Monday, February 28, 2011

Baba Jubal- what fun!

Welcome to Baba Jubal!

Today, our visiting artist-in-residence, wowed us with an extremely fun assembly! Baba Jubal shared some wonderful beats, songs, and stories that are rooted in his African heritage. We had such a great time, be sure to check out some of our memories (I will be posting a video later today)!

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Sunday, February 27, 2011

My Amazing Discovery!

I was sitting on the couch this evening, watching TV, and looking around for some new math websites to use in our classroom. I came across this site called Math Playground, which I think the kids are going to love. It gives them problems in the set-up that they are familiar to (part- part- whole, now how do they work together). I am very excited to introduce this website! You can click the icon, and it should take you directly to the site. If they like them, have your child comment on this telling their favorite part. It will really get children wanting to try new things!

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Our Graphic Novels

We have been spending the last 4 weeks or so working on writing our graphic novels. The students have learned all about text boxes, panels, transitions, and character interactions. As the unit draws to a close, I wanted to let you see what your child will be graded on before the final product comes home. The students have been aware of these expectations since the start of the unit, and it has guided our discussion throughout our exploration. Have a great night!
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Loren Long is Coming Tomorrow!

We are so excited! The incredibly talented author/illustrator, Loren Long, is coming to our school tomorrow! He is the author of one of our classroom favorites, Otis, as well as the illustrator for our project book, Of The I Sing. You can read some of his bio here.

If you purchased books at the book fair, or from an outside source, and want to have them autographed, here is what to do:

-Send the book in tomorrow (it MUST be here in the morning)
-Place a post-it on the cover with your child's name and any special message you would like inscribed.
-The books will return back home tomorrow.

Be sure to watch our blog for a video of his visit. We could not be more excited!!!!
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Thursday, February 17, 2011

Our Field Trip Today!

We had such an amazing time today! The doctors had set up wonderful stations for us. We got to experience making a dental mold (though they did it with our fingertips), see how a mouthguard and retainer were made, and even look at the x-ray machine. We really had a lot of fun, and learned a great deal about what happens at their office. They even sent us home with goodie bags (including the little pills that turn your mouth pink to show where you need to brush- these were a hit today). I hope you enjoy the pictures, and getting to see some of what we did. Have a great evening!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011


Today we started Topic 13, which focuses on Measurement (Length and Area). We introduced this topic by playing a game called "Measurement Hunt" where the children were using their estimating skills to predict the length (in cubes) of objects. **This activity is on the back of your math mat if you are interested in reinforcing the skills at home.** Be sure to check our important math words section to see our new math vocabulary!
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Monday, February 14, 2011

A Tear To My Eye

Every once in a while, while reading a professional book, I stumble upon a few words that will reaffirm my love of my students and my teaching. I was reading a book called "The Complete Year in Reading and Writing: Grade 2", and there is a description of a second grader that really caught my attention. I thought I would share it all with you, since I am so blessed that you share your second graders with me.

"The second grader, with his gap-toothed smile, is a physical marvel...he is able to think outside the concrete experience of his in-the-moment life, and to plan ahead. He can envision what is not yet there. As a result, he worries about things more than ever before. What will happen if Mom is not there to meet him when he gets off the school bus? What if his playdate goes badly? Second graders worry, but they also revel in the life-rich moments that are special to that age. An ice cream cone with a grandparent, a subway ride with mom: these moments are grand adventures. Second graders are cuddly and cozy, and an inch closer to you as read-aloud begins. They are just learning the pleasures of a good joke, and no one will laugh harder or louder at the funny parts in a book. They are your best buddies and true companions."

-Patty Vitale-Reilly and Pam Allyn

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Our Valentine's Party

Our Valentine's Day party is on Friday from 2:15-3:30. What fun! We will be passing out our valentines on Friday morning, so that our party can be focused more on coming together as a class and having a great time. So, please make sure that your child has their valentines here to school by Friday morning (you are welcome to send them in earlier). You are welcome to have your child write student's names, or just have them sign them- it is completely up to you. Here is a list of the students in the class:

Sarah J.
Sarah R.
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We have been talking about the wonderful world of homophones! Homophones are words that sound alike, but are spelled differently and have different meanings. We read two books together, How Much Can a Bare Bear Bear and Dear Deer. These two books were incredible! Then, we came together and generated a list of all the homophone pairs we could think of. Here are some of the examples:
aunt-ant, flew-flu, bee-be, bear-bare, horse-hoarse, tale-tail, see-sea, and choose-chews.

The students then demonstrated their understanding through showing me a pair in illustration and words. They came up with some of the cutest examples!

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Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Changing Our View of Reading

I was sitting in our classroom during reading the other day, and I had an epiphany. "We need to reflect on our reading more!" So, we have revamped our reading workshop (for as I tell the kids, if it doesn't work for you, fix it). Now, after about 15 minutes of quiet reading, the students are given the remainder of the time as "workshop"time to do independent projects that reflect their reading goals. Here are some of the things they are working on:
-Book chats with Mrs. Price
-Blog about a great read, or recommendations
-Reading contracts
-Reading connection sheets
-Work in Reading Response notebook
-Continue to read
You would have been so proud of them today! They were so engaged in their reading. Be sure to check out their conversations on KidBlog!

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I took a look at the account activity today on ProgressBook, and I thought I would send out a reminder. It is CRITICAL that you check your child's account at least weekly to see how they are doing in 2nd grade. We are inputting grades and comments almost daily, and it is a direct representation as to their progress (if a report card were to come home today, these are the grades you would be seeing). Please, please, please check periodically. If you need login information, I am going to resend it home today just as a reminder, and as always, let me know if you have any questions.
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Our Famous People!

Andrew- Thomas Jefferson
Panya- Mother Teresa
Samhi- Ruby Bridges
Sydney- Jane Goodall
Benjamin- Benjamin Franklin
Jake- Albert Einstein
Ezra- John Hancock
Jenna- Betsy Ross
Gunnar- Barack Obama
Jessica- Amelia Earhart
Sarah J.- Betsy Ross
Aneesh- Mahatma Ghandhi
Ryan- Ronald Reagan
Vishi- George Washington
Sarah R.- Abraham Lincoln
Jonathan- Thomas Edison
Joshua- The Wright Brothers
Joel- Neil Armstrong
Makena- Elizabeth Blackwell
Meredith- Martin Luther King, Jr.
Zachary- Buzz Aldrin
Victoria- Pocahontas

**Please feel free to go to the Dublin branch of the library and check out additional books to send in. We will keep them in our book bins until the research is complete. Thanks for all of your help!

Friday, February 4, 2011

Famous Person Projects

At the start of next week, we are going to begin our famous person project. The children will be researching the life and accomplishments of someone who has contributed to American (or world) history in some way. They will demonstrate their knowledge through a series of self-selected projects at the completion of the research, and will share this knowledge with the class and all of you! We are so excited! There will be a list of possibilities posted here on the blog, so please discuss some of these options with your child. There will be only one kiddo researching each famous person, so be sure to discuss a few. Be sure to have your top 3 possibilities, and send it back in to school by Monday (you can have your child write it down, email it to me, comment on this post, or just have them tell me). Let the learning begin!
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Thursday, February 3, 2011

Happy Chinese New Year!

Gung hay fat choy (which means "I hope you are lucky and successful")! Today is the start of Chinese New Year! It lasts for 15 days, and is a huge reason to celebrate! This year is the year of the Rabbit, and the kids found this fascinating! If they were born in 2003, they were born in the year of the Ram. If their birthday was in 2002, it was the year of the horse. The had a great time using the chart to figure out the birthdays of all of the people they knew!
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