Friday, December 21, 2018

Holiday Shopping

THANK YOU to everyone who donated items for our Holiday Shopping!  We were able to raise $500 from the sales and 2nd grade decided to donate the money to our Decorah Community Food Pantry. 

Did you know that for every $1 donated, the pantry is able to purchase $8-$10 worth of food!!  With our donation, the food pantry was able to buy about $5,000 worth of food.  That is absolutely AMAZING!!!

As a parent, I can honestly say I have gotten some pretty "special" gifts in the past!!!  And, I have displayed them proudly!  :)   Honestly, watching the kids pick out their gifts is absolutely priceless.  They have their shopping lists and really do look for the perfect item for each family member! 

I hope you all enjoy your gifts!  The kids also had fun wrapping your presents in the classroom!!

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

Donuts in December

Thank you to everyone who attended Donuts in December last Friday!  We had a great turn out and it sure looked like everyone was enjoying their time together.  It's always fun for the kids to have a special guest visit them at school!!

Sunday, December 9, 2018

Hour of Code

I sure hope your child told you that I introduced them to coding last week!!!  I was quite surprised by how many had coded in the past - that's awesome!!

December 3-9 was Computer Science Education Week and during that week Hour of Code was promoted globally in all classrooms.

What is coding?  Coding, in a quick snapshot, is telling a computer what you want it to do.  This means typing in step-by step commands for the computer to follow.  If done correctly, it will do exactly what it's told to do!

How did 2B participate in Hour of Code last week?  I introduced coding for the first time last year and it was hugely successful!  Using the website, students participated in Hour of Code.  They had the choice between several options: Star Wars, Minecraft, Dance Party, and Basic Maze.  All of those allowed students to put lines of code together to generate game sequences.  Each was self-led and included quick video tutorials along the way to help students.  At the end of the week I enrolled the class into a coding coarse within

The students have loved coding!  I continue to learn so much from while they code.  It was something I had never done before last year, and needless to say, I still have a lot to learn!!  There are many apps out there that are great for coding.  If you need suggestions please let me know!  Here are a couple pictures that I took last week while they were coding.

Wednesday, December 5, 2018

2B update

Yikes!  I promise I have not disappeared!!!  Here is a rundown of what's been happening in our classroom.


  • The focus on instruction is still centered around determining the main idea and details in fiction and non-fiction.  Along with that, I've reviewed the importance of non-fiction text features and how they help the reader.  Finally, we are still working on using text evidence to ask and answer questions while reading. 
  • Since those standards were also a focus during our first unit of literacy we wanted to have students apply their learning.  So, each student chose an animal to research.  Literacy, writing, and science are being taught together since so many of the skills overlap each other.  Before students chose their animal they learned a little more about specific habitats: ocean, grassland, arctic, desert, and rainforest.  Once they chose a habitat of interest they selected an animal that lived in that particular habitat.
  • Each student researched their animal based on the main ideas that they chose.  We talked a lot about what their audience would want to know about the animal.  This research was much quicker than genius hour.  The majority of students chose similar main ideas: habitat, diet, appearance, and interesting facts.  Once research was finished, I showed students how to use a Pages template to organize their information.  They've also done a Google search to find 2 pictures that supplemented their information and inserted their pictures into the template.
  • They have done AMAZING with this project.  Next they will narrow down their information even more to create an animal plaque.  Finally, each student will write a speech about their animal and present it to the class. 

  • Last week I gave the unit 3 math assessment, which covered money, telling time to the 5 minute as well as AM and PM, and bar graphs.  Overall, they students did really well on this! Their telling time skills have REALLY improved and I can honestly say everyone that is able to tell time using an analog clock :)
  • Unit 4 will focus on place value and adding 2-digit numbers.  Eventually I will introduce to them the partial sums addition algorithm as well as the traditional model for adding two 2-digit numbers.  However, the first several lessons of this unit will encourage students to develop mental strategies for adding 2-digit numbers together.  
WIN Time

  • Last week we switched back math WIN and the focus of this cycle is telling time.  We meet four times each week: Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday.  We will meet next week and then will be done until after Christmas.  After Christmas we will have literacy WIN for about 3 weeks again.
What else?
  • Donuts in December is this coming Friday, December 7.  Thank you to those who have returned the slips.  If you have not done so, please get them sent back to school so I know who will be attending with your child.  I would recommend your child come to school with their special guest on Friday.
  • Holiday shopping is Thursday, December 13.  We are still taking donations!  I appreciate all of the donations that have been sent to school already!!  I will send home a note soon asking that you send money and a shopping list to school with your child.  Please do not send money yet.
  • December READO was sent home on Monday.  I know my daughter who is a 2nd grader loves to do the activities on the reado board - I hope you and your child are enjoying them as well :)  I realize that the next several weeks will be busy, but please continue to try and find 10-15 minutes each night to read with your child.  December reado boards will be returned after winter break.
I think that's all for now.  Have a great week!!

Friday, October 19, 2018

2nd Grade Reward Recess

For several years now the 2nd grade team has given their students a monthly reward.  The kids work so hard in school and at home doing their nightly reading!  We think it's great to give the kids a small reward to show them that we appreciate their hard work. was the day!  For this month's reward we invited several high school students over at the end of the day for a reward recess.  Who doesn't love an extra recess?!  And, it was great for our 2nd graders to see the older kids showing Viking Pride on the playground.  It was a win for all!!!