Meters, yards, inches, centimeters and arm spans were all being used this week to calculate distances, the length objects around home and at school. Students worked in class to collect measurements for surfaces they see everyday. Students were also assigned class activities and asked questions that had them comparing units of measure. These activities helped to challenged their critical thinking and their abilities to work in partner and small group collaborations. Each class created line plots with data collected from their arm span measurements. The students particularly enjoyed working with a partners to measure how far they could jump. They recorded their measurements in inches and created another class line plot.
2nd grade mathematicians returned from winter break eager to reunite with classmates and also demonstrated they were ready to get back to work. In math, students are working on activities and learning games that help them apply place value concepts and measuring skills. We read the fun book, How Big is a Foot that kicked off whole class discussions and activities regarding "standard" and "non-standard" units of measure. In this story, a king wants to give the queen the best birthday present ever - a bed. However, beds had yet to be invented. Her bed needed to be designed and built. How can they figure out what size the bed should be? The students came to understand the need for a standard measurement tool. We used rulers to explore objects around the classroom and at home. The 2nd graders practiced measuring in feet, inches and centimeters.
Second graders wrapped up this week by clearing out much of their work from the year, sorting and organizing classroom materials to get classrooms back in order, and finally, participating in the Moving Up assembly. Students were eager to cross the bridge with their current classmates to visit third grade teachers in their classrooms. There was plenty of reflection on what this year held and lots of anticipation and excitement for what lies ahead. Our year was full of learning, fun explorations in the outdoor classroom, exceptional game play on the back turf field, trips around our local community, and building relationships that will last for years to come. It is always with mixed emotions that we say goodbye to our current students, but we are sure that these friends are ready to move on to their next adventure. We hope you all enjoy a great summer and thank you for all the support you provided us this year to help make second grade a memorable experience for our students. We hope all of our second grade families enjoy a fun-filled summer full of family adventures.
Second graders practiced how to collaborate, communicate, and compromise this week as they worked in small groups on a culminating social studies project. To conclude our unit on towns, second graders worked together to design and build towns using many different materials. Students considered the four elements of a town and used information from our town field trips several weeks ago to help them plan and build. The social/emotional skills developed as children worked in a small group were equally important as the final products. Students pushed themselves to listen to others and to work as helpful team members. After constructing their towns, students used technology tools to take a photo of their work. Next week, they will use the photo as part of a screencast to reflect on their contributions, and they will share a screencast of their thinking with their teachers. They will also self-assess their work on a rubric that contained both social studies content and group work skills. As we look toward third grade, children are building the important life skills of how to convey their thinking to others, how to solve problems fairly, and how to make sure everyone’s voices are heard.
Second graders reviewed the strategies to help them add and subtract multi-digit numbers this week. Partial sums method and regrouping were the focus for addition and the Trade-First method was the target strategy students utilized to solve given problems in class and for homework. Place value concepts were highlighted as students represented multi-digit numbers with Base-10 flats (100s), longs (10s) and cubes (1s). When manipulatives are not on hand, students reviewed how they can use Base-10 notation to represent their numbers while adding and subtracting.
Second graders are now diving into their Book Series unit and learning to identify common elements often found in books written as a series. Readers continue to make personal connections to texts and are now also beginning to make connections to characters, settings and themes in series books their classmates recommend or to series they have read at other times. This book series work helps boost comprehension skills and helps all readers, both developing and seasoned, think more critically about their books as they read. It encourages them to ask questions and make predictions based on patterns they are noticing in their series books and get them talking more about their books in general. It is an exciting time as readers round out their reading skills to apply more comprehension strategies during read aloud and independent reading times. Some of the strategies students have been trying in class include: jotting written reading responses, sketching ideas, tracking story elements in their reader's notebooks and partner/small group book talk work. All of these strategies help to support them in noticing and sharing patterns and similarities they come across as they read. Second grade students are more excited than ever to read!
It was a big week in second grade as we celebrated the MKA tradition of weaving the Maypole followed by our writing celebration where the genre was poetry. On Tuesday morning, parents, teachers, and students gathered on the backfield for the beautiful day to celebrate the coming of Spring in the tradition that has been around since the Kimberley School. The entire community was moved by how effortlessly the students completed the very complicated dance. Thank you again, Ms. Weaver, for your leadership and direction. We celebrate your 21st year teaching our students the Maypole Dance. Following the beautiful and deeply rooted tradition of the Maypole Dance, parents joined their students in the classroom to hear the beautiful poems the children worked so hard to publish. The celebration of the finished poetry books was a culmination of a month long study of how poets think, using their five sense and their imagination. Poems ranged in topic from sports, to family members to gummy bears! Thank you to everyone who shared in this morning of celebration with our second graders.
If you have not yet signed up for a Parent-Teacher Conference on Thursday, May 17th, please access the links below to reserve a time slot to meet with your child's teacher.
Second graders are all working through word sorting activities and extension activities during Word Study times to learn more about how consonants and vowels work together to help them words. Students work through a range of word study concepts and complete differentiated work in class. This word work addresses areas that students need to explore further to gain a better understanding of how words are working and be able to ultimately apply common patterns to their spelling. During word study you might note students working to master short and long vowel patterns within words; build words that include consonant digraphs & blends or maybe a whole class favorite... mini-lessons that introduce and explore preconsonantal nasals. These are words that include consonant combinations such as -ng; -mp; -nt; nd; -nk, and can tickle your nose and roof of your mouth as you pronounce these patterns within words.
Reminder - Join your child this coming Tuesday, May 1st following the Maypole Dance for the final Writing Celebration of the year - featuring Poetry! Brunch reception in classrooms follow.
Parent-Teacher Conference Day (May 17th) sign up links below:
This week, 2MG and 2S visited areas in Montclair to collect data to help inform their Town study. These second graders were on a mission to find examples of the four major elements of a town: places to live, places to work, transportation, and open spaces. Each class visited a different section of Montclair for their exploration and data collection. 2S visited the Watchung Plaza area and 2MG visited the Montclair Center/Church Street area. Students were excited to notice various buildings, ways to get around, open spaces, people, pets, and “street furniture” (like public benches, parking meters and recycling bins). The information they gathered will be shared in a variety of formats in the coming weeks. All the data will be a useful reference as they progress through our Town unit in social studies. Thank you to our parent volunteers for accompanying us on our data gathering field trips this week!
Parent-Teacher Conference Day sign up links below: