Friday, December 20, 2013

Busy Little Elves...

The elves...I mean the students have been very busy this week. Our classroom elf continues to travel the world and report back to us about the traditions in other countries.  This week we learned about Sweden, Canada, Mexico and even here in the United States.

Canadian traditions are very similar to what we do here.  One of their customs is to bake cookies. We made a "plate" of cookies in honor of this.

To celebrate the Unites States, we made a string of Christmas lights.  All of the students put their Christmas tradition on the light and we hung them proudly in the classroom.

Our elf moved around the classroom a lot this week.  We found him under a lego bridge one day and reading the book about himself another day.

We met with our book buddies this week.  They read to us from "The World According to Humphrey" and then we made a Christmas scene that including Humphrey. Thanks Book Buddies!!

In reading this week, we learned about things we see in the sky.  In our stories this week, we learned about the big dipper, solar eclipses and how in different countries you can see different stars.  We also practiced spotting compound words and identifying the plot sequence.  The students did a great job this week writing the sequence for our story "The Hidden Sun".  

In writing this week, we started with a "four square" organizer about what I like about Christmas. Then we turned the four squares into a paragraph.  This was written on holiday paper and brought home.

Of course, this week would not be complete without making something special for the loved ones in our families.  Look for something special to come home today.

I wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.  Best Wishes Always, 
Love, Mrs. Wells

Friday, December 13, 2013

It's Beginning to Look a lot Like Christmas...

The Christmas spirit has hit second grade.  Our elf continues to move around the classroom each night.  This morning we found him being rather patriotic.

The students have been keeping a "spy" journal to let Santa know where the elf has been each day.  He was snuggling in a stocking this week...probably to keep warm with all the snow.  He also was sitting comfortably on one of the monkeys' lap.  He is tricky!!

This week we were asked to complete a secret mission for Santa.  I can't tell you the mission...but I can tell you that the elf has been traveling around the world and bringing us back information about the Christmas customs from different countries.  We learned about the tannenbaum trees in Germany and how they put pickles on their trees.  We made some special trees in honor of Germany.

The elf then told us all about Italy.  In Italy there is a good witch called "La BeFana" who brings presents to children after Christmas, too.  We made a La BeFana and even learned some Italian words.

He then traveled to England and told us about the traditions there as well.  Did you know that they call Santa, Father Christmas.  One of the customs there is to burn a yule log so we made one of our own. 

In reading, this week we started a new unit about how the Earth's forces affect us.  We read about Isaac Newton and how seeing an apple fall off a tree inspired him to learn about gravity.  We read about magnets and how they work.  We tested gravity to see if objects that are heavier would fall to the ground faster.  We dropped a penny and a paper clip and they landed at the same time.  

In math, we did some exploring with blocks and clocks and built "nests" to help with multiplying. We learned how to draw line segments with a straightedge.  Today, we played a math concentration game with clocks.

This week was our annual Christmas concert.  It was nice to see so many aspiring singers turn out for the evening concert.  

More snow is predicted for the weekend.  Stay Safe....

Friday, December 6, 2013

Elves...Elves..Everywhere Elves!!

As I am sure you have heard....we have had an elf visitor to our classroom.  Our class named him "Dr. Jingle Bells."  He arrived and wrote a note on our board say hello to everyone.  The students "Elfed Themselves" and made elf bodies with their heads on them.  They completed an elf glyph, so it was colored in based on questions that the students answered. We all got a kick out of what the students looked as elves.  During the night, the elf decided he wanted to be hung up like the rest of the class and taped himself to the shade with the elf pictures.

The students also completed elf applications.  Maybe Santa will hire one or two of them...

This week in Math, we practiced and practiced adding.  The students were taught two different ways to add: The partial sums way and the traditional way. I think that most students were most comfortable with the traditional algorithm (as most of you are.)  They performed very well on the Unit 4 test which will be coming home next week. 

We finished up another unit in reading and started taking a Unit test.  This unit was all about animals.  Our next unit will be focusing on the Earth. This should be interesting for our students because they love science.

Next week, we will be learning all about Christmas traditions in other countries.  We will be doing fun crafts for each country as well. 

Have a great weekend!!