Friday, December 19, 2014

It's That Time of the Year

It's that very busy time of the year.  We have been really busy in second grade preparing for the upcoming holiday while still learning.

Our essential question this week was "How do the Earth's forces affect us?" We read about gravity and how it works.  We also learned about friction.  Did you know that longer grass will provide more friction and on a soccer ball and slow it down more than shorter grass?

In math we finally started adding two digit numbers.  We started by first using a number grid and then by using base-10 blocks.  Then we moved on to the "old way". The students must get in the habit of adding from the ones place first.  We started with problems that have no regrouping (or carrying as many of you are familiar with).  Again I will say how important it is for the students to know their facts.  They are practicing daily and have improved by leaps and bounds.  So far, two digit addition is a snap!!  Great job, class!!

This week our elf was a very busy traveler.  He traveled to several countries.  He went to Holland, Sweden and the United States.  In honor of Holland, we created our version of wooden shoes.

We wrote about our family Christmas traditions for the United States and strung them as lights.

After all that travel, our elf, Peppermint, needed a good rest.  Here he is hanging with the Phillie Phanatic.  

Only two more days left until break.... I hope you all have a Healthy and Happy Holiday and spend quality time together over our long Christmas break.

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Where in the world is...Peppermint?

Our elf, Peppermint has been busy at night traveling around the world.  This week he traveled to England and Italy.  We learned about Christmas traditions in each of these countries.  In Italy, they believe that a good witch named, La Befana, brings gifts for children.

In England, one of the traditions is that a yule log is burnt in the fireplace and decorated.

We have found Peppermint is some funny places this week too.  

In math this week we are preparing to add and subtract 2 digit numbers.  We started by adding and subtracting 10.  We practiced changing the tens place value when adding and subtracting.  Then we moved on to adding and subtracting 100.  Next week we will begin adding 2 digit numbers using a number grid and base 10 blocks before learning the traditional addition algorithm.

Our essential question is reading this week was "What do we love about animals?"  We read several poems about animals and discussed what the author of the poem loves about that animal.  In one of the poems, the boy had a pet crocodile and he loved him so much that he wanted to keep him in his bathtub when he grows too big.

This week the students all entered a school wide writing contest.  This year our school reading theme is "One School One Author."  Our featured author this year is Patricia Polacco.  We have read several of her books throughtout this year.  In the writing contest, the students were asked to write about their favorite Patricia Polacco book.  Winners of the contest will be announced at an assembly on December 23.

Today was our annual Christmas concert.  The second graders have been practicing their songs every day and sounded great singing at the concert.  I hope you all got a chance to come out to our concert on Thursday night.

Did you see the snow????

Friday, December 5, 2014

The Elf has Arrived...

Every year my classroom gets a visit from a special elf.  This year is no acception.  Our classroom elf arrived on Monday with a top secret mission.  Apparently, Santa is clumsy and has spilled his hot cocoa on some of his important files.  He needs our elf to fly around to different countries and then report back to him the Christmas tradition from that country.  So far, our elf has traveled to Germany. When he arrived back to our classroom he gave us some informatio about Germany.  Did you know that in Germany, they put a pickle on their tree and the first child to find the pickle receives a special present.  In honor of Germany, we made special Christmas trees.
Of course, as elves can be, he was up to a little mischief as well...
My two granddaughters

This week in reading our essential question was "How are offspring like their parents?"  We read all about different animal families.  Parent wolves have to chew food for their yound and then spit it in their mouths...ewww!  We learned about penquins and gorillas and eagles and how they take care of their young.

To go along with our elf theme this week, each student wrote an opinion piece about why he or she should be Santa's head elf.  Some of the reasons were:  I am good at using tools, I am a good leader, I will help take care of the reindeer and many other creative ideas. 

And lastly along with the elf theme, we have a new classroom door.  Thanks Pinterest for all the fun ideas out there and also Mrs. Pitzo who helped get it together.

Have a great weekend...stay dry!!