Grade 3 Summer Reading

The following is a list of age and content appropriate novels for students entering Grade 3. Please read at least two of these books over the summer, as well as many picture books. It is wonderful to continue reading pictures books along with novels at this age. Picture books work to build the imagination visually with pictures and new vocabulary and novels build stamina by reading over a sustained period of time.

Download a PDF version

Recommended Books

Alphabet Thief The Alphabet Thief by Bill Richardson
The alphabet thief stole all of the B’s, and all of the bowls became owls…When night falls, along comes a peculiar thief who steals each letter of the alphabet, creating a topsy-turvy world as she goes. It seems that no one can stop her, until the Z’s finally send her to sleep so that all the other letters can scamper back to where they belong.
Catching Spring Catching Spring by Sylvia Olsen
The year is 1957, and Bobby lives on the Tsartlip First Nation reserve on Vancouver Island where his family has lived for generations and generations. He loves his weekend job at the nearby marina. He loves to play marbles with his friends. And he loves being able to give half his weekly earnings to his mother to eke out the grocery money, but he longs to enter the up-coming fishing derby. With the help of his uncle and Dan from the marina his wish just might come true.
Charlottes Web Charlotte's Web by E.B. White
Charlotte’s Web opens the door to a magical world for a young girl named Fern. An affectionate, sometimes bashful pig named Wilbur befriends a spider named Charlotte, who lives in the rafters above his pen in the barn. In this story of friendship, hardship, and the cycle of life, E.B. White reminds us to open our eyes to the wonder and miracle often found in the simplest of things. A classic all children must read.
The Enormous Egg The Enormous Egg by Oliver Butterworth
Young Nate is surprised when one of the hens on his family farm lays a giant egg. After a painstaking wait, Nate is even more surprised when it hatches and out pops a baby triceratops that he names Uncle Beazley. But when Nate decides to keep the dinosaur and raise it on his own, he has no idea what he’s getting himself into. As Uncle Beazley grows, Nate and his family realize they are not equipped to take care of a full-sized dinosaur and so with the help of their scientist friend, they head off to the National Museum in Washington, DC, to hunt for the perfect home for a modern-day dinosaur—then the real trouble begins.
Fortunately, the Milk Fortunately, the Milk by Neil Gaiman
You know what it’s like when your mum goes away on a business trip and Dad’s in charge. She leaves a really, really long list of what he’s got to do. And the most important thing is DON’T FORGET TO GET THE MILK. Unfortunately, Dad forgets. So the next morning, before breakfast, he has to go to the corner shop, and this is the story of why it takes him a very, very long time to get back. Featuring: Professor Steg (a time-travelling dinosaur), some green globby things, the Queen of the Pirates, the famed jewel that is the Eye of Splod, some wumpires, and a perfectly normal but very important carton of milk.
The Invisible Boy The Invisible Boy by Sally Gardner
When his parents are lost in space, Sam is left, heartbroken, in the care of the horrible Hilda Hardbottom. Then he finds a tiny spaceship in the cabbage patch and meets a little alien called Splodge. How Splodge makes him invisible, and how Sam uses his new talent in his darkest hour, makes a touching and extremely funny story with lovely memorable characters.
The Mouse and the Motorcycle The Mouse and the Motorcycle by Beverly Cleary
When Keith and his family take Room 215 at an old hotel, he never imagines what is in store for him. Their room also happens to be the home of Ralph, a young mouse. When Keith leaves his toy motorcycle out, Ralph can't resist sitting on it. Keith discovers the mouse and the two become friends. But what adventures will await Ralph now that he can ride a motorcycle? The central themes include friendship and overcoming obstacles and fears. It’s the exhilaration of the story, the joy of speed and adventure, the cliffhangers, and the unshakeable central friendship between the boy and the mouse that has made this book a classic.
Shi-Shi-Etko Shi-Shi-Etko by Nicola Campbell
Finalist for the TD Canadian Children’s Literature Award, the Marilyn Baillie Picture Book Award and the Ruth Schwartz Award. In just four days young Shi-shi-etko will have to leave her family and all that she knows to attend residential school. She spends her last days at home treasuring the beauty of her world—the dancing sunlight, the tall grass, each shiny rock, the tadpoles in the creek, her grandfather’s paddle song. Her mother, father and grandmother, each in turn, share valuable teachings that they want her to remember. And so Shi-shi-etko carefully gathers her memories for safekeeping.

Recommended Series

The Amazing World of Stuart The Amazing World of Stuart (3 in the series) by Sara Pennypacker
Stuart and his family have just moved to town, and there’s plenty to worry about. Stuart is very good at worrying, but not so good at waiting. Impatient for an adventure, he makes himself a cape out of a hundred old ties, and from then on, he has on preposterous adventure after another.
Beast Quest Beast Quest (series) by Adam Blade
An evil wizard, magical beasts and a hero who stops them from destroying the land. What else can you ask for in a fantasy? This is a good first easy-reading fantasy novel. Read the first and then get hooked on the series.
Clementine Clementine (7 in the series) by Sarah Pennypacker
In this first book of the series, Clementine tries to help out her friend Margaret by cutting her hair, but ends up in a lot of trouble for it. Things get worse each day of the week, until finally she’s worried that Margaret is right: Clementine’s parents might consider her “the hard one” in the family. They’re up to something mysterious. Are they thinking they’d be better off if they only had her little vegetable-named brother—“the easy one?” All children can relate to the antics and troubles that Clementine finds herself in. Find out what makes this naughty, little girl character so charming and likeable.
Dory Fantasmagory Dory Fantasmagory (3 in the series) by Abby Hanlon
Move over, Junie B. Jones and Ivy & Bean! Here comes a lovably energetic little sister with a BIG personality—and an imagination to match! As the youngest in her family, Dory really wants attention, and more than anything she wants her brother and sister to play with her. But she’s too much of a baby for them, so she’s left to her own devices—including her wild imagination and untiring energy!
Guardians of Ga’Hoole: The Capture Guardians of Ga’Hoole: The Capture (15 books in the series) by Kathryn Lasky
This is the first book in series, about an owl clan. Soren is born in the forest of Tyto, a tranquil kingdom where the Barn Owls dwell. But evil lurks in the owl world that threatens to shatter Tyto’s peace and changing the course of Soren’s life forever. The story’s fast pace, menacing bad guys, and flashes of humor make this a good choice for reluctant readers.
Heartwood Hotel Heartwood Hotel: A True Home (series) by Kallie George
When Mona the Mouse stumbles across the wondrous world of the Heartwood Hotel in the middle of a storm, she desperately hopes they'll let her stay. As it turns out, Mona is precisely the maid they need at the grandest hotel in Fernwood Forest, where animals come from far and wide for safety, luxury, and comfort. But the Heartwood Hotel is not all acorn souffle and soft moss-lined beds. Danger lurks, and as it approaches, Mona finds that this hotel is more than a warm place to spend the night. It might also be a home. This delightfully enticing start of a new chapter book series tells a tale of friendship, courage, and community, with exquisite black-and-white illustrations throughout.
Hockey Rules Hockey Rules! (6 books in the series) by Irene Punt
Tom really likes his babysitter, Jeff. So do his friends. Jeff plays road hockey with them after school. A conflict arises when Jeff becomes a referee at the local arena and calls penalties against the team. If you love hockey this is a good easy reading chapter books with a theme of conflict and resolution.
I Survived I Survived Series (8 books in the series) by Lauren Tarshis
These books are a great way for children to plunge into historical fiction. Each story is set during a time of disaster where brave children need to use their intelligence and problem solving skills to survive. This is series will keep young readers gripped all this while learning some history.
Lulu Walks the Dogs Lulu Walks the Dogs (3 in the series) by Judith Viorst
The stubbornly hilarious Lulu has decided it’s time to buckle down and make some some money. How else can she save up to buy the very special thing that she is ALWAYS and FOREVER going to want? After some failed attempts at lucrative gigs (baking cookies, spying, reading to old people), dog walking seems like a sensible choice. Readers and lovers of Clementine and Judy Moody will enjoy this brash and bold character.
Marty McGuire Digs Worms Marty McGuire Digs Worms (3 in the series) by Kate Messner
Marty McGuire’s third-grade class has a special assignment: Save the Earth! Even more exciting, the best project wins a special award. Marty’s pretty sure her classmates’ ideas won’t stand a chance against her plan to turn the garbage from the school cafeteria into fertilizer. All she needs is a little help from her teammate and best friend, Annie—and the worms in her grandma’s garden. But it turns out that worms are awfully SLOW eaters. And when the critters escape, the whole class starts grumbling. Can Marty save the Earth without losing her friends?
Operation Bunny Operation Bunny by Sally Gardner
Adorableness oozes out of this book. It is a delightful read for young readers. If Harry Potter is too long or too hard for you then try this series. It has many of the same themes without being so dark. It’s perfect for just starting to read middle grade fiction. When Emily Vole inherits an abandoned shop, she discovers a magical world she never knew existed. A fairy-hating witch, a mischievous set of golden keys, and a train full of brightly coloured bunnies are just a few of the surprises that come with it. With the help of a talking cat called Fidget and a grumpy fairy detective called Buster, it is up to Emily to save the fairies and get to the bottom of Operation Bunny. Try this book if you like a fun-filled fantasy mystery.
Skunked: Calpurnia Tate, Girl Vet Skunked: Calpurnia Tate, Girl Vet #1 (series) by Jacqueline Kelly
From Newbery honour author Jacqueline Kelly comes a new illustrated chapter book series for younger readers featuring the beloved characters from The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate. In Calpurnia Tate, Animal Doctor in Training, Callie Vee, Travis, and Dr. Pritzker help animals big and small. When soft-hearted Travis discovers an abandoned baby skunk, he can't help but bring him home and take care of him. Stinky, as Travis names him, settles in pretty well. But when Travis discovers Stinky's litter-mate, Winky, who is in need of some help, things get complicated around the Tate house. One skunk is a piece of cake; two is just asking for trouble. Will Travis and Callie be able to keep the critters away from Mother's careful eyes—and nose?


Curious Kids Nature Guide Curious Kids Nature Guide: Explore the Amazing Outdoors of the Pacific Northwest by Fiona Cohen and Marnie Fylling
Did you know that baby raccoons are smaller than a bar of soap? Or that salmon smell using little pits in the front of their eyes? Curious Kids Nature Guide is filled with full-color illustrations and fun facts about the natural wonders of the Pacific Northwest, encouraging kids to discover and explore nature in their own backyards and beyond.

Back to top of page.