It's hard to believe we are already in the second week of December. This week we are still finishing up our rocks and minerals unit. Just when we think we are almost done our conversations in class lead us to new and exciting things to learn about our amazing planet. This week we decided to talk about volcanoes and the pacific rim of fire, all great learning that I LOVE doing with these kids! They are all super excited to paint their rock pets that they worked to describe in descriptive paragraphs explaining the properties their rock had. I'm hoping we can get to that on Thursday or Friday of next week. (Speaking of painting our pet rocks...if anyone has some paint or googly eyes we'd appreciate some. I have a little, but it would save me a trip to the store!).
In math we have been working on estimation and rounding numbers. I really like to make math more hands on, so we learn a chant that gets stuck into their heads to help them it goes like this:
"If it's five or above,
give it a shove up.
If it's four or below,
let it hang low."
We are referring to the ones place in the number and the up or down tells us which direction we should count. We then count up or down until we get to the next number that end is a zero (0) as estimates always end in zero! We also add in some fun actions to make it full body learning.
Next week in math we will be beginning our Geometry unit. Our main focus for the week is line segments, parallel lines and naming some basic 2 and 3 dimensional shapes.
We will also be transitioning to social studies next week and learning about Flat Stanley! In class we will be reading the book "Flat Stanley" and creating our own Flat Stanley's for the students to take over Winter Break and have an adventure with. They will be writing an entry over break and drawing or taking a picture with their Flat Stanley. We will then share these when we get back from break. After break we will have an optional assignment where students can mail their Flat Stanley to family or friends and we'll start to map where they are all traveling on a big map in the 2nd grade hallway. I love learning about geography this way as it makes it fun and interactive! There will be more details in their "Flat Stanley Adventure Journal".
I also wanted to let everyone know that I will be attending a math conference next week, so I will have a sub for a few days. I am very excited for this opportunity to learn new techniques on integrating thinking strategies into our daily math work and through conferring. Mr. Al will be teaching and working with the kids for these days, and we'll also have another sub to help work with small groups. I'm so grateful to have Mr. Al so the students can still have a sense of consistency since he is very familiar with our routines as he works with the kids every day!
Another quick note-if you know you are leaving early for break would you might sending me an e-mail so that I can make sure to get your child their Flat Stanley before you leave? Thanks so much!