Friday Newsletter: Week 6

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Second Grade Learns About September 11th

I’ve always wanted to do a focused lesson on September 11th for my students, but I never felt that I had the appropriate tools to do so in the past. This year, I found some wonderful resources that helped me shape an open and informative discussion, craft project, and a week of social studies mini-projects for my class!

We began by watching this video, which was free and available to watch the day after 9/11. We had a delicate discussion about how people are free to feel how they feel but that it is not okay for people to hurt other people because of their feelings. Our discussion ended with me guiding our class to the idea of the phrase “United We Stand.” I decided to focus on this positive phrase in case some of my students were feeling sad after watching the video and also because I saw that it was a writing prompt on some of the materials I wanted to use for social studies time, that I downloaded from Teachers Pay Teachers. Though I did not end up using the craft from Just Wild About Teaching‘s “Patriotic Craftivity,” I absolutely loved all the writing prompts and other printables in this bundle. Those materials helped me create an entire week of focused social studies activities and discussions!

The craft project I ended up doing with my class in honor of September 11th was based on a Google search and this image from Teacher by the Beach that really caught my eye. Though my class didn’t have enough blue construction paper for a blue heart background, I found some heart-shaped templates from this fantastic website, and I had my students glue on a blue square and red and white strips of construction paper. We also painted on stars, and I told my students they could be “abstract” with how many stars were in the blue part of their art piece, though we knew from our KWL discussion of America that there are 50 stars in the United States of America flag!

Find our finished products below!

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Wednesday Art Day: Labor Day Tool Belts

 

In deciding what project I wanted our class to focus on for today’s Art Day, I thought it would be fun to have a little discussion about the recent holiday we celebrated–Labor Day! Before beginning to design our tool belts, we had a discussion about the meaning of the word labor (Google told us it means: “work, especially hard physical work”) and watched a cute little video about people who work.

Later, we colored some tools. (Click the pictures below to enlarge.).

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Finally, Miss McWoodson stapled together our tool belts!

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This was a very fun, simple craft, and I like that it related to the recent holiday we had in the United States. It took me longer than expected to fit students for belts (hence me only getting through about 5 students today!). Also, I can’t figure out how to make the belt adjustable. Future goals!

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Wednesday Art Day: Circle Flowers

For last week’s Wednesday Art Day, we combined materials to created mixed-media pieces. I knew that I wanted to have the class create something with circles, as I enjoy starting off the year with classic Wassily Kandinsky circle projects, but I wanted to put a different spin on the project.

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Using circles found HERE and prototypes found HERE we created lovely circle flowers last week! Find them hanging in our hallway tomorrow morning!

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Find a few close-ups of student art work HERE.

Learn more about Kandinsky circles from the video below, which demonstrates how to create the circles using oil pastels!

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I Can Add Doubles!

Hello! I hope you are feeling well-rested, as am I, after the long holiday weekend.

We are now officially on schedule and doing formal ELA and math lessons each day in school. Today, we did a read-aloud of our story Henry and Mudge and discussed the jobs of an author and an illustrator. Remember: Scholars must be familiar with this story, as we have our 40-question ELA test this Friday, and 10 of those questions are on story comprehension. Our centers activities that we will be doing each day will help us review the story themes, our phonics (short “a” and short i sounds), grammar (subjects–WHO? and predicates–DID WHAT?), and our language skill (alphabetical order) this week.

In math, we had fun reviewing our doubles facts! Scholars are learning that they can use a doubles addition sentence (i.e., 6 + 6 = 12) to solve a near-doubles addition problem (i.e., 5 + 6 = 11).  We also began learning about the following vocabulary words in math today: sum, difference, greater than, less than, addends. Feel free to watch the fun doubles-fact video below with your scholar this week! You can also find several doubles worksheets that you can download and print by clicking HERE.

Our “Go Word” for this week is: VERB. Today we learned that a verb can show action (run, jump, hop, skip) or a state of being (am, is, are, was, were).

Happy Tuesday!

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