Third graders have an adventurous spirit: exploring on their own and taking initiative when it comes to creating, building, and—you guessed it—reading! As your little one begins reading independently for the first time, the right books can help propel them towards new skill development. Supporting their reading confidence at this stage is also crucial—their attitude towards reading in third and fourth grade will go on to shape their habits down the line. That’s why finding engaging and enriching books is a task worthy of some extra effort. We want to help.
There are plenty of terrific titles out there for third graders, but some of the very best ones will help them develop new skills while nurturing existing ones. Here are a few of Literati’s top picks for third graders:
Maze Quest History: Travel Through Time!
For George and his pup Milly, it’s just a normal day at the Natural History Museum—that is, until they’re suddenly rocketed into the past! To get home, they’ll need the help of your very own little history buff. You and your reader can help George and Milly navigate through the past in Maze Quest History: Travel Through Time! With over 48 mazes to solve, this interactive book sprinkles in historical facts across all major time periods, making it more educational than your typical book of mazes. The narrative format also helps readers engage with the story sequence as they memorize (and repeat) new fascinating facts!
National Parks of the USA
National Parks of the U.S.A. stuns with glossy, realistic illustrations that will introduce your child to diverse landscapes and animal species they might not realize are in our very own backyard! And they aren’t just pretty to look at—your child will learn bite-sized facts they can remember and recite back.
This book includes a crossword of predators, a bird word search, spot-the-difference games with insects, a pull-out poster map, and dozens of stickers. Safe to say there’s hours upon hours of fun to be found in this book—no travel necessary!
Roscoe Riley Rules #1: Never Glue Your Friends to Chairs
Accidental rulebreaker, Roscoe Riley, gets himself into a sticky situation when he tries to solve a problem for his teacher. But this little guy is so used to inadvertently getting into trouble that he’s got a list of “time-out activities” that are sure to keep your little one busy. Short, fast-paced chapters and funny sentences have been known to keep readers glued to their chairs!
Marge in Charge
Marge is a one-of-a-kind babysitter with an over-the-top kind of attitude. This rowdy, rainbow-haired rule-breaker comes off as tame, but is quick to get siblings Jemima and Jake into all sorts of hilarious mischief. Third graders will get a kick of Marge’s wild antics, while building comprehension skills with longer dialogue and fewer pictures.
Your Very Own Robot
Some kids want puppies. Some want hamsters. Some just really want a robot. In this choose-your-own-adventure book, readers get to “build” their own robot and go nuts (and bolts) with it throughout the fun story. The unique format is perfect for third graders who are developing a newfound sense of autonomy, while the subject matter may spark an interest in autonomous machines!
The Case of the Missing Carrot Cake
Miss Rabbit’s carrot cake has gone missing and Detectives Wilcox and Griswold are on the case! Mystery stories can help third graders understand how to use context clues and connect the dots between cause and effect. This delicious whodunnit is just desserts for readers who love stories that keep them guessing and giggling.
Franny K. Stein, Mad Scientist: Lunch Walks Among Us
It’s hard fitting in, especially when you’re a mad scientist in grade school with a love for the creepier things in life. Jim Benton, the bestselling author of Dear Dumb Diary, is back with this lovable misfit who learns that the greatest power she contains is being herself. This book is delightfully different, just like Franny. If your third grader already loves science, silliness, and monsters, they’ll zoom through these pages.
Discover Personalized Picks with Literati Book Clubs
There you have it—a handful of stories that can help third graders continue on their reading journey with confidence. While these books are undeniable crowd favorites, the very best books for your child probably won’t come from a list. Literati curates books on an individual basis—Literati readers get a box of books that’s as unique as they are.
With Literati’s personalized kids book clubs, you’ll never have to worry whether your bookshelf is suited to support your child’s progress. Instead, you’ll get a box of books that match their reading level, align to their interests, and expand their love of learning. Take the Literati personalization quiz, and Literati’s curation experts will get to work finding extra-enriching books—stories your child simply won’t want to put down.