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Grade 2 Happenings

Follow the latest happenings in Grade 2 below.

This Week: Hellen Keller

posted Dec 11, 2017, 5:47 AM by Jason Brunken   [ updated Dec 11, 2017, 5:47 AM ]

This week in Grade 2 we are reading the very interesting nonfiction piece called Hellen Keller. The story of Hellen Keller is incredible and very inspirational for many people. Hellen Keller was born in healthy like any little girl, but she became very sick and lost both her sight and hearing. Fortunately, her family was wealthy, and they were able to hire a personal teacher for her. Nonetheless, teaching someone who is both blind and deaf poses serious challenges. Her teacher, Anne Sullivan, found creative ways to teach Hellen Keller. After many failures, Hellen and Anne began to communicate and build a relationship. The two became lifelong friends, and Hellen went on to graduate from college and become a world famous activist for workers' rights. It is an amazing story.

This week we will also have vocabulary, grammar, reading, and spelling/phonics practice. Please take some time to review the spelling and vocabulary words with your child using the weekly handout sheet below. Below is also a the vocabulary slideshow used in class to help you practice.

This week for writing, kids will be continuing with learning about the persuasive writing model. We will teach how to organize a persuasive paper to get ready to write one next week.


This Week: Schools Around the World

posted Dec 1, 2017, 7:09 PM by Jason Brunken   [ updated Dec 1, 2017, 7:10 PM ]

This week in Grade 2 we are reading the very interesting nonfiction piece called Schools Around the World. This is a book about how children all over world go to school. It gives children a fantastic insight into how the cultures and traditions of different peoples change how they go to school. Also, it helps kids expand their understanding of their world and see that while all schools are different in some ways, in many others, they are very similar. I know the kids will learn a lot from this reading selection.

We will also have vocabulary, grammar, reading, and spelling/phonics practice. Please take some time to review the spelling and vocabulary words with your child using the weekly handout sheet and vocabulary slideshow below. Please let me know if you have any questions.

Students will focusing on learning more about persuasive writing this week and work on a special project for our pen pals. More info to come on that!


This Week: Ugly Vegetables

posted Nov 26, 2017, 6:34 AM by Jason Brunken

This week we are reading Ugly Vegetables by Grace Lin. Ugly Vegetables is a fun little story about a family that lives in a neighborhood where everybody plants a garden. The other residents of the neighborhood plant beautiful flower gardens, but our main character's mother plants a garden full of Chinese vegetables. The girls is disappointed, wanting a flower garden like everyone else, but her mom insists their garden will be great. In the end, of course, all the neighbors want to trade some flowers for the delicious soup made from the vegetables. 

Grace Lin is a native Taiwanese, but moved to the US when she was in elementary school. She has written many great books for young children, many about her Taiwanese heritage and maintaining that heritage while living in the US. Some of her more famous books include The Year of the DogWhere the Mountain Meets the Moon, and Dim-Sum for Everyone. You can see her other titles here

Students will also be finishing up their research reports this week. We ran out of time last week, so many students sill some some drafts to complete.

Below is the weekly handout for this week and the vocabulary slideshow for this week's words. Remember to help your child review the spelling and vocabulary words when you have a chance. Please also remind your children that library books are due on Wednesday. 



Extension Week: Writing Research Reports

posted Nov 19, 2017, 5:27 AM by Jason Brunken   [ updated Nov 19, 2017, 5:28 AM ]

This week, the grade 2 classes are learning how to research and write an informational text about a main idea. This will be the culmination of a variety of skills the students have been practicing all semester. The most basic of these is paragraph construction. Using topic sentences and supporting sentences to communicate information about a topic. We practice this skill during our pen pal letter extension, but now students are taking that skill to the next level. 

An informational text has many paragraphs all about a single main idea, or big topic. Each paragraph gives supporting facts in greater detail about the big topic. Learning to organize and write information in this way is a new skill for our students. For this reason we are spending the rest of this week on this assignment to make sure students have enough time to master the skill.

This week, students will be taking their research reports through the entire writing process. They are beginning by organizing their topic and researching details. Below you can see the assignment and prewrite sheets the kids will be using to plan their writing. They will write two drafts and revise their work twice before completing the final draft. I know you all will be very impressed with their work. 


This Week: Jellies

posted Nov 12, 2017, 5:22 AM by Jason Brunken   [ updated Nov 12, 2017, 5:22 AM ]

This week in Grade 2 we will be doing the usual, practicing grammar, vocabulary, spelling, reading, and writing. Our story for this week in Journeys is JelliesJellies is a nonfiction book about some of the many kinds of jellyfish that live in the sea. While reading Jellies, we will again be looking at the importance of main ideas and details getting ready for writing our own multi-paragraph informative compositions. 

At the end of the week students will finally be learning to write research reports and choosing their topics for their research reports that they will be working on next week. Next week will be a hard week of writing for the class.

Below is the weekly handout sheet  and vocabulary slideshow for this week. We will have a spelling test at the end of the week. Please remind your child to study the spelling words and help them review the vocabulary as well. 


This Week: Super Storms

posted Nov 5, 2017, 4:08 AM by Jason Brunken

This week in Grade 2 we will be doing the usual, practicing grammar, vocabulary, spelling, reading, and writing. Our story for this week in Journeys is Super Storms. Super Storms is a nonfiction book about some of the most devastating types of storms on Earth: tornadoes, typhoons, thunderstorms, and blizzards. This week marks the second week of our look at nonfiction. While reading Super Storms, we will again be looking at the importance of main ideas and details getting ready for writing our own multi-paragraph informative compositions.

At the end of the week students be doing some more practice with writing an informative paragraph, this time, using information from a book. Good practice for your child this week would be to read additional nonfiction selections.

Below is the weekly handout sheet and vocabulary slideshow for this week. We will have a spelling test at the end of the week. Please remind your child to study the spelling words and help them review the vocabulary words as well.



This Week: Animals Building Homes

posted Oct 29, 2017, 3:19 AM by Jason Brunken

This week the grade 2 classes will be reading Animals Building Homes by Wendy Perkins. This is a nonfiction book about the different places that animals live. It is a perfect opportunity to get into our next writing project: a research report.

This week also marks the beginning of a new unit. This month, we will be looking at informative writing, namely the research report. Little by little this month, the students will learn the basic parts, organization, and strategies for writing a basic research report. This is a writing skill that will serve them them for the rest of their time at Happy Kids. It isn't the funnest writing assignment, but it is one of the most valuable that I teach this year. I hope all of the students try their best to master it.

Below is the weekly handout for this week and a slideshow to review this week's vocabulary words. Please help your child review the spelling and vocabulary words. We will have a spelling test on Friday.

Extension Week: First Letters to Our Pen Pals

posted Oct 21, 2017, 9:21 AM by Jason Brunken   [ updated Oct 21, 2017, 9:21 AM ]

This week, the grade 2 classes are spending their time writing replies to our new pen pals in Kenya. We received special introduction videos from Ms. Print's class at The International School of Kenya in Nairobi, 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.


This Week: Teacher's Pets

posted Oct 8, 2017, 8:33 PM by Jason Brunken

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 National Day this Monday, we will still be covering our vocabulary, phonics, grammar, and reading lessons. We will also have some friendly letter writing practice on Friday this week.

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.


Our finished coat of arms!

posted Oct 5, 2017, 10:14 PM by Jason Brunken   [ updated Oct 5, 2017, 10:15 PM ]

We finished our family coats of arms last week. After some messy making in the classroom and some great writing practice, I have them posted up on the 2F landing of Happy Kids for all to see. 

The kids did a great job and had a lot of fun making them, and they turned out very nice. I will send them home at Parent-Teacher Conferences, but for now, please enjoy them here online or in person (and all their real live glory) when you come to pick up your child at Happy Kids.






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