Happy New Year, 2nd grade families!
We hope you all had a wonderful holiday season of welcoming Jesus into your hearts in new ways. We pray you are staying warm (and healthy) during these colder days.
First of all, a HUGE “THANK YOU!!!!” for all of the Christmas gifts, gift cards, and cards that were sent our way. Your generosity & thoughtfulness leave us speechless. The sweet treats, gift cards, tote bag, and other goodies were well-enjoyed during our break. Thank you so very much!
As we enter this new year, we have lots of exciting things happening in our classroom. Here are some highlights:
SOCIAL STUDIES & LANGUAGE ARTS – This month we will be starting our South America. We will be learning Close Reading strategies for literary & informational texts as we read books about South America and the Amazon Rainforest. We will use the chapter book, Amazon in the Afternoon (Magic Treehouse) to practice reading for character, plot, and setting – as well as practicing asking/answering questions about texts. We will also work on murals of the rainforest, write persuasive paragraphs about protecting the rainforests, and use informational texts to learn about the different countries in South America.
Also, this month we will be doing the next round of individual reading assessments with the students. We hope to complete this round of TC assessments by the end of January. Both of us teachers will be in the school on the days when we are doing assessments. Ms. Zbaracki will be in the classroom & Mrs. Hoch will be in the hallway doing the assessments. We will send home new summary sheets after we complete all of the assessments. Keep up the fabulous reading practice you’re doing at home!
SCIENCE – In the coming months we will be exploring Solids and Liquids.
Last month in science students completed their second section in the Balance and Motion unit by creating twirlers, which are flying spinners that rotate using only air resistance. Each twirler was dropped carefully from above while students observed the different spinning motions. The classroom was filled with surprises as the students watched their twirlers float slowly down to the ground and move in varying directions. Students noticed that none of the twirlers moved the same way.
In the last section of the Balance and Motion, students set up cardboard ramps. Using different sized disks, they observed and compared rolling systems. Next, they rolled paper cups down the ramps and made predictions through their observations of the movements of the cups. They taped cups together to make them roll straight and weight them down in various ways to see how weight affects the rolling. To conclude the investigation, the class rolled spheres, otherwise known as marbles, down flexible runways. Students then worked together to connect all the runways creating one long runway.
YOGA – Yoga is a time to relax and focus on our breathing. Students gather in the carpet area, by their desk, or as they transition from one class to next to stop for a couple of minutes and calm themselves. We continue to work on the plank, warrior I, and bear breath while adding on shark, cobra, and airplane poses. It is so fun to watch the children work on these poses, but also to see how yoga strengthens and encourages focus among the students.
MATH – We are doing a quick overview of multiplication and learning our multiplication facts of 2s, 5s, and 10s. Then we move on to our chapter on Subtracting with Regrouping. We continue to use XtraMath several times a week in the classroom, and encourage you to use it as a practice tool at home. It is making a great difference in our student’s knowledge of their Quick Recall facts!
RELIGION – We are getting closer to celebrating the sacrament of Reconciliation. In preparation, we will be learning several gospel stories that teach us about forgiveness and God’s desire to always be close to us. Fr. Jack will be coming into our classroom to role-play the rite of the sacrament and making connections with how the sacramental rite mirrors the way we reconcile with our friends and families in our everyday lives. We continue to take time in class and in church to learn more about the sacrament of Reconciliation & how it is a special time to “clean our hearts” of the unloving choices we have made. This week children will start working towards memorizing the Act of Contrition. Please help your child practice the prayer at home (you can find it on the 2nd grade website, under the File & Flyers tab); we will be practicing it at school, too.
** NOTE: Families receiving First Sacraments…Remember to plan to attend the Family Learning Centers THIS Saturday, January 12 between 10:00 – 2:00. Bring your Family Reflection with you! Earlier this week, Helen sent an email that included the Family Reflection questions. Let us know if you did not receive that email. Plan to arrive no later than 1:00, and leave yourself at least 60-90 minutes to complete all of the centers. Centers are cleaned up starting at 2:00. **
- January 11 (Fri) – OLG Spirit Day – wear clothes to show your OLG spirit!
- January 12 (Sat) – Sacramental Prep – Learning Centers (in the gym)
- January 21 (Mon) – No School – MLK Day
- January 25 (Fri) – NOON Dismissal (teacher work day)
- Sun., January 27 (Sun) – CATHOLIC SCHOOLS WEEK Open House (9:00am-1:00pm)
- January 28-February 1 – CATHOLIC SCHOOLS WEEK – Watch the FCEs for details.
o January 30 (Wed) – WINTER CONCERT – The music will begin at 7:00pm. Students will need to be in the classroom between 6:30pm & 6:45pm.
o January 31 (Thurs) – SPECIAL PERSON’S DAY – Information will be coming home SOON. Please help your child contact and invite a Special Person for the day. Thank you! We look forward to meeting all of the Special Persons!
- February 5 (Sat) – FIRST RECONCILIATION – Our celebration will begin at 10:00am. Please plan to arrive at the church a few minutes early so your family is settled and ready when we begin.
Know that we are holding you and your family in our prayers in a special way as we begin this new year!
Mrs. Hoch & Ms. Zbaracki