This is the place to find tidbits of what's happening in your child's school days. You may also want to follow @MrsFedorkoSCE  on Twitter. This will often be used to document and share our class in action throughout the year.

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    During Math, students learned and played a new game, STAR POWER. This game strengthens their understanding of commutative and associative properties of addition as they strive to land on decades numbers in their quest to reach 100. Readers browsed, selected and read books with an American theme and some read to Mrs. Neumann. Thank you, Mrs. Neumann! Readers also meet with their book clubs to discuss shared reading, and worked on phonics with Mrs. Williamson.  Many used maps to gain an understanding of where a story or event took place. Students learned more about Veterans Day in our book of the same title. Be sure to ask what they’ve been reading about. After lunch, kids were eager to talk about the veterans they know. Then, Mrs. Snavely led the class off to Library. After a brief break, we learned more about Veterans Day, signed a card, and generated many questions for our guest veteran. Our all-school gathering left an impression with 12 visiting veterans, all of whom have a connection to our Spring Creek family. After the gathering, we welcomed our book buddies and guest veteran, Joel Hoffman to our class for a question and answer period. I am proud of this class, the thoughtful questions they asked, and time they took to come forward at the end of the day to thank Mr. Hoffman for his service! This class (and our 4th grade book buddies) haven’t just learned about thanking veterans--today, they put it into action! It makes it extra special, to me, to see the young students that I know coming forward and shaking hands with the man I call ‘Dad.’

  • Friday- Day 1- It’s been a fun Friday! Students practiced speaking as they shared their weekend plans. During Math, kids worked in  workplaces & stations to strengthen skills for adding numbers within 100. Some are working on challenges and I’m impressed with those who came to the table as a choice time for extra challenges to show what they know about representing and adding numbers beyond 100! During Reading, kids had an opportunity to read nonfiction, work on words and read to me. Writers were delighted to have time to share portions of their books that they’ve been creating. Students were serious editors, spotting things they need to revise and making changes. The class tied with me during our game of DOUBLE UP durning Number Corner, accurately identifying facts as doubles, doubles plus or minus 1 or neither. They’re becoming very good at this & that helps exercised and strengthen their computational fluency! We observed the calendar grid and found many different patterns. Part of the pattern looks at elapsed time, so reading digital and analog clocks is a good way to practice at home.  At the end of the day, kids enjoyed the sunshine and crisp air before taking a look at the Scrambled States of America and finding their state of birth on the map. We’re looking forward to celebrating Veterans Day on Monday. Students are invited to wear red, white and blue on Monday. Have a great weekend!  

    Thursday- DAY 5 - Math was fun, learning a new math game that helps us practice quick addition for decade numbers and those skip jumps we learned on the numberline yesterday. Readers were excited to find new facts in their nonfiction text and have been working to record information to teach to others. Mrs. J.’s ART class livened up the afternoon. Writing meant working on non fiction books on Book Creator. This takes time as kids learn to use the tools in the app to make their books just as they want them to appear.  Students leaders supported peers with text editing, uploading and editing images, and creating appealing backgrounds for their book pages. Number Corner keeps us on our toes with a new activity each day! Finally, in Social Studies, kids viewed the digital book, The Scrambled States of America which they’ll compare and contrast with the video of the same title tomorrow as we learn about the states.

    Wednesday - Day 4 - Students completed a pre-test for our third unit in Math. This process simply allows me to know what your child is already good at and what concepts to teach your child next.  Readers paid attention to nonfiction text features in a book about the Liberty Bell and considered using those things to gain new knowledge. After lunch, Mrs. C. gave the class a workout on the Whittle equipment before we settled in to begin writing. Student leaders demonstrated features of Book Creator such as adding and editing text, and adding and resizing and moving imported pictures. Many were eager to work on their own writing projects but due to lack of internet connectivity, were not able to use book creator. This crew is pretty good at going with the flow and they embraced a day to work on choice writing once their planning pages were complete. Number Corner revealed a new visual for doubles plus or minus 1. Kids seemed to grasp the concept and even identified the odd - even pattern in the answers to such problems.  An afternoon fire drill both brought awareness that some need a little practice at being calm, cool and collected during drills so that necessary information and remain safe. Our class meeting revealed several great ideas for making good choices of which we can be proud. This afternoon, we took time to learn two new card games to helps us become more familiar with our country, its states, and their capitals. Don’t be surprised if your child is asking about the capital of Pennsylvania sometime soon. 


    Tuesday - Day 3 - One year ago, we welcomed Mrs. Williamson, our paraprofessional to our class. We are happy to have someone who is familiar with our school community here to lend a hand daily! Today she supported students as they sought and recorded patterns in the even numbers on a 100s grid, worked to determine how many eyes were in given sets of animals and worked on fact fluency & work places. We kicked off our nonfiction reading unit. Kids were pretty comfortable making the transition since they’ve already begun to use such text to do research for their American symbols writing projects. They’ve collected information from digital books, books, and in some cases, the internet. Be sure to ask what they’ve been reading about. Students also worked on words with Mrs. Williamson. We were happy for the sunshine today and are excited to see some new equipment taking shape on our playground. Kids continued to collect and organize information about their chosen American symbols and some began creating their books on Book Creator. Number Corner time found the class thinking about length, then estimating, measuring and recording length of our screen on the whiteboard. They estimated and measured the length in some unusual units.

    Monday - Day 2- Today, we took a close look at the twos chart we made last week, noting the equations that match each row and observing number patterns. Work Places were a welcome change in pace as students practiced their skills using a variety of games. Readers paid attention to details and put parts of the book together to gain new knowledge. Thanks to Ms. Mayes who made certain everyone could log onto Epic to read to gain new information about the Liberty Bell and the Statue of Liberty. Sharing that new information is very exciting to this crew--especially when we find information that is conflicting.  After Library, lunch and recess, authors began planning for writing about an American symbol of their choice. Finally, we welcomed the rest of the 2nd grade students to our class to review skills for learning and to learn a new skill: Identifying feelings.


    Thursday- Day 1 - was an extra fun day with all the excitement in the air! This class did a great job of taking care to keep track of their costumes. I must say this is one of the most calm, cool, collected celebrations I’ve ever had with a group of students! Mathematicians practiced subitizing on IXL and fact fluency on Reflex before heading off to our first Book Buddy gathering. Everyone got a book to take home and a 4th grade book buddy to read with periodically throughout this year! Seeing them enjoy their time together reading was pretty neat.  We are thankful to Ms. Mayes who came and helped us access Epic on all chromebooks for future reading endeavors. After recess and lunch, Matilda led the class off to STEM where they--once again earned a STAR ticket! Writers seized the day as a pseudo Friday and were eager to have free write time! They changed into costumes, shared experience with buffets to help our party run smoothly and were kind to one another throughout our celebration! Many thanks to those who donated treats and drinks. Everyone’s  coming home with a snack in their belly and a small stash in their backpack. I hope you have a nice time with your 2nd graders on their extended weekend! Check out our twitter page for some pictures.

    Wednesday - DAY 5 - We started the day thinking in pairs of two. We practiced subitizing using what we know about 2s & doubles, wrote equations for arrays, and even found related multiplication equations. The class considered things that come in twos, and created our own chart to show groups of twos. Readers unveiled new information in their nonfiction text. Today readers paid attention to details and began putting together lots of little pieces of information from their books to gain new knowledge about the Statue of Liberty and other American symbols. (In the midst of reading stations, we had a situation drill and this class did a nice job of keeping their cool and following instructions.) Authors practiced all they’ve been learning about using google docs to tell their stories. We reviewed the completed October calendar grid, with students revealing multiple patterns. After a brief break, kids gathered to share their facts about Lady Liberty and then enjoyed BEARS CAN’T READ, as read by Dr. Dishong. Ask your son or daughter what message(s) they heard in this story to learn more.

    Tuesday-Day 4- Kids brushed up on place value using IXL this morning, then demonstrated their skills on the Unit 2 Check Up. Readers met with book clubs and were also invited to read non-fiction selections on Epic to learn more about our country and its symbols. After lunch, Mrs. Constable led the class in PE. Next, we nestled into writing, learning more about how to use the tools of Google Docs to edit work. Finally, we were very thankful for the four members of the PUS Women’s Lacrosse team, Madison, Madison, Cara and Regan, who visited to read with our class! What a great way to build community! 

    Monday-  DAY 3 - During our class meeting, kids shared one highlight from their weekend. Students may have sighed when I told them that Jack is still working to make more money from selling the products of his beanstalks.  This week, he’s using the vines to make ropes. This led to some double digit computations to find out how long the ropes would be when combining the lengths of two or more. Kids used the open number line and strategies such as skip-jump by 10s, getting to a multiple of 10, and using a sharing strategy. They should all know that starting with the largest number is the most efficient way to find the length when adding on the open number line. In addition to stations, readers read nonfiction text with their Stick Together Partners and began collecting facts about the Statue of Liberty. After lunch, they were off to Music with Mrs. K. and returned with a STAR ticket for the class! (They ALSO received an all class STAR ticket when Mrs. Fetterolf caught them in the hallway silently gathering their things for recess and helping one another. A third was earned because we had a “NO card day” in room 153! It’s an understatement to say I’m pretty please with these young people.) Writers seemed to have left the doldrums in the dust and are eager writers as they use their chromebooks to record their stories.  Today this tech - savoy bunch learned to use the spelling and grammar tool as well as speech to text. Not to worry, their doing the typing and work of getting their words just right; these two tools are to help them along the way. During Number kids demonstrated their ability to tell the difference between odd and even. This was their ticket to a sunny recess. Finally, we gathered more information about the Statue of Liberty with an article on FactCite123. It might make some good dinner conversation to hear what your child has learned so far. Hope you enjoy the sunshine!




    Friday- Day 2 - It’s been a fun Friday in Room 153! Everyone arrived excited for the day.   During math there was more bean measuring. This time though, we used an OPEN NUMBER LINE to add double digit addends (or lengths of beans) to find that total. Students picked up on this concept quickly and rose to each challenge, even finding totals for 3 - 6 addends and differences! Literacy stations were a hit with choices of free reading, digital reading and free writing along with our usual phonics and reading clubs. After lunch, Mrs. Snavely complimented the class on their practice of using their skills to solve the mystery states! Today in writing, students were happy to create a writing folder on their Google Drive and begin writing on Google documents. It’s fun to see how familiar they are with the keyboard. We played Rolling for Minutes in Number Corner to practice telling time. We learned more about American symbols and landmarks at the end of the day. Then we talked about our Fall Harvest party. A few friends voiced their desire to bring treats, themed napkins, water bottles, etc.  IF you wish to contribute, you are welcome to do so, but it is not necessary. :)


    palmer 10/19

    Thursday- Day 1- Kids practiced using the open number line to add double digit numbers, continuing to think about them in groups of tens, fives and extra ones. They are no longer surprised when I announce that there is MORE to the Jack and the Beanstalk story. They are great sports though, and did the math to help Jack figure out the price of his lengthy beans by using the number line to add the totals. After Math, we go new seats. Everyone was very cordial in accepting their newly assigned seats. We headed off to Palmer Museum to view the works of American artists. Having Mrs. Lintner as our docent was an added touch since she’d previously been in our classroom. Maybe your child will recall some of the knowledge shared about the art. After lunch and STEM, kids reconvened to write letters of thanks to our Palmer guide. I think you’d be pleased with the thoughtfulness and gratitude they shared in their notes. We had a nice, sunny recess and returned for a round of reading American-related books. 


    Wednesday - Day 5 - Kids kicked off the day by using 23 tiles to see how many different arrays they could build using exactly 23. They also celebrated the fourth century day by solving equations with totals of 300 - 400, and wrote their own equations. They learned a new game in Math called, Steps and Leaps. Of course, they beat me at the game, then they played in partners, working to add totals up to one hundred to win the game! Readers learned about doing the complex work of using multiple strategies when they encounter tricky words. We also began selecting good fit books on American - related topics, and began our new book clubs. Art time earned lots of compliments for work time. It’s reported our class is still working on polishing ‘clean up’ time. During writing, authors used their phonics knowledge of vowel teams and trigraphs to help them write their stories. Students completed and mounted their Great Seal and related writing to display in our SCE hallway. Finally, Mrs. Williams, our school counselor, came for a visit and to review the Skills for Learning that we’ve been studying and practicing. Hope you have a great sun-shiny afternoon. 


     great seal

    Tuesday -Day 4- It’s been a cloudy, but a good day! Students started by using the meaningful colors to color the Great Seal of the USA. We learned about this symbol and it’s meaning yesterday from Liberty. During math time, we played a new game, Count Around, in which students practiced counting-on by tens, beginning from any single digit number.  Later, kids made their own measuring tool and practiced measuring items, paying attention the the number of tens and ones in the measurement of each object. Next, students sank into comfy spots to read. Some worked on words with Mrs. Williamson and others read to check in with personal reading goals. After lunch, Mrs. Constable led the class in physical education in our shiny, new gym. Writers reviewed what they learned about the Great Seal and then used a word bank, and focus on conventions to write what they’ve learned about this symbol. Finally, during Social Studies, we enjoyed the book that Liberty delivered, Being a Good Citizen. As you know, these kids have already shown they know a lot about being good citizens and they were eager to share their connections! Everyone also voiced one thing they were going to do at home to be a good citizen. You'd be proud to hear their choices like: being kind to siblings, not being 'difficult' about going to practices/activites, waking up with their alarm, and many kind gestures to moms, dads and other family members are a few these kids shared. Ask your son or daughter what he/she is planning~or just enjoy the results. :)

    Monday - Day 3 -  Thank you, families, for taking time to meet at conferences this past week! Students seemed to arrive with a sense of direction and copies of their goals are now in their communication folders for regular reference. This copy will stay in the folder’s back cover. If you would like another copy to keep in a special spot at home, just let us know. Students warmed up with Reflex math, then collaborated to make a measuring tool to help measure Jack’s giant beans. Readers generated a strategy chart to help guide them as they tackle difficult words. They met with Mrs. Williamson or Mrs. Fedorko to work on phonics & vocabulary. After recess & lunch, kids  practiced speaking and listening as friends shared a favorite part of their weekend, then Mrs. Komlenic led our young musicians. Writers are wrapping up narrative writing and enjoyed sharing some of tehir work with the class. At Number Corner, kids took on new roles, and recorded observations about the calendar markers. We also played a friendly round of Around the World to practice fact fluency. Writers reviewed 2nd grade writing expectations and worked to tell their stories and meet expectations. They used clues to accurately predict that our mystery symbol is an eagle. Not just any eagle, but Liberty the American Bald Eagle!  Learn more about why this bird was selected to represent our country. Ask your child to learn more. They may laugh when they share the ‘other’ bird that Ben Franklin wanted to be our national bird.

  • Wednesday - Day 2 - Learning to play Pick Two, Roll and Subtract was a great way to liven everyone up this morning. Afterwards, we took a math measurement check up and revealed the competent abilities of this class!  Students selected Work Places to help build skills and engaged in games with partners. Readers learned that it takes work to become better readers. They reflected on and shared strategies for figuring out new words and applied those strategies in independent reading. They also worked on phonics and had 1:1 reading check-ins. We were able to squeeze in recess before the rain and headed off to lunch and Library. Writers seized the opportunity for a pseudo-Friday so they could “Free Write.” (I do love their enthusiasm!) We had some technology practice as students completed an online quiz to reveal their knowledge on Social-Emotional skills for learning. Despite an error in the electronic score reporting, most students got a perfect score once the glitch was fixed! Students had an opportunity to explore math apps and then focused on telling time as we collected and recorded time on our Number Corner clocks.  Finally, the class voted on student-created class symbols and found a clue in the classroom about a certain American symbol. By Monday, we should have enough clues to help us discover what the symbol is!


    Tuesday- DAY 1 - Warming up with fluency practice was a good way to start the day before moving on to math where we heard MORE about Jack and his beans. This time, he’s planting them in garden beds, and students worked in pairs to find the perimeter of five garden beds before comparing their answers with peers. This crew is very accurate, with nearly all answers coming within 2 or 3 units of one another! Readers worked on personal writing goals as students met in small groups to work on words. During STEM, Mrs. Snyder said these kids were on task! Writers worked to add detail and proofread their writing.  Number Corner is helping us build skills for arrays as students use tiles to make various arrays, noting columns and rows and related equations. We had our first ever severe weather drill and this class did a great job of being serious and respecting everyone during the drill. During Social Studies, we reviewed the meaning of symbol, and discussed how that applies to creating our own class symbol. 


    Monday - DAY 5 - It was a marvelous Monday in room 23! Math time met us with another chapter to the Jack and the Beanstalk story. This time, Jack has discovered GIANT beans which he needs to measure. Kids wasted no time using manipulatives to measure and compare the beans. After a bit of free reading, we welcomed Mrs. Lintner, our docent for the Palmer Art Museum trip which we’ll be taking on the 24th. We viewed some art, learned about a bit of the architecture of the Palmer Museum. We talked about proper conduct when visiting a museum. Students are prepped for the trip, having brushed up on identifying portraits, still life, landscape, cityscape and even sculptures!  After lunch, we spent some Art time with Mrs. Johnson, celebrated our 3rd century day and worked on generating story problems for specific tens frames. This class seems more a bit more enthused with writing time each day. The results are writing with more details and description as they strive to tell their stories in an entertaining way. Finally, we met with our 2nd grade peers to learn about being assertive in order to get the things we need. This is another skill that helps us not only as citizens, but as scholars. Ask your child what it means to ‘be assertive’ to learn more. 


  • Friday - It’s FUN RUN DAY! - Friends arrived in good spirits this morning ready for a great day. We kicked off the AM with some fact fluency practice, before exercising our math skills at Work Places.  Next, kids kicked up academic vocabulary with game of I Have Who Has. Students reflected on themselves as readers and mathematicians, highlighting strengths and areas in which they would like to grow. Kids also used some time to read and write before heading off to PE and our first ever SPRING CREEK FUN RUN! What a beautiful day to be outside! Hope you have a great weekend with your families.   

    Don’t forget: Tomorrow is our FUN RUN! Please help your child choose appropriate clothing for the weather. We will spend most of the afternoon outdoors. 

    Thursday-  Day 3 - The class strategized and reasoned as they played a new game: Number Line Race. They spun to determine direction and then chose which and how many dice to roll to help them reach their end goal. Of course, luck is part of the game too. This is such a pleasant group to work with because, not only do they ‘do the math’ when playing the game, but they are also having fun and being great sports continuously! The class also had a check up to measure current progress with their understanding of place value. Readers piggybacked on yesterday’s learning to think more about the LENSE through which they are reading. Not only do 2nd graders decide what and how to read, but they can also learn a lot about how words work! Today, everyone practiced learning more about words, by seeking words to fit phonetic patterns. Number Corner is revealing more of our October pattern on the calendar and today, we reached a new century number.  Ask your child to learn more about this. We later looked at some familiar symbols, being thoughtful about what they mean. Finally, we viewed some of the familiar symbols of our country! 

    Wednesday- During Math, students learned more about arrays using dot arrays. They also devised methods of seeing groups of dots within the arrays to quickly subitize and find various dots in numerical order all the way up to 1,000! Readers stopped and thought about their reading and began to think about their purpose in reading. Our authors continue to tell their story, with a focus on using the kind of words and ‘moves’ that make their story fun to tell and read. Finally, students showed all they know or have learned about the monarch life cycle on our Science test.  Watch for these to come home in your child’s folder by Friday. If you ordered any Spring Creek Spirit Wear, that is coming home with your child today, just in time for the Fun Run on Friday! Your gear is being delivered in a tied plastic grocery bag, along with the attached receipt. 

    Tuesday - Day 1 - Kids fired up laptops for Reflex today as a way to bolster fluency, then we moved into math, studying place value and using manipulatives to build and decompose numbers to solve riddles. Readers learned to stop and jot as they read and are thoughtful about reading. This helps increase comprehension. After recess, lunch and STEM, students settled into writing. I must say many are really finding their writing voices. It’s also fun to hear morning conversations about the things that occur during their day and then hear someone say, “Hey! That’s going to make a great story at writing time!” Students are showing what they know in science, identifying solutions to solve problems and talking about metamorphosis.

    Monday - DAY 5 - Mrs. Thomas led the class today. In math, students used unifix cubes and landmark 10s to show and combine numbers up to 100. Speaking and listening were just two skills practiced with vocabulary games at literacy time as students practiced short and long vowel sounds with a friendly round of I Have, Who Has. . . They also worked on phonics and read Scholastic News. Later authors worked on writing and shared favorite parts of their writing with peers. All of 2nd grade met to  identify classroom distractions. They learned about and practiced using self-talk in response to different situations. These are skills for maximizing learning!


    Friday- Day 4 - Math students scooped beans to try to collect close to 50. Then, they paired up and tallied the number of beans they had when combining theirs with a partner’s. Practice counting larger groups using tens, ones and hundreds makes many students quite efficient! Finding out how many more or how many fewer are needed to hit a landmark number can be a little tougher.  Readers nestled in to practice fluency, accuracy and comprehension. They also worked on words. Writers embraced their FREE WRITE Friday with enthusiasm and even began writing stories like some of their favorite real life authors! Number Corner is becoming a highlight of our afternoon with student leaders taking charge. Today we learned about arrays and corresponding equations which tell us something about the rows and columns. This is all part of our study of odd and even, but also lends to learning additional math concepts! Finally, we finished the day with a class meeting. I hope you have a nice weekend!  


    Thursday-  Day 3 - The class used what they know about estimating as they  learned a new math game called Scoop, Count & Compare was introduced, then the class took a pre-assessment for our upcoming math unit. Readers practiced stopping after short passages to think and retell what they’ve read. After a pleasant indoor recess and lunch, they scurried off to Music. Authors looked at a piece of 2nd grade writing and worked together to add details to make it more interesting and complete! Writing time is quite focused these days in our classroom as students work to tell their stories!  Number Corner cards led to the discussion of how different leaves can be identified, sorted and grouped. Maybe your child will recall two types of leaves, palmate and pinnate. Finally, we finished up our video on taking responsibility, then ended with a class meeting in which students shared times they have seen classmates taking responsibility.


    Wednesday- Reading Jack and the Beanstalk (as told by Iona Treahy) kicked off our morning and our new math unit, Place Value and Measurement with Jack’s Beanstalks. After hearing the story and sharing opinions on Jack’s decision to trade his cow for magic beans, we broke out some beans of our own. Students estimated the number of beans in pound, then after witnessing how many were in one sixth of the pound, had a chance to revise estimates. Everyone participated in counting the bean collection, grouping beans into groups of 10s, 100s and extra ones. See if your child can tell you how we tallied them all. Readers gathered on the carpet to review strategies for growing as readers. Today everyone practiced periodically stopping, thinking and retelling what they’ve read. This increases comprehension. The class received big compliments from Mrs. Snavely after Library! Writers learned that writing takes practice and hard work as they strove to add settings to their stories and continued to edit for 2nd grade conventions. Colton led the calendar time, Finn helped us collect 5 minutes, and afterward kids headed to PM break. Finally, students reviewed and labeled the parts of the butterfly. They’re becoming very scientific!


    Tuesday- Day 1 - Students demonstrated their understanding of the concepts presented and practiced in Unit 1, then moved onto Work Places. Readers revisited long and short vowels and silent e. Practice with identifying these words and even generating their own words helps support growth in reading and writing. After a toasty recess and a cooler lunch, kids enjoyed STEM and returned with more compliments and an all class star ticket. Writers are working on proofreading their work like detectives and editing for 2nd grade expectations like complete sentences with capitals and punctuation; missing or extra words; spelling no excuse words properly; and beginning middle and end. A brand new pattern is on deck for the October calendar and we’re now practicing telling time using 5 minute landmark numbers on the analog clock. We witnessed a Popcorn Park character as he realized he’d hurt others by not taking responsibility and discussed what we may do differently. We had a class meeting where students highlighted many positive things they notice and like about our class and its citizens. Some examples are: most people are using STAR behavior in the hallway, at specials and lunch; classmates are almost always using kind words; most  students are listening to the speaker; most use transition time well so we have more time for learning and fun . . . The list goes on! We also began laying the groundwork for using class meetings to talk about things that we can work on together to make our community the best it can be! Having conversations with your children at home are a great way to support this growing, positive community. 


    Monday- DAY 5 - Today’s Math time focused on the 2nd half of the Addition Table, identifying equations for doubles, doubles plus or minus 1, fast tens and the leftover facts. Later, students solved addition tables, indicating which strategy they used. Readers were paired up with ‘Stick Together Partners’ to practice Read to Someone. After Recess & lunch we updated our calendar grid and practiced our date chant for the final time in September. Mrs. Johnson returned with an excellent compliment to the class regarding their focused work and calm demeanor. After our PM break, we gather with the rest of our 2nd grade friends to learn more about focusing attention and listening in order to become better learners. Ask your child about what they can do to better focus attention and listen. If they need a reminder, ask them to recall what they did to notice when the sound stopped from the tuning fork.



    Friday- Day 4 - Reading Picture Day Perfection seemed appropriate on this day. Math students solved story problems and studied the addition table. Kids fired up their new touch screen laptops for Reflex to bolster fluency. Speaking and listening were just two skills practiced with vocabulary games at literacy time. Students also made entries to SeeSaw to introduce themselves and worked on phonics, fluency and comprehension. After lunch kids enjoyed Free Write Friday. Many were chomping at the bit to work on fiction writing while others were happy to continue their narratives. We had another no card day in room 153 and we were also pleased to release Burrito the Butterfly. Sciencentists explored some up-close views of a beetle noting similarities & differences of the beetle and butterfly feet and mouth parts. Happy Friday!


    Thursday-  Day 3 - The class spent the morning submerged in math stations. They used math tools to solve story problems, played games and practiced fluency. Readers reviewed strategies and practiced them with 1:1 check-ins.  Indoor recess was a must with all the rain. The class got rave reviews from music class for great STAR behavior! Writers hear Ralph Writes a Story and then worked on their own stories before taking time to share them with their peers. It was great to hear the compliments friends shared with one another about their writing! Finally, we release 3 more butterflies!  Adrian, Mega Charizard, and Sparkle all made their way into the great wide open this afternoon.  



    Wednesday- I’m so thankful for this class! They read the morning list and got right to work! They kept their great focus throughout math time. . .even while we were busy building number strings with tiny beads. Skip counting and using landmark numbers, students demonstrated various numbers and combinations on the number string and number line. Readers rotated in stations. Some met with Mrs. Williamson to work on phonics, while others read independently and worked on SeeSaw tasks. After lunch and recess, writers went to work on their true stories. We even had a few disappointed authors when I stopped the class for PM break. We released our two latest male butterflies, got some fresh air, and settled into the ribbon cutting ceremony. Finally, we finished the day with Number Corner and said our goodbyes!  



    larvae      boy

    Tuesday- Day 1 -Students started the day examining our monarch habitats. Seeing the wing pattern through chrysalides was a sure clue we’d meet new winged friends today In the midst of Reading, one butterfly emerged! The class is quite good about celebrating, observing and also moving on to do their work! We continue to compare numbers during math time. We played a new game called Find the Difference. Readers enjoyed two rounds of focused reading and also revisited first grade phonics that will help them grow as 2nd grade readers.  After making a list of all phonics terms they know to talk about words, we searched our names for those features. Kids found things like vowels, consonants, syllables, vowel teams, and blends to name a few! Writers were introduced to the idea of proofreading their work like detectives and used pens to edit and revise work to polish their writing. We played the Century Game, practicing counting by decade numbers, forward and backward. Calendar leaders updated collections and led the calendar time. Finally, we made some cool and disgusting discoveries at Science time using the super magnification of Zoomy to see our new male butterfly’s feet, face, wing pattern, and tachina flies larvae! We finished the day by saying farewell to our first male butterfly!

     NEW BFLY em's bday BFLY

    Monday- DAY 5 - We are already in our 5th week of 2nd grade. What’s more exciting? Returning to find two newly hatched butterflies in our classroom with a third emerging during our morning work time. Students named and released 3 female monarchs this morning, bidding farewell to Samantha, Rose and Senorita in the beautiful morning sunshine outside of our classroom. Our Math time focused on the meaning of sums, totals, and finding the difference between numbers. We played a new game called Battling Bugs and discussed different ways to find differences along with related equations. Readers were paired up with ‘Stick Together Partners’ and practiced scooping up words in bigger chunks to make reading more smoothe. One to one check ins with readers found most making good fit selections and practicing fluency. To learn more about reading, ask your child what 2nd graders DO to grow as readers. At lunch, Emma shared a birthday treat and afterwards, we celebrated with a song and compliment train for the birthday girl. Writers combined their science knowledge with writing practice to record monarch butterfly facts. Emma updated our calendar grid and led us in our date chant. We took a look at strategies to solve story problems posed on the calendar and students worked on whiteboards to show their thinking. While the computations may be simple right now, we are focusing on showing HOW we find the solution. Finally, after recess, we joined the other 2nd grade classes for Social Studies. Students considered what respect is and shared ideas on they show respect. The class earned two all class  STAR tickets today for their ART time and for great choices during our 2nd grade gathering! 

    *Update on Friday's butterfly: Since she was unable to fly, she was released into nature near the PSU arboretum.



    Friday - Day 4- Math students reviewed and finished the work of finding suitable seating arrangements for a tailgate party, careful to follow guidelines and test their ideas. They also practiced fact fluency on Reflex. Readers practiced phonics, and brushed up on academic vocabulary, and practiced stopping to think about their reading during independent reading time. Be sure to ask your so or daughter what thoughts they have about their reading when reading at home each day! After Gym with Mrs. C., writers hunkered down to continue working to write with purpose. Science time was a relaxing end to our day as we had the opportunity to see our new Butterfly. She has some physical characteristics that were not allowing her to fly when we took her outside to say farewell.  As a result, we took her back into the school to end our day. Finally, we shared our plans for the weekend as we practiced speaking and listening to one another. Have a great weekend.

    Thursday- Students started the day with the challenge of helping make seating arrangements for a tailgate party. Using an arrangement of assorted plates and specific guidelines for placement of guests, they toiled to find multiple combinations for different numbers of guests. Students wrote related equations to demonstrate their arrangements. Reading time focused on using strategies to make reading sound more smooth. Reading ebooks was an option that some students enjoyed. Writers practiced planning their stories across their fingers before getting started on recording ideas on paper. . . with added detail! Scientists are compiling information they’ve learned about caterpillars as they begin to create a fact-filled booklet of their experience with our monarchs.  Everyone is waiting to see if or when the chair chrysalis will produce a butterfly!

    Wednesday- This crew kicked it up a notch with Math! I am amazed at how they take each task in stride and ‘take care of business.’  Readers warmed up with phonics and reviewed the guidelines for selecting good fit books. Reading to teachers holds all accountable for taking the time to read the words how they want to be read. We are also taking time to STOP and think about what we are reading! We welcomed another Spring Creek Hawk to our class to travel to lunch and specials with us in the coming weeks. After Library, students composed thank you letters to Mrs. Ford for her wonderful presentation yesterday. Paying attention to placement of capitals and end marks is a focus right now.  Many are doing very neat printing already! We finished up our day recording caterpillar facts which we’ve learned through our observations.

    Tuesday- We started the day thinking in doubles, halves, odd and even and about how these terms relate to one another. Students built numbers on their number rack and practice proving whether they were odd or even numbers. Work Places are so pleasant in this classroom as students pair up and play games to strengthen math skills. During reading time, we learned that 2nd grade readers read more and more.  Students read to Mrs. Williamson or myself and also discussed choosing good fit books. We began reading The Constitution in honor of Constitution Day. Maybe your child will recall that the constitution was written over 200 years ago! There’s little action in our monarch habitats right now, but Mrs. Ford, our Master Gardener, livened up our afternoon with her presentation on all things monarch / butterflies.  Actually, she taught us a new word to represent all moths and butterflies: Lepidoptera.  She, along with the assistance of her grandson, Owen, also showed us how to identify male and female butterflies. She kindly led the 2nd grade classes at SCE to name and release four butterflies. In a surprising twist, students were given the opportunity to feel the butterfly feet on their finger.  Ask them what the butterfly was doing! (Tasting!) Our Number Corner time is falling into place with student leaders heading up the routines as they collect 60 minutes each day, determine numbers odd or even, practice saying and writing the date and many other skills. STEM seems to be a day many anticipate and this class is good about staying on the ‘Day Cycle’ and recalling each special class. The kids earned another star ticket today and are making quite a great name for themselves! This was part of our social studies discussion this afternoon as we really enjoyed celebrating all the great citizenship and friend behaviors in our classroom!  Thank you for all you do, families! All the time you spend rearing these young people is really making our days together enjoyable!

    Monday - Hard to believe it’s week 4 already! Routine is in place with students recalling AM procedures with few reminders. We returned today with caterpillars still munching, two new hanging J’s and chrysalides showing signs of change.  Mathematicians thought about doubles and showed examples of doubles. They talked about how this relates to halves and shared ideas. Our latest Work Place game is a hit and students were eager to get started! Ask your child what game they’re enjoying at Work Places to learn more. Readers are reading more and more each week. We talk about the importance of selecting books that challenge us, but still allow us to comprehend the text. It is sometimes tempting for kids to get books just because they’re ‘big’ and this class also has an appetite for some ‘dessert books.’ (Dessert books = books that are really easy books for them/not challenging them to grow as a reader.) Of course, all books are welcome at free reading times, but during instructional time, good fits are a necessity. After our time with Mrs. Johnson in Art, we read Owl Moon by Jane Yolen and considered how she comes up with ideas to write books. Kids thought about their day(s) and jotted memorable details or ideas for their ‘small moments’ in their tiny tablets.  New Number Corner leaders took over tasks to lead the class. We’re noticing patterns, counting by decade numbers, practicing using the analog clock and becoming more familiar with AM and PM times. Finally, we finished the day brushing up on R-E-S-P-E-C-T as we joined the characters of Popcorn Park for a fun video on respect.


    Fun Friday- Everyone’s on the ball with AM routine, checking the board for their jobs as soon as they enter! After sharing activities they’re looking forward to this weekend, they challenged me to a game of Count and COmpare Twos. (Yes, they won despite my best efforts.) Readers shared their interests on a special survey, enjoyed a book with Dr. D., and, of course, read. This top-notch class earned ANOTHER STAR ticket. . .and this time they actually fooled me into believing that they did not.  Their painted-on sad faces really had me believing they’d broken their streak! The afternoon was extra fun as authors shared favorite pieces of their writing and had their first experience with REFLEX math. Ask them about it to learn more. Finally, we got into place for an all-school picture and enjoyed the extra recess they’ve earned. Have a great weekend!

    Thursday - We are now 17 students strong in room 153! This class is making me feel like one fortunate teacher. They’re really starting to get into the groove of our routines and becoming more focused on their tasks. During math we learned & played a new game called Make the Sum. It’s fun to see the fun kids are having together while applying their math skills! We have a lot of good sports and kind kids in our class which makes these game times extra enjoyable. Readers used good fit books to build stamina and practiced taking sneak peek at their books to find clues about how the book wants to be read. Mrs. Komlenic returned the class after music with a nice compliment about their time together. Writers heard the story Sincerely Yours, about writing their own letters, then dove into writing. The entire class was able to watch a caterpillar transform into its chrysalis on the big screen & a few moved their bodies in imitation of the caterpillars motion. Science time is tough to top these days, with so much happening in our Monarch habitats! Dr. D. stopped by to announce that in addition to an all school picture at 2:00pm tomorrow, everyone has a chance to earn extra recess.  This class is up to the challenge and I have NO doubt they'll earn it!! Thanks for sending me your best!

    Wednesday - Students arrived, signed up for lunch, and checked out the caterpillars and chrysalides. Several noticed there was a chrysalis with a black line. We found 2 or 3 new chrysalides today. We also found another hanging J!  Everyone logged onto laptops and completed math MAP! These kids are amazing with their technology!! After a few minutes to move in the dance circle, students choose book bins or epic reading with others read to me. Library time is reported by Maddie to be 'great!' We learned about writing friendly letters and children wrote to people they know and deserve letters. (<--in Ava's words) Then, we wrote equations for odd and even numbers. Fia reports this to be fun! Mrs. Gilligan arrived and told us we will be welcoming a new student tomorrow. The class came up with terrific ideas on how we can make our new friend feel welcome. Studnets wondered about, then figured out the boy to girl ratio in our class. Love this crew!

    Tuesday- Your children began this 'Day 1' by greeting our caterpillars and wathing them chow down on the juicy green milkweed that Mrs. Darlington has supplied! We’ve been waiting and hoping to see some hanging J’s or green chrysalides soon and after a focused morning with our first Reading MAP, we had an unbelievable surprise!! In the midst of Math, Robby spotted a chrysalis on. . .the bottom of one of our spinning chairs! I’m sure your children will tell the tale of how we suspect this happened. Needless to say, it has made for quite an exciting time in our class! Kids eagerly inspected other nooks and crannies in the room to check for more escapees. Who knows, maybe we’ll have butterflies emerging from mysterious places in a couple of weeks . . .After STEM (where the class earned another STAR ticket), we found that another of our caterpillars had transformed into a chrysalis. We enjoyed watching the final wiggles on the big screen as kids jotted stories about our caterpillar adventures & other engaging topics. Number Corner is now student-led for most of the session. Today, moving our bodies into horizontal and vertical positions helped us to identify and name two different number lines. Students counted decade numbers to 100 and then added another decade on our class number line. They’re getting quite good at collecting 60 minutes a day. Any time spent looking at analog clocks or talking with your kids about AM and PM will help support this learning. Finally, we finished our day by selecting new seats and reflecting on the ‘glows and grows’ of our day. I, for one, am feeling grateful for this class of 16 pleasant, second grade students!

    Monday- Everyone kicked off the morning seatwork time as many finished work from Friday. They observed our caterpillars, which are not too active, but still eating and growing. We’re still observing, asking, wondering,recording.  . . and eagerly awaiting their transformation to the next stage! Mathematicians learned a new game, Count and Compare Fives and practiced subitizing for fast totals of 10. Literacy time found students reading good fit books, reading with me, and recording complete thoughts about the changes in our caterpillar habitat. Recess was a welcome time to share and play with friends, though a few are still working on getting to line in a timely manner once the whistle is blown so we’ll have plenty of time for lunch. Mrs. Johnson returned the class to me with ANOTHER all-class STAR ticket!  They are really getting a reputation for this and that is something to be proud of for all! Later, students studied the calendar grid, noting equations for the number depicted on today’s card. We added the first century to our number line! Writers did the work of 2nd grade authors, getting started quickly and writing right away! Finally, we observed real time and time lapse videos of two monarch caterpillars transforming into chrysalides. This will prep us for watching for those tiny details when our eventually go to the hanging J stage. It never seems to get old, watching and wondering, when we see this transformation! Tomorrow, we’ll kick of the day with technology as students log on to MAP for Reading. Having a good night’s sleep and good fuel for breakfast will help them be at their best, just like any other day!

  • Friday- 9/6 The day was full with Mrs. Heim at the helm. Playing Flash Attack, working at Math Work Places, making discoveries in Scholastic News, independent reading, & Houdini the Amazing Caterpillar filled our morning. After lunch, Mrs. Constable led the class in PE. Students later enjoyed coming up with imaginative story ideas about fictional caterpillars. Finally, second graders worked on using complete sentences as they recorded scientific observations and completed drawings of the caterpillars! They paid special attention to the size, color and detail to accurately record observations. (Thanks to Mrs. Darlington for the special, juicy, green milkweed for our little critters!)

    Thursday - It was great to see so many of you at Back to School Night! There’s a refreshing sense of community in the classroom and those who weren’t able to attend enjoyed getting updates from their classmates. Morning work included opening up Chromebooks to explore tools, watch a video about MAP, and even try some practice questions like the ones they’ll see on the site for our 2nd grade Measures of Academic Progress. We got a close up view of our caterpillars, identifying and counting different parts of their bodies. A review of our schedule and morning gathering were the perfect start before moving onto Math where students built their own number racks and began showing efficient ways to represent numbers within 20. Readers nestled into cozy spots to enjoy their good fit books while Mrs. Williamson and I conducted 1:1 check-ins. Number Corner gave us a closer look at the pattern shaping up on our September calendar and students are taking the lead with jobs to become more familiar with the analog clock, corresponding digital times, and representing the date using numbers and abbreviations. Writers embrace the opportunity to tell their stories! Finally, we watched a few close-up video clips of monarch caterpillars hatching from their eggs and munching leaves in real time! Students reviewed expectations for STAR behavior in 2nd grade and confirmed their desire to make good choices!  


    Tuesday -  We finally got a look at our caterpillars in person after the long weekend! They certainly have grown over the past three days, and we were eager to see them moving about. This week 2nd graders will be asked to take greater responsibility for doing their morning jobs independently and everyone is getting better at recalling the routine. Nearly every student has been remembering his or her folder daily! Math time was spent learning about bar graphs and picture graphs, then creating one of our own. We worked on strengthening our language skills with some fun, active word work.  Readers identified and practiced great Read to Self habits as others began meeting with myself and Mrs. Williamson to assess sight words and phonemic awareness. Our first Fire Drill went smoothly, with students taking great responsibility for their role in our community. After lunch & STEM, students had a chance to read with Mrs. Allen or Mr. Rockey and also worked on writing. Finally, we finished our day observing our caterpillars and recording changes. Ask your child what TOOL they used to get a closer look. We look forward to welcoming you and sharing some student work tomorrow evening!

    Monday-  Happy Labor Day!


    Friday- What a first week! The class has earned 5 all-class STAR tickets in the first week of school. Good citizenship is shining more brightly with each day. We kicked off the morning sharing our weekend plans, then moved onto math, using Venn Diagrams to categorize our beetles. Readers reviewed Good Fit books, and how to make those selections. We also learned that 2nd grade readers don’t just choose what to read, but also how to read. Students practiced in pairs, demonstrating their ability to make their own choice, based on the text and their interpretation of it. After recess, lunch and Art, students were eager to get to writing. We peeked at two mentor text and considered how these authors may have come up with such ideas. Second graders also have story ideas and can choose to tell meaningful stories that people are interested in reading!  We’re just beginning to learn how to use the sort of moves language to tell our stories in ways that are more powerful. Scientists observed caterpillars and recorded scientific details to share some information which they collected. Have a great weekend with your family and friends and I’ll look forward to seeing your children and our caterpillars next week!

    Thursday 8/29 We continue to get to know one another and practice being a part of a larger learning community. Mathematicians choose Work Places to apply their skills to various tasks using unifix cubes, geoboards, tiles, and pattern blocks. S.T.A.R. lessons for playground, cafe, hallway, bathroom and even buses filled much of our morning as we explored our new school with all of 2nd grade. After lunch, Mrs. Constable led our class in their first P.E. class of the year. We continued to talk about and practice ‘thinking like scientists.’ Partners observed rocks and used specific words to describe characteristics. Mr. Ferguson surprised us with a plant teeming with tiny caterpillars. This led to great discussion on what students already know and what they’d like to learn about caterpillars. Later, writers practiced penmanship as they labeled the parts of a caterpillar. Most were surprised to learn that there are three different categories of ‘legs’ on these little critters. Students created an August calendar to record our caterpillars’ events in the coming weeks. This helps establish our Number Corner routine as we familiarize ourselves with the calendar.

    PS There was a spectacular turnout of friends remembering their green folders on this first day already! 

    Wednesday 8/28 - We continue to establish routines on this 3rd day. Students have already gotten the hang of many routines like: signing up for lunch, unpacking backpacks and folders and bringing all needed materials into the room upon arrival. Today, everyone received a green communication folder which they’ll use to transport important items to and from school. (Students should soon be responsible for independently collecting mail things at the end of the day and ALSO for sharing them with an adult at home.) During Math, we began classifying by generating appropriate categories in which to place our beetle glyphs. Next, we practice our Work Place routine for Math time. Kids did this flawlessly. Having this down-pat allows us to maximize our time for learning each day! Ask your child what they explored during Work Place time to learn more. Readers learned that they don’t just choose what to read, but also how to read. They were eager to get their hands on some books from our class library and nestled into spots to read without any prompting at all! They only stopped when I insisted they needed to take their recess break. Writers thought about things they may enjoy writing about and jotted them in their tiny tablets before continuing their first narrative writing. Finally, we also enjoyed the The Sneetches by Dr. Seuss and talked about the author’s purpose and the message. Ask your child to hear all about their first Music class!

    Tuesday 8/27 - We warmed up our minds and hands creating with Play-Doh. Students were thoughtful in teaching us something about themselves with their handy work! After Library time, students enjoyed some reading time before calling on all their first grade skill for writing. They began demonstrating what they are able to do as writers, recording visions or goals for themselves and also began telling a true story about a time in their lives. Kids are beginning to settle in a bit. For many, this means more positive learning, sharing, exploring and living! For some it means they’re testing limits and may need reminders for making positive choices. We continued to build our community by reading a portion of the Energy Bus for Kids.  We discussed the message and how it relates to our lives. These students think deeply and are quick to make connections! By the way, this class is VERY responsible for knowing their travel routine and for keeping track of where they go, weather it be a regular routine or adjusting to planned or impromptu change in routine. That’s nothing to sneeze at for kids of 7 & 8 years, and I know that all comes from home. Thank you!

    Monday 8/26 - Welcome to our Room 153 Week in a Wink! This is the place to get a glimpse of what’s happening from day to day in our classroom.  We had a great first day in our new school! Students are displaying good manners, kind friend behaviors and simply using many STAR behaviors all through the day.  We have 16 children in our class. Today, we took a tour of our new building and learned about some daily routines before taking time to share our names. It was wonderful to see how all of the students in our class enjoyed visiting with one another at our arrival gathering in the gymnasium.  We’ll do this one more time tomorrow! Students established some guidelines to help make our learning environment a comfortable place for all. Of course, everyone must do their part here! Parents have already set the foundation; it’s easy to see that you’ve already instilled very valuable traits in your children that are essential to positive community! Thank you!  Students learned a bit about each other in our class meeting. Then they used hieroglyphics to share some important facts about themselves, which we will later decipher during math time. This class earn their first all class S.T.A.R. ticket today and have made a nice first impression! Thank you for sending me your children ready to learn and play in a positive community where we support and encourage one another.  I am looking forward to seeing what lies ahead.  

Last Modified Yesterday at 8:16 PM