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Grade 2 Happenings

Follow the latest happenings in Grade 2 below.

Extension Week: Letters to Our Pen Pals

posted Oct 20, 2019, 7:09 AM by Jason Brunken   [ updated Oct 20, 2019, 7:09 AM ]

For the past couple of weeks, we have been learning to write a friendly letter. This week, the Grade 2 classes will be spending their time writing multi-paragraph replies to our pen pals in Tanzania. We received letters from our friends in Ms. Suleman's class at United World College-East Africa in Arusha, and it's our turn to write back. We will be applying what we've learned about paragraphs and writing a friendly letter to compose a four paragraph letter to their new friends. We hope to mail the letters out after next week. Below is the assignment sheet given to students to help them write their letters. I know our friends in Africa will be so happy to get these letters.

Remember, Teacher Professional Development Day and Parent-Teacher Conferences are this week, so no class Wednesday through Friday. I look forward to meeting everyone this week.


This Week: Teacher's Pets

posted Oct 6, 2019, 10:12 PM by Jason Brunken   [ updated Oct 6, 2019, 10:12 PM ]

This week the Grade 2 class will be working out of Journeys reading Teacher's Pets, a funny little story about school and pets by Ann Dodds. While it is a short week due to the National Day this Thursday and Friday, we will still be covering our vocabulary, phonics, grammar, and reading lessons. 

Below is the weekly handout sheet for this week. On it you will find the spelling and vocabulary words. Vocabulary words are also posted below in the practice slideshow to help you practice. A spelling test will be given on Friday this week. The words are getting harder. Please review. Coat of Arms pics are coming soon. I'll post them later this week.


This Week: Diary of a Spider

posted Sep 28, 2019, 8:30 PM by Jason Brunken   [ updated Sep 28, 2019, 8:30 PM ]

This week Grade 2 is moving on in Journeys to Diary of a Spider. This is a wonderful little book by Doreen Cronin that takes a comical look at life through the eyes of a spider (if the spider thought and lived like we did that is.) Ms. Cronin has written several of these books with titles such as Diary of a Worm and Diary of a Fly. Both of those are in our Happy Kids library I believe. She also writes the great "duck books" about a scheming duck on a farm. Click-Clack-Moo is one we will read later this year. You can see a complete list of her books here.

As always we will begin the week looking at our vocabulary words, move into grammar on Wednesday, read the selection on Thursday, and then do a writing assignment on Friday. The spelling test will also be on Friday. Please remember to help your child study for the tests. Below is the weekly handout for this week. On it you will find all of the spelling and vocabulary words along with some grammar practice. You can also find a slideshow for practicing vocabulary below. Please encourage your child to practice.

We will also be wrapping up our Coats of Arms this week. We just have to wrap up the writing. They will be posted on the 2F landing of the building for all to see on by the end of the week. I will post a few pictures later this week.


Extension Week: My Family Coat of Arms

posted Sep 24, 2019, 7:18 PM by Jason Brunken   [ updated Sep 24, 2019, 7:18 PM ]

My apologies for the late post. This week, we are taking a break from Journeys and will do our first extension activity: a family coat of arms. A long time ago in Medieval Europe, wealthy families that had land were required to fight for their king as knights. These knights would suit up for battle in full armor making it difficult to tell who was who on the battlefield. So knights could know who was friend and who was enemy, they began wearing their family crest, or a symbol that represented their family. These became known as coats of arms and can be seen today all over Europe and even in the US. Think of coats of arms as logos for a family. They are usually simple in design but capture the essence of what the family is.

Students have been working on their own this week to both create a coat of arms for their family and then write about their family in a paragraph that explains why they made the coat of arms the way they did. I am looking forward to seeing our students' coats of arms, as I am sure you will be too. These will be on display for Parent-Teacher Conferences later this month. I will also be sure to post pictures of them when we are done. To see examples of coats of arms used around the world today, see the slideshow below.


This Week: Henry and Mudge Under the Yellow Moon

posted Sep 16, 2019, 5:29 AM by Jason Brunken   [ updated Sep 16, 2019, 5:29 AM ]

This week we pay homage to the arrival of fall by reading another great Henry and Mudge book called Under the Yellow Moon. This story is about how Henry and Mudge are both alike and different in how they enjoy the thrills of fall. So far, Henry and Mudge have been a big hit in class. I know they will enjoy this one too. Also this week, we will be continuing our efforts to learn how to write a proper paragraph. Last week we learned the basics; this week we will practice writing our own paragraphs. 

Below is the handout for this week with the spelling and vocabulary words. I've included a slideshow with this week's vocabulary as well for more practice. Remember, spelling test on Friday so help your child practice and encourage her to read at home.

It was great seeing everyone at Meet the Teacher last week. Remember to contact me with any questions or concerns this year.


This Week: My Family

posted Sep 10, 2019, 6:59 AM by Jason Brunken   [ updated Sep 10, 2019, 7:00 AM ]

Hello! This week the Grade 2 classes will be reading My Family by George Ancona. George Ancona is an acclaimed photographer who has made and contributed to many children's books over the years. This week we are reading a book he made about families, specifically his family. This story fits great with our overall family theme this month.

Below is the weekly handout sheet for this week. Please help your child review the spelling words, grammar concept, and vocabulary words this week. I've also posted a slideshow of this week's spelling words below to help you and your child review this week. A spelling test will be this coming Thursday instead Friday due to the short holiday week.

Soon we will be learning to write paragraphs and begin our journey to becoming composition writers this year, but first this week we are focusing on what makes a complete sentence and continue to practice our fundamental skills.

Don't forget, Meet the Teacher is this Thursday at 2:30. See you there!


This Week: Henry and Mudge

posted Sep 1, 2019, 6:15 AM by Jason Brunken

This week, the Grade 2 class will be finishing our postcards to our pen pals and reading and doing lessons related to the first chapter of Cynthia Rylant's first book in her amazing Henry and Mudge series. Students at this age love Henry and Mudge: a boy and a dog who are best friends. The Happy Kids library has seven Henry and Mudge titles. I will encourage the kids to check them out f they enjoy the reading this week.

The selection this week tells the story of how Henry first got Mudge. It is a cute story and easy to read. The kids will enjoy this smooth transition into 2nd grade. Aside from reading, the students will also be practicing short vowels, a list of vocabulary words, subjects and predicates, and sentence writing. There will be a spelling test on Friday, so please help your child review both the vocabulary and spelling words throughout the week. 

I sent home a weekly handout with this information and posted it below to help your child review at home. I have also included slideshows to review the vocabulary lesson for this week. Feel free to use it if you need.

Please email me with any questions. Don't forget, Library on Wednesdays!

Welcome to the 2019-2020 School Year

posted Aug 26, 2019, 5:35 AM by Jason Brunken   [ updated Aug 26, 2019, 5:39 AM ]

Hello! I'm Mr. Jason Brunken, and you've found the online home for the Grade 2 Early Bird class at Happy Kids. Let me welcome Grade 2 parents. I am very excited to get the chance to teach your child this year. Your involvement and input is very important to me. Please feel free to contact me whenever you like with questions, feedback, or concerns about class this year.

To learn more about me, please visit the About Me page on this website, or see the letter of introduction I sent home this week. I have been teaching Grade 2 at Happy kids since I started here back in 2006. It is one of my favorite classes to teach, and I am really looking forward to helping these kids grow into strong young writers and readers this year.

This week we will be focusing on three main tasks. First, we will be getting used to each other and learning our class routines, rules, and expectations. Second, we will do some character education with Happy Kids's Core Values. I want the kids to think about how they can not just be good students while they are here, but also good people. Finally, we will begin our Pen Pal Project. This is an annual project that I do with my Grade 2 classes to help motivate the kids to write. This year we will collaborating extensively with an international school in Tanzania!

Please stop by here each week to get updates on what we will be doing in class and to view important class materials like our weekly handouts or writing assignment sheets. I work hard to keep this site updated for your convenience. I look forward to meeting you all at Meet the Teacher on September 12 at 2:30.

Final Extension: Collaborative Poetry Project

posted May 19, 2019, 7:37 PM by Jason Brunken   [ updated May 19, 2019, 7:37 PM ]

It's that sad time of year where the school year is coming to an end. It has been a great one, and I have had a lot of fun the kids this year. For the final 6 classes of the year, we will be working on poetry. The kids have been reading and learning about poetry for the last couple of weeks, and this week they will get the chance to write their own. As a bonus, the kids will be partnering with their pen pals for a final time to write a rhymed poem and to provide some feedback on the poems they write. In the end, I hope the kids all get to go home with a short book of poems to share with their family over the summer. Please see the assignment packet below to get a better understanding of this project and what is expected of the kids this week.

This Week: Now and Ben

posted May 12, 2019, 8:37 AM by Jason Brunken   [ updated May 12, 2019, 8:37 AM ]

This week Grade 2 is reading about Benjamin Franklin. Benjamin (Ben) Franklin is a very important figure in American History. He is considered one of the Founders of America for his role in gaining independence from Great Britain and helping to write the Constitution. He was much more than that though. He was a man of science, an inventor, a writer, a publisher, and a philanthropist. He, in fact, invented or improved some things we see everyday, like public hospitals, flippers (for swimming), and vitamins. This week we will be reading a fun little book called Now and Ben which looks at how Ben Franklin has affected our lives today. I know the kids will enjoy learning from this little story. When we finish, the kids will write a short poem about Ben Franklin too.

The practice materials for spelling, grammar, and vocabulary can be found below (weekly handout and vocabulary slideshow). It's too late to practice, but you can review in case you feel you missed something. We did a little preparation work for this week's Poetry Writing project as well.



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