third grade

Third Grade: Ecosystems

Talking Science Through Texts > Third Grade > Ecosystems

Driving Questions: How are plants, animals, and environments of the past similar or different from current plants, animals, and environments? What happens to organisms when their environment changes?

View the topic bundle standards

Third Grade Crosscutting Concepts

Select a concept to learn more.


Scale, Proportion, Quantity

Observable phenomena exist from very short to very long time periods.

Caues and Effect

Cause and Effect

Events have causes that generate observable patterns.

Caues and Effect

Systems and System Models

A system can be described in terms of its components and their interactions.

Talking Science: Crosscutting Concepts to Support Comprehension

Crosscutting concepts have application across all domains of science. As such, they are a way of linking the different domains of science. They include patterns; cause and effect; scale, proportion, and quantity; systems and system models; energy and matter; structure and function; and stability and change. The Framework emphasizes that these concepts need to be made explicit for students because they provide an organizational schema for interrelating knowledge from various science fields into a coherent and scientifically based view of the world.

Suggested Read Aloud Texts

Choose a text to view its read aloud guide.

A Weed is a Flower

A Weed is a Flower

Oscar and the Cricket


The Little Snowplow

Spring After Spring

The Little Snowplow

Animal Friends, Animal Families

Talking Science: Formative Assessment Probes

Extend the discussion of these books using the suggested prompts from the Uncovering Student Ideas in Science Series from Page Keeley and NSTA.

  • 3-LS2-1
    • No Related Probes for LS2.D
  • 3-LS4-1
    • #22 Mountaintop Fossil (USI Vol2) p. 165
    • #17 Is it a Fossil? (USI EES) p. 91
  • 3-LS4-3
    • #19 Habitat Change (USI Vol2) p. 143
  • 3-LS4-4
    • #19 Habitat Change (USI Vol2) p. 143
    • #17 No More Plants (USI LSV1) p. 103
    • #18 Changing Environment (USI LSV1) p. 109

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