AWOL, Apps, Wanderlust and Moon Phases | Grade 2 Hullabaloo: AWOL, Apps, Wanderlust and Moon Phases

Sunday, March 2, 2014

AWOL, Apps, Wanderlust and Moon Phases

I have been AWOL. It seems like things have been speeding along, and I've pretended that I didn't have anything to share. I do! Here goes...

My Class --

I have a fabulous class. They're conscientious, focused and absolutely precious! I catch myself watching them in awe while they're coming into the room in the morning. I dubbed last year's class, "BCE", because they were the Best Class Ever, and I meant it. 

This year's class is another BCE, but in a completely different way. We are truly a little school family. I love that we can talk about scandalous topics (such as, why turd isn't a word we use at school or why it's not appropriate to say that someone has a jelly booty [not sure HOW that topic came up at lunch]), and we can be silly while singing and dancing to Rebecca Black's Friday as our Friday morning ritual. I have such affection for these kiddos, and yet, I feel like I'm barely holding it together with my responsibilities most days. My guess is that you know exactly what that's like. The wonderful, heartwarming experiences clearly outweigh the frustrations that have very little (if anything) to do with the children.

RTI --

Our district is gung-ho with response to intervention. I suppose most districts are these days. It's all about the data. Don't get me wrong, I love poring over data to look for trends, successes and red flags.   I have a couple of students who need some shoring up in math and literacy, so I've been working with these students during the thirty-minute RTI period. It's such a challenge to juggle keeping everyone focused on their particular work, while helping my RTI friends polish skills. Yet, it's so important to provide these students with this focused instruction. I can see it making a difference.

One resource that I have found to be really useful is Turbo Math: Sea Buddies. It starts a child on a kindergarten level (identifying groups of fish or other images, more more than the group shown, etc.) and moves a child up as progress is made. This is exactly what my two friends need! They need that mental practice to move toward subitizing sets larger than three or four. I can see their confidence growing, and that is exciting for all of us!

Turbo Math: Sea Buddies

Speaking of iPads and apps... my friend, over at The Wanderlust Teacher, is teaching her second graders amazing skills with iMovie and book trailers. Her energy rejuvenates me! Her fearlessness in the classroom is so much fun to watch!  I'm honored to call her my colleague and my friend. You'll be wowed by their trailers!

What's New in Our Room --

We've been studying the phases of the moon. Below is an example of the poster that the children made.They really have become quite fascinated with all things space! I took advantage of this enthusiasm by having them take notes and sketch the phases while they watched a video about the moon. I love that they view note taking so seriously! We'll wrap up our moon studies this week, but we can't do it without a special activity. I bought Oreo Cookies today. You guessed it! We're making edible moon phases later in the week. 

Our next scientific encounter involves forces, simple machines and magnets. Later in the week, we'll be having Scientists' Day, during which the children will dazzle the class with a mini presentation about one of the topics we've studied this quarter. I can't wait to see their presentations.

Until we meet again... hopefully sooner, rather than later... 

Have a great week!


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