning words and phrases based on grade 3 reading and content, choosing flexibly from an array of strategies.  (L.4) 

    • Use sentence-level context as a clue to the meaning of a word or phrase. 

    • 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). 

    • Use a known root word as a clue to the meaning of an unknown word with the same root (e.g., company, companion). 

    • Use glossaries or beginning dictionaries, both print and digital, to determine or clarify the precise meaning of key words and phrases. 


  • Demonstrate command of the conventions of standard English grammar and usage when writing or speaking.  (L.1)

    • Independently and legibly write all upper-and lower-case cursive letters. 

    • Produce grade-appropriate text using legible cursive writing. 

    • Explain the function of nouns, pronouns, verbs, adjectives, and adverbs in general and their functions in particular sentences 

    • Form and use regular and irregular plural nouns. 

    • Use abstract nouns (e.g., childhood). 

    • Form and use regular and irregular verbs. 

    • Form and use the simple (e.g., I walked; I walk; I will walk) verb tenses. 

    • Ensure subject-verb and pronoun-antecedent agreement. 

    • Form and use comparative and superlative adjectives and adverbs, and choose between them depending on what is to be modified. 

    • Use coordinating and subordinating conjunctions. 

    • Produce simple, compound and complex sentences.  

  • Demonstrate command of the conventions of standard English capitalization, punctuation, and spelling when writing. (L.2)

    • Capitalize appropriate words in titles. 

    • Use commas in addresses. 

    • Use commas and quotation marks in dialogue. 

    • Form and use possessives. 

    • Use spelling patterns and generalizations (e.g., word families, position-based spellings, syllable patterns, ending rules, meaningful word parts) in writing words. 

    • Consult reference materials, including beginning dictionaries, as needed to check and correct spellings. 

    • Use conventional spelling for high- frequency and other studied words and for adding suffixes to base words (e.g., sitting, smiled, cries, happiness). 

  • Use knowledge of language and its conventions when writing, speaking, reading or listening (L.3)

    • Choose words and phrases for effect. 

    • Recognize and observe differences between the conventions of spoken and written standard English.

  • Demonstrate understanding of figurative language, word relationships, and nuances in word meanings.  (L.5)

    • Distinguish the literal and nonliteral meanings of words and phrases in context (e.g., take steps). 

    • Identify real-life connections between words and their use (e.g., describe people who are friendly or helpful). 

    • Distinguish shades of meaning among related words that describe states of mind or degrees of certainty (e.g., knew, believed, suspected, heard, wondered) 

  • 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) (L.6)

5) Writing


  • Write opinion pieces on topics or texts, supporting a point of view with reasons.  (W.1)

    • Introduce the topic or text they are writing about, state an opinion, and create an organizational structure that lists reasons.  

    • Provide reasons that support the opinion.  

    • Use linking words and phrases (e.g., because, therefore, since, for example) to connect opinion and reasons. 

    •    Provide a concluding statement or section. 

  • Write informative/explanatory texts to examine a topic and convey ideas and information clearly.  (W.2)

    • Introduce a topic and group related information together; include illustrations when useful to aiding comprehension.  

    • Develop the topic with facts, definitions, and details.  

    • Use linking words and phrases (e.g., also, another, and, more, but) to connect ideas within categories of information.  

    • Provide a concluding statement or section. 


  • Write narratives to develop real or imagined experiences or events using effective technique, descriptive details, and clear event sequences.  (W.3)

    • Establish a situation and introduce a narrator and/or characters; organize an event sequence that unfolds naturally.  

    • Use dialogue and descriptions of actions, thoughts, and feelings to develop experiences and events or show the response of characters to situations.  

    • Use temporal words and phrases to signal event order.  

    • Provide a sense of closure. 

  • With guidance and support from adults, produce writing in which the development and organization are appropriate to task and purpose. (Grade-specific expectations for writing types are defined in standards 1–3 above.)  (W.4)

  • With guidance and support from peers and adults, develop and strengthen writing as needed by planning, revising, and editing. (Editing for conventions should demonstrate command of Language standards 1-3 up to and including grade 3.) (W.5)

  • 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. (W.6)

  • Recall information from experiences or gather information from print and digital sources; take brief notes on sources and sort evidence into provided categories.  (W.8)

  • 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 (W.10)

Nice To Know 

  •  Conduct short research projects that build knowledge about a topic. (W.7)

6) Speaking & Listening


  •  Conduct short research projects that build knowledge about a topic. (SL.1)

    • Come to discussions prepared, having read or studied required material; explicitly draw on the            preparation and other information known about the topic to explore ideas under discussion.    

    • 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).   

    • Ask questions to check understanding of information presented, stay on topic, and link their comments to the remarks of others.  

    • Explain their own ideas and understanding in light of the discussion. 

  •  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.  (SL.2)

  •  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.  (SL.4)

  • Speak in complete sentences when appropriate to task and situation in order to provide requested detail or clarification (See grade 3 Language standards 1 and 3.)  (SL.6)

Nice To Know 

  • Ask and answer questions about information from a speaker, offering appropriate elaboration and detail. (SL.3)

  • 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  (SL.5)