Weekly Newsletter 2/25

THE HOOT -  News from Ms. Lavoie’s Second Grade - 2/26/16
Hello Everyone,
It was so nice to connect with everyone after February vacation! We are off and running and busy as ever, getting so much learning in before the end of the second trimester.  Here are some of our highlights:
Memoir Project- The first steps to working on our projects began this week.  The children read their notes so they were fresh in their minds and then verbally told a partner what they thought the beginning, middle and end of their story might be. We then explored another memoir called Big Mamma’s by Donald Crews.  We looked at how this author developed the setting in his book. The kiddos then worked on developing their own story settings by using the five senses.  We also worked on producing a good lead for our stories.
Science - We met as a whole second grade again to revisit our experiment with the three different combinations of water when put in the freezer.  One bottle was plain water, one was water mixed with salt, and the third was water mixed with oil. Students checked out each bottle carefully and then we compared our findings with our hypotheses.  It was fun to see which were correct and which we were surprised by!  We then learned that there is a fourth state of matter!!!  It is plasma!!   We saw a quick little informational video about what things fall into this category. Interesting!!!
Math - We continue to settle into our new math group and work on our second grade money standard. Everyone is showing what they know and working on new skills!
Reading- Our reading strategy this week has been on how to look for the main idea in a book as well as in individual paragraphs to help us better understand nonfiction text.  

Calendar of Events
2/29- Mystery Liquid Homework due
3/18 - Workshop day!  No School

3/25 - End Of Trimester

Weekly Newsletter 2/12

2:34 PM Posted by Gina Lavoie 0 comments
THE HOOT -  News from Ms. Lavoie’s Second Grade - 2/12/16
Hello Everyone,
Thanks to those of you who helped to make our Valentine’s Day party a huge success.  It was nice to have a healthy snack in addition to the “Sweet” treats.
Memoir Project- On Friday last week we all gathered together to talk about our Memoir Project.  We watched  “Too Many Tamales” a memoir so that our writers can get a clear understanding that they need to be interviewing an adult of their choice and focusing on a memorable event in their special person’s life.  It is very important that the notes are turned in on the day we get back from vacation because our young authors will be using those notes to become a storyteller and write a memoir.  The memoirs will be shared at our Trimester Tea.
Science - As a whole second grade group we are conducting an experiment on what we think will happen  (hypothesis) to three different combinations of water when put in the freezer (during vacation).  One bottle is plain water, one is water mixed with salt, and the third is water mixed with oil. We are also going to take this science opportunity to see what happens with the water level when frozen.  
Math - The second math standard is “Solves word problems involving dollar bills, quarters, dimes, nickels, and pennies, using $ and ¢ symbols appropriately”.  Any practice at home during vacation on counting by 1, 5, 10, and 25, naming their coins and their values, and practicing counting money is greatly appreciated.  Before we can begin working on our second grade standard, we need to ensure that our learners have that foundation previously taught in grade kindergarten and grade one.   Thanks for your assistance.  

Calendar of Events

2/22- Memoir Project Notes due

Weekly Newsletter 2/5/16

THE HOOT -  News from Ms. Lavoie’s Second Grade - 2/5/16

Hello Everyone,
Welcome February!  Second graders are continuing their study of solids, liquids, and gases.  Students are enjoying working with all the second grade teachers as they rotate from lesson to lesson.  Our rotation days are Wednesday and Friday afternoon until Rug Rats ends, and then we will revisit our schedule.  Homeroom teachers teach their lesson with their class at a time that fits with our individual schedules.
*Tower Building - (The Challenge) Students will use marshmallows and toothpicks to construct a tower that meets the criteria of.... The tower must be 30 cm tall. The tower must stand on its own for at least 15 seconds. They may only use the provided materials.
*Engineering Design - Build a Valentine Holder - Students use their knowledge of physical properties to build a holder that fits the specific criteria.  
*Mystery Balloons - Students explore unknown objects and substances inside balloons to list their physical properties and determine their state of matter.
Memoir Project- Along with this letter today you will find another letter explaining this project. It is a requirement for each student as they will be using the info they collect in writing during the weeks following February break. Everyone will be given two weeks to gather the information for this project. Next week which is a regular school week and the week of February vacation.  Choose the week that will work best for your child to gather the information needed for this project.  This can be a very meaningful experience for both students and the adult whose stories they record.  We hope you find this so!

I am also still in need of a drink, cups, plates and napkins for our Valentine’s Party.  Please let me know if you are able to contribute any of these things.  Thank you!
Gina Lavoie

Calendar of Events
2/8 -Monday -  Rug Rats PM - Pick up at 4:30
2/8 - Valentines can begin arriving
2/12 - Valentine Party
2/22- Memoire Project Notes due

Weekly Newsletter 1/29/16

News from Ms. Lavoie’s Second Grade - 1/29/16
Hello Everyone,
Wow, where did January go?!  Second graders are VERY excited about diving into their next science unit on solids, liquids, and gases.  As a group last week we gathered to share, “What we thought we knew about solids, liquids, and gases”, came up with questions that they want answers to, and watched in informative video on solids, liquids, and gases.
For the next several weeks we will be involving our scientists in several experiments.  This week all second graders experimented with
*Oobleck (Oobleck is a non-Newtonian fluid; it has properties of both liquids and solids. You can slowly dip your hand into it like a liquid, but if you squeeze the oobleck or punch it, it will feel solid. The name oobleck comes from the Dr. Seuss book, “Bartholomew and the Oobleck.”).
*Properties of Matter- All matter can be described by its properties.  Properties are a list of adjectives that describe what an object looks, feels, tastes, smells, or sounds like.  This week we completed an activity looking at the properties of different fruits.
*Solid or Liquid - Students describe the physical properties of various objects and compare objects with similar properties.  The words used to describe the objects are called physical properties. All objects have physical properties that we can observe such as their color, shape, size, texture, strength, or flexibility.
Math Groups - This week and next week we will be finishing up on our concepts on Number and Operations in Base Ten and Operations and Algebraic Thinking. Beginning February 8th we will be starting a unit on Measurement and Data, beginning with money.  After looking at the most recent NWEA scores, we have regrouped students according to their needs.
See attached Valentine information!

Calendar of Events

2/1 - Monday - Rug Rats PM - Pick up at 4:30
2/8 -Monday -  Rug Rats PM - Pick up at 4:30
2/8 - Valentines can begin arriving

2/12 - Valentine Party

Weekly Newsletter 1/22/16

3:00 PM Posted by Gina Lavoie 0 comments
THE HOOT -  News from Ms. Lavoie’s Second Grade - 1/22/16

Hello Everyone,
It was a busy four-day week in second grade!  We continue to strive to elevate student thinking when listening to nonfiction books.  We are activating prior knowledge, asking questions to spark curiosity, determining the author’s purpose, looking at the text features (Text features include all the components of a story or article that are not the main body of text. These include the table of contents, index, glossary, headings, bold words, sidebars, pictures and captions, and labeled diagrams), and more!  It is very exciting to see students learning about science and social studies topics through our nonfiction unit.  We have read about the history of popcorn, Martin Luther King, Jr., how magnets work, bats, manatees, and snow leopards.
Thank you for reading to your child and having them read daily.  Education experts agree it is the single most important activity parents can do with their children.  Scholastic News reports the many reasons parents read aloud to their children:
Keep up the good work….For these reasons and more, your child benefits!
We were all so happy to ski in the Rugrats program today.  We are lucky to live in the Western mountains of Maine and have such incredible opportunities!  Please refer to the calendar below for the rest of our ski dates. Thank you for all you do!
Calendar of Events
1/25 - Monday - Rug Rats PM - Pick up at 4:30
2/1 - Monday - Rug Rats PM - Pick up at 4:30

2/8 -Monday -  Rug Rats PM - Pick up at 4:30

Weekly Newsletter 1/15/16

2:59 PM Posted by Gina Lavoie 0 comments
THE HOOT -  News from Ms. Lavoie’s Second Grade - 1/15/16
Hi Everyone!!
This has been a full week with getting all of the NWEA tests completed for our mid year check in!  The children have been working very hard to show us how much they have learned!  We second grade teachers will be using the data from this round of testing to assist us with targeting our instruction in English/Language Arts/Math and setting up upcoming math groups.
We have been weaving in some activities this week that focus on Martin Luther King Jr..  They have included, readings, videos, writing, and skills work. The children were also able to complete an art and writing activity that shows MLK Jr. along with their own dreams.  These are on display in our hallway and look great!
In English/Language Arts we have continued with our nonfiction unit. Our lessons typically begin with a great book that we use to model an element of nonfiction and then allow the students to try out and practice strategies that good readers use. We usually conclude our lessons with sharing how we used our new strategy during practice time.  This is done with a partner or the whole group and really enjoyed by everyone!
In math we are continuing to work on learning and practicing those skills that will bring us to the end of our current math instruction groups.
Please remember that there is no school on Monday as it is Martin Luther King Jr. Day.  Also we will be having Rug Rats Skiing on Friday 22nd. Please be on the lookout for the Rug Rats Reminder next week where you will indicate where your child will be picked up and by whom.
Have a wonderful three day weekend!
Calendar of Events
1/18 - Holiday No School!
1/19 - Gr. 3 Rugrats Skiing (AM)
1/20 - Gr. 2/3 Cross Country Skiing
1/21 - Gr. 2/3 Cross Country Skiing
1/22 - Gr. 2 Rugrats Skiing (PM)
1/25 - Monday - Rug Rats PM - Pick up at 4:30
2/1 - Monday - Rug Rats PM - Pick up at 4:30

2/8 -Monday -  Rug Rats PM - Pick up at 4:30

Weekly Newsletter 1/8/16

THE HOOT -  News from Ms. Lavoie’s Second Grade - 1/8/16
January 8, 2016
Happy New Year!
We have had a wonderful start to the new year in second grade.  Our first day back we headed to Sunday River for an afternoon of skiing and fun!  We met our coaches and they took us to the rental department to be fitted for equipment.  Next, we hit the slopes for lessons and practice.  It was cold outside, but the sunshine, hot chocolate, and exercise kept us warm.  
In English/Language Arts we have started a new unit on nonfiction.  We started off by discussing what we already know about nonfiction so we can build on our prior knowledge.  We are also working on:
  • Asking and answering questions to guide our nonfiction reading
  • Noticing how the author uses text features to teach about a topic
  • Selecting the most important details when we read
  • Stating the main idea of a paragraph or text
  • Comparing and contrasting different nonfiction texts
In math we are becoming more advanced in our addition and subtraction skills.  We are checking our answers using the inverse operation.  We are also reviewing our place value skills and beginning to work with arrays.  
Please continue to send your child to school with plenty of warm clothing (They still need shoes/sneakers for inside wear).  We go outside for recess most days.  The students need fresh air and exercise to be at their best.
Next week we will be completing all of our mid year NWEA tests.  The three tests (math, reading & language arts), along with any make-ups will be scheduled throughout the week.   Please make sure your child is well rested, well fed and on time to school.  Thanks for your support,
Gina Lavoie
Calendar of Events

1/11-1/15 NWEA mid year tests
1/22 - Friday - Rug Rats PM - Pick up at 4:30
1/25 - Monday - Rug Rats PM - Pick up at 4:30
2/1 - Monday - Rug Rats PM - Pick up at 4:30
2/8 -Monday -  Rug Rats PM - Pick up at 4:30