Welcome To Third Grade

What Every Third Grade Student Should Know and Be Able To Do!

En Español


This curriculum brochure is an overview of the Mesa School District expectations of what 3rd grade students are expected to know and be able to do in the major subject areas of reading, writing/language, mathematics, science, and social studies in order to be prepared for the fourth grade.

The expectations listed are summarized from the Mesa Public Schools curriculum, which is aligned with the Arizona Academic Standards. These performance standards reflect the goals of the educational community to ensure all students an education essential to success in our local and global communities.


The goal of MPS is for every child to be a successful and independent reader. Recognizing the importance of reading practice, it is necessary to read with your child, read to your child, or allows your child to read independently every day.


Social Studies




The goal of MPS is for every child to be a successful and independent reader. Recognizing the importance of reading practice, it is necessary to read with your child, read to your child, or allows your child to read independently every day.


Students should know and be able to …


Phonetic Skills



• decode words with more than one syllable using phonics and common spelling patterns (in-for-ma-tion)


Vocabulary/Word Analysis



• learn and use new vocabulary, including sight words

• read and understand words with prefixes, suffixes, and multiple meanings





• read grade-level material with 90% accuracy


Comprehension – Literary Text (fiction: stories, poetry, plays)



• compare characters, setting, problem, and solution

• restate story events in order

• identify cause and effect


Comprehension – Informational Text (nonfiction)



Students are required to understand and use the wide variety of informational materials that are a part of our daily life: advertisements, brochures, diagrams, directions, magazines, maps, newspapers, product labels, recipes, and tables.

• identify the main idea and supporting details

• read and evaluate multi-step written directions

• locate facts to answer questions




Writing Process



Through use of the writing process, students will continually develop and improve their writing.


Students should know and be able to …

Prewriting use strategies to generate, plan and organize ideas for specific purposes

Drafting incorporate prewriting activities to create a first draft

Revising evaluate and refine the rough draft for clarity and effectiveness

Editing proofread and corrects the draft for conventions

Publishing format and present a final product for the intended audience


Writing Elements



Through daily writing activities, students will develop the elements/traits of beginning writing.

Students should know and be able to …


Ideas express ideas that are clear and directly related to the topic; use important details to support ideas

Organization organize writing in the appropriate format such as a letter, narrative, or report; develop a beginning and ending; use transition words or phrases to connect ideas; group sentences to construct a paragraph

Voice expresses a sense of originality and personality in the writing patterns/generalization to spell words correctly; use grammar (parts of speech) correctly

Word Choice use a variety of specific and descriptive words to get across the intended message

Sentence Fluency use a variety of sentence beginnings, lengths, and patterns so writing sounds natural when read aloud

Conventions follow rules of capitalization and punctuation including some commas and apostrophes; spell high frequency words and homonyms correctly; use common spelling


Writing Applications



Through a variety of writing applications, students will improve their written communication skills.


Students should know and be able to …

• write narratives/stories and poetry

• record information using logs, notes, or lists

write an expository paragraph that contains a topic sentence, supporting details, relevant information, and a conclusion

• write letters, thank-you notes, messages and directions

• address an envelope for correspondence

• write persuasive text that attempts to influence the reader

• write personal reflections and responses to literature selections

• write an informational report that includes a main idea and supporting details using information from at least one source


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The goal of MPS is for every child to be successful in developing the concepts and understanding of mathematics and to recognize the connections between mathematics and everyday life.


Students should know and be able to …


Number and Operations



• read, write, and order numbers through six digits

• identify, model, and use place value concepts through six-digit numbers

• sort whole numbers into sets

• understand and use concepts of halves, thirds, fourths, fifths, sixths, eighths, and tenths

• compare and order benchmark fractions

• memorize addition facts through 10 + 10 and the related subtraction facts

• understand the concepts of multiplication and division

• memorize multiplication and division facts through 10’s

• determine reasonableness of numbers in a variety of situations

• use estimation strategies

• create and solve word problems

• count and represent money using coins and bills to $100.00


Data Analysis and Discrete Mathematics



• collect, record, organize, and display data to construct a variety of tables, charts, and graphs

• formulate and answer questions to solve problems based on a variety of tables, charts, and graphs

• determine the number of combinations using arrays, charts, and systematic lists

• color complex maps using the least number of colors

• explore circuits, paths, and weighted edges of vertex-edge graphs


Patterns, Algebra, and Functions



• recognize, describe, extend, create, and find missing terms in numerical patterns

• describe rule used in simple functions (t-chart, input/output model)

• find the missing number in addition and multiplication sentences

• show equivalent forms of whole numbers


Geometry and Measurement



• identify, compare, and describe two and three-dimensional figures

• identify all lines of symmetry in a two-dimensional figure

• recognize same shape in different positions

• recognize similar figures

• select and use the appropriate tool and unit of measure (U.S. customary) for length, capacity, and weight

• determine passage of time: minutes, days, weeks, months

• compare units of measure and relationships (length, capacity, weight)

• determine area and perimeter of rectangular arrays

• determine perimeter of two-dimensional figures





• use problem-solving process and strategies to solve mathematical problems

• explain mathematical thinking and evaluate the reasonableness of solutions


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Students should know and be able to …


Inquiry Process



• make observations, ask questions and predict results

• conduct a simple investigation using appropriate procedures

• record, organize, and analyze data

• draw conclusions from data and communicate results


History and Nature of Science



• describe history of science as a human endeavor including diversity of people and science-related careers

• explain how systems influence one another


Personal and Social Perspectives



• describe changes in environments

• describe the beneficial and harmful impact of natural events and human activities on the environment

• identify ways that people use tools to solve problems

• describe the development of technologies


Life Science



• describe the function of plant structures

• compare life cycles of various plants

• examine and explain organisms and their environments

• identify and describe adaptations of plants and animals


Physical Science



• describe and demonstrate behavior of sound and light


Earth and Space Science



• identify layers of the earth

• describe metamorphic, igneous, and sedimentary rocks

• describe fossils


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Students should know and be able to …


American History



• use timelines, primary, and secondary sources to tell about past events

• retell stories of those who fought for the freedoms of others, including events from the Civil War through 20th century immigration

• discuss exploration, and settlement of the Southwest

• discuss European explores, their discoveries, and impact in the new world

• discuss connections between American current events and historical events


World History



• use timelines, primary, and secondary sources to tell about past events

• describe past events, people, and places including the Ancient Greeks and Romans

• describe daily life in past times and places

• discuss European global explorations including the Northwest Passage

• discuss connections between world current events and historical events





• describe national symbols and monuments and the significance of national holidays

• describe the diversity and varied backgrounds of people in the U.S.

• discuss the three branches of state government and how laws are made

• describe rights and responsibilities of citizenship

• understand the responsibility of contributing to a community and voting





• identify the characteristics and purposes of maps and globes and other geographic tools

• construct a map using all components of a map

• construct charts and graphs to display geographic information

• identify natural and human characteristics of places

• describe how physical and human characteristics of places change from past to present

• recognize how people depend on and use their environment

• describe changes over time in transportation and communication





• identify the foundations of economics: scarcity, opportunity costs, and goods and services

• discuss reasons for American produced vs. world produced products


Miss. Chase, Mrs. Sonive, Ms. Lepire, and Mrs. Hayden and Top of Page