Downloadable PARCC Practice Test 3rd Grade + How To Ace the Test

PARCC Practice test 3rd grade

If your child is a 3rd grade student in a PARCC state, this will be the first year he or she is required to take the PARCC tests.

PARCC tests are aligned with Common Core State Standards (CCSS) and assess students’ progress toward these rigorous standards. English Language Arts and Mathematics tests are annually administered in grades 3-11.

These tests are challenging, but completing PARCC practice tests for 3rd grade can help. Since these tests are new for your child, we’re providing helpful practice tests, answering all of your pressing questions, and giving you 3rd grade PARCC practice questions, with answer keys.

Completing full-length practice tests is one of the most effective test preparation strategies, and doing this will help put your child on the path to success.

The following downloadable PARCC tests are made by the creator of the PARCC assessments, so they are the gold standard for practice. That means that these tests contain the kind of material that your child will face on test day.

Just click the button below to get the practice exam, plus we will also send you our 5 proven test prep strategies for using PARCC practice tests in your study plan.

Grade 3 PARCC Practice Test - ELA & Math

What is PARCC?

Let’s get started on discussing everything you need to know about the third grade PARCC exam.

PARCC (the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers) is a group of states that collaborates to create assessments measuring if students are on track for success in college and careers. As we mentioned earlier, questions are linked to the Common Core State Standards.

Common Core is a “clear set of shared goals and expectations” for the skills and knowledge students in each grade level should master in English Language Arts and Mathematics.

In accordance with the CCSS, PARCC focuses on higher level critical thinking skills, problem solving, analysis, and real-world application.

PARCC provides parents, teachers, and students with information about student performance and progress. You’ll receive insight into the skills your child still needs to master in order to be on track for continued success.

PARCC 3rd Grade Basics

This year, your child will take PARCC English Language Arts and PARCC Mathematics for the first time.

Your child will have the majority of the school year to master the skills that will be assessed on the PARCC tests. Tests must be administered during a 30 day window that ends about 90% of the way through the school year.

These assessments are computer based and use interactive questions that can test higher order skills more effectively than traditional multiple choice tests.

Students write short responses and essays, provide evidence to support responses, drag and drop words and numbers into charts and graphs, and more.

Let’s take a look at the type of skills and knowledge that will be tested on both the ELA and mathematics assessments, along with some 3rd grade PARCC practice questions.

PARCC ELA 3rd Grade

Your child will be evaluated on higher level reading comprehension and writing skills, including the ability to:

  • Determine main idea

  • PARCC - Main Idea sample question

    PARCC - Main Idea sample question

  • Evaluate author’s purpose and author’s choices

  • Determine the meaning of vocabulary in context

  • PARCC - Vocab sample question

    PARCC - Vocab sample question

  • Understand cause and effect

  • PARCC - Cause and Effect sample question

    PARCC - Cause and Effect sample question

  • Find evidence to support a claim, idea, or answer (See Evidence Based Selected Response below)

  • Identify and analyze theme, characterization, conflict, and figurative language

  • PARCC - Characterization sample question

    PARCC - Characterization sample question

  • Analyze how individuals, ideas, and events interact over the course of a text

  • Describe how various parts of a text interact with, build on, and impact other parts

  • PARCC - Build On sample question

    PARCC - Build On sample question

  • Compare/contrast theme, setting, key details, etc. from two or more texts

  • Comprehend and analyze text features like subheadings, images, etc.
  • PARCC - Text Features sample question

    PARCC - Text Features sample question

    Questions are based on both literary and nonfiction passages. Students may also be expected to respond to questions based on audio or video.

    On all ELA PARCC exams, there are three major question types:

  • Evidence Based Selected Response: This is the most common question type. Students are asked a two-part question: Part A is a traditional multiple choice question, and Part B asks students to select evidence to support their response to Part A.
  • PARCC - Evidence Based sample question

    PARCC - Evidence Based sample question

  • Technology-Enhanced Constructed Response: Students use technology (drag and drop, cut and paste, move items to show relationship) to demonstrate critical thinking, analysis, and comprehension abilities.

  • PARCC - Technology Enhanced sample question

    PARCC - Technology Enhanced sample question

    Students may be asked to click on pieces of text to support a claim, check each box that could be a correct response to the question, drag and drop steps into chronological order, etc.

  • Range of Prose Constructed Response: Students must generate written responses related to a question about a text or texts. They must use appropriate evidence and language conventions to earn full points. Four of these questions will appear on your child’s test.
  • PARCC - Written Response sample

    PARCC - Written Response sample

    The test is divided into three sections, which are referred to as “units.” For third grade students, the units are timed as follows:

  • Unit 1: 90 minutes

  • Unit 2: 75 minutes

  • Unit 3: 90 minutes
  • Although this is a rigorous test, you can help your child prepare with PARCC practice tests 3rd grade.

    PARCC Mathematics 3rd Grade

    This test assesses the ability to solve multi-step math problems that require critical thinking and address real-world situations. Your child may be expected to:

  • Make sense of quantities and relationships to solve real world problems
  • PARCC - Real World Problem sample

    PARCC - Real World Problem sample

  • Find and correct errors

  • Prove or disprove mathematical statements (See Type II question below)

  • Recognize basic characteristics of various geometric shapes, understand area and perimeter
  • PARCC - Geometry sample

    PARCC - Geometry sample

  • Understand the basics of place value and the number system

  • Add, subtract, multiply, and divide
  • PARCC - Multiplication and Division sample

    PARCC - Multiplication and Division sample

  • Understand basic decimals and fractions
  • PARCC - Fractions sample

    PARCC - Fractions sample

    On PARCC Math tests, there are three major task types:

  • Type I: Tasks assessing concepts, skills, and procedures. (The sample questions above are Type I.)

  • Type II: Tasks assessing the ability to express mathematical reasoning (written arguments and justifications, critiques of reasoning, precision in mathematical statements).
  • PARCC - Type II A sample question

    PARCC - Type II A sample question

    PARCC - Type II Bsample question

    PARCC - Type II Bsample question

  • Type III: Tasks assessing models/application in real world contexts or scenarios.
  • PARCC - Type III A sample

    PARCC - Type III A sample

    PARCC - Type III B sample

    PARCC - Type III B sample

    PARCC - Type III C sample

    PARCC - Type III C sample

    Like the ELA exam, the Mathematics test is divided into “units.” Third grade students must complete four 60-minute units.

    Students in third grade are not permitted to use calculators, and calculators will not be necessary to solve 3rd grade math problems.

    To avoid losing points, remind your child of the following:

  • If a method for a problem is specified, your child must use this method to earn points.

  • “Precision points” can be lost if your child forgets to label answers (feet, yards, etc.).

  • Using incorrect mathematical vocabulary can also result in lost precision points.
  • On the plus side, if your child makes an error early on when solving a problem, and the rest of the work follows from this single mistake, no additional points will be deducted.

    To help your child prepare for the big day, we recommend using PARCC practice tests 3rd grade, paying particular attention to your child’s strengths and weaknesses and helping him make adjustments as needed.

    PARCC: 3rd Grade Test Prep

    Yes, PARCC tests are challenging, but remember that these tests are aligned with CCSS, and so is your child’s curriculum.

    This means that your child will be learning the skills and knowledge tested on PARCC throughout the school year. For this reason, remind your child that it’s important to pay attention in class, complete classwork and homework, and ask questions when needed.

    If your child seems to struggle with reading, writing, or math this year, you may want to ask the teacher for extra help or consider hiring a tutor. Your child’s teacher can also be a great resource for staying informed about your child’s progress, strengths and weaknesses, etc.

    To improve reading comprehension, vocabulary, and grammar, it’s a good idea to set a weekly reading goal. Encourage your child to read a set amount of pages or minutes weekly. She can choose something engaging and interesting, as long as she’s reading.

    If your child needs extra math practice, you can purchase workbooks, computer programs, or even apps designed to help children improve specific math skills.

    The best way to prepare for any standardized test, however, is by working on sample questions and completing practice tests. The PARCC practice tests 3rd grade that we’ve provided here are a great place to start.

    As your child answers questions incorrectly, take the time to discuss why the right answer is correct instead. You can also spend time clearing up misconceptions and developing strategies to approach similar questions more effectively in the future.

    If you notice a question type that your child particularly struggles with, focus future practice sessions on these questions. Keep sessions as brief, engaging, and encouraging as possible to prevent your child from getting burnt out or developing anxiety about the test.

    Along the same lines, try not to overemphasize the test. Too much stress at a young age is not only unhealthy, but it’s also likely to have a negative impact on your child’s ability to perform his best.

    If you follow these tips and help your child complete PARCC practice tests 3rd grade, you’ll be giving him the tools he needs for a successful PARCC performance!