Thursday, April 13, 2017


Happy Day before Vacation!!!

The students have been enjoying the warmer weather, and I'm ready for consistently 80 degree days too.  A little update before we are all more concerned about vacation than school.

I will send homework papers tomorrow, they will not be due until Friday, April 28.  The kids do not have to do homework over vacation (although I hope they do read).

We had a special guest speaker today.  Mr. Woolsey, a father of a student in Mrs. Richardson's class, came in and talked to us about his vision impairment.  I wasn't able to be there the whole time, but the kids were very interested in what he was saying, especially because we just finished reading about Laura Bridgman.  He brought in some of the tools he has that help him see and read.

The students are finishing up their opinion paragraphs about Laura Bridgman.  Ask your child about Laura Bridgman.  The writing assignment was to answer the question of whether they agree or disagree with Dr. Howe's decision to have Laura's parents leave right away when they dropped her off in Boston at Perkins School for the Blind.

The work we did this week on reading was with informational texts about geometry.  It was a great opportunity to practice scooping up a lot of words at a time, use strategies for reading larger words, reading the punctuation, practice writing complete sentences and learn more about geometry all the while--I love it when that happens!

Wednesday I introduced arrays by reading the book, One Hundred Hungry Ants.  Arrays are the way we introduce repeated addition (multiplication).  On their own or with a partner they set up a line of one hundred hungry ants.  One little ant in the story kept stopping the others and rearranging the line(s).  We went through 1x100, 2x50, 4x25, 5x20.  One of the things I learned at the math conference I went to in November, was to provide the concrete (their own ants--kidney beans, dominoes, etc.), the pictorial (the illustrations in the book and my dots on the white board), and the abstract (numbers, 1x100) all at the same time.  Previously I was taught to first use concrete materials, then move on to pictures or representations, and finally, students would be ready for abstract (numbers, letters, symbols) with the implication that students shouldn't "need" manipulatives anymore.  Teachers are now encouraged to have manipulatives available all the time.

When the students return after vacation we will be working with arrays (putting objects in rows and columns).   Then we will move onto fractions.

We will also quickly dive into all things colonial.  Look for a permission form for our trip to The Fort at Number 4.  Please make sure to read and sign both sides of the permission form.  The trip to the Fort is scheduled for Thursday, May 11th.  Over vacation I will set up a Sign-up Genius for our craft workshops.  More details to follow.

We're in the home stretch...Colonial Day and the preparations are such an exciting time for second graders.  I enjoy being with your children every day and look forward to this special time of learning.

Enjoy the vacation!