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Armstrong Elementary School

Second Grade News

Dec. 1, 2017
 

Second Grade is proud to be taking part in Hour of Code next week!  Second grade students will take part in activities where they just aren't using technology, but they are making technology work!  One of our goals as technology-rich classrooms is that our students will be creating, not just consuming.  With these code-writing activities students will learn what is behind their favorite apps, and learn how to persist when something isn't working quite right!

Nov. 3, 2017
 

Thanks to the standards-based report cards, grades are neither rewards nor punishments.  They simply communicate the child's progress toward a learning target.  The vast majority, no matter how bright, do not begin even close to mastery.  And, they shouldn't!  The children are here to learn. In the classroom teachers provide the appropriate work to keep the children moving towards mastery of these targets.  The report card grades communicate the progress.  

 

What is a learning target?  A learning target is what the student is expected to master by the end of a unit or school year.  Some are year-long targets (such as reading fluency and comprehension), some are taught during a short period (needs of plants and animals).  The grades on the report card no longer communicate whether a student is meeting expectations at this particular time, but rather, where the student is on the way to mastering the learning target.  
Oct. 13, 2017
 

The second grade teachers appreciate having a way to communicate specific progress on a learning target.  The standards-based report card shows where a child is along the continuum.  Once a learning target is mastered, the teacher can either go deeper within that target to further challenge the child, or concentrate on the targets that are yet to be mastered.  This helps the teachers plan their instruction, and differentiate for each child.  

October 6, 2017
 
Your children have doing a lot of math work using the research and methods of Greg Tang. He's been a frequent visitor to Armstrong conducting professional development for the teachers. The teachers love his methods to get children to truly understand math. He's also a wonderfully engaging and entertaining speaker. I hope you can make it to Family Math Night on Thursday, Oct. 12 at 6:30. Children are welcome to come as well. Many teachers will be there to play math games with the students so parents can listen to Greg.
Sep. 29, 2017
 
We are already at the mid-point of the first nine weeks of school!  As we work on our learning targets, now is a good time to remember how we communicate this progress on report cards.  Students will be given a grade depending on where they are on their way to mastery of a learning target.  Students don't start second grade with all of their learning targets mastered, so please don't be surprised to see some grades that are below a 3!  You can find the explanations for each learning target on the report card guide found here.
September 15, 2017
 
Second grade is in full swing!  Students know their routines, have participated in all of their specials classes, become familiar with their iPads and much more.  This is the point when teachers begin to work on deeper skills.  From comprehension in reading, to problem solving in math, to research in science and social studies, the students sure are busy!  Please keep in touch with your child's teacher to hear all of the latest news!
Second grade teachers are preparing the students for the homework that will come!  Pictured above is an example of a first grade Tangy Tuesday puzzle completed for practice. Greg Tang is producing new puzzles for the new school year!  We're so excited to see what's in store. What is certain is that the puzzles will contain numerous benefits for the students. Below are some examples of how these puzzles benefit students.
 
  • Math vocabulary from across all strands of mathematics.
  • Reinforcement of the concept that expressions on either side of the equal sign have the same value.
  • Correct spelling and accuracy is required for the puzzle to be completed.
  • Strategic thinking - i.e. "I know the third letter is an i..."
  • Spiral review of numerous math concepts.
 
We will continue to practice with your children as they begin to bring home the Tangy Tuesday puzzles!