Third Grade

Tennessee Science Standards

3rd Grade Science

Checklist for Checks for Understanding

Academic Vocabulary Quizlet

Third Grade Science Songs

Third Grade Science Review Powerpoint


Grade 3 : Inquiry

Conceptual Strand Understandings about scientific inquiry and the ability to conduct inquiry are essential for living in the 21st century.


Guiding Question What tools, skills, knowledge, and dispositions are needed to conduct scientific inquiry?


Grade Level Expectations


GLE 0307.Inq.1 Explore different scientific phenomena by asking questions, making logical predictions, planning investigations, and recording data.


GLE 0307.Inq.2 Select and use appropriate tools and simple equipment to conduct an investigation.


GLE 0307.Inq.3 Organize data into appropriate tables, graphs, drawings, or diagrams


GLE 0307.Inq.4 Identify and interpret simple patterns of evidence to communicate the findings of multiple investigations.


GLE 0307.Inq.5 Recognize that people may interpret the same results in different ways.  


GLE 0307.Inq.6 Compare the results of an investigation with what scientists already accept about this question.   


Checks for Understanding 


0307.Inq.1Identify specific investigations that could be used to answer a particular question and identify reasons for this choice.


0307.Inq.2Identify tools needed to investigate specific questions

                         How Stuff Works

                         Create Your Own Windmill



0307.Inq.3Maintain a science notebook that includes observations, data, diagrams, and explanations



0307.Inq.4Analyze and communicate findings from multiple investigations of similar phenomena to reach a conclusion.


State Performance Indicators


  • SPI 0307.Inq.1 Select an investigation that could be used to answer a specific question.

Grade 3 : Technology  & Engineering

Grade Level Expectations

GLE 0307.T/E.1 Describe how tools, technology, and inventions help to answer questions and solve problems.

                       Leonardo's Mysterious Machines


GLE 0307.T/E.2 Recognize that new tools, technology, and inventions are always being developed. 

                       Test your Engineering Skills


GLE 0307.T/E.3 Identify appropriate materials, tools, and machines that can extend or enhance the ability to solve a specified problem.

                       Invention Playhouse


GLE 0307.T/E.4 Recognize the connection between scientific advances, new knowledge, and the availability of new tools and technologies


GLE 0307.T/E.5 Apply a creative design strategy to solve a particular problem generated by societal needs and wants.

                        Break It Down Interactive


Checks for Understanding 


0307.T/E.1Explain how different inventions and technologies impact people and other living organisms.

                       Science and Technology includes Invention timelines for the 18th, 19th, and 20th Centuries and much more.

                       A Sightseer’s Guide to Engineering

                       Inventions (grade 3)  pre-assessment, KWL, test, answers, matching worksheet, wkst answers

                       Finding Edison-His inventions has impacted many we use today!!

                       Inventors Who Have Changed the World-Webquest



0307.T/E.2Design a tool or a process that addresses an identified problem caused by human activity

                       Buoyant Boats



0307.T/E.3Determine criteria to evaluate the effectiveness of a solution to a specified problem.



0307.T/E.4Evaluate an invention that solves a problem and determine ways to improve the design.

                       Systems, Up, Up and Away!

                       Inventions Solve Problems PowerPoint


State Performance Indicators

  • SPI 0307.T/E.1 Select a tool, technology, or invention that was used to solve a human problem

                       Wheelchairs - Podcast

                       Inventions (grade 3)  pre-assessment, KWL, test, answers, matching worksheet, wkst answers

  • SPI 0307.T/E.2 Recognize the connection between a scientific advance and the development of a new tool or technology.

                       The Science Toy Maker Home Page

                       Invention Game

                       Images of Science.


Grade 3 - Life Science

Grade 3 : Standard 1 -Cells


Conceptual Strand 1 All living things are made of cells that perform functions necessary for life.


Guiding Question 1 How are plant and animals cells organized to carry on the processes of life? 


Grade Level Expectations

GLE 0307.1.1 Use magnifiers to make observations of specific plant and body parts and describe their functions.

                                Electron microscope 

                                Cell Structure


Checks for Understanding 


0307.1.1Use a magnifier to investigate and describe the function of root hairs, stem cross sections, and leaf veins.

                       Virtual Cell

                       Plant Cells

                       The Cell Design and Function

                       Comparing Plant and Animal Cells


0307.1.2Use a magnifier to investigate and describe the function of skin pores, hair follicles, finger nails, veins, and cuticles, etc.

State Performance Indicators

  • SPI 0307.1.1 Identify specific parts of a plant and describe their function.

                       FOSSWeb: Watch it Grow

                       The Great Plant Escape

                       Labeling a Green Plant (Smart)

                       Plant Parts and their Function (Promethean)

                       Great PowerPoint on functions of Plant Parts

                       Plant Game

                       Closer Look at Plant Functions

                       Scinet: Plant Parts

                              Anatomy of Plants Printouts

                       Fossweb: plants

                       Roots, Stems, Leaves Song and Lyrics

                       Root Factory Game

                       What Plant Parts Do We Eat?


Grade 3 : Standard 2 -Interdependence

Conceptual Strand 2 All life is interdependent and interacts with the environment.


Guiding Question 2 How do living things interact with one another and with the non-living elements of their environment?

Grade Level Expectations

GLE 0307.2.1 Categorize things as living or non-living.  

GLE 0307.2.2 Explain how organisms with similar needs compete with one another for resources.

Checks for Understanding 

                       Keeping a Field Journal

                       Learn 360: BioTrackers – Animal Habitats video

                               Lesson Plans:  The Web of Life  Weaving the Web

                       Food Chains and Webs

                       Food Web Game

                       Food Chains BBC  

                       Chain Reaction Food Chain Game 

                       Learn 360:Food Chains in the Ocean video

                       Learn 360:  Balance in Nature – Food Chain video

                       Organisms chant (grades2-5) podcast


State Performance Indicators

SPI 0307.2.1 Distinguish between living and non-living things.

                       Living and Nonliving

                       Is it Alive?

                       Living and Nonliving Quiz

                       Classify Living and Non-living

                       Inquiry Lesson on Living and Non-Living things

                       New Living and Nonliving Quiz


SPI 0307.2.2 Determine how plants and animals compete for resources such as food, space, water, air, and shelter.

                        Migration Webquest



Grade 3 : Standard 3 -Flow of Matter and Energy

Conceptual Strand 3 Matter and energy flow through the biosphere.


Guiding Question 3 What scientific information explains how matter and energy flow through the biosphere?


Grade Level Expectations

GLE 0307.3.1 Describe how animals use food to obtain energy and materials for growth and repair.

           Chain Reaction Food Game


Checks for Understanding 

                       What Plants and Animals do to Get Energy - PowerPoint

                       Energy Travel - PowerPoint

                       Learn 360: Food Chains in the Ocean video

                       Learn 360: Balance in Nature – Food Chains video

                       What Plants and Animals do to Get Energy - PowerPoint

                        Energy Travel - PowerPoint

                        African Grassland Food Web

Matching Landforms

                        Deserts of the World

                        Oceans of the World

                        Wetlands of the World

                        Rainforests of the World

                        How To Build A Food Web Game

                        Who lives in the Desert? Game

                        What Do These Animals Do in Winter?

                        Learn 360: Food Chains in the Ocean video

                        Learn 360: Balance in Nature – Food Chains video

                       Animal Mouth Structures Help You Determine What a Bird Eats

                       Can teeth tell you what an animal eats?



State Performance Indicators

                       Basic Needs of Living Things

                       Organisms chant (grades2-5) podcast

                       Great PowerPoint with Questions on Animal Groups

                       Food Chain Video

                       How do plants and animals obtain their food?  PowerPoint

                       Food Chain Sequencing Game

                       Learn 360: Predators video

                       Learn 360: Cutthroats of Yellowstone – Prey and Predators video


Grade 3: Standard 4 - Heredity

Conceptual Strand 4 Plants and animals reproduce and transmit hereditary information between generations.

Guiding Question 4 What are the principal mechanisms by which living things reproduce and transmit information between parents and offspring?


Grade Level Expectations

GLE 0307.4.1 Identify the different life stages through which plants and animals pass

                       Brain Pop on Metamorphosis of a Frog and Butterfly

                       Life Cycles

                       Monarch Butterfly Life Cycle


GLE 0307.4.2 Recognize common human characteristics that are transmitted from parents to offspring.

                       Gallery of Photos of Parents with their Young

                       Game Matching Parents with Young

                       Let's Play Find that Parent


Checks for Understanding 

                       butterfly lifecycle game, answers

                       Let's Play Find that Parent


State Performance Indicators

SPI 0307.4.1 Select an illustration that shows how an organism changes as it develops  

                       PowerPoint Life Cycle of a Butterfly

                       Life Cycle of a Bird

                       Circle of Life

                       Something Froggy-The Life Cycle and Facts about Frogs


SPI 0307.4.2 Distinguish between characteristics that are transmitted from parents to offspring and those that are not.

                       Let's Play Find that Parent

                       Gallery of Photos of Parents with their Young

                       Game Matching Parents with Young


Grade 3 : Standard 5 -Biodiversity and Change

                       Ology - Biodiversity  A good general page with many activities

Conceptual Strand 5 A rich variety of complex organisms have developed in response to a continually changing environment.

Guiding Question 5 How does natural selection explain how organisms have changed over time?


Grade Level Expectations

GLE 0307.5.1 Explore the relationship between an organism’s characteristics and its ability to survive in a particular environment.


GLE 0307.5.2 Classify organisms as thriving, threatened, endangered, or extinct.


Checks for Understanding 

                      Many Adaptations for Survival

                      Animals and their Adaptations

                      Beaver Adaptation Activity

                      Adaptation Game

                      Adaptations Related to You

                      Adaptations Powerpoint about Animals


                 Camouflage and other adaptations games

                 How Different Animal Groups Get Oxygen

                 Game on Animal Adaptations

                 Lesson Animal Survival

                       Cactus Survival

                       The Wild Habitat

                       Climate Change and Pollution on Oceans

                        Learn 360: BioTrackers – Animal Habitats video

                        Learn 360: Desert video

                        Learn 360: Forest ecosystem video

                        Great Group Activity on Thriving, Threatened, Endangered and Extinct

                        Match the Endangered Species

                        Causes of Extinction


State Performance Indicators

SPI 0307.5.1 Investigate an organism’s characteristics and evaluate how these features enable it to survive in a particular environment.  

                       The Wild Habitat

                       Brain Pop on Extinction

                       Pictures and Games about Extinct Species

                       Learn More about Endangered Species

                       Extinct: The Dodo Bird

                       Extinct Animals

                       Endangered, Exploring A World At Risk

                       Fun Video on Fossils

                       Information and Questions about Fossils

                       Sequencing Fossil Game

                       Learn 360: Digging Up Fossils

                       Learn 360: Dinosaurs – “Studying Fossils” video


Grade 3 - Earth and Space Science

Grade 3 : Standard 6 -The Universe

Conceptual Strand 6 The cosmos is vast and explored well enough to know its basic structure and operational principles. 

Guiding Question 6           What big ideas guide human understanding about the origin and structure of the universe, Earth’s place in the cosmos, and observable   motions and patterns in the sky?


Grade Level Expectations

GLE 0307.6.1 Identify and compare the major components of the solar system.

                        The Eight Planets

                        National Geographic Game Explorer 2022

                        Virtual Solar System from National Geographic

                        Fun Facts about the Solar System

                        Awesome PowerPoint about the Solar System

                        Dwarf Planet Pluto

                        Order of the Planets Quiz

                        The Sun and Its Planets

                        Solar System Review

                        Earth, Sun, and Moon

                        The Nine Planets

                        Earth, Sun, and Moon Game

                        Planets Memory Game


Checks for Understanding 

                       Solar System Trading Cards

                               Window to the Universe  also in Spanish


State Performance Indicators

                       Planet Roll Call  (podcast)   worksheet

                       The Solar System

                       NASA Kids' Club

                       Solar System Trading Cards - interactive site

                       The Nine Planets

                       Learn 360: Our Solar System (video)

                       Learn 360: Real World Science – Our Solar System (video)

                         Learn 360: Slim Goodbody Mercury – closest to the sun– video clip

                        Learn 360: Slim Goodbody Mercury – smallest planet video clip

                        Learn 360: Space Trek – Mercury video clip

                        Learn 360: Slim Goodbody – Venus (hottest planet) video clip

                        Learn 360: Space Trek – Venus video clip

                        Learn 360: Slim Goodbody - Jupiter video clip

                        Learn 360: Space Trek – Jupiter video clip 

                        Learn 360: Slim Goodbody – Saturn video clip

                        Learn 360: Space Trek – Saturn video clip

                        Learn 360: Space Trek – Uranus video clip

                        Learn 360: Slim Goodbody – Neptune video clip

                        Learn 360: Space Trek – Neptune video clip

                        Learn 360: Space Trek – Pluto video clip

Grade 3 : Standard 7 – The Earth

                Sunken Millions - Earth's Surface and Resources Review Game

Conceptual Strand 7 Major geologic events that occur over eons or brief moments in time continually shape and reshape the surface of the Earth, resulting in continuous global change.

Guiding Question 7 How is the earth affected by long-term and short term geological cycles and the influence of


Grade Level Expectations

GLE 0307.7.1 Use information and illustrations to identify the earth’s major landforms and water bodies.  

                       Landforms - board game  questions 1 - 10  questions 11 - 20

                       Landforms PowerPoint


                       Landforms and Bodies of Water


                       Labeling Landforms


                       Landform Quiz

                       Matching Landforms

                       Deserts of the World

                       Learn Some Animals and Plants You May Find in a Dessert

                       Oceans of the World

                       Memory Game on Landforms


GLE 0307.7.2 Recognize that rocks can be composed of one or more minerals.

                       Three Types of Rocks

                       Interactive Rock Cycle

                       Brain Pop on Types of Rocks

                       How Rocks Are Formed

                       Mind Boggling Rock Activity

                       Rock Cycle Song

                       The Rock Cycle Game



                       Matching Landforms

                       Deserts of the World

                       Oceans of the World

                       Memory Game on Landforms

                       Oceans song grades (K-5) podcast


GLE 0307.7.3 Distinguish between natural and manmade objects.

                        Lesson for Classroom on Natural/Man Made

                        Third Grade Science Jeopardy Game


GLE 0307.7.4 Design a simple investigation to demonstrate how earth materials can be conserved or recycled.


Checks for Understanding 

                       Rocks and Solids

                       Eco-Cycle school recycling kit

                       Rotten Truth About Garbage

                       Saving Energy

                       A Recycling Sorting Activity

                       Learn360:  Recycle video

                       Learn360: Clothes, Books, Toys video

                       Learn360: Recycle metal video

                       Learn360: Recycle paper video

                       Learn360: Recycling video quiz

                       Learn360: The need to recycle video

                       Learn360: The patchwork Quilt video

                       Learn360: Recycle plastic



 State Performance Indicators

                       Landforms - board game  questions 1 - 10  questions 11 - 20

                       Maps as Tools

                       Observing Landforms

                       Landforms PowerPoint

                       Start a Rock Collection

                       Rocks and Solids

                       Brain Pop on Types of Rocks

                       How Rocks Are Formed

                       Mind Boggling Rock Activity

                       Rock Cycle Song

                       Kids in the Hall of Planet Earth: Rocks in Your Cabinet Grade 3+

                       The Rock Cycle Game



                       Items Made from Rocks and Minerals 

                       Oceans song grades (K-5) podcast         

                       Lesson for Classroom on Natural/Man Made

                       Brain Pop on Natural Resources

                       Recycle City

                       Earth Day



                       Natural Resources


Grade 3 : Standard 8 -The Atmosphere


                      Sunken Millions Review Game For The Atmosphere Standard


Conceptual Strand 8 The earth is surrounded by an active atmosphere and an energy system that controls the distribution life, local weather, climate, and global temperature.

Guiding Question 8 How do the physical characteristics and the chemical makeup of the atmosphere influence surface processes and life on Earth?


Grade Level Expectations

GLE 0307.8.1 Recognize that that there are a variety of atmospheric conditions that can be measured.

GLE 0307.8.2 Use tools such as the barometer, thermometer, anemometer, and rain gauge to measure atmospheric conditions

                       Make Your Own Barometer

                       Weather Tools

                       Make A Thermometer

GLE 0307.8.3 Identify cloud types associated with particular atmospheric conditions.

GLE 0307.8.4 Predict the weather based on cloud observations.


Checks for Understanding 

                       Brain Pop on Weather

                       Weather, Seasons, and Climate

                       Learn 360: Building a Weather Station – tools for collecting weather data

                       Observe Clouds

                       Cloud Types

                       National Geographic :  Cloud Photo Gallery

                       NASA - Observing Cloud Types This site has printable charts and a quiz plus is in French and Spanish

                       Curious Clouds | An inquiry challenge about different types of clouds.

                       PowerPoint and Quiz on Clouds 

                       Cloud Matching Game 

                       Cloud Clues

                       Cloud Game

                       Cloud Boutique

                      Learn 360: Predict the Weather/ Clouds (Reading Rainbow)

                      Learn 360: Clouds, Climates, and Storms video

                      Learn 360: Clouds Slideshow

State Performance Indicators 

                       Great PowerPoint on Weather Tools

                       Brain Pop on Clouds

                       PowerPoint on Different Cloud Types

                       PowerPoint and Quiz on Clouds 

                       Cloud Matching Game 

                       Cloud Clues

                       Water Cycle

                       Water Cycle/Weather Quiz

                       Learn360:Natural Recycling/Water cycle Video

                       Learn360: The water cycle video

                       Learn360: What is the water cycle video

                       Learn360:  The Earth’s water video



Grade 3 - Physical Science

Grade 3 : Standard 9 -Matter

Conceptual Strand 9  The composition and structure of matter is known, and it behaves according to principles that are generally understood. 

Guiding Question 9 How does the structure of matter influence its physical and chemical behavior?


Grade Level Expectations

GLE 0307.9.1 Design a simple experiment to determine how the physical properties of matter can change over time and under different conditions.  

GLE 0307.9.2 Investigate different types of mixtures. 


GLE 0307.9.3 Describe different methods to separate mixtures.


Checks for Understanding 

                       Brain Pop on Physical Changes

                       Learn 360: What is Matter?

                       Learn 360: States of Matter video

                       Learn 360: Three Properties – Solid, Liquids, Gases

                       Does temperature affect evaporation?  Inquiry lab

                          Learn 360: Separating Mixtures video  

State Performance Indicators

                       Solids, Liquids, Gas

                       Solids and Liquids

                       Solid, Liquid, and Gases Sorting Game

                       Sequencing Game for Solid to Liquid

                       Matching Game with Solid, Liquid, and Gas

                       Chart on Solids, Liquids, and Gases

                       Learn 360: What is Matter?

                       Learn 360: States of Matter video

                       Learn 360: Three Properties – Solid, Liquids, Gases

                       The Mixture Lab

                       Learn 360: Separating Mixtures video


Grade 3: Standard 10 -Energy  

Conceptual Strand 10 Various forms of energy are constantly being transformed into other types without any net loss of energy from the system.

                       The Energy Story  covers all aspects of energy divided into 20 online chapters

Guiding Question 10 What basic energy related ideas are essential for understanding the dependency of the natural and man-made worlds on energy?


Grade Level Expectations

GLE 0307.10.1 Investigate phenomena that produce heat.

                       Brain Pop about the

                       Heat, Heat, Heat

                       How Can We Plug into the Sun’s Power


GLE 0307.10.2 Design and conduct an experiment to investigate the ability of different materials to conduct heat.


Checks for Understanding 


State Performance Indicators

                        Timelines of Different Types of Energy Created by Students


                        Real World Mass Story

What is Force?


Grade 3 : Standard 11 -Motion

Conceptual Strand 11 Objects move in ways that can be observed, described, predicted, and measured.

Guiding Question 11 What causes objects to move differently under different circumstances?


Grade Level Expectations

GLE 0307.11.1 Explore how the direction of a  moving object is affected by unbalanced forces

                       Balanced forces     Unbalanced forces

                       Balanced and Unbalanced Forces

GLE 0307.11.2 Recognize the relationship between the mass of an object and the force needed to move it.


GLE 0307.11.3 Investigate how the pitch and volume of a sound can be changed.


Checks for Understanding

                       Balancing a Scale PowerPoint

                       Math Cats Balance Game

                       The Compound Machine


                       Perfect Pitch

                       Sequencing Game with Sound

                       Changing Sounds Game with Guitar, Water Bottle, and Drum

                       Foss Kit Investigation One in Sound Chambers

                        Ask a Scientist about Sound

                        Duplicate Sheets for Investigations of Sound with Foss Kit

                        Xlyophone Water Bottle Pitch Experiment



State Performance Indicators 

                       Pushes and Pulls

                       Games on Forces and Objects

                       Magic Motion an inquiry based lesson; Sorting Pushes and Pulls worksheet for Magic Motion; 

                       What Can It Do? an inquiry activity for Magic Motion; Moving with Motion activity for Magic Motion;

                       Move It - an inquiry activity

                       Lesson Changing Pitch

                       Sorting Instruments between High and Low Pitch

                       Changing Sounds

                       Brain Pop about Sound


Grade 3 : Standard 12 -Forces in Nature

Conceptual Strand 12 Everything in the universe exerts a gravitational force on everything else;  there is an interplay between magnetic fields and electrical currents.

Guiding Question 12 What are the scientific principles that explain gravity and electromagnetism?


Grade Level Expectations

GLE 0307.12.1 Explore how magnets attract objects made of certain metals.


Checks for Understanding 

                       Exploring Magnets and Magnetism

                       Brain Pop on Magnets


                       Magnet Game


State Performance Indicators 

                       Springs and Magnets

                       Marvelous Magnets  Will It Stick? (Inquiry)