Week of November 12th…

This Wednesday is Report Card pick up.  I will send home the schedule tomorrow.  If you have not signed up please do so as soon as possible.  Tomorrow is picture day make up.

What is happening in 215 this week…

Reading Workshop:  We started out nonfiction reading unit last week.  We learned about looking for details, asking questions, and understanding how our books are organized.  This week we will start looking at text features and using

Writing Workshop:  We started informational writing as well!  We are learning how to write lab reports.  We are in the middle of revising a science experiment with match stick cars.

Math:  Last week we practiced and shared different strategies for subtraction.  This week we will look at in/out boxes and function machines.

Science: We will look at the properties that make solids and liquids different and  learn how molecules change the shape of objects.

Social Studies: We will begin our unit of Native Americans. We will study folktales from different tribes and understand the regions that they lived and their way of life.

Week of November 5th…

Last week we had a lot of fun eating pan de muerte, making paper picado, and creating calaveras… This week we welcome Quarter 2!  We will be doing some mock elections to understand what is happening on Tuesday and how government affects the communities we live in.  Expect to get a conference sign up sheet for Report Card pickup November 14th.  I will try my best to accommodate everyone.

What else is happening this week…

Reading Workshop:  We will begin our nonfiction unit!  We will start by orienting ourselves to nonfiction texts and “revving up” before we read.

Writing Workshop:  We will also begin our information writing unit.  We will begin by learning about scientific writing and will conduct experiments and write about them using the scientific method.

Math:  We began Unit 3 last week and we there will be a much larger emphasis on subtraction in this unit.  Please continue practicing counting money, telling time, and addition facts!

Social studies:  We will start transitioning into learning about Native Americans.  At the end of November we will study the cocoa plant and how that relates to Native Americans and food.  This week we will also do a project with a “Mystery Box” picture.  I am a member of the TAP program at the Art Institute this year and am excited to implement this program into the classroom.

Science:  We will continue studying chemical and physical changes in different states of matter.

Week of October 29th..

We had a lot of fun picking pumpkins, eating apple cider donuts, and going to the animal farm on Friday!  This week we will continue fall fun by studying why leaves changes color, writing poems about Fall, and doing art activities about Dia de Los Muertos. On Wednesday we will participate in some Halloween like activities, but students are not allowed to wear costumes that day.  Friday will be a Teacher Institute Day and students and there will be no school for students that day.  The last day of the quarter will be Thursday.

What is happening this week.. 

Reading Workshop:  We will wrap up our unit on Fiction texts. On Thursday we will have an assessment on what we have covered this quarter thus far- folk tales, predictions, cause and effect, story lesson, author’s purpose.  We will begin a unit on nonfiction starting next Fall.  Reading logs need to be turned in by Thursday of this week.

Writing Workshop:  We will finish up our personal narratives this week and celebrate with a publishing party on Thursday. If some students have not completed their narratives in class, they will need to finish them at home.  Spelling words will be given Monday and students will be assessed Friday.  Students will also be expected to find the pattern, sort, and write 10 sentences in their notebooks.

Math:  We moved the Unit 2 math test to this week due to the field trip.  We will review tomorrow and take the test on Tuesday.  Please continue to practice math facts, count money, and tell time at home!

Science:  Last week we concluded that liquids stand apart from solids because they take the shape of the container that holds them.  This week we will begin to discuss the difference between chemical and physical changes and the differences between solid, liquid, and gases.

Social Studies: We will study the scientific process of how leaves change color and write poems about it and do lots of fun activities for Dia de Los Muertos.  Last week we found the neighborhoods of Pilsen and Little Village on the map and watched a video about Day of the Dead in Mexico. We will eat pan de muertos (from a bakery in Little Village) and make sugar skulls.

Week of October 22nd

We had such a fun week with NOODLES!  We first discussed their origin and then looked at where other types of noodles come from in the world.  Then we looked at where Greektown, Italian Village, Uptown, and Chinatown were on a map from Chicago. The next day we made orrichette pasta from scratch.  We let our pasta dry out and then sent home with some positive results.  The next day we did a taste test of four different types of noodles (orzo, rice noodles, spaghetti, and couscous) and ranked which ones were our favorite.  We bookended our week with the read aloud Everyone Brings Noodles. Below are some pictures of us cooking and from writing workshop doing partner feedback with our narratives.  There is also a flyer for the upcoming dance for middle school and the bottom of the page.

What is happing in class this week! 

Reading Workshop:  We are doing a shared reading of Mercy Watson and working to create strong predictions with evidence.  We created a student friendly rubric where students are able to evaluate their own work and strive to reach 4 stars by including reasons and evidence.  This week we will continue to practice making predictions, looking for lessons in stories, and thinking about author’s purpose, and then will also learn about cause and effect.   Reading Logs are collected and graded on Friday!

Writing Workshop:  We did great work last week adding action and imagery into our narratives. We also discussed what makes a strong lead by reading other 2nd graders work.  Students are doing an awesome job giving feedback to their writing parters and being able to express writing craft moves and describing how you can “show and not tell.”  We will begin to narrow down what writing pieces we want to publish and use our student checklist to see that we have incorporated all of the strategies we have learned.  We will also be given our spelling words on Monday and tested on Friday.  Students are expected to have their words written into categories and 10 sentences in their notebooks by Friday.

Math:  We will have our Unit 2 test this week.  We will continue to work on addition strategies and number sense and do a big day of review before we take the test.

Social Studies: Every Monday we do a Second Step lesson which fits into our social emotional curriculum.  This week we will talk about empathy.  We will continue our conversation around Chicago and community as well.

Science:  We will investigate how liquids move in containers and take shape of what they are in and then move on to solids!

Week of October 15th

This week we will have lots of fun with NOODLES!  You will also be getting a permission slip sent home this week- keep an eye out.  Thank you to everyone who has donated snack!  We appreciate it, especially around 2:15:)

This week we will…

Reading Workshop: We will be discussing how fairy tales and folk tales come from different cultures and stories are similar and different.  On Friday we read the traditional Little Red Riding Hood. On Monday we will read Lon PoPo.  We will also discuss all that we have learned so far this quarter and focus on how to write more meaningful predictions and understandings of lessons and authors purpose by including evidence.

Writing Workshop: We are discussing how we can give our writing feeling. While writing we think- “What type of story and I am trying to write?  Is it funny?  Sad?  Beautiful?  Or is it all of those feelings in different parts?”  We are adding in detail to create those feelings.

Math: We will going through lessons 2.6-2.9 this week.  We are focusing on strategies to help us add easier.  Combinations of 10, doubles, near doubles etc.  We are also learning new math games and working in centers to practice our number sense and have fun!

Social Studies: We will be learning about Chicago neighborhoods by studying noodles.  We focus on Greektown, Chinatown, Italian Village, and Little Saigon.  We are also going to make noodles!

Science: We are continuing our science unit on Solids and Liquids.  We also be going to the garden to observe and water our radishes and shrubs we planted!

October 7th

Last week we had a great time planting rose bushes and black current bushes in the garden.  This week we will perform in the Hispanic Heritage Month Assembly.  Please make sure that your child wears the color of their flag on the 12th.  They should be able to tell you what country they are representing. If you have any questions please email Señor Walters.

This week we will…

Reading Workshop:  We will continue our Folktale study, reading books from different parts of the world and discussing the characteristics of folktales.  We will also discuss author’s purpose and notice author’s craft in our own independent reading.

Writing Workshop: We are finishing our first draft of our personal narratives and then will start a second one later on in the week.  We look deeper into our mentor texts and study literary language.

Math:  We are doing a lot of work with money and will work on lessons 2.3-2.5 this week.  At home please give your child opportunities to count money for practical application.

Science:  Last week we studied the properties of liquids. We will continue to investigate the differences between different liquids.

Social Studies:  We will continue looking at what makes communities strong and finish our kente cloth patterns that we were painting.  Many of the folktales we have read have come from the Ashanti people in Ghana and we decided it would be fun to look a little deeper into the meaning of kente cloth.


October 1st

We had such a fun and busy week.  We made tamales which was very successful, the taste on the other hand, had mixed reviews.  We enjoyed going to the farmers market- observing and eating everything that was sold and dancing to some music!  Progress Reports will be sent home this Friday and this will be our last week in Spanish before switching specials.

What is happening in class this week…

Reading Workshop:  We will keep working on making predictions, tackling tricky words, and paying attention to learning new vocabulary.

Writing Workshop:  We will learn how to craft leads to our narratives and write endings that wrap up our stories creatively.

Math:  We will review for Unit 1 on Monday and Take our Unit 1 test on Tuesday.  For extra math practice at home- practice addition and subtraction facts, count money, and tell time on a clock.

Science:  We will continue our unit on Solids and liquids and investigate properties of different liquids.

Social Studies: We will continue discussing what makes communities strong and how food can bring people together.

Week of September 24th

We had a busy week and have finished NWEA testing. On Friday a permission slip went home for a walking field trip to the 53rd street farmers market.  Please sign and return.  We will also be making food with pilot light on Thursday- if you have not turned in a permission please do so this week.

Reading Workshop:  We worked on strategies to solve tricky words and will continue practicing next week.  As we grow as readers, the words we read become longer and trickier- using multiple strategies at once help us grow.

Writing Workshop: We discussed including detail in our narratives.  We will continue this work this week and find places where we can stretch out small moments.

Math: We will be completing lessons 1.8-1.11 and starting math centers.

Social Studies: We discussed food deserts and how they impact neighborhoods as well as how farmers markets and grocery stores are ways to improve areas without access to healthy food.  We will continue this discussion next week and also make food with Pilot Light on Thursday!

Science: We will begin our unit on solids and liquids this week!

Week of September 17th

Hi 215 Families- I hope you all are enjoying this wonderful weather.  This week I will be sending home permission slips with more details about going to the 53rd st. Farmers Market on Thursday, weather permitting.  As a continuation of our pilot light and social studies lessons, we will look at where food comes from in Chicago, the benefits of farmers markets, and hopefully interview people who work at the stands.  If you would like to come with us, please let me know!

This week we will also be taking the beginning of the year NWEA for Math and Reading, Monday and Thursday.

I have been asked to be a Network 9 Teacher Facilitator which means that I will miss a few days of school attending and giving trainings.  Thankfully, Ms. Newsome is with us this year and a certified substitute so she will be take over the class on some of the days that I am not here.  This Tuesday, I will not be at school as I will attend the first district summit.

What is happening in class this week…

Reading Workshop:  We have been talking and writing about predictions, character traits, and thinking about how books want to be read to practice our fluency.  We have also been pushing our stamina and as a class have independently read for 26 minutes! This week we will delve in to word work and use strategies to figure out tricky words.

Writing Workshop:  We will continue on with our personal narratives.  We have been learning strategies about how to generate ideas for our stories.  We talked about people and places that are meaningful for us and writing small moments.  This week we will talk about objects and practice stretching out small moments over pages.

Math:  We will review our extended response from Monday and continue on with lessons 1.6-1.10.  At home please practice addition facts and giving an opportunity to count change whenever possible.

Social Studies:  We will continue talking about community in terms of our classroom, school, neighborhood, city, county, and world.

Science:  We will hopefully take a trip to the farmers market mid week, check in with our garden, and begin solids and liquids the following week.

First Week


We had a great first week in 215!  We spent a lot of time getting to know each other,  building relationships and classroom community. We discussed our class and school virtues to be kind, safe, respectful and responsible and how those should look, feel, and sound.  We launched our reading workshop and Everyday Math curriculum. We also read lots of great books and explored the garden and our garden box in a scavenger hunt. I am looking forward to a really great year with your children
Some of the lessons we will be covering this month…

Readers Workshop: Readers read in longer phrases, solve tricky words, check for comprehension, mark their thinking with a post-it, and practice high frequency words.  

Writers Workshop: Writers generate ideas for personal narratives, study master writers to understand how they make small moments meaningful, write with detail, craft powerful endings and hook readers with a strong introduction.

Social Studies:  We will look at where Room 215 is on the map, analyze different types of communities, discuss what makes a community strong, and study Hyde Park.

Science: We will launch our unit on Solids and Liquids this week.  We begin by inquiring what makes something a solid, liquid or gas. We will also spend lots of time in the garden and begin our Pilot Light Lessons!

Math: We will begin Everyday Math by placing whole numbers on a number line, count tallies and calculate their value, use patterns to solve number stories, compare numbers and find even and odd patterns.

Things to know…

  • Beginning of the year NWEA testing, Tuesday September 18th and 19th
  • Specials this quarter are Spanish and P.E.
  • If you received a note for snack please provide one this month for the class.  There are 26 children. We will switch from A-M, N-Z each month.

2018-2019 Supply List

Supply List

2 Dozen #2 Pencils (Preferably Ticonderoga)
3 Composition Books Wide Ruled
4 Glue Sticks
1 small safety scissors
4 Folders (1 green, 1 yellow, 1 blue, 1 red)
1 reams of copy paper
1 Paper Towel
1 Box Kleenex
1 Drum sanitizing wipes
1 Box colored pencils
1 Box crayons
1 Box markers
2 square pads of Post-its
Sharpie markers
Expo Markers (Dry Erase)

Summer Learning Fun

Hi Families!  I hope you are having a great summer and I am so looking forward to meeting all of you for a great 2nd grade year.  These months, please make sure to read, read, read.  The Chicago Public Library has a great summer reading program that is all about Earth.  They have science experiments and recommended reading as well as prizes to keep kids motivated.

Real world applications of telling time, counting money, counting and adding items in the grocery store are great ways to keep kids engaged in math while prepping them for 2nd grade math.

The library also has passes that can be checked out for museums this summer and offers chess classes and tournaments.