..Out Like A Lamb!

Posted by Nancy Wollum on 3/27/2021

Out like a lamb, INDEED! 


We have enjoyed many opportunites for outdoor time this week.  A kindergardener stopped me in the hall recently and asked why we have so many "little recesses"? I told her these are not really recesses, but EARNED freetime: active participation in class and focus on work for 20-25 min. equals 2-8 minutes of free time - TMI for this little one, but 2nd graders understand! If I put effort into my work time, I get the full 8 min; less focus, less freetime (and I can use the time to take work action where I might have done it before). The mini-breaks really make a difference - almost ALWAYS all kids get at least two minutes for each break time for a quick run!  Fridays are cumulative:  all the week's work done = more time outside; otherwise, that outdoor time translates to catch-up time. This promotes good choices with time management all week...which leads me to ROBERT FROST.


The Road Not Taken by Robert Frost is an important poem on making sometimes hard but important choices that make a difference. We have read this poem many times, learned new vocabulary, translated sections to words we understand and summarized it. We have acted it out on the playground and talked about how this applies to our lives; we have talked about our choices with time, words, and actions. And now I have students noticing moments in their school day that connect to this poem! It has been surprisingly fun and productive.


WE FINALLY finished our paper chain of 1000 links and on a beautiful afternoon connected the 100 groups of ten to each other to see what 1000 looks like (predictions first of course...I was WAY off :->)  Then we thought about what 10,000 and 100,000 is and what those might look like.  Many thanks to Ms. Claire (Officer), Ms. Abby, and Ms. Ann for support!


We have finished our Epic research/response learning engagement connected to How We Organize Ourselves. This was about 4 weeks, 1-2 hours of independent class work time per week. We needed to have a completion date and the kids knew it was Friday; some have not completed the expectations and are welcome to continue with it and hand it in for a change of grade at anytime but there will be no more dedicated class time for work on this.


Ditto for ROBIN HOOD, our finished read-aloud from this past month. Students were given a week+ of warning that their summaries/pictures should be completed by Friday...taking art supplies home to finish work on the last two Wed. afternoons was recommended. Finishing them is a great IDEA if they are incomplete but our new read aloud starts MONDAY. These booklets are WONDERFUL examples of student art skills interpreting the Robin Hood chapter action! 


Ditto for GOOGLE SLIDES presentation on The Pros and Cons of Trade. You can see your student's work in their Google Slides. If it could use some work, your student can complete/enhance it for a grade change, but we will not be dedicating anymore class time with this activity.


TAP INTO READING our whole-school reading challenge has been completed!  2nd graders logged over 10,000 hours; please give your students HIGH KUDOS for the many minutes they read each day.  More importantly, they have come away with new reading goals: "I'm going to keep reading EVERY day."


I hope you have noticed the incredible changes in the spelling dictation results! Spelling thinking, editing and application to reading development is really improving! The kids REALLY love this dictation and challenging themselves to improve!


Along with spelling, learning parts of of a complete...and interesting... sentence (nouns, verbs, adjectives, adverbs, articles) is our focus in work work now. We are having fun as a class adding adjectives and adverbs to a "boring" sentence and seeing how our visualization of the subject and action changes.  This will help support our next writing assignment: a fictional story of choice!


Math continues with addition and subtraction strategies, money value and computations, and understanding large number (hundreds to 1000) counting through pattern awareness. We are also finishing work with 3D shapes - ask your student about the parts of a 3D cube or prism and some of the new shape vocabulary they know!


In preparation for conferences beginning this cominng week, students are reviewing and noticing all the work they have done within the 2nd grade Common Core State Standards.  This document will be shared with you at conferences.  We only have a 20 minute conference block so I will be asking students to just share their specific growth and goals gleaned from this document but I hope you can take the time to review their thoughts on where they feel they are in their learning.  NOTE: the checked boxes are the ones THEY chose in reflecting on themselves, not boxes I chose.  If you have any questions about their choices or what we are doing, please contact me and we can continue our conference at a later date.  My intention is that this document is informative to families and energizing for students to see how much progress they have made this year.


THANK YOU for your prompt responses to conference signup!  I will see many of your this week!!