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Engaging 3rd Grade Nonfiction Reading Passages

If you’re looking for a way to boost comprehension skills, you have to check out these engaging 3rd Grade nonfiction reading passages. I’m so excited to share how you can use nonfiction reading comprehension passages with your 3rd graders to help improve their understanding of informational text. You’ll find out why it’s important to use nonfiction passages with your third graders on a regular basis. I’ll also share my favorite 3rd Grade nonfiction reading passages that your students will also love. Whether using these 3rd Grade nonfiction reading passages in small groups, for independent work, or to send home for extra practice, you’ll see the benefits of focusing on informational text with your young learners!

The Importance of Nonfiction Passages

Nonfiction passages are so important to include in your classroom activities. Nonfiction texts are super interesting for 3rd graders because of all themes that you may be reviewing in subjects like social studies or science. With the content specific themes, students are getting additional practice decoding content specific vocabulary. Breaking down multiple syllable words is a big focus for third graders, fourth graders, and fifth graders. Using 3rd grade nonfiction reading passages each week in your classroom gives students a chance to routinely decode content specific multiple syllable words. The focus on content specific vocabulary also leads to students learning interesting facts about new topics. These new facts can lead to interesting discussions in your reading groups. So not only are students improving their decoding skills, but they’re also majorly improving their comprehension skills.

Text Features in 3rd Grade Nonfiction Reading Passages

Another feature of nonfiction reading passages is the inclusion of text features. Just like with the content specific vocabulary, students can learn a lot from nonfiction text features. Students have a chance to improve their reading comprehension skills not only from the paragraphs in a text, but also from their understanding of the text features. Comprehension tasks can revolve around the text features themselves. Text evidence can be focused on specifically in relation to text features as well as the entire informational text used. Nonfiction text features include: diagrams, photographs, captions, glossary, index, types of print, timelines, table of contents, to name a few. By making text features a primary focus, students are applying critical thinking skills as they dig deep in a text. This way students aren’t only reliant on the main text itself, but rather have to search for their answers to comprehension questions. 

Text Structure in 3rd Grade Nonfiction Reading Passages

The last feature of nonfiction reading passages that is so beneficial to 3rd graders is the different text structures that students will see. Text structure is simply the way in which the author organizes information in a text. In nonfiction, the five text structures are: descriptive, chronological order, compare and contrast, cause and effect, problem and solution. Students can gain such important information from paying attention to the text structure of 3rd grade nonfiction reading passages. A focus on text structure of nonfiction reading passages can help improve overall comprehension. Readers become aware of signal words, visuals, and overall have a better understanding of a nonfiction text format. They can then use these features of nonfiction text structure when finding text evidence to answer comprehension questions.

Nonfiction Reading Passages for 3rd Grade

The 3rd Grade nonfiction reading passages I am about to share with you really are windows to the real world. They are full of important information and new facts about science, history, culture, and other subjects. By engaging with nonfiction, 3rd graders not only expand their knowledge but also develop critical thinking skills. Nonfiction passages allow students to sharpen their comprehension skills, helping them understand, analyze, and evaluate information, which is crucial for their grade level academic success. When using nonfiction passages as a comprehension resource students pay close attention to the text. This allows them to learn to think critically, figure things out, and get better at understanding what they read. Nonfiction texts are not only interesting but also so helpful in developing students’ reading skills as they apply their phonics knowledge to more challenging vocabulary. 

With my 3rd Grade nonfiction reading passages, 3rd graders will actually provide text evidence when replying to comprehension questions. A variety of topics and individual question pages for each passage makes these super versatile. Teachers often use any of the below nonfiction reading passages for small groups throughout the year or for test prep as that season approaches. While students are learning all the fun facts about the variety of topics, they are also improving their understanding of main idea, content specific vocabulary words, and how to respond to short answer comprehension questions. These grade level appropriate information text passages are sure to be loved by you, and your students!

3rd Grade Nonfiction Reading Passages with Comprehension Questions

These 3rd Grade nonfiction reading passages are a great way to boost 3rd-grade reading and comprehension skills. With the simple to use and engaging format, these are a game-changer for your 3rd grade classroom. With all the engaging nonfiction passages and thought-provoking questions included, this resource offers a well-rounded approach to help 3rd graders develop their reading and critical thinking abilities. It’s not just a collection of reading materials; it’s a comprehensive toolkit designed to inspire curiosity and deepen understanding. I’m so excited for you to see your students improve their reading comprehension, increase engagement when it comes to reading, and develop their accurate word reading skills of content specific vocabulary words. 

Included with each of the 3rd Grade nonfiction reading passages, you’ll find:

  • vocabulary words so students can be introduced to key words from the text
  • lesson plan for you to lead your small reading groups
  • running records for a quick informal reading assessment
  • comprehension questions page
  • answer key

These 3rd Grade nonfiction reading passages really are a complete package that you just need to print and use. If you want to easily differentiate for your readers, you can check out my 3rd-5th Grade bundle or my Kindergarten-5th Grade bundle! These will help you accommodate all of your readers without the stress of having to go and find informational text passages for each of your small groups. 

3rd Grade Nonfiction Reading Fluency Passages

Fiction stories are not the only text you should use to focus on fluency. Nonfiction passages can also be used to improve fluency. This 3rd Grade resource of nonfiction reading fluency passages takes fluency to the next level by offering a interesting nonfiction passages specifically designed for 3rd graders. By providing content at a variety of reading levels (Level N-P), it caters to diverse reading abilities, ensuring that every child can find texts suited to their needs. These passages aren’t just about speed; they’re about enhancing comprehension and promoting a deeper understanding of real-world topics. Through repeated reading and guided exercises, students can boost their fluency skills while gaining valuable knowledge about science, history, and more. These are definitely a set of passages you’ll want to begin including in your fluency rotation. 

Included with each of the 3rd Grade nonfiction fluency reading passages, you’ll find:

  • a teacher page to mark up any errors or self corrections, as well as for students to self assess and write fluency goals
  • student full page nonfiction reading passage to read
  • comprehension questions page
  • answer key
  • fluency reminders
  • student fluent reader awards

These 3rd Grade nonfiction reading fluency passages are another complete program for you to use. Whether it is in small groups, literacy centers, or to send home for extra practice, you’ll have everything at your fingertips ready to be printed and used. Again, if you’re looking for something that will benefit all your readers at their ability level, check out my 3rd-5th Grade nonfiction reading fluency passages bundle or my Kindergarten-5th Grade nonfiction reading fluency passages bundle. These bundles will have you covered for below level, on level, and above level readers!

You can also read more about the set up of these 3rd grade nonfiction reading passages here!



Digital Nonfiction Reading Passages

I have a true love for digital resources! If you’re someone who appreciates digital formats too, you’re going to love these digital nonfiction reading passages. You can use them as a way to develop nonfiction reading skills in a simple way. This bundle brings a cutting-edge approach to enhancing 3rd-grade reading comprehension through digital platforms. With the use of Google Slides, students can engage with these nonfiction passages in an interactive and dynamic way. The transition to digital not only makes learning more engaging but also aligns with the 21st-century skills children need for the future. Whether you’re a tech-savvy teacher looking to incorporate digital resources into your lessons or a teacher who is simply trying to increase engagement in learning experiences, these digital 3rd grade nonfiction reading passages are for you! Combining the best of nonfiction content with digital convenience, you can rest assured that students will hone their reading skills while navigating the digital landscape with confidence and curiosity. Don’t wait- take the leap into the digital world of nonfiction reading!

All set up in Google Slides, these digital versions of these nonfiction reading comprehension passages can be assigned to students in Google Classroom. Due to the independent nature of using digital versions of a great resource, you can easily set students up with these to use in literacy centers. The passages come with comprehension pages that allow the students to type both move objects on the screen or type their responses into text boxes. You do not need to print out anything!

Just like the other resources, I have these for Kindergarten-5th grade, so if you want to reach all your readers, check out my 3rd-5th Grade digital nonfiction reading passages bundle or my Kindergarten-5th Grade digital nonfiction reading passages bundle!

Aylin Claahsen

Aylin Claahsen

Providing resources and support to engage all readers.

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Hi, I'm Aylin!

I’m so happy you’re here! I’m a certified reading specialist who loves talking all things literacy. I have a huge passion for providing resources and support to engage all readers!


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