Your students will love comprehensible third grade reading activities

By the third grade, most students are really starting to get into reading. They are enthusiastic readers, with choices for particular themes and genres and opinions about what they read! Here are 12 third grade reading comprehensible activities that will help them dig deeper into what they are reading and build their skills to the next level.

1. Create a comprehension cottage catcher.

Photo collage for a reading cottage catcher free printable

Make reading fun with these free cottage catchers a fun game. There are three different versions available, and each has questions that will help your students dig deeper into their reading. Each cute catcher addresses reading comprehension elements such as character, plot, setting, problems and solutions and the questions are simple enough that they can be used with any book.

Source: The Classroom Game Nook

2. Play a round of roll and retail.

Game directions for a third grade reading comprehensible game roll and down with a colorful pennant and dice 1-6 dice across the top

One of the best ways to help students make sense is to give them a chance to talk about what they have read. It’s a fun game to play, and all you need is a pair of dice. Students can connect and share information about what they have read. Or they can work alone and roll their dice and write their answers.

Source: Home school gift

3. Make a paper chain of connections.

Third Grade Reading Comprehension Paper Chain hangs on a poster made with students' text connections

Good readers make connections as they read. Track your students’ connections with this exciting visual activity from Brooke at Literacy in Focus. First, students write their connections on a colored strip of paper (each type of connection is made in a different color). Then, students attach their links and attach them to their respective text-connection labels or posters (see the bulletin board example at the link below). Links can be added throughout the year as new articles are read. The link-up activity provides a great visual representation of the entire text-connection process.

Source: Literacy in focus

4. Build guessing skills.

A photo in the middle of a worksheet for third graders and comments around it

Check out this blog for eight fun activities to build students’ guessing skills, including watching short films, reading wordless books, and using photo task cards.

Source: The Teacher’s Next Door

5. Bat near a beach ball.

Written in the inflatable ball and cube section with reading comprehension questions

Using a sharpie marker, students write different questions to answer the book they are reading. Hit various elements like character, problem and solution, setting, connection, prediction etc. Kids will swell around them as they build comprehension skills.

Source: Conversation in Literacy

6. Run a nonfiction relay race.

According to instructor Cleo Sternus, PhD, “Kinesthetic games allow third graders to use their bodies as well as their minds, and can be especially helpful for students who do not like to be static or who benefit from a multi-sensory approach to learning.”

One of his ideas is to run a non-fiction relay race to improve reading comprehension. This activity is great after reading a nonfiction book or article together. Divide students into groups and go to the gym or out. Set up a racecourse, for example marked by a 100 yard flag or a lap around the track. The first student in each group will run the course, and after they return, and before the next student in the line runs, they must repeat a fact that they have learned from the lesson. The first team to complete the course of all runners wins.

Source: First Cry Parenting

7. Hold a Book Character Day.

The children dress like the characters in a book

Kids love Book Character Day! It gives them a chance to show how much they know about one of their favorite characters Encourage them to dress like their characters and carry props that are part of their story. Maybe they want to act and talk like their character. Be sure to set aside time for each student to tell their classmates about their chosen character and why.

Source: Shann Eva’s Blog

8. Repeat a story with rock painting.

Take a classic childhood art project — Rock Painting — and add a story for a creative, engaging lesson comprehension project. In this activity, children will read a book, then they will retell the story with pictures drawn in stone.


9. Play a board game.

3 understandable board games for kids

There are many fun games that enhance literacy skills, including Scrabble, Story Cubes, Tall Tales, Headbangs and more. Try this fun board game available on Amazon, it has three different games that students can play to improve their reading comprehension. Put it in your classroom wish list!

Source: Amazon

10. Track your thoughts with sticky notes.

Classroom anchor chart shows students how to use sticky notes to express their thoughts

According to the Home Reading Helper, using sticky notes is a great way for students to memorize and internalize what they read. Using these symbols as a guide, students place a sticky note with the appropriate symbol next to a line in a book to show their thoughts while reading.

Source: Arabic Comprehension Strategies

11. Create anchor charts together.

Anchor chart collage for reading comprehension

From identifying a text to visualizing a character’s journey, we’ve got the best reading understandable anchor chart for you! There are over 35 color samples for you to create with your students during direct instruction.

Source: WeAreTeachers

12. Create the “desired” poster.

A wanted poster of a book character drawn by a child

Your kids will love this fun writing and drawing activity that demonstrates an understanding of their character development. After reading a story, kids will use what they know about bad guys in a book to create a wanted poster.


Looking for more ways to encourage third-grade reading comprehension? Check out our list of over 60 best third grade books.

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