A Super September

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Upcoming Events:

Oct. 13- Lily’s Purple Plastic Purse Production field trip

Oct. 26 at 1:30 in the MPR- Communities Project Presentation

September was packed full of fun and learning! AJA second graders went on their first field trip of the year to Austin Humane Society, started building their community project, learned a cool new dance, met their fourth grade buddies, baked a cake for Rosh Hashanah, and more!

Below you will find a summary of what the students have been studying in the month of September.

Reading

In order to work on fluency, students studied poetry together. As a class, we read many poems for children and learned that poetry has a beat and rhythm. Our favorite poets are Brod Bagert and Shel Silverstein. Students received a fluency poem and practiced it both in class and at home in order to enhance fluency. Reading poems or short passages several times is a great activity to try at home to help your child with fluency. Fluency is something that will be practiced and strengthened during the entire school year. Students have also focused on genre identification. First, students determine if a book is fiction or nonfiction. Then, they determine the more specific genre. The class has worked a lot on identifying fantasy fiction vs. realistic fiction. Second graders have also continued to practice the important skills of identifying story elements and summarizing.  Great questions to ask when reading at home are: Who was the main character? What was the main idea? What genre is this book? How did you know? Can you retell this story telling the BME (beginning, middle, end)?

Check out some of our first Mystery Readers and Mystery Guests!!!

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Language Arts

After defining and reviewing nouns, second graders learned the difference between common and proper nouns. They learned that a proper noun names a specific noun and should be capitalized. Students have been practicing finding common and proper nouns within their environment. Second graders also learned to write in complete sentences. They learned that every sentence should begin with a capital, end with punctuation, and be a complete thought (which includes a subject and predicate). They practiced finding the subjects and predicates in various sentences as well as identified complete sentences vs. sentence fragments.

Writing

Writing as a process continued to be our main focus as students became more comfortable following each step. Students refined their friendly letter writing skills further by choosing a person, animal, or fictional character to write to. They then wrote him/her a letter in proper format including a greeting, body, closing and signature. Students also practiced writing summaries by telling the beginning, middle, and end (BME). This skill will continually be practiced throughout the year and eventually expanded to include five complete sentences.

Math

Second graders studied and reviewed various addition and subtraction strategies in order to become more fluent in basic facts.  Strategies such as counting on, counting back, doubles, doubles plus one, and finding ten were utilized. Students also reviewed fact families and created their own “fact family houses.” A unit on place value was also completed recently. The class learned place value up to the hundred-thousands and were exposed to place value up to the billions. Students learned to identify the value of a given digit, write numbers in expanded form, write numbers in standard form, and to draw/build a number using base ten blocks. Saying numbers correctly aloud was also practiced each day and students became noticeably more comfortable with pronouncing large numbers. This unit was finished with a test which was graded and sent home.

Social Studies

In social studies, students learned the differences between rural, urban, and suburban communities. They then used boxes and other supplies to build a community in their own vision. Currently, they are learning to write interview questions so that they can interview community members. These interviews will begin next week and are intended to help the children learn about the many different roles within our Jewish community. The class was able to interview their fourth grade buddies for practice and are well on their way to learning this valuable skill. AJA second graders went on a field trip to Austin Humane Society to begin the tikkun olam element of this project. Students viewed the cats and dogs, toured the facility, and learned about volunteerism. Second graders have started doing small mitzvahs around campus; such as cleaning the desks in other classrooms. They look forward to raising money for animals in need.

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