Finger-Knitting Friday

Finger-Knitting Friday:  We started a little club in our class.  First recess on Fridays will be “Finger-Knitting Friday.  It will also be a time when we work on the milk mat.

Language  Job Reflection: When everyone has had a chance to do all the language jobs, I ask the class to do a reflection.  When we reflect we think back about every job that we did. Today for reflection, students were asked to share which job they did the best work at.  Here are the results:


  • Liam – This job is fun and I know contractions.


  • Ava – Because it made me think.
  • Avy – I know because I double checked everything.
  • Miley – It was my best because I did the most writing.
  • Lucas – I know this was the best one because I made up my very own fairy tale


  • Stephanie – This was the best one because I listened very carefully.
  • Preston – This was the best because it’s a good challenge.
  • Meika – I got three stars on every one I did!
  • Mason – I got every word right.
  • Autumn – I listened very close to all the words.
  • Pheonix – I read the blog and I love to read the blog and it’s super awesome to read!


  • Todd – I got to read read my favourite book, the food atlas.


  • Angel – I got to learn about the United States
  • Fiona – Because I got the most done.  I really, really, really want to read my Afghanistan
  • Zoe – I helped someone log in!
  • Leah – I did three countries and I like to learn about countries and I like PebbleGo
  • Abram – I like to learn new countries.  I did India.
  • Jade – I learned a lot.  Afghanistan’s capital is Kabul.

Math:  We started 2D Geometry today.  We will do more shape-shifting next week!

Jade and Liam shared their family trees!

Check Out: Check Out is how we end a week of learning in our classroom. It is a special time where everyone has a chance to share a memory from the past week or a wish for the next.  Here are our notes from today:


A Peek Inside Our Language Groups:

Autumn and Fiona shared family trees today

A Peek Inside Our Language Groups: Earlier this week, I shared a photo of the sheet students use to keep track of their Language Jobs. (Print your own copy here: Language Jobs.) I thought you might like to see what this looks like in action.  I took the pictures and the groups wrote the captions!

Contraction Action:

We worked together and did team work (Stephanie)

Writing Group:

We all did the list choice of things that are/are not in a fairy tale. (Miley)

We all got stars on a high level (Angel)

Making words/Reading Our Blog:Window Books:

It was fun, and we have an awesome couch plan for next time! (Leah, Avy , Lucas)

iPad Research:

Meika did Afghanistan, Ava did China, Todd did India and I did Mexico. (Mason)

Munsch Math:  Did you know that there is a new book by the author Robert Munsch?  It is called Get Me Another One. It isn’t a fairy tale but it is really funny!  We read it this morning, and then had a math class based on things that were in the story.

How would you solve this?

A few more pictures from today:

Grade 2 Makerspace!

More Grade 2 Makerspace!

Time practice!

We got AWESOME mail!

Perfect Printing Practice

Mason and Leah shared today.

Perfect Printing Practice: Sometimes when kids write, I can’t read what they wrote. They can’t even read what they wrote!  This doesn’t usually mean that they didn’t write great things. It doesn’t usually mean they weren’t doing their best.  It usually just means that their brain got ahead of their pencil while they were writing. Their ideas end up all squished together.

One way to fix this problem is to use paper where the lines are not squished together.  We tried this kind of paper out this morning and it really made a difference. 

Believe it or not, these two samples were written by the same kid:

What a difference! Keep it up Pheonix!

Math: Remember yesterday when math made my brain hurt?  Here is an explanation of the part-part-whole work we are doing.  It uses numbers that are a little less challenging than 81!

We watched and discussed this video together.  Then I decided that our brains could use another workout today, so we did make and break for 82. Thanks for the help Ava!

Fairy Tale List Update: My favorite fairy tale has always been the Emperor’s New Clothes.  I’m pretty sure Grade 2 can guess why!  We giggled a lot when I read today’s story.Contractions Challenge Time:  How many contractions did I use in this post?

Professional Presentation Strategies

Professional Presentation Strategies:  Four students have shared family trees already.  As we listen, we are thinking of lots of ways to make our presentations more professional.  Here are some things we will try to do:

For the Student Sharing: 

  • Use a powervoice.
  • Practice what you want to say at home.  Make sure you know the tricky names if you plan on saying them!
  • Point to the part of the family tree that you are talking about so the audience knows.
  • Get someone to hold your work up for you if it is a big poster so that your body doesn’t block the audience view of your work.
  • If your work is a small paper, take a picture and show it on the smartboard.
  • When it is time to find your country on the globe, explain what you do to find it.  If you don’t know, ask me so I can teach you!

For the Audience: 

  • Choose a spot where you can see.
  • Do not leave for a washroom break during a presentation.
  • Pay attention.  Try to notice the things they do to make their presentation great.  Think about how you could do one extra thing to make your next presentation awesome.

Meika and Zoe both identified counties that are part of the United Kingdom. Check their blogs!

Contractions:  During morning reading, students kept track of contraction words they found on sticky notes.

When we shared our sticky notes, we sorted what we wrote on a padlet.  The padlet explains why some of the words we found are not a contraction.

Language Groups:  Back by popular demand, I made brand new language jobs today!  The recording sheet this week looks like this:

Make and Break Time.  In math today we used base 10 blocks and the make and break strategy to make adding sentences that equal 81. 

My brain hurt by the end, but Fiona was still smiling!

Celebrating Martin Luther King Jr. Day

Celebrating Martin Luther King Jr. Day:   In Grade 2 Social studies, students learn about the many ways children around the world celebrate. Today. January 15, 2018, is a special day of celebration for children who live in the United States.  It is Martin Luther King Jr. Day. We do not officially celebrate this  holiday in Canada.  This is because Martin Luther King Jr. was not a Canadian.

He was pretty great though.

Dr Martin Luther King Jr. was a leader of the civil rights movement.  This means that he hoped that black people and white people would begin to live together peacefully. When children in the United States celebrate today, they remember that everyone, in their own way, can make a difference – however small. Here is a book we read together to learn more about this important man: Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

You can make a difference like Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.  It can be big or small.  An easy way is to just to try saying some of these things more often:

Miley and Todd:  Our first two family tree presentations were today.  Miley and Todd shared what they learned about their families.

Great work Todd and Miley!

They also identified a country that is part of their heritage.

Maker Space: It is Grade 2’s turn to explore the new Eastdale makerspace!  Here is this week’s schedule:

The rest of our class will get to go next week!

A Few More Monday Notes:  We made new clocks, we read Jack and the Beanstalk, we learned about contractions and we had perfect class attendance for the first time in over a month!

Friendly Flash Freeze Friday!

Friendly Flash Freeze Friday!  The weather has been doing strange things this week.  School was cancelled on Monday because of the snow. Yesterday our recess ended early because of the rain. Today was unusual too.  There was a flash freeze warning.  First recess was held indoors and second recess was limited to ‘grass only’ because the pavement (and everything else!) was frozen.

Inside our classroom, flash freeze Friday was actually a fun and friendly Friday.  There were six children away, so the rest of us blogged to let them know about some of the things they missed. According to Leah, Fiona, Jade, Angel, Autumn, Todd, Lucas, Mason, Meika, Miley, Avy, Pheonix, and Preston, 2018 is off to a great start!

Family Tree Research Projects: Today I presented my own heritage research project.  I identified The Netherlands as one of the countries my family came from and I explained my family tree:

Several students have brought beautiful family trees in to display at school.  They have done extra work to surprise me.  I think their projects look fantastic, and I also think it is fantastic if students decide to fill in a paper with information like I did.

Check Out: Check Out is how we end a week of learning in our classroom. It is a special time where everyone has a chance to share a memory from the past week or a wish for the next.  Here are our notes from today:

Responsibility, Clock Talks and the Orchestra: Day 78

Team 2 Responsibility Writing!

Responsibility Our school character trait for the month of January is Responsibility.  We sang about, talked about, and wrote about responsibility today.

Example of the clock students use in class.

Clock Talk: You only have to be able to tell time to the quarter hour in grade 2, but we made clocks that help us tell time to the minute!  The class has also started writing the time down when they leave for a washroom break.  First they try to figure it out on the analog class clock, and then they compare to the smartboard digital time.  If you have analog clocks at home, see if you can figure out exactly what time it is when you get home from school tonight.  Double check on a digital clock and then leave a comment!

New App Today! Jungle Time

The Orchestra:  We are learning about the orchestra in music class.  Yesterday, we listened to a violin, a viola, a cello, and a bass viol. They belong to the string family of instruments.

Today, we listened to a flute, a clarinet, a saxophone, a bassoon, and an oboe.  Do you know what instrument family these belong to?

Day 78 number play:  We spent a lot of time doing make and break for the number 78 in math class.  I recorded a few of Pheonix’s answers at the bottom of this chart.  How else could you break 78 into an adding sentence?

Avy brought her family tree today.  She will tell us all about it on January 23.

It’s Peanut Butter Jelly Time!

Half past? Quarter to? Quarter after?

It’s Peanut Butter Jelly Time: We celebrated learning to tell time to the quarter hour today with the only time dance I know: It’s Peanut Butter Jelly Time.  This dancing banana is actually a decent workout if you keep your arms going the whole time! The class spent an entire hour practicing reading the minute and hour hands on their own analog clocks.

***A few of my teacher friends from @justanotherclass wanted a copy of our clock, and I said I’d share it on the blog today.  You can use this to make another clock at home.  Blank Clock Template

Family Trees: Families are complicated!  I shared two diagrams that I drew of my own family with the class today.  The first was a diagram I drew as a gift for my cousin’s fiance so she could see how we are related.  It starts with my grandparents and works down:

The second is a family tree diagram that I drew for our class assignment. It goes in the opposite order since we are tracing our ancestors, not our descendants. My family tree diagram looks like this:

You can print a blank copy of a family tree diagram here:  Kid_Family_Tree.  Autumn has already finished her project and brought it in for me to display. It looks like this:

Autumn will explain this on her star day next week!

Compound Words: Today’s Padlet challenge was to find compound words.  Some words have little words hiding in them, but that doesn’t make them a compound word.  (So-me does not mean some, he-art does not mean heart, and a-we-so-me does not mean awesome!)

A Special Presentation:

Liam won first prize for his Remembrance Day poster. Congratulations Liam. Visit Liam’s blog to see the certificate and poster!


Padlets and Goal Setting, Compound Words and Fairy Tales, Social Studies and Telling Time: Welcome Back!

Padlets and Goal Setting: Padlet is a free website/app that you can use to create an online bulletin board.  We started 2018 by learning how to make a padlet.  We used it to share our learning goals for the week.  This went so well that we made a second padlet to share our best holiday memories.

What else could our class share on a padlet?

Compound words: This week, our spelling words are compound words.  One of our reading jobs this week will be to find compound words to add to our class chart.

Fairy tales: For the next few weeks in language, we will study fairy tales. We will read many fairy tale stories and we will try to figure out what a fairy tale story needs to include.  Today’s story was Thumbelina.

How many fairy tales have you read?

Social Studies:  Next week, star students will begin to share family tree projects.

January 2018 calendar – Family Tree sharing

Part of this task includes identifying one of the countries the family originally came from.  I added a country from my own heritage to our chart today.

Telling Time: The time has come to learn about time! We will do various activities this week to practice telling time to the quarter hour, including making our own analog demonstration clocks.Welcome Back:  We missed each other.  It was a happy day.

Art class!