A Super Start to Second Grade!!

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Welcome to the AJA Second Grade Blog!!! I will send you the link to my blog post on a monthly basis. Here you will find a summary of what second graders have been learning, important upcoming dates, as well as awesome pictures of your children. Below is a summary of what we have covered so far.

Reading

Our focus for the beginning of the year is fluency and comprehension. These will be emphasized year round in reading class. Reading is taught primarily in small groups, so that students can receive targeted instruction at their individual level. So far, second grade has learned to identify the elements of a story (characters, setting, plot, problem, and solution). Second grade is currently working on writing a three sentence summary which I often refer to as a BME (beginning, middle, and end). Students apply their summarization skills and ability to write in complete sentences to write BME summaries of books they have read. Students also received a brief introduction to various genres and are currently working on differentiating between fiction and nonfiction. Don’t forget that every second grader should be reading for at least twenty minutes a night!

Writing

In writing, students were introduced to the writing workshop model, which places an emphasis on following the writing process. First students come up with ideas during prewriting. This may be done in a list, chart, etc. Second, students write a rough draft in which they may write freely without worrying about errors. Next, students read their draft aloud to themselves and make corrections during the revising stage. Then, they get with a peer for peer editing. After finding at least two mistakes, students have a one-on-one teacher conference to conduct more formal revision. Last, students create a final copy with all corrections made. Currently, students have learned about the components of a friendly letter. They learned to write a proper greeting, body, closing, and signature. Ask your child if they remember how to sing the “Friendly Letter Song!”

Math

In math, second grade started using the Everyday Math 4 curriculum. Math is taught in both whole group as well as leveled groups in order to meet individual needs. Everyday Math has a spiraling curriculum, which means topics once covered are practiced again so they are not forgotten. The class has worked on strategies for coin counting. The most important strategy for them to remember is to begin counting the most valuable coins first, then the next most valuable, and so on. Students have also applied this skill to counting bill and coin combinations. Counting money will be an ongoing subject for second grade. Students have also been practicing basic addition facts and have learned some strategies for completing those facts quickly. Some strategies are making ten, finding doubles facts, and doubles plus one facts. Second graders were also introduced to writing addition story problems. Writing story problems in math is another key second grade skill which we will work on often.

Science

In science, students were introduced to the scientific method. The “Scientific Method Song,” helps the students to recall the steps in the method. Students learned to start with a problem and ask a question. Then, they learned to make a hypothesis, which we defined as an educated guess. After experimenting, they analyze their results and draw conclusions. Second graders have completed two science experiments using this method. One was about hypothesizing whether items would sink or float. The other was an experiment where students’ thumbs were taped down so they could not use them, so that they could discover the meaning of opposable thumbs.

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Social Studies

The second grade class just began a unit on communities. They learned that a community is a group of people who live or work together. We discussed our school community as well as our class community. The class then learned about the three main community types (urban, suburban, and rural). After learning and taking notes, students wrote to me about which community they prefer in order to be grouped for the upcoming project (building a community using recyclables). Soon, they will begin drafting a plan for what they would like their community to look like and then moving on to building it. Thank you, parents, for sending in the requested items. The collection ends September 18th. I look forward to this cross-curricular, super fun unit!

Email me if you would like to become a Mystery Guest! felicia.frazee@austinjewishacademy.org

We already had our first guest, Isaac Gonzales’ grandfather spoke to the class about his job as a dentist and taking care of your teeth.

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