Monday, November 21, 2016

Classroom News; November 21, 2016


Dear Families,

It is hard to believe we are nearing the end of November! Picture retakes are tomorrow, Tuesday November 22nd.  Also, we have Thursday and Friday off of school this week for the Thanksgiving Holiday. 

In class we are very busy indeed!  Our writing projects include writing acrostic poems for Thanksgiving and beginning expository animal reports.  Please look for the poems to come home on Wednesday.  It is a great time to talk about everything your child has to be thankful for.  The animal reports are a long-term project.  Students are researching an animal of their choice.  The report will include a drawing of their animal, basic facts, interesting facts, all put together on a decorative poster. 

Math is very exciting, as we have started a geometry unit covering 2D and 3D figures.  Math vocabulary includes words such as quadrilateral, prism, vertices, area, and symmetry.  At home to support our unit try and find everyday objects and/or situations when you can use these words and concepts. The more students hear and use these words, the easier it will be to learn the concepts. We are also working hard on our math facts.  Nearly half of the students have mastered their addition facts & are moving on to subtraction. We also have about 6 students who are working on their multiplication facts!  Keep practicing at home. It is important to get the basics so more complex problems are less challenging.  

In reading our focus last week was story development.  We are learning how to identify characters, setting, and plot.  Students are also spending a lot of time happily reading self selected books. December 7th is our Camas Ridge Book Fair. If you need new books, this is a great time to purchase ‘good fit’ books.
A big thank you to the families who are able to donate snack.  We are getting low again. If you have not donated snack this year please feel free to send in items such as pretzels, plain Cheerios, goldfish, saltine crackers, etc...  Our hungry tummies appreciate your kindness.
Finally, we started art block last week.  The art walk is December 15th.  Please save the date. The art walk never disappoints!

 Have a wonderful week and always if you have any questions feel free to email me,
~Donna

Saturday, October 29, 2016

Classroom News October 28th, 2016

Dear Families,

This week we survived school pictures, indoor recess, a visit from the firefighters, and a visit to the pumpkin patch!  I'm exhausted just thinking about it. I am always inspired by the curiosity and love of learning 2nd graders bring to these experiences.

The pumpkin patch was a huge success. Thank you to all the parents who attended and made this trip safe and fun for everyone. Also a shout out to Ben, Averick, and Riley who kept DVD safe in the spooky spider house! The students went on a hayride, experienced a Harry Potter scavenger hunt, had lunch together, played together, learned about what is real and fake, and picked out the perfect pumpkin.  I hope all the pumpkins made it home in one piece.  To incorporate math you could estimate how many pumpkin seeds are inside. You could measure around your pumpkin and find the 'circumference'. You could also estimate the weight of your pumpkin.

If you missed school pictures or would like retakes the date is November 22nd. I must say the entire group looks as adorable as ever all dressed up!

This week firefighters visited 2nd grade students. Only about 1/5th had a fire escape plan at their home. I have watched a home burn down. It happens quick. Please make a plan and teach it to your children. Here is a great website as a resource. Be Safe!
http://www.nfpa.org/public-education/by-topic/safety-in-the-home/escape-planning/basic-fire-escape-planning

Conferences are happening next week.  I hope everyone received their conference appointment slip.  If not, send me an email and I will be happy to give you the time and date. This means there is NO SCHOOL next Thursday and Friday. There is also NO SCHOOL Friday November 11th due to Veteran's Day.

I am NOT sending home official homework this week due to the three day week ahead. Please keep reading every night with your child or encouraging them to read to themselves or a stuffie. Additionally, you can always use the links on my blog to practice 2nd grade skills.  Here is a great Halloween math website.

Monday students may wear costumes to school. If there is a very special part of a costume such as a prop perhaps it should stay home and only be used Monday night. I want to avoid the tears lost costume parts can cause.  Other than that, we are planning a very exciting day.  Thank you to all the volunteers who are decorating and providing a fun party for the class.  If you can stay a few extra minutes Monday morning you will  see our annual Halloween Parade.  It is always a good time.

With so much going on, sometimes it is hard to keep up with all of it.  Remember to take some time and just enjoy each other. Have a wonderful weekend!
~Donna




















Thursday, October 27, 2016

Wattle and Daub

 Last week was very messy in project class.  We constructed our version of wattle and daub, peasant homes to begin our replica of a medieval village.  This village will take some time to complete, but with nearly 30 peasant homes we certainly have a good start.  Traditional wattle and daub is a composite building material used for making walls, in which a woven lattice of wooden strips called wattle is daubed with a sticky material usually made of some combination of wet soil, clay, sand, animal dung and straw.  Our homes were made of popsicle sticks and a mixture of soil, straw, moss, and glue.  This is one of many activities to address our project driving question... "How do we as historians educate our community about what life was like 1000 years ago?"