Second Grade Room 214

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Week of November 13th

Hi 214 Families!  This coming Wednesday is report card pick up and parent teacher conferences.  I have sent home a list with times for families to sign up and return to school on Monday.  I will do my best to accommodate everyones schedule.  If you can not make it on Wednesday and would still like to meet, please email me and let me know times you are available.

This week…

Reading Workshop:  We will continue our informational unit.  We are focusing in on main idea and supporting details as well as authors purpose. Today we focused on stopping and jotting questions.  Homework is still whatever leveled books they have in their book baggie.  Please make sure your child is reading for 20 minutes and filling out their reading log.

Writing Workshop:  We have started our scientific writing unit off with a bang and are learning how to write lab reports.  We conducted a simple test with a toy car, ramp and meter stick and wrote up a question, hypothesis, procedure, data, and conclusion.  Next week they will alter the investigation and try a new test and… write a new lab report!

Math:  This week we will cover 3.6, 3.7, 3.8, and 3.9.  Our ST math subscription is ending at school, but I have signed up all kids for a Moby Max subscription (  When signing in, you can enter il5089 for the code and you childs name is both the username and password.

Science:  We tested our model skyscrapers in different layers of the crust and found that bedrock indeed was the best layer to anchor a building to withstand an earthquake.  On Friday we created models of the Earth. Next week students will make a TarPul model and test what weight it can withstand using the engineering process (ask, imagine, plan, create, improve).

Social Studies:  We have begun our Native Americans unit and are learning about different tribes. Currently we are studying the Native Americans of the plains.


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Week of November 6th

Happy November 214 Families!

We will be taking a field trip 11/21 to The Old Town School of Folk Music for a pow wow.  The cost of the trip is $10.00.  Please get permission slips in early! We are also still in need of snack so we would love any donations.  Thank you to parents who have already contributed for the month of November.

The end of quarter 1 was this past Thursday and report card pick up will be November 15th.

This week…

Math:  We will begin Unit 3 in Everyday Math! This week we will cover 3-1 (2 days), 3-2, 3-3, 3-4.  At home, please continue to practice counting money and subtraction and addition facts.  Family letter covering the unit will go home Monday.

Reading Workshop: We are starting our informational reading unit!  At the start of the unit, we will orient ourselves to the different parts of nonfiction books and pay attention to details.  Students should still be reading their independent reading books at night and filling out their reading logs.  They should be reading an hour a day so it is necessary that they read at home at home as well so they build fluency and practice reading skills.

Writing Workshop:  To support our informational unit in reading workshop will begin our informational writing unit this week as well.  Students will learn procedural writing incorporating our science unit and will also make informational books. We will study mentor texts and learn how to write like a scientist.  This will be a big departure from our personal narratives which I urge kids to continue writing at home because they enjoyed doing it so much in class.  Our word work words from last week will carry over to next week.

Social Studies:  Due to the field trip and shortened week we were unable to wrap up our government study but we will do so this week.  After that we will begin a unit on Native Americans.

Science:  Kids are in the middle of performing an investigation on building support beams to anchor a building into the ground using models and core samples.  We made a prediction about what layer of the Earth would be the most supportive.  Most guessed bedrock…..

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Week of October 30th

We will be leaving for our field trip on Tuesday! Please make sure to dress your child appropriately as it will be in the 40s and we will be outside. For those who are chaperoning I will email you tomorrow with further details.  We are in need of snack- graham crackers, goldfish, pretzels, apples are great options and will be greatly appreciated.  As a reminder, all birthdays are to be celebrated on the last Friday of the month.  Due to school policy, treats should be on the healthier side- fruit roll ups, juice boxes, fruit snacks are good alternatives.

This week…

Writing Workshop- we will publish our 2nd personal narratives this week.  Kids have been doing a great job trying different leads and including dialogue.

Reading Workshop- we are working to include evidence from the text in our predictions.   I predict ______ is going to happen because ____________ is a prompt we use often.  We are also talking about how we can “elaborate” when we talk to our reading partners about our books.

Math- we will finish up unit 2 this week and have a unit test on Thursday.

Social Studies-  we will continue learning about state and local government and also continue on our Dia de Los Muertos art activities- sugar skulls and paper picado.

Science-  Last week we read about geotechnical engineering which leads us into this weeks investigation called “Stick in the mud.”  It will relate to geotechnical engineering and understanding how structures need to be supported in the earth.



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Week of October 23rd

Hi 214 Families!  Please turn in your permission slips for our October 31st field trip.  The cost is $15 and open to all chaperones.  Picture day forms went home last week- let me know if you another form.  October 27th is our school assembly and students will be performing a song with Señor Walters.  Please make sure your child is dressed in red , white and blue.

What is happening this week…

Reading Workshop:  we are going to finish up our unit on realistic fiction and begin informational reading next week. We will continue to work on authors purpose and support our ideas with text evidence.  Students will receive a new set of word work words tomorrow and will be assessed on Friday.

Writers Workshop: Last week we published our personal narratives.  This week we will continue writing narratives but focus on stories connected to people who are important to us- using that as a strategy to generate story ideas and include lots of details.  The kids are really excited about this project.

Math:  We will continue learning and practicing strategies (doubles facts, combination of 10, and turn around facts) for addition.  Monday and Tuesday we will be working on an open response math problem. In class we have been working on explaining our thinking with problem solving. We practice this by partner math talks and writing steps.

Social Studies:  we will be talking about local and national government and the process of voting within a democracy.  Last week we made 3 branches of government models and discussed the difference between each.

Science: We have begun our engineering unit!  We will begin by reading story about a student in Nepal who needs to engineer a bridge for his community.

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Week of October 16th

Happy October Room 214 families- progress reports went home last week and we are mid way through the 1st quarter.  A field trip form was sent home for October 31st field trip.  More information about the trip will be sent home this week.  Students will perform with Señor Walters at the October National Hispanic Heritage Assembly on 10/27. He asks that all students wear red, blue and white that day for their performance.

This week we will…

Reading Workshop- study authors purpose and practice retelling.  We will practice these strategies during our read alouds, guided reading, and independent reading.

Writing Workshop- publishing our final drafts for personal narrative and having a publishing party.  Students have been working hard revising and editing their stories.

Math- we will cover 2.4, 2.5, 2.6, and 2.7.  Children received a hard copy book for their homelinks today.  I have pulled out the first pages and stapled them together to go home.  This has the table of contents, parent letters you have already received, and a few homelinks the students have already done.  When the students open their homelinks today to rip out 2.4 they will be exactly at that page and more organized.  They can do any the old homelinks I sent home today for extra practice.  Another strategy for practice would be counting money with your child.  Kids need extra practice especially counting quarters.

Social Studies:  We will continue studying government.  Specifically what are the 3 branches and the difference between local, state and national.

Science:  This week we will start working on dams.  We will investigate how to make them the most safe for humans to live.

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October 10th

We are half way through the 1st quarter!  Progress reports will go home Tuesday along with a field trip form.  If you need another Taffy Apple order form please let me know.

What is happening this week…

Reading Workshop:  students will analyze the characteristics of a folk tale and retell the message/lesson from the story. We will also be reading folk tales in guided reading groups practicing the reading strategy of retelling. Students will be given new word work words on Tuesday as well.

Writing Workshop:  Last week we took a few days to practice writing narratives about our Hyde Park walk. Students wrote with detail using their senses while we were in the neighborhood.  They also practiced using comparisons. This week we will pick back up with our own personal narratives and continue studying our mentor authors for writing moves.

Math:  We finished Unit 1 on Friday and will begin Unit 2 on Tuesday.   I will send a family letter home tomorrow explaining what students will be learning in this unit.  It also will give strategies for working with your child at home. This week we will be exploring place value, writing addition number stories, and explore doubles and combinations of 10 to build fact fluency.

Science:  Last week we made streams.  This week we will look at our landforms now that some time has passed to examine weathering and erosion. We will also analyze our water run off samples.

Social Studies:  This week we will study the different branches of government and continue to look at different neighborhoods in Chicago.

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Week of October 2nd

Welcome to the 5th week of 2nd grade!  This will be the last week of our specials cycle and progress reports will go out on Friday.  Forms for the Taffy Apple PTO fundraiser went home on Friday.  Order forms are due Friday, October 13th.

This week in 214 we will …

Reading Workshop- continue to practice our word work strategies- figuring out tricky words and determining ways how to solve them in our independent reading books. We will be reading instructional texts in our word study groups and practicing reading strategies.  Students will also get a new set of word work words on Tuesday.

Writing Workshop- we are working hard on our narratives.  We are focusing in on detail- writing about what we feel, see, think, and hear in our stories.

Math- we will be working on the final lessons of Unit 1.  Please talk to students about the value of coins at home- how much is a quarter worth?  If you have 6 nickles, what is the total?

Social Studies- we are comparing urban and rural communities and starting to narrow in on Hyde Park.  What makes Hyde Park a unique community?  What makes you a good citizen?

Science- last week we looked at erosion by studying the act of precipitation on land.  This week we will look at how water effects soil over time and what happens to run off and ground water.

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Week of September 25th

Happy Monday 214 Families-  Please read below for what we will be up to this week!

Reading Workshop:  all kids have been assessed and if you would like to talk about your child’s reading level or strategies for reading at home please let me know.  We are going to start guided reading and word study groups this week.  Thank you to Ms. Gruber for helping me get them started.  Students will also continue to practice strategies for figuring out tricky words and stopping and jotting to remember ideas.  We will also practice writing 4 star questions with our read aloud Zeely.  Kids are expected to fill out their reading log in school and at home. They should be bringing their book baggie with blue folder to and from school M-TR.

Writing Workshop:  Last week we analyzed our narratives with a writing checklist with our writing partners.  This week we are going to continue writing using that lens and also trying out craft moves from our mentor authors, Jane Yolen and Angela Johnson.

Math:  Today we will look at our open response problems from Friday and students will have a chance make changes to their written answers.  For the rest of the week we will continue practicing counting using number grids, calculators, number lines, and money.  Students do not have Everyday Math home links for unit 1. Math homework is review from the end of the 1st grade.

Science:  Last week we made a model of a landform using humus, gravel, sand, and clay. We created a lake and investigated how condensation occurs.  This week will continue our exploration into the water cycle and look at how rain creates streams and alters landforms.

Social Studies:  We will continue our study into rural, urban, and suburban communities. We will discuss the components that make Chicago an urban community and jobs that help the community grow.

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3rd week!

Happy Monday and welcome back to the 3rd week of school!  We are off to a great start and have launched our science unit, already grown as readers, practiced our strategies with number lines, and stretched out small moments in our writing.

This week…

-In reading workshop we will be using strategies to solve tricky words and also practicing retelling and our new skill- stop and jot.

-writing workshop we will crafting powerful endings and introductions.  We will also continue studying our master texts Owl Moon and the Leaving Morning to learn how to stretch out small moments and include detail.

-Math we will cover lessons 1.4-1.7.

– Social studies we will continue to read Zeely and discuss the differences between urban, rural, and suburban communities.

-Science we will make models of the water cycle by making stream tables with different organic materials to create a model of land and water. We will observe the reaction to land and water when we spray water and use ice packs to alter the landscape.

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Welcome to Room 214’s blog site!

Hello families!  I am happy to have our blog up and running.  Please check here weekly for class updates.

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