Sunday, March 27, 2016

Have a beautiful day Second Grade Families

We have had a wonderful couple of weeks. 

We had a visit from the wonderful children's author, Jennifer Jacobson. She was a hoot! 
Here she is taking on the role of one of her story characters. Awesome! She connected her work so beautifully with the work we are practicing every day as readers and writers. She explained that we were creating stories long before we could write through imaginative play. We practiced our inferring skills: using clues from a book from her Andy Shane series to find out in this case, who bought the binoculars. We also had a blast digging deeper in character development and what that looks like as readers. It was great to see so much interaction as your children could relate with so much because of the work we are doing in literacy. Thank you PTA for this awesome opportunity. 

The most exciting news is that at the end of our time with Jennifer Jacobson, she told us that she has a website and on that website there's an address that we can send letters to. Well...she also said that, she "always writes back!" So...needless to say we will be writing to Jennifer Jacobson as we transition into our letter writing unit. First we must complete publishing our informational pieces. Stay tuned for the publishing of our research projects too! They are incredible! 

Shifting gears to math: story problems, time to the nearest five minutes, interacting with coins and recognizing a trade opportunity, fractions to the half, third, and fourths, even and odd numbers and how to use them to our advantage when identifying equal amounts. These are only some of the skills we are currently practicing in math. We continue to practice the use of number strings and recognizing doubles facts and near doubles when adding. Along with these practices, we are learning and discussing the importance of slowing down our work, how important it is to be presentable, and furthermore, how critical it is to go back through to check our work before presenting it. 
Above we are showing you how we took one piece of drawing paper and turned it into halves then fourths. We are reading and writing fractions! 

Some hot topics in science right now are life cycles, metamorphosis, and symbiosis. We got to recently reflect on our favorite odd animal relationship and explain how they benefit from one another within their relationship. Ask your second grader what their favorite odd couple relationship was and why. 

Finally, we also received a visit from EcoMaine to talk to us about the three R's. Reduce, Reuse, Recycle. I'm sure you've seen the goodies that came home with your student on Wednesday. This was a very cool presentation. 
Second grade's next step is thinking about how we can bring the great work were doing recycling and composting in our classroom into our community. We want to teach others how simple it really is! Thank you EcoMaine. 

Some friendly reminders as we move into April:
It's likely to be wet, muddy, and still cool and chilly then warm and seasonable. Please make sure your child is prepared with the proper clothes, change of, and boots. 

Also, I've noticed a decrease in the return of homework. I only send homework if I feel like it is truly an opportunity to practice and/or refresh a skill. This is important and our year is not complete. Please help your child remember to practice and return their homework. 

I cannot believe it'll be April by the end of our week together. WOW! We continue to have such a productive and awesome year together. Thank you for sharing your children with me and thank you for all of your support along the way. 

Thursday, March 10, 2016

Checking in

Hello Second Grade! 

We've had some beautiful days that have certainly gotten your children very excited. I love it! However, please help your child remember layers. As you know what starts out as a warmer day can become cooler in just a few hours. Jackets, sweatshirts, and even boots and a change of clothes, especially pants and socks are a great idea as spring approaches. 

We have an exciting couple of weeks ahead of us in second grade. Next week on the 15th we will have the honor of author, Jennifer Jacobson visiting our classroom. Then on the 23rd we will have representatives from ECOMaine visiting to talk with us about the importance of reducing, reusing, and recycling. We have begun this in our school as you know through composting and recycling but it's exciting to hear how we can continue to make a difference not only in our school but in our community. 

Skills we've been practicing:
Various ways to get to 100
Collecting $1.00 and spending $1.00
Solving double and triple digit addition and subtraction story problems with the use ofmoney 
How many 5's are in 100?
How many 10's are in 100?
Math games has been a fun and challenging way to practice mental math, partner accountability, explaining how, and using critical thinking while practicing the most efficient ways to practice and develop math skills. 

Does a frog or a ladybug go through complete metamorphosis? This is what we're talking about as we use informational text and our partners to pull out examples of metamorphosis. 

Learning about nonfiction has been teaching us how to use text features to enhance our comprehension, research, identify the difference between fact and opinion, as well as implement some fun experiments during our writing block. We had the chance to explore which is stronger: a piece of flat paper or a paper that has been folded like an accordion?  We also experimented with absorption between writing paper and paper towels. In the end, we experimented then wrote about it. The best part was presenting our findings! So wonderful!!! 

Be sure to ask your second grader what animal they're studying right now. 

Enjoy your weekend!!!