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2014-2015 news

posted Oct 1, 2014, 12:43 PM by Jessica Hudon

Please go to https://sites.google.com/a/watertown.k12.ma.us/lowell-grade2/ this year to find out more about 2nd grade in Ms Hudon's class!!

Thanks!

Happy New Year

posted Jan 12, 2014, 2:17 PM by Jessica Hudon   [ updated Jan 12, 2014, 2:22 PM ]

Welcome to 2014!!  We had a longer vacation then expected, but we came back to school and jumped right back into our curriculum.   We began our week on Monday in Social Studies reading The Sneetches by Dr. Suess which is wonderful story about equality, which is our present topic in Social Studies.  We all wrote a reflection on the story discussing what was the problem and solution.   As the year has progressed, and will continue to progress, the students will be writing more and more responses to both books read aloud in the classroom, as well as their own reading.  The weekly Reading Log reflects this expectation, as it now includes a second, full page of writing attached. It is the expectation that students write a minimum of the page and half reflection about a reading they have done in a respective week.  They may write a summary of the text, their opinion about the book, a clear description of the characters, or anything else that is relative to their reading.  We practice this in school following their "Read to Self" time in our Literacy Block, so it is not something new.   

In writing we have begun to use graphic organizers to assist us in our writing. This week we practiced webbing.  During Daily 5 we read some non-fiction paragraphs and practiced finding, and webbing the details in those paragraphs.  We then discussed how our own stories have a main topic for the story and then details for the different pages and practiced creating webs, and using these webs to help organize stories that we wrote this week.  Our topics all were focused on one aspect of the vacation, so it was also a nice way for the children to share and write about some of their many adventures over the long vacation. 

In math we have spent a number of weeks on addition with and without regrouping.   We are going to be now transitioning to subtraction of larger numbers with and without borrowing.   We are beginning, as we had with addition, with pictorial representations and then will learn a method with expanded notation.  Lastly, for children who may be comfortable with the standard algorithm, I will introduce that strategy.  If, as homework comes home, your child is having struggles, please note that on their work.  Homework should not be a time of frustration at home.  Similarly, if ever there is a family situation or time when your child cannot complete something, please just notify me.  I completely understand how things come up and family and family priorities are always first!

Hopefully your child shared with you some of the "fun" news of the week.  We welcomed a new student to the class and on Monday January 13, 2014 we are going to have a student teacher from Lesley joining us.  Ms. Hopkins will be beginning, and I will be encouraging her to send out her own welcome letter this week!  

Monday November 18--It's Parent/Teacher Conference week! :-)

posted Nov 18, 2013, 6:22 AM by Jessica Hudon

We have had a very busy month so far, and this week will be no exception!!  Here are some highlights of what we've done the past weeks, and a few reminders about the next two weeks prior to Thanksgiving. 

During Writer's Workshop we wrote a collective, class non-fiction book on Scarecrows. We began by creating a chart of what we knew about scarecrows. We then came up with questions about what we wanted to learn about scarecrows. We did some collective research by reading both fiction and non-fictional information on scarecrows.  We then worked in groups to answer the questions we had created about scarecrows. Lastly we wrote a text with our information.  We used an IPad app entitled "Story Creator" and were able to do the shared writing by pairing the Ipad with the computer and projector.  It was a great experience.  We now are back to working on our own personal narratives during Writer's Workshop.  Our focus is to be specific with our details and make the writing interesting.  This can be a challenge, but we are all working on it!

In math we have completed our unit on identifying place value.  We are now beginning to work on adding larger numbers.  We will be focusing on this skill for some time, as it is a very important math skill for the children to comprehend.  I have stressed to the children that the more they know their fact up to 20, the easier it will be to work on the larger number addition (and subtraction when we get there).  I strongly recommend that the students work on the Xtra Math  website at home for practice. I do try to have each child work on the site at least 1x weekly, but the more practice children get with fluency on facts, the better.  

I have also updated all of your children's Raz-Kids account to reflect a more accurate level of reading for them, based upon this term's assessments. I have placed the children in "bookrooms" that should be independent for them when reading.  This is another resource I would recommend, and it can always be used as their 20 minute reading for their reading log.  

I will be meeting with each of you this week to discuss your child's individual progress. I am very pleased with all children's development and look forward to meeting with you all.  During our short days this week we will NOT have snack nor recess.  Our lunch time is close to our typical snack time!!  On the Wednesday before Thanksgiving we have a NOON dismissal with NO  Lunch served.  On that day, please send in a snack with your child.  For children in LEDP--they have their programming all of this week, but are NOT open the Wednesday before Thanksgiving.  On that day (11/27) all children will be dismissed at 12:00p outside.  If you have any questions, let me know. 

Have a great week!

October 28

posted Oct 28, 2013, 6:58 AM by Jessica Hudon

I hope all families enjoyed the lovely fall weather we had this weekend.  We have a busy week ahead!  Here our some reminders: 
--Thursday the STORYBOOK project is due.  Your student should come to school with BOTH the draft and final copy of their report.  If they choose to come dressed as the storybook character in their book, they may do that as well.  We will be presenting the reports in the classroom to our classmates. Children may also bring a change of clothing if necessary for the remainder of the day.
--Thursday is the last day of the month--so if you want to order Scholastic Books this month, please do so by Thursday and I will be processing the orders either Thursday night or Friday. 
--Friday we are planning a fun morning of scarecrow making in the classroom.  Donations of craft materials can be sent in any day this week. 
--Later this week I will be sending home conference notices.  If you need an evening appointment, please notify me by Wednesday.  These slots are on a "first come/first served" basis. 
As always, if you have any questions, please let me know!  Have a great week. 

October 21

posted Oct 21, 2013, 7:03 AM by Jessica Hudon

Though last week was a "short" week, we got a lot accomplished.  The children had their first MAP testing of the school year and on Friday the school had an evacuation drill that went very well.  From our class conversations, it sounds like most children are well prepared for the Storybook project that is due on October 31.  If your child has not chosen a book by now, please encourage them to do so in order not to be rushed next week!  Today a notice is also going home about a crafting project we will be doing in school on Friday November 1.  I'm attaching it to this post as well.  You may be contacted to donate crafting items.  Anything is appreciated.  I know personally I have felt in my home as well as extra patterned paper I'll be bringing in.  Do not go out to buy items, rather if there are items you have that you are willing to donate, we'd appreciate it.  Thank you and have a great week.

October 16

posted Oct 15, 2013, 6:18 AM by Jessica Hudon   [ updated Oct 15, 2013, 6:24 AM ]

I hope all families had a wonderful long weekend!  I know I thoroughly enjoyed my own three day weekend.  I personally love the summer months and the ability to be outside and on the beach so often, however every year when Fall comes I'm in awe of the colors and the beauty of our surroundings. We are so lucky to live in an area that truly "shows" the seasons!  (Don't ask me if I feel the same with 2 feet of snow on the ground!!)

Observing signs of fall is an activity that we have been doing in our classroom.  I recently got the book Awesome Autumn by Bruce Goldstone to add to our class collection.  It is a wonderful book about fall facts and fall fun.  It is broken into observing Autumn with the differing senses, something we also have been speaking of in Science.  We have not finished it yet, as we are reading it in sections, but so far it has been very informative and engaging. 

Last week during our Community Meeting, which occurs on Thursdays as part of our social curriculum, we discussed the book How Full is Your Bucket for Kids by Tom Rath and Mary Reckmeyer.  This book discusses the importance of being kind to others, as that "fills their buckets" as well as our own.  When individuals are unkind, even unintentionally, it can "dip" into someone else's bucket and make them feel bad.   Earlier we'd spoken about being proactive and what that looks like for children. As an anchor text I'd read a selection from The 7 Habits of Happy Kids by Sean Covey.  To be proactive is to just do what is expected, even without been reminded or asked.   I have been finding that at times the children are not always being as kind to their peers, or doing what is "expected" when there is "no one looking".  Transitions in the stairwell and hallway, as well as time in the cafeteria, where there are a lot of children, seem to be times that are challenging.  If at home you could remind your child that doing the "right" thing, even when no one is looking, is the best way to behave, and often gets compliments, which ultimately "fill our buckets", I would appreciate it. 

This week I'm sending home a small list of High Frequency words for your children to review for Friday.  I've given a selection of our High Frequency words as a spelling inventory, and the words your child is coming home with are based upon that inventory.  Many of the words are homophones like "their" and "there".  Your child may know the spelling, but didn't write the proper form on the inventory.  This week we will practice the meanings in context as well as the spelling.  Unlike past week's, where sorting was a great activity to complete at home for practice, I'd recommend more sentence writing, or other ways to use the words your child is given.  Throughout the year I will be either sending home these separate lists, or adding two or three HF words to your child's word principle list.

I hope that all families received the notice about our October Book Report project and your child has chosen a book selection for the assignment.  I've attached the letter to the bottom of this post, in case you misplaced the original letter.  If you have any questions regarding this assignment, do not hesitate to contact me.  I hope everyone has a wonderful week. 

October 7

posted Oct 7, 2013, 7:00 AM by Jessica Hudon   [ updated Oct 7, 2013, 7:05 AM ]

The weather may not fully feel like October, but the trees have begun to change and we are definitely heading into our cooler, crisper days. Please be sure to send your child with appropriate outerwear as the weather shifts.  I've told the children that they are to bring their coats/sweaters outside for recess daily if they have brought them with them to school, and then based upon how it really is outside at the time of our recess, they can determine for themselves if they are too warm.  Obviously, as the temperature cools, they will be removing their coats less and less!   

Last week we began our final routine of our classroom day by beginning social studies/science and math games in the afternoon.  On Mondays the children have social studies with me in our classroom.  On Tuesdays the children visit Mr. MacLellan's class for science.  On Thursdays we go to Mrs. Seward's room for math games that expand upon the learning we are doing in math.  On  Wednesdays and Fridays we either have a follow up from Mr. MacLellan in our own room for science, or similarly have a social studies follow up lesson.  Last week, in social studies we began learning about the variety of communities that our in and around our state and country (urban, suburban and rural).  We will continue with this unit this week.  In science the children are becoming better observers and describers of their surroundings. They were able to investigate plants last week, and I believe Mr. MacLellan will continue with the understanding of "what is a scientist" this week.  During math games we learned a new game called "Around the World."  It's an interactive game that practices math fact.   Please ask your child what they are doing in all of the classes. 

On Thursday of this week we have Picture day.  Mrs. Kaplan's website always lists the upcoming events in school, so I advise that you check that frequently, or subscribe to her Monday Message via her webpage.  On Monday and Tuesday of next week there will be NO SCHOOL for the children.  Monday is a holiday and Tuesday is a Professional day for teachers.  I will NOT be sending a word sort home with your children on Wednesday of next week, due to the shortened week. However, each child will get a small (no more then 5 words) selection of High Frequency words I have found they may need to work on.  A note will accompany those lists.  Also, within the next few days, be prepared for your child to receive a notice of an October book report project.  All information will be coming home via the notice, and I will send an email too, but I wanted families to be aware that this is upcoming.  

I hope everyone has a wonderful week. 

Monday September 30

posted Sep 29, 2013, 12:09 PM by Jessica Hudon   [ updated Sep 29, 2013, 12:10 PM ]

I cannot believe that September is ending! It has been a great first month of school.  The children are really getting used to the routines and expectations of the classroom.  This week we will be adding our last "block" of curricula in our afternoons, which is science/social studies and extra math games.  We will be switching among the classrooms.  The children will have an opportunity to be taught by Mr. MacLellan for Science and Mrs Seward is going to be reinforcing our math curricula, and I will be teaching the Social Studies units.  We are really looking forward to this new added routine in our week.  We will "switch" on Tuesdays and Thursdays, so be sure to ask your children how it goes!  Have a wonderful week!

Monday September 23

posted Sep 22, 2013, 1:01 PM by Jessica Hudon   [ updated Sep 23, 2013, 9:41 AM ]

I hope all families had a lovely weekend.  I was so pleased to find that ALL children brought their reading logs back to school on Friday.  They are really doing well with following class expectations.   Today  we are formally beginning our word study lessons in our classroom.  The children will be coming home today (and most Mondays) with either a list of picture/word match and sort or just a word sort.  I don't expect to have any work come back to school based upon these words, but please have your child work with them 5-10 minutes nightly as there will be a brief assessment on Fridays.  They will be taking their assessments in a notebook in the classroom in order for me to best track their progress.   We also will send homework for math on both Tuesday and Thursday this week. As noted last week in the Math Homework information note, Tuesdays, homework is due on Thursdays and Thursdays' is due Tuesdays.  Your child can also practice their math on xtramath.org and their reading on raz-kids.com.

This Thursday is the yearly Open House.  I hope to see many families there.  Have a wonderful week!
Miss Hudon

General Information

posted Sep 10, 2013, 4:05 PM by Jessica Hudon   [ updated Sep 12, 2013, 4:32 AM ]

This is a site that has JUST begun.  I wanted it to be active for families as quickly as possible, but know that in no way is it complete.  Also, the second grade site that is referenced in the "Welcome Post" is also JUST beginning. I am learning as I "go" on how to best create this particular site and make it not only "user friendly" but how to edit and create the variety of pages through this particular software.  In the past I used a different template and software. In many ways I found this site to be easier to create, yet I'm still learning :-) Please bear with me as I work out the kinks!

Miss Hudon

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