Wednesday Art Day: Winter Trees

MissMcWoodson.comLast week for art, we created beautiful art trees, inspired by an image I found by a quick Google search. We used water color paint on construction paper to create our multi-colored backgrounds, added our cut trees after the water color dried, and finally added “snow” to our pictures using tempura paint. The students made trees shaped in whatever style they wanted, and some students even added icicles! This might be my favorite art that we have done so far this year! Find more of the art projects we are doing in second grade here: https://www.pinterest.com/saumirah/simple-second-grade-art/

 

Snorkeling Self-Portraits

I love when we have (read: make) a little more time for art during the week! I feel like my students really enjoy the opportunity to use their brains in a different way, and I relish in opportunities to encourage my students to apply their skills and preferences to artistic endeavors. Last week, we took time over two days to create snorkeling self-portraits, inspired by this blog that I found over a year ago. I originally taught this project as part of a daily activity for a summer camp I directed at a private school.

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We used face templates that I found from this awesome website and fish templates that I found from a quick Google image search. I believe using templates/cut-outs is really helpful, especially when doing this project within a limited time frame and with younger students. My second graders still need lots of guidance when it comes to arts and crafting, and I always do projects with them or circulate the room the entire time they’re working, so that I can be there to assist with cutting and gluing where it’s needed.

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We happened to be reading about jelly fish in our curriculum this week and we wrote about what life would be like if we were sea creatures. Though not identical to our curriculum studies, it was great to tie in our art lesson to the ideas we were discussing for our academic studies last week. I think it’s also nice to throw a little summer into the midst of winter whenever possible!

Find more photos of this project on my Pinterest page, in Simple Second Grade Art and Simple Summer Arts and Crafts.

Happy Holidays!

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How Many Fives Around the Clock?

I came across this video earlier today, and I was pleasantly surprised when I heard the voice of Genevieve Goings of Choo Choo Soul, who I know from a freeze dance song I frequently use for my children’s dance classes. I was excited to find Genevieve’s educational video of counting around the clock by fives, which is something my second graders and I practice each day during our math “calendar routines” and spiral review. I will be sure to show them this video before calendar routines when we get back from the winter beak!

Contractions

contractionsThis week in second grade, we will be practicing with contractions. Below are some videos that might help your child become more familiar with contractions. The first video features a first grade class performing a rap about contractions and the second video gives a lesson then provides the typed lyrics to the Kidz Bop version of the Bruno Mars song “Just the Way You Are” so that the number of contractions used can be counted by students.

See you tomorrow bright and early!

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What’s Up Wednesday

Hello Families,

This week has been packed full of reinforcing our school culture and learning new routines that we will be doing for the rest of the year! However, we finally had time today to get to our class and independent writing time. I may have mentioned before that we will be focusing on 3 types of writing this year in second grade:

  • Narrative Writing (tells a story)
  • Expository Writing (explains something)
  • Persuasive Writing (tries to convince reader that writer’s opinion is correct)

Today, I modeled writing a story about a time when I found a dog (true story!) using my Topic Sentence Starters and Closing Sentence Starters (found in your child’s Take Home Binder). Remember, this is the format we will be using to write in our class this year:

  1. GREEN – GO! Topic Sentence (Grabs the reader’s attention and tells the main idea.)
  2. YELLOW – SLOW DOWN! Big Idea (Give a reason or a fact. Use a transition word.)
  3. RED – STOP! Detail (Give a detail or an example that supports your big idea.)
  4. YELLOW – SLOW DOWN! Big Idea (Give a reason or a fact. Use a transition word.)
  5. RED – STOP! Detail (Give a detail or an example that supports your big idea.)
  6. GREEN – GO BACK! Closing Sentence (Go back and remind the reader of your topic.)

As students advance beyond the 6-sentence paragraph, I would like them to focus first on adding more “reds” or more details. Below is the helpful video that we watched in class today. I will also link additional helpful videos below.

Is your child a “reluctant writer”? The following article explains how the Step Up to Writing “Traffic Light Paragraph” model is simple for students to visualize and use to construct a solid paragraph. While the article explains how to write a 4-sentence paragraph, we will be writing at least 6 sentences for our paragraphs in second grade: “Step Up To Writing: A Tool For The Reluctant Writer”

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Mid-Week Notes!

Hello Families!

I hope you and your children are settling back into the routine of school nicely. One important piece of information I will generally post on Mondays (and in our Weekly Newsletter) is the tests and quizzes for the week!

This week on Friday, we will have the following tests and quizzes:

  1. English Language Arts Test (reading comprehension, phonics, & vocabulary)
  2. Spelling Test (12 words; find them typed in our child’s Take Home Binder and also posted here)
  3. Target Vocabulary Quiz (the 8 words that your child writes each morning as part of Morning Seatwork; also on the Spelling List posted here and in their Take Home Binder; students should be generally familiar with the definitions of these words-we have been discussing them each day in class and they are in this week’s story)

Also on Friday of this week:

  1. Share Day — Students have the option to bring a small stuffed animal or toy from home to share during Morning Meeting. They should not bring anything that they are afraid might get lost or ruined.
  2. Student Store — Students who have earned at least 25 cents will be able to shop at the student store or “trade out” their money (e.g., trade 5 pennies for 1 nickel) if they would like to save for a future Student Store day

This week as a class, we are working to make our Study Hall time more productive and less chatty. My goal is to have most of the children complete their “Must Do” work by the end of Study Hall each day. Students who want additional practice may always work on the “Should Do” options with parents at home.

Have a great evening!

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See You Next Monday!

Dear Second Grade Families,

I am so excited to work with you and your children for the rest of the 2015-2016 school year! I feel fortunate to have been selected to be your child’s teacher and to be part of the staff at William Lee College Prep.

fall_foodsFor the rest of the year, you can check this area for daily blog posts from me. I plan to cross-post whatever I post here to our Class Dojo page as well. It is my pleasure to help keep you informed about what’s going on in our classroom so that we can work together to have a great year!

Enjoy the rest of your Thanksgiving Break. I look forward to seeing you in one week, bright and early at 7:30 am!

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