Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Welcome Emma... and Double Digit Subtraction!

Greetings Family and Friends!! Second grade has been busy with new science units, new math, readers theaters and summary writing... along with many spirited meetings... where do we begin? Rebecca helped welcome Emma, our new student teacher from Mt. Holyoke College. After observing our second grade class she knew this would be a great place for her to learn about second grade and stretch her skills as an early childhood educator, and we are lucky to have her! She'll be joining our classroom community every day from now until the beginning of May. She'll complete some of her master teaching work with us and already has shared wonderful ideas on how to stretch our curriculum and integrate some math and social studies lessons! Way to go Emma! Great first day!
We began a new science unit called Earth, Moon, and Sun this week, and learned the difference between planets, stars, and moons today. We began our KWL chart with what we already Know about the earth, moon, and sun, and had some thoughtful ideas and interesting facts! We'll stretch our learning this week in writing workshop and fuse science with writing while learning about this little "blue" planet we call home!
In math we reviewed place value and began double digit subtraction (and how to use addition to double check your subtraction)! Tricky, and we got it! We stretched our learning to include "borrowing" or "regrouping" when the upper digit is smaller than the lower digit. We began concretely (with unifix cubes) to see how we borrow a ten from the tens column (and how it's not just a trick... changing numbers when solving equations). We will continue to practice a little every day, to keep our skills sharp and begin (later) to integrate double digit addition (with carrying/regrouping) and subtraction (with borrowing/regrouping) soon. Right now, we're LOCKING in the skills and steps for success in subtraction.
We began a new read aloud today: Matilda, by (our hero) Roald Dahl. And wow... does Roald Dahl tell it like it is! We noticed he does NOT shy away from "calling it how he sees it" when it comes to children and adults who demonstrate unflattering behavior, that's for sure! It's such an exciting feeling when you begin a story written by one of your favorite authors, and we can't wait to take this journey with Matilda! Great day everyone! Second grade is a very happy, productive, compassionate place to learn... and that's just the way we like it!

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