2 November 2018
Grade 2 News
We pray these autumn days are filling your heart with joy as the beauty of God rises around us in the colorful leaves and the crisp, blue-skied (and gray, rainy-skied) days. Here are some notes about upcoming activities, and a summary of some of our classroom happenings.
Family Reflection Activities – A few parents have asked for simple activities they can do with their children as we continue to prepare for the sacraments. As such, we will be including optional reflection activities in each newsletter that complement what we are doing in class, and that will hopefully give you additional opportunities to share your faith journey with your child.
Activity 1: We will be learning about the leaders of our Church and how they are shepherds and “coaches” for us as we grow in our faith. As such, I invite you to reflect, with your child, on the leaders in our community who have influenced your family in a positive way. Take time to write & send a letter (or card) to those leaders, thanking them for the ways they have been role models and positive influences on your family.
Activity 2: At the dinner table, ask family members to tell about a time when someone forgave them. Ask them how they felt before asking for forgiveness and how they felt after saying “I’m sorry” and being forgiven. Ask family members to tell about a time when they have forgiven somebody. How did it feel to be the one to forgive someone else. Together, say a prayer, thanking God for always loving you & for always forgiving you. Ask God to guide you in your everydayness, helping you to make loving choices, and helping you ask for (and give) forgiveness when needed.
Sacramental Preparation – Families who are participating in the First Sacraments program, remember to be working on your Together Workbook. You should be focusing on Sessions 2 & 3 during the month of November. See you this Sunday, November 4 at the 11:00 mass for the Rite of Enrollment. Then, see you Sunday, December 9th for our next Family Preparation Session. We will meet 9:30-10:45 in the Walmsley Center/Gym.
Dates to Remember:
- Fri., Nov. 2 – Midterm Progress Reports (MidTris) sent home
- Tues., Nov 6 – Math Night (sponsored by Parent Org)
- Thurs & Fri, Nov. 8 & 9 – NO SCHOOL – Conferences
- Mon., Nov 12 – NO SCHOOL (Veteran’s Day)
- Sun., Nov. 4 – Sacramental Prep – Rite of Enrollment @ 11:00 mass
- Sun., Dec. 9 – Sacramental Prep: 9:30-10:45am (followed by 11:00am Mass)
- Mon., Nov . 19 – Mrs. Hoch out of the classroom. I’ll be in Texas so Grandpa can meet baby Sam, & Naomi can have time with her Grandpa, aunts, uncles, & cousins.
- Wed., Nov. 21 – NOON Dismissal (Thanksgiving break)
- Thurs.-Fri., Nov 22-23 – NO SCHOOL (Thanksgiving)
Social Studies/Language Arts – We are in the middle of our Community unit. We have been learning about the three different types of communities: urban, suburban, and rural. We are currently working in cooperative groups to create models of each of the three types of communities. We look forward to sharing our models with you when you come in for conferences next week. We will spend the next couple of weeks learning more about Communities, and then we will use that knowledge as we look at different communities around the world. Students are doing “close reading” with Informational texts: using texts & text features to identify new facts, ask/answer questions, and learn meanings of new words.
In writing, we will be using creative graphic organizers to construct paragraphs about the things for which we are grateful. Watch for those paragraphs in the hallway around Thanksgiving time!
Science – We continue to learn about balance and motion. This past month we created mobiles using paper clips, straws, rubber bands, and index paper. Students worked to make their mobiles stable and balanced while moving the objects on the beams. Adding to our investigation, we played with toys, crafts, and games centered on balance. Next, the class moved onto spinners creating tops and zoomers (a traditional toy made from a button and a piece of string). Students explored ways to produce rotational motion using tops and zoomers and noted the motion of an object can be changed by pushing or pulling. During classroom discussions, students added their own thoughts, worked together to answer science related questions, and added scientific drawings in their science log books.
Yoga – We continue to work on relaxing…. starting each yoga time with bear breath. During bear breath, we breathe in through our nose and out through our mouth relaxing our bodies. Poses this month have been warrior 1 making sure our knee doesn’t extend past the toes, dancer, triangle, rock, plank our latest pose, and finally tree our main balance position. Take time out from your busy schedule and join your child in one of these yoga poses.
Math – We have finished our unit on Adding with regrouping to 1,000. Keep practicing adding with regrouping at home…it can be tricky. Next, we’ll be moving on to a short unit on Bar Models. As you may have noticed, math is being taught quite differently than the way many of us learned these concepts. Students are not merely learning a series of steps for these processes. They are learning to think about the concepts on a deeper level and in many different ways. As such, you won’t see math homework every night. When you do see math homework, if your child gets stuck, try using one of the prompts below to help get their brain “unstuck:”
- What do you notice?
- What would happen if…?
- How do you know?
- Are you sure? Prove to me. Convince me.
- How is you mind thinking about this?
- What do you see?
- Describe the picture in mind to me.
- Can you imagine what ____ might look like? Describe what you see.
- How does your mind picture this?
- What does it look like?
Quick Recall Facts –Find fun ways to practice quick recall facts (Top-It, computer games, practice sheets, flashcards, oral quizzes/races, etc.). We continue having our timed checkpoints each week. Students have one minute to complete up to 28 facts. The weekly goal is for students to get at least one more fact correct each week. The year-end goal is to be able to complete 25-28 math facts (adding & subtracting facts to 20) in one minute. Second graders are creating a bar graph in their Math Journals to track their own weekly progress. You should be seeing graded Quick Recall tests coming home each week. The grading scale is as follows:
3 = 25 – 28 correct
2 = 15 – 24 correct
1 = < 15 correct
So keep practicing the Quick Recall facts (adding sums to 20). A great resource for practice pages is the Math Fact Café website (https://www.mathfactcafe.com). Also continue to practice number patterns (counting by 1s, 2s, 5s, 10s, & 100s forward & backward to 1,000), especially using trickier starting numbers. For example, starting at 328 and counting by 5s to 428.
Religion – We will be learning about the Ten Commandments and the ways we can follow in Jesus’ footsteps. We will be learning the story of Jesus in Temple. In the church on Fridays, we will be learning about how the church remembers our beloved dead during the month of November. We will spend time looking at the banners and the book of prayer for our beloved dead. As we clean the church, we will be praying for all of our loved ones who have died.
When you are mass in the coming weeks, please help your student watch for the following things:
- when a sacristan goes to the Tabernacle right before communion;
- people who are welcoming (as you walk in the church, as you sit in your pews), and to be welcoming to those around them
- Fr. Jack’s welcome/greeting at the beginning of Mass (“Good morning,” sign of the cross, “The Lord be with you.”)
- the penitential rite (the “I’m sorry” part of our Mass): “Lord have mercy. Christ have mercy. Lord have mercy.” Also, the Lamb of God: “Lamb of God, you take away the sins of the world, have mercy on us.” We are tying that part of Mass to our home/school life (times when we need to apologize/forgive others), and to the sacrament of Reconciliation.
During these days of autumn, we pray that God fills your hearts with gratitude and joy! We look forward to seeing you at conferences!
Blessing to you & your family this week!
Mrs. H & Ms. Z