January News

Class News 1/27/2017

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

 

7 Habits of Happy Kids

We continued our focus on Habit 3 – Put First Things First: Work First, Then Play.  We are practicing this habit in many ways at school.  For example, we get ourselves packed up and get our classroom ready for the next day BEFORE we chat with friends at the end of the day.

 

Character Focus

Our whole school is focusing on confidence during the month of January.  When we have confidence, we believe in ourselves.  Learning to be a problem-solver can help us to develop confidence.  Once we’ve solved some problems on our own, we start to have confidence that we can handle things that come up.

In our classroom, we are also working on courage.  We have courage when we are brave and do things that make us a little nervous or scared.  One example of this is when we do an “out-loud” reading test with the teacher (a running record). 

After we read the book aloud, we tell the teacher what the book was about.  This shows her that we understand what we read.  Sometimes, students are worried about what to tell the teacher about a book.  We have to have courage, be brave, and tell her what we remember from the book.  Usually, what we are thinking about maybe telling her IS what she is hoping we will say.

 

Life Skills

We are working on being respectful to classmates.  Sometimes when WE finish a task, we feel like chatting with neighbors.  However, this is very distracting to classmates that are trying to concentrate and do their work.  We are working on noticing when it is quiet work time, and being quiet ourselves so that our classmates can concentrate.  This is one way we can be respectful to classmates.  We have been taking important reading and math tests over the last two weeks, and have a lot of opportunity to work on this important life skill.

 

Volunteering Opportunity (Friday mornings, 9:30-10:30 a.m.) … NO EXPERIENCE NECESSARY! 

We are still looking for another parent to come and play word games with students on Friday mornings. 

Word games are scheduled from 9:30 to 10:30 a.m. on Fridays.  If you are interested in being a Word Games leader, please email me.  sgruenew@livoniapublicschools.org   Thanks!

 

Valentine’s Day Celebration (Tuesday 2/14, 3:00-3:45 p.m.) [Click here for the link to Sign-up Genius]

We will be having a class celebration on Valentine’s Day.  Students are invited to bring valentines (they can make or purchase) for classmates.  If children choose to bring valentines, they MUST bring one for every child in the class. 

Valentines should be addressed to classmates and include each student’s special class number.  We will be “delivering” valentines to special “mail bags” that are numbered and in numerical order.  It will be VERY helpful if children put their valentine’s in number order at home and then bring them to school in either a rubber band or ziplock bag.

 

Important Dates

Scholastic Book Order due:  Tuesday, 1/31/17

Jump Rope for Heart: Tuesday, 2/7/17, 9:15-10:15 a.m.

Unit 5 Math Assessments: Wednesday, 2/8/17 & Thursday, 2/9/17

Valentine’s Day Class Celebration: Tuesday, 2/14/17, 3:00 p.m.

Spell Check #6: Friday, 2/17/17

Mid-winter Break (no school): Monday, 2/20/17

End of Second Trimester (1/2 day of school): Friday, 3/10/17

Battle of the Books: Wednesday, 3/29/17

 

Book It!

Thank you for helping your children to remember to complete the reading logs and to bring them to school.

January goal: 400 minutes

Weeks that count toward this goal:  1/9, 1/16, 1/23, and 1/30

 

Podcasts [Click here for the link.]

Check them out!

 

Activity with Mrs. Coleman

This week we reviewed synonyms and played Synonym Scoot.  Synonyms are words that mean almost the same thing as each other.  For example, “big” means almost the same thing as “large.”  “Same” is a synonym for “alike.”

 

Reading [Click here for the link.]

Current unit of study:  Readers Learn from Informational Text

Last week we learned:

* We can use a R.A.N. (Reading and Analyzing Nonfiction) chart to help us keep track of what we already know about a topic (our schema), to confirm or revise our prior knowledge, and to keep track of our new learning.

* We can stop and retell what we read after each page (or paragraph) of text that we read.  This helps us to better understand what we read. 

 

This week we learned:

* We notice headings in texts and use them to help us understand what we read.  First, we use headings to get our minds ready for what we are about to read.  Second, we use the headings to help us “file” the information we learn into “file folders” in our heads.

* We talk with people in our book clubs about things that were confusing when we read.

 

Next unit of study:  Informational Book Clubs

 

 

Writing [Click here for the link.]

Current unit of study:  The Power of Reviews

Last week we learned:

*  We write a draft of our review.

*  We use the voice of a reviewer.



This week we learned:

*  We use transitional words (such as first, next, then, after that, later, and finally) to help connect our ideas and make our writing flow.

*  We write a bold beginning / catchy lead that grabs the reader’s attention and makes him/her want to read more.  We basically “hook” the reader with our bold beginning.

* We revise our writing and try things that we learned from our “big authors” and the mentor texts.

 

 

Math  [Click here for the link.]

Current Unit: 5 – Addition and Subtraction

Last week we:

*  Worked on building “fact power.”  Fact power has to do with being able to quickly recall basic math facts.  Our goal is to be able to recall/answer within 3 seconds and NOT have to figure it out.

*  Used counted coins and pretended to use them to buy things. 

 

This week we:

*  Made arrays on grid paper.  Arrays are rows where each row has the exact same number of things in it.  We drew “X”s and used grid paper to help us line up the items in each row neatly.  Then we wrote repeated addition number sentences to count the total number of “X”s. 

For example, we made 4 rows of 5 “X”s.

X    X    X    X    X

X    X    X    X    X

X    X    X    X    X

X    X    X    X    X

5 + 5 + 5 + 5 = 20

* Counted coins and counted up to make change.   We put the amount we owe in our head (Ex. 35 cents), and then count up to the amount we handed to the cashier (or put in the vending machine). 

For example, if we are buying something that costs 35 cents and we are paying with a $1 bill…  We think 35 and count up “40” (put a nickel down), “50” (put a dime down), “60” (put a dime down), “70” (put a dime down), “80” (put a dime down), “90” (put a dime down), “100” (put a dime down).

 *  Used mental math to add and subtract 10 and 100.  We learned that we can use place value concepts to help us do add or subtract quickly.  We think about the “places” and increase/decrease the digit that is in that place. 

For example, when we add 10 to 79, we increase the 7 which is in the tens place.  We need to have 1 more ten.  So, it becomes “8.”  So, the answer is 89.

 

 

Science  [Click here for the link.]

Current focus: Measuring Matters

We learned:

*  We measure volume with tools such as measuring cups and graduated cylinders.

*  The volume of different sized and shaped containers could actually be the same, even though they don’t look the same.  We measured using a tool to find out.

Mass is a measurement that tells how much material is in an objects.  It is measured a little bit like weight.  We use a balance scale.

*  You can compare the mass of different objects using a balance scale.

* You can measure the mass of objects using a balance scale and cubes that are 1 gram each.

 

 

Social Studies [Click here for the link.]

Current focus: How do citizens live together in a community?

 

Computer lab

We took online assessments (iReady) in reading and math.  Students are working on doing their best and persevering when the questions get challenging.  When we keep working and don’t give up, we have “grit.”

 

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!


_____________________________________________________


1/13/2017

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

 

7 Habits of Happy Kids

We began our focus on Habit 3 – Put First Things First: Work First, Then Play.  We talked about how

 

Character Focus

We will be focusing on courage during the month of January.

 

Life Skills

We are continuing to work on being good listeners.  We are also working on following CLASS directions.  Students need to follow directions that are given to a group of people.  In the classroom a lot of learning time is wasted when directions need to be repeated to individual students.  This is an important life skill to master. 

 

Volunteering Opportunity (Friday mornings, 9:30-10:30 a.m.)

We are looking for another parent to come and play word games with students on Friday mornings.  It would be great to have a parent that could come every week, but we are to have parent helpers whenever they can come.  Word games are scheduled from 9:30 to 10:30 a.m. on Fridays.  If you are interested in being a Word Games leader, please email me.  sgruenew@livoniapublicschools.org   Thanks!

 

Important Dates

MLK Holiday (no school): Monday, 1/16/17

Mid-winter Break (no school): Monday, 2/20/17

End of Second Trimester (1/2 day of school): Friday, 3/10/17

 

Book It!

Thank you for helping your children to remember to complete the reading logs and to bring them to school.

January goal: 400 minutes

Weeks that count toward this goal:  1/9, 1/16, 1/23, and 1/30

 

Podcasts [Click here for the link.]

Check them out!

 

 

Activity with Mrs. Coleman

This week we talked about synonyms.  Synonyms are words that mean almost the same thing other words.  We learned that we can use synonyms to help understand things we read. 

Here’s a strategy we are using to help us better understand something we are reading.  First, we underline words we don’t understand.  Next, we find synonyms for those words.  Then,

 

Reading [Click here for the link.]

Current unit of study:  Readers Learn from Informational Text

This week we learned:

* We talk with our book clubs about the big ideas in text.

* We compare (talk about what is alike) and contrast (talk about what is different) ideas.

 

Next unit of study:  Informational Book Clubs

 

 

Writing [Click here for the link.]

Current unit of study:  The Power of Reviews

This week we:

*  Learned that we can do research and collect data before we write a review.  We might want to ask others about the thing we are reviewing.  This can give us ideas for things we want to include (talk about) in our review.

* We made a list of things we might want to include in reviews of movie theaters, movies, restaurants, and toys.  Some of the things we talked about and included on our lists were:

** features

** details

** service

** price

 

 

Math  [Click here for the link.]

Current Unit: 4 – Place Value and Measurement

This week we:

* Took our unit assessments

* Students did a self-assessment on the day before we began our assessments.  It was sent home that day as an “idea list”.  I explained to the children that a self-assessment can help you decide how to spend your time as you are preparing for assessments. 

* We talked about how you might want to spend 15 minutes of “study time” preparing for assessments.  I suggest that students spend their time on concepts with which they feel less independent or confident. (I.e., The items that they said they would “need help” with on the Self-Assessment.)

* Many children struggle with self-assessment.  They are often quite confident that they understand, can do, and could even teach the concepts.  However, these children sometimes struggle to complete the related questions on assessments. 

* I am in the process of checking the assessments, and plan to send them home in the Weekly Folder next week.

* I would suggest that you hold onto the Self-Assessment so you can talk with your child about it next week when the unit assessments come home.

 

Next week we’ll start Unit 5 – Addition and Subtraction

 

Science  [Click here for the link.]

Current focus: Measuring Matters

* We learned about:

** volume (how much you have of something)

** capacity (how much a container will hold)

          ** solids vs. liquids

                   *** slime is sort of a mix between a solid and a liquid

 

 

Social Studies [Click here for the link.]

Next focus: How do citizens live together in a community?

 

 

Computer lab

We typed poems and worked on finding and using the following keys on the keyboard:

* letters

* space bar

* backspace

* delete

 

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!