Friday, January 25, 2013

Winter is finally here!!

This week we celebrated Martin Luther King Jr.  We read and discussed a book about his life and came up with character traits about him.  We created "dream" clouds with the traits and definitions of Dr. King.  We then created our own dream like Dr. King.  Can you guess who is who??

In continuing with this theme, we read a book called Westward to Oregon and talked about the character traits of the main character and her parents.  We then made some funny posters about us with our character traits.  They should be coming home this weekend.  Have them show you what they look like.

In Math, we did a lot of mental arithmetic.  We learned a few tricks to help us to this in our head.  One way is to look for numbers that add up to 10.  Please remember to practice math facts at home.

In writing we made an analogy of writing a story with making chicken soup.  The student loved deciding what "ingredients" should be in their soup (story).  On Monday, we will be making a recipe card with these ingredients.

In Social Studies, we pretended to be types of transportation and delivered our toy that we made in our factory last week to the store to be sold.  In Science, we experimented with our solids to see if they would sink or float in a pail of water.

Keep warm and enjoy the snow?????

Friday, January 18, 2013

Can you infer how our week went?

This week we have been spending a lot of time practicing inferencing.  The students were introduced to the famous artist, Norman Rockwell and were shown some of his famous paintings.  Then they were asked to infer what was happening in the picture.  We then used this skill to make inferences about books. 

Another Theme Test was given in reading and again the students performed very well.  They will be coming home next week for you to look over and sign.

We also ended another unit in Math with an assessment on Friday.  A difficult part of this test was the subtraction problems.  The students were given blocks to help solve the problem.  This is a beginning skill for second grade and they have yet to learn the trade/borrow method for subtraction so please do not be concerned if your child did poorly on that part of the test.

We are still studying our writing mentor, Angela Johnson.  She has shown us some interesting things she does in her books, like ellipses and comeback lines and now we have been trying to incorporate them into our stories as well.  The students published their first stories by typing them on the laptops and then illustrated them.

In Social Studies, the students became factory workers and on an assembly line they made a clown toy game.  They are learning how goods are produced in factories and then sent to companies.  We continue to study solids in Science.  We have been learning how the solids have different properties by sorting them into groups.

Enjoy the long weekend!!

Friday, January 11, 2013

The hospital is open!!

Did you know I could perform surgery?  This was an exciting week in second grade. Surgery was actually performed in our classroom...Contraction Surgery. The students had a lot of fun learning how to turn two words into a contraction and Mrs. Taylor and I had a lot of fun teaching them!!

Meet the doctors:  Dr. Taylor and Dr. Wells

Meet the patients:
Our medical students watched as we performed the surgery:

After the surgery was complete, the students were then able to practice some surgery on their own. They received masks and gloves.  Their patients were then put into the hallway recovery room with Dr. Dennis (thank you Mrs. Moran again for making him).
In other news, this week we continued to study the work of our author mentor, Angela Johnson.  We practiced turning a tiny seed topic into a story.  We also learned how to use ellipses in our writing.

In Math this week we once again practiced doing number stories and uses diagrams to help us in solving them.  We also started subtracting two and three digit numbers.  We start out use Base-10 blocks but soon they will discover how to trade/borrow.  This is a difficult task for second graders so we will practice a lot in class.

In Reading, we continued talking about inferencing.  One of the ways we practiced was by looking at pictures and figuring out what was happening by the clues in the picture.  We are going to continue to work on this skill again next week by using several different stories.

In Social Studies, we looked the effects of pollution on our environment.  We continued in our study of solids in Science by observing properties like color, shape and whether it rolls or stacks.

Have a great weekend and enjoy the warm weather......

Dr. Wells

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Happy New Year!!

Welcome back!  The students arrived Wednesday morning ready to work.  Our new CSA, Mrs. Gansert popped in for a visit and to introduce herself to the students.  The students welcomed her warmly and were very excited to meet her.

One of our first activities of the week was writing our school resolutions for 2013.  We also enlisted the help once again from Mrs. Moran for our new classroom door.  The sign says, "Room 204 is "snow" much fun."  The students all received a snowflake and wrote one thing about our class that they think is fun.  Some of the answers were:  brain breaks, math games, word work and even...learning.
In Math this week, we learned some strategies to adding more than three numbers together.  We also began solving subtraction number stories.  As we continue this year and adding more difficult skills, it becomes more and more important for the students to know their math facts.  This is something that we practice often in school but can also be practiced at home.

We were introduced this week to Angela Johnson, a mentor author.  During the next few weeks, we will be looking at some of Angela's stories and use some of the same techniques she uses in her writing.

In science, we started our new unit, Solids, Liquids and Gas.  We began by comparing to objects and discovered why they both considered solids.

I have received many of your community pictures for our technology project and would like to thank you for your cooperation.  I am looking forward to how this project is going to turn out.

On another note, please keep in mind that although this season brings snow and fun, it also brings colds and sickness.  We try to encourage hand washing as much as possible.  Also, the students do go outside during these winter months, so they will need hats and gloves and winter coats.  Keep in mind, our classroom being upstairs can get very warm even in the winter.  So therefore, layering is always a good option. 

Remember Friday, January 11 is a half day for students! Have a great week!!