April News

4/28/2017   

Here are some things we’ve been working on in second grade.

 

Collecting Items for the Basket Raffle

Our class it putting together a basket of gift cards for the PTA basket raffle fundraiser.  The basket raffle will take place at our Art Fair & Cass 50-Year Celebration on May 10th. 

Please send donations of gift cards (any amount to any store/restaurant/etc.) in an envelope marked “Basket Raffle Donation.”  Thank you!

Thank you to the families that have already sent in donations! 

 

Looking for an At-Home Volunteer

We are looking for a volunteer to cut letters for our alphabet buffet that we use daily for making words.  This is a job that you could work on at home.  These letters come 20 to a sheet of paper. Essentially, we need to mark columns to cut (because the tiles are too wide for our alphabet drawers), and then cut the letters apart.  This task would be easiest if you have a craft cutter (paper cutter).

If you would be willing to work on this project, please let me know.  I’ll send home the letters and a special ruler to help mark the columns.  Thank you!

 

7 Habits of Happy Kids

We continued our focus on Habit 5 – Seek first to understand. 

We are also reviewing and practicing habits 1-4.

Habit 1 – Be proactive.  You are in charge.

Habit 2 – Begin with the end in mind.

Habit 3 – Put first things first.  Work first, then play.

Habit 4 – Think win-win.    

 

Character Focus

We have been focusing on integrity during the month of April.  When we have integrity, we are honest and have strong moral principles

We decided that the Stepmother in the traditional literature book Hansel and Gretel did NOT have integrity.  She kept trying to take the children into the woods and leave them.  Each time the Stepmother told the children that she would come back, but she did not.  Who does something like that?

 

Important Dates

Spell Check #10: Friday, May 5th

Unit 8 Math Assessments: Friday May 5th (Cumulative: Units 1-7) and Monday May 8th (“Regular” unit assessment)

Donations for the Gift Card Basket:  Please send these in by Friday, May 5th so a parent can organize/display the gift cards in our basket.  Thank you!

Art Fair, Basket Raffle, & Cass 50-Year Celebration: Wednesday May 10th, 5:30 – 8:30 p.m.

Field Trip to Greenfield Village: Tuesday, June 6th (all day)

Closing Ceremonies/End of Year Special Event:  Friday, June 9th (2:00 – 2:30 p.m. & 3:00 - 3:45 p.m. 

 

*NOTE*  Parents are encouraged to be chaperones for this field trip.  However, you MUST have a cleared IChat form on file to do so.  If you are unsure whether you completed this form earlier in the school year, we can check our list of approved/cleared parents.  We just need to know the exact name (and spelling) of your name on your driver’s license.

 

If you do not have a cleared iChat on file, you will need to compete the form as soon as possible.  It takes time for these forms to clear, and spring is a rather busy time.  Thank you for your prompt attention to this matter.

 

Podcasts [Click here for the link.]

Check them out!

 

Activity with Mrs. Coleman

We read more about Superflex and finished learning about Glassman.  Glassman is the “Unthinkable” character who tries to make us have huge, upset reactions to small problems

We made a list of strategies we use to help ourselves if Glassman is trying to make us have a big upset reaction to a small problem.  Here are the strategies we thought of and put on our list:

*  Tell yourself, “This is a small problem.”

*  Keep calm.

*  Say ABCs backwards.

*  Breathe

*  Think to yourself, “What are others thinking of me?”

*  Count to 10.

*  Use positive self-talk.

*  Focus on positive things.

*  Imagine the worst-case scenario, then this problem might not seem so bad.

Great thinking, class!

 

Reading [Click here for the link.]

Current unit of study:  Traditional Literature

This week we learned:

*  We notice how characters respond to events.

*  We imagine how characters would act and what they would say.

*  We role play and act out strong emotions of characters when we read.

 

Writing [Click here for the link.]

Current unit of study:  Research & Information Writing: Descriptive Report

This week we finished publishing our descriptive reports about plants.  We’re putting these books in our writing portfolios.

Student writing portfolios with published work from throughout our writing units we’ve completed will be on display at our Art Fair & 50 Year Celebration on Wednesday, May 10th.  Be sure to stop in and check out how much your child has grown with writing this year!

Next unit of study:  Realistic Fiction

 

Math  [Click here for the link.]

Current Unit: 8 – Geometry & Arrays

This week we:

* Partitioned rectangles into equal squares.  Sometime it was centimeter squares; sometimes it was inch squares.

* We made “math pictures” of equal groups and arrays to help us solve problems about equal groups.

->  Math pictures are simple pictures (for example with circles, squares, etc.) that represent the story problem.

->  Arrays are rows of the same number of things.  They can be “X”x, dots, etc.

*  We wrote repeated addition number sentences to tell how many in all.

*  We challenged ourselves to try writing the multiplication number sentence for some of the problems we solved.  We’ll be working more with multiplication shortly.

  For example, I have 3 shelves of books.  Each shelf has 5 books on it.   How many books do I have all together?

X X X X X                                         

X X X X X

X X X X X                      5 + 5 + 5 = 15    3 X 5 = 15

We will finish unit 8 and take the Cumulative (concepts from units 1-7) portion of the assessment next Friday.  We will take the “regular” unit assessment on Monday, May 8th.

Next Unit: 9 Equal Shares and Whole Number Operations

 

Science  [Click here for the link.]

Current focus: A Plant’s Life

*  We read books about plant lifecycles.  Our focus was on apple trees and pumpkins.

*  We learned that adult plants have flowers BEFORE they have fruit.

 

Social Studies [Click here for the link.]

Next focus: How can a citizen affect a community?

 

Computer lab

We learned about and played a game called Prodigy.  This is a fun game where children answer math questions to proceed through the game.  It is fun and very engaging!  Children can log in at home and play this game too!

Look for a parent note about Prodigy (including your child’s username and password) in the front pocket of the Weekly Folder.

 

Monthly Homework Calendars [Click here for the link.]

Thank you for helping your child to remember to complete 3 activities each week on the calendar.

 

Closing Ceremonies/End of Year Special Event  (Friday, June 9th )

Mark your calendar for our special year-end event.  Come for all or part of this special event.

2:00 – 2:30 p.m. – Act I:  Musical Review of Second Grade - Mrs. Gruenewald’s Class

2:30 – 3:00 p.m. – Intermission/set up for Act II (during recess)

3:00 - 3:45 p.m. – Act II: Combined Event with Mrs. Gruenewald’s Class & Mrs. Mayne’s Class, INCLUDING certificate ceremony & ice cream sundaes 

 

Have a wonderful weekend!

______________________________________________________

4/21/2017   

Here are some things we’ve been working on in second grade.

 

Robot Garage In-School Field Trip

We had a wonderful in-school field trip with the Robot Garage on Friday.  Thank you to our fabulous PTA!  This field trip came at a perfect time in our curriculum.  Students needed work with a partner, identify the correct parts, and follow directions carefully to assemble a robotic car

Students needed to be sure that the parts were put together correctly, facing the correct direction, etc.  We talked about how the “attributes” of these special parts helped us to find the correct ones.  We also had to “measure” the length of different pieces that looked similar and use estimation of length to place certain parts on the assembly.  It was amazing and the children had a lot of fun!  I hope to upload photos to our photo album soon.  Be on the lookout for them.

Each child got a special “drop in” certificate that he/she can use when they visit the Robot Garage (in Birmingham).

 

7 Habits of Happy Kids

We continued our focus on Habit 5 – Seek first to understand. 

We are also reviewing and practicing habits 1-4.

Habit 1 – Be proactive.  You are in charge.

Habit 2 – Begin with the end in mind.

Habit 3 – Put first things first.  Work first, then play.

Habit 4 – Think win-win.    

 

Character Focus

We are focusing on integrity during the month of April.  When we have integrity, we are honest and have strong moral principles

We decided that the Stepmother in the traditional literature book Hansel and Gretel did NOT have integrity.  She kept trying to take the children into the woods and leave them.  Each time the Stepmother told the children that she would come back, but she did not.  Who does something like that?

 

Important Dates

Poem in your Pocket - due Thursday, April 26th
Field Trip to Greenfield Village
: Tuesday, June 6th (all day)

 

*NOTE*  Parents are encouraged to be chaperones for this field trip.  However, you MUST have a cleared IChat form on file to do so.  If you are unsure whether you completed this form earlier in the school year, we can check our list of approved/cleared parents.  We just need to know the exact name (and spelling) of your name on your driver’s license.

 

If you do not have a cleared iChat on file, you will need to compete the form as soon as possible.  It takes time for these forms to clear, and spring is a rather busy time.  Thank you for your prompt attention to this matter.

 

Podcasts [Click here for the link.]

Check them out!

 

Activity with Mrs. Coleman

We continued our focus on social skills.  We are learning strategies that we can use to defeat the team of “unthinkables” (characters that try to take over our brains).  

This week we reviewed “unwritten rules.”  For example, do not interrupt people who are concentrating.

We read more about Superflex and talked more about Glassman.  Glassman is the “Unthinkable” character who tries to make us have huge, upset reactions to small problems.  We talked about how uncomfortable others feel when they are around someone who has a huge upset reaction to something that is really a small problem.

We reviewed things we can do to help ourselves if Glassman is trying to make us have a big upset reaction to a small problem.  We learned about “positive self talk” and learned that it can help us.

 

Reading [Click here for the link.]

Current unit of study:  Traditional Literature

This week we learned:

*  We reread to better understand.

*  We make theories about the characters why they act the way they do, etc.

*  We identify good and bad characters and use different voices, expressions, and gestures when we read.

 

Writing [Click here for the link.]

Current unit of study:  Research & Information Writing: Descriptive Report

This week we:

*  Wrote a bold beginning that will make readers want to keep reading our books.

*  Wrote an excellent ending that wraps up our writing and makes it seem finished.

*  Revised (make our message better).

Edited (fixed mistakes with capitalization, punctuation, and spelling).

Next unit of study:  Realistic Fiction

 

Math  [Click here for the link.]

Current Unit: 8 – Geometry & Arrays

This week we:

* Continued to look at 2-dimensional shapes and focus on attributes.  Attributes are characteristics of shapes such as the number of sides, square corners (right angles), etc.

*  Learned that polygons have these attributes:

-> straight sides

-> the lines all touch at their endpoints

-> none of the sides cross

-> there is only one “inside” space

-> you can trace the shape with your finger and end up where you started without crossing over

*  Learned that hexagons, octagons, and quadrilaterals are special polygons.  They just have a specific number of sides.

 

Next Unit: 9 Equal Shares and Whole Number Operations

 

Science  [Click here for the link.]

Current focus: A Plant’s Life

*   We continued to observe the plant that began growing in the cupboard and is now on our window.  We discovered that getting sunlight did help it turn green.

 

Social Studies [Click here for the link.]

Current focus: How do communities change over time?

*  We finished our Unit 5 lapbook.  Students did an even better job with this unit than the previous 4 units.  This was great to see!

*  Ask your child to share his/her lapbook and talk about the things we learned about during this unit.

 

Computer lab

We worked in RAZ Kids … reading books and taking quizzes about the books. 

 

Monthly Homework Calendars [Click here for the link.]

Thank you for helping your child to remember to complete 3 activities each week on the calendar.

 

Have a wonderful weekend!


______________________________________________________

4/14/2017  

Here are some things we’ve been working on in second grade.

 

7 Habits of Happy Kids

We continued our focus on Habit 5 – Seek first to understand. 

We are getting better with listening first, and then talking. 

We are also reviewing and practicing habits 1-4.

Habit 1 – Be proactive.  You are in charge.

Habit 2 – Begin with the end in mind.

Habit 3 – Put first things first.  Work first, then play.

Habit 4 – Think win-win.    

 

Character Focus

We are focusing on integrity during the month of April.  When we have integrity, we are honest and have strong moral principles.

 

Important Dates

No School:  Friday, April 14th

Spell Check 9: Friday, April 21st

Field Trip to Greenfield Village: Tuesday, June 6th (all day)

*NOTE*  Parents are encouraged to be chaperones for this field trip.  However, you MUST have a cleared IChat form on file to do so.  If you are unsure whether you completed this form earlier in the school year, we can check our list of approved/cleared parents.  We just need to know the exact name (and spelling) of your name on your driver’s license.

If you do not have a cleared iChat on file, you will need to compete the form as soon as possible.  It takes time for these forms to clear, and spring is a rather busy time.  Thank you for your prompt attention to this matter.

 

Podcasts [Click here for the link.]

Check them out!

 

Reading [Click here for the link.]

Current unit of study:  Traditional Literature

This week we learned:

*  We make characters come alive by using facial expressions, gestures and voices.

*  We become the character when we read.

*  There are usually lessons that we can learn from traditional literature.

 

Writing [Click here for the link.]

Current unit of study:  Research & Information Writing: Descriptive Report

This week we:

Read plant books and took notes about facts that we might want to include in our books. 

Organized our facts into chapters using colors.

*  Wrote a Table of Contents for our book.

*  Began writing the chapters.  We are writing topic sentences that tell the big idea, and then supporting sentences that tell details.

Next unit of study:  Realistic Fiction

 

Math  [Click here for the link.]

Current Unit: 8 – Geometry & Arrays

This week we:

*  Took the unit 7 assessments.

*  Began unit 8 lessons.  We are looking at shapes and focusing on attributes.  Attributes are characteristics of shapes such as the number of sides, square corners (right angles), etc.

*  Practiced playing Hit the Target using a 2-step strategy.  First we added or subtracted ones to get to the next 10.  Then, we added or subtracted tens to get to the target number.

Next Unit: 9 Equal Shares and Whole Number Operations

 

Science  [Click here for the link.]

Current focus: A Plant’s Life

*   We talked about what we learned from our “in the cupboard” seed experiment.  We learned that seeds do NOT need light to begin growing.

*  We took the plant that began growing in the cupboard out of the cupboard.  We put it on the window.  We are wondering if getting sun might help it change color from white to green.

 

Social Studies [Click here for the link.]

Current focus: How do communities change over time?

*  We talked about how things change over time.  One thing we talked about is telephones.  Now days we have cell phones, but the telephones have not always looked and worked like our cell phones do.  We talked about how phones a long time ago had to be connected to a wall and had dials (not buttons).

 

Computer lab

We worked in RAZ Kids … reading books and taking quizzes about the books. 

 

Monthly Homework Calendars [Click here for the link.]

Thank you for helping your child to remember to complete 3 activities 

 

It’s Celebration Time!

Students are making connections across the curriculum with things we have studied this year in social studies.  This is wonderful to see!  Things are coming together as we wrap up our school year.  This is truly my favorite time of the year in the classroom!

 

Have a wonderful weekend!