Wednesday, February 24, 2010

$47.20 Toward Haiti Reflief Fund!! Well Done Second Graders!

Our Helping Haiti Friendship Pin Project finally came to a close as we counted the money earned selling our beautiful little pins throughout the school. Small groups of students each worked together to use what we know about money and value and counted our earnings. Each group got a slightly different answer (hard, counting so much money with 2 or 3 other friends, but useful cooperative learning opportunity!!). All groups were certainly "in the ball park" with their counting (only a dime or two off)! The final tally was $47.20! WOW!! That's almost $50.00.... and that's a lot of money! We will forward our money to the Helping Hands Club who will donate their collection to Haitian Relief. Connecting our second graders in a global, humanitarian, creative way with our Haitian brothers and sisters in need! Now that's what I call "stepping up to the plate" second graders! Well done!
Other news... We continue our skills practice with double digit addition (with regrouping/carrying) up to three digit numbers and will begin our geometry unit soon. We will explore the attributes and differences/similarities in 2 and 3 dimensional shapes, learn their names, and vocabulary involved when working with geometry (flips, turns, face, vertex, sides...). Fun unit!
We will also begin our magnet unit soon! Understanding north, south, attract/repel, poles, how magnets work as well as how society uses magnets as tools. Fun!
Our social curriculum is also embedded in everything we do in the classroom. Learning how to make good responsible choices for your learning, the art and skill of active listening, attending to tasks, working independently or cooperatively with other students and caring and respecting one another is fostered every day in second grade! We have really come together as a thoughtful invested community of learners working together to make our classroom a wonderful place to stretch, take risks, and try new challenges!

Monday, February 22, 2010

Welcome Back!!

Another "better than average" Monday in second grade! First of all... Welcome Isaac! A new student has joined the our 2W family and his name is Isaac. He's only been here for the better part of one day, but there's no better place to "land" than our second grade classroom. 2W students were truly welcoming and generous (NO SURPRISE) and did all they could to help our new student feel comfortable and welcome.
Other news... Autumn kicked off our Monday with a stellar morning meeting! Who knew that you could sing two totally different songs (to the same melody) at the same time.... AND SOUND GREAT!! The friendship pin greeting was a creative way to share our left over pins.... Now... time to count our Haiti money!!! Wonder how much we made? Venture any guesses? What a great project!
We worked on our weekend (vacation) journals during a very productive writing workshop. Many writers are working on elements discussed/practiced and are including these ideas in their stories (setting the scene... dialogue...). Great job sharing today Otto and Alex! Every writer was focused and busy writing today! Well done! Best writing workshop in quite a long time! Let's keep up the good work, writers... Eric Carle, Jan Brette, and Leo Lionni are not only great models when it comes to writing, but really helping us learn about what "good writers do" in their writing!
We practiced a bit of double digit addition with regrouping, but mostly focused on our 100th day of school in math! We practiced counting to 100 (by 2's, 3's, 5's, 10's) and talked about the fastest, slowest, and most efficient ways to count! CJ was a great substitute math helper, and we look forward to Maddison's math meeting tomorrow! Get well Maddison, we sure missed you my friend!
Tomorrow.... can't wait! We'll switch "writing" gears and work on summaries with a book about one of my favorite presidents.... do you know who? Surprise me with your guess in the morning! Sleep well friends. Can't wait to start another exciting day full of fun and learning!
FYI... The "cooty-police" is requesting more wipe donations please. If anyone can donate a tube of wipes to our class, we would appreciate it... Thanks!

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Back to Business!!

Greetings Second Graders!
Hope you all had a mix of adventure and rest during your winter break! Mine was very busy and full of work, reading, exercising and one big haircut (I'll let you be the judge...). Can't wait to get back into our school routines and all the fun we have in the classroom! We will get right back into double digit addition with regrouping/carrying (anyone practice over the break?), reading groups and work board, and begin some new units and read aloud! Hope our meeting helper and math helper are ready for an exciting Monday! Curious... what have you been reading over the break? Anyone celebrate Presidents Day? What have you been busy with over the past week? Heard we may have another new student in second grade... how can we help new friends feel comfortable and welcome? Can't wait to see you (and Mrs. Cialek!) tomorrow morning! Get a good night's sleep and see you then!

Friday, February 12, 2010

Friendship Pins, Valentines, and Double Digit Addition!!

Another busy week! Second grade has jumped smack-dab into double digit addition... with regrouping/carrying! Practice makes perfect, and practice we did! We will review upon our arrival post-vacation to keep our skills sharp!
We've also taken some time with our Help Haiti Project. Making friendship pins and posters, crafting/writing announcements, and organizing a job plan to sell our product to the public! What a success! There's been much interest, across the grades in our pins, and certainly our cause! Our bottom line... helping Haiti and contributing in a sensitive/global way while using our skills, talent and creativity! Well done second grade! You continue to impress me and our school with your industrious energy and diplomatic action!!
Must also mention we swapped valentines today as well. Some did... some did not... a great snack was enjoyed by all, thanks to Annika for the delicious brownies you so thoughtfully provided today! Friendship is celebrated every day in 2W, so it's no surprise today was a day we had great snacks provided by thoughtful, generous friends! Just the way we like it!
FYI: Next week Johannah has a collection deadline for contributions towards our second grade Red Sox Basket for the PTO fundraiser! Thanks Johannah, and all who are able to generously donate to this worthy cause! Happy Vacation! Enjoy your students, they will be missed... can't wait to hear vacation stories on Monday!

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Wow! Writing announcements, and spreading the word!!

Well done second graders! Writing announcements full of important information about our friendship pin project! Students talked about what we NEED to say (share) and what we WANT to say (slogans) and what information must be included to inform the public! Kai did an amazing job articulating his announcement about our friendship pin project, and we couldn't have been prouder! After announcing how students can purchase our pins, on the loud speaker, to the whole school.... Kai entered the classroom full of applause and recognition for a job WELL DONE! Very impressive Kai, well thought out, well written, and well read! Way to appreciate his effort second grade... that applause and all those kind words go a LONG way!!
Helping our Haitian neighbors in any way we can.

Friendship Pins... Helping Haiti!!

Greetings Friends! Sooooo... How was Henry the Juggler?? Awesome! I don't know about you, but my face hurt after 45 minutes of "big-smiling" and "laughing OUT LOUD"!! Lots of participation by SES students (and well done, I might add)!! Also, lots of unexpected surprises throughout the whole show! Even Ms. Antes and Ms. Worthley, and Ms. Palmer got a piece of the action!! Fun for all, to watch, and certainly participate (as many students did beautifully!!). Thank you to the Sunderland PTO for bringing this kind of artistic, creative enrichment into our school! What a treat! Truly appreciated and so worthwhile! What a Blast!
Check out the slide show and see all of Henry the Juggler's stunts and students who bravely joined him in one supremely great show!!
And.. If you haven't heard... Second grade is making some mighty fine friendship pins (selling for 5 cents to fifteen cents in the cafeteria during lunch periods) to earn money for our Help Haiti cause! Students have crafted posters (what's important, what do we need/want to say, slogans...) as well as beading up all those friendship pins (seriously working our "fine-motor-fingers"!). We will begin selling Thursday and Friday, and will forward all the money to the Helping Hands club toward their Haiti Relief Fund. Love it!! Students feeling empowered and contributing in developmentally appropriate, meaningful ways! Well done Second Graders... WELL DONE!!

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Welcome Arayana!!

Greetings! How lucky are we... our old friend Arayana is joining our second grade family (thanks for that great way of saying it, Kalesiah) and we are sooooo happy to have her back! First day back was smooth sailing Arayana! Way to go, and what an amazing way you all greeted her, friendly, comforting, and so helpful! That "golden rule" knows what it's talkin' about!
Kudos to Autumn who sure knows how to run a math meeting! Well done Autumn! That girl looks like a seasoned professional, with all her graphing and place value skills, not to mention knowing how to compliment a good listener! Well done Autumn, looking forward to Thursday and Friday math meetings with you in charge!
And... what can I say... we've been working so hard on our writing and crafting "great beginnings" to really "hook" our readers. Writing practice every day (at least 20 minutes.... just like reading) improves our writing skills.... even if we don't know what to write about. Every kid has a story to tell... finding your voice (honest voice) is the trick to knowing what you want to share in your writing. The work continues...
We also welcome Lital Shahar, from UMass School of Education Program! She's excited about joining our classroom on Tuesdays, and we're equally grateful we can provide a place for her to learn and "grow" her teaching skills! Welcome Lital!
Looking forward to Henry the Juggler tomorrow... Second graders will have a half hour workshop where they might even learn to juggle???? Show time is at 2:00. We'll let you know what we thought about Henry tomorrow...
Get a good night's sleep second graders (you may have heard... the "pewking-bug" is going around, so take heed when you hear complaints of tummy trouble.) Look forward to another supremely awesome day in second grade!! Be well.