This year, we will be using the Open Court reading program to enhance our reading skills. This program builds on the phonics learned in First Grade and integrates writing, Science, and Social Studies. We will be using various mini-books that focus on high-frequency words and specific sound-spelling blends, etc. Our Open Court anthologies include stories and texts of various genres including biographies, fictional stories, non-fiction texts, photo essays, folk tales, fairy tales, and poetry.
I also incorporate a spread of stories, poetry, and short chapter books throughout the year. This includes Teacher Read Alouds of Junie B. Jones and numerous storybooks, an in-depth author study of Roald Dahl and a look at Jack Prelutsky's short poetry collections.
Later in the year, students will begin participating in Silent Sustained Reading (SSR) where they will choose books from my classroom library to read independently and complete short book reports.
Second Grade is all about writing, writing, writing! We will be building our skills this year through the Writing Process which includes these five stages:
We will be learning to compose friendly letters, paragraphs, lists, stories, series or sequence writings, autobiographies, short poems, book reports, and informative reports. Students will be encouraged to be creative and have fun as they find their writing "voice" this year.
SCIENCE and SOCIAL STUDIES
We begin the year with our Science unit on life cycles. We take an in-depth look at honey bees and take particular interest in the life cycle as they grow from egg to adult bee. Our completed Bee Books will be displayed at Open House!
Our other Science units include Energy and Matter, Earth's Materials (where we will explore rocks, fossils, and dinosaurs), and Germs. I strive to teach students the scientific process and let them know that all people can be scientists if they think in a scientific way. We will be hands-on explorers with realia and experimentation. So get ready!
Social Studies is a great deal of fun as we look at the world around us in a broader spectrum. We will be learning about people who have made a difference- both in our local community and in the larger world. We will be following the process of clothes and food as they are produced and shipped around the world to be ready for consumers. Students have tracked where an item of their choice came from and we are getting ready to have Job Day where students will come dressed in the clothing for the job of their choice and will make a short presentation for the class.
Students will look at their personal history, taking time to explore their own family trees and conduct an interview with a family member.
Our math skills will grow phenomenally this year. We will review number sense and place value as well as the math facts they learned in First Grade. Then, we will graduate to adding and subtracting double-digit and triple-digit numbers with and without regrouping.
Other units include time, money, shapes and geometry, symmetry and fractions, and graphing. We will work to build number sense and place value understanding as well as build both comprehension and computation.
We are currently working with money and fractions. Students are learning about equal parts and parts of a whole or parts of a group. We continue to work on skip counting and place value, as well as word problems.
Second Grade is a year of faith formation as students learn the basics of mass, common prayers, popular Bible stories, the Ten Commandments, etc. The year culminates in a celebration as students participate in the sacraments of Reconciliation and First Communion.
I am so excited to learn and grow with your students and families as we discuss and question such concepts of sin, forgiveness, faith, symbols and signs, God's laws, charity, and moral choices. We will have two family meetings later in the year to discuss specifics of each sacrament and there will be a sacramental fee, collected in November.