Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Special Fonts for Students with Dsylexia

For myself, this new font that CBS.COM aired is incredible!  It is a special font that helps people who have dyslexia read better - without flipping their letters.

Dyslexia Fonts that Help Children Read!

Monday, November 10, 2014

This Week - November 10

Language Arts:

·       Writing:  This week we will be working on Expository and Procedural Text.  We will be talking about how things are made (recipes) and focusing on transition words:  First, Next, After that, Finally, etc…
·       Reading: Our focus will continue to be Expository Text Features (Non – Fiction).  We will analyze magazines / newspapers and draw conclusions based on our inferences.  

Math: This week we will begin solving real – world problems using the Part / Part / Whole and using a “bar model” as a visual representation.  Homework Videos will be on Monday & Thursday.

Social Studies:  We will be working on reading and identifying various types of maps.  We will also look at the legends / key to help decipher important information.  Kids will be able to create their own map in class. 

Science:  We have some fun experiments that we will be doing this week with our Balance and Motion Foss Kit.  Students will be using ramps, cups and much more to study how objects balance and move.   

Upcoming Dates to Remember: 
18th - Spirit Night at Taco Cabana
19th - Kindergarten Thanksgiving Program

November 26th  – 28th Student Holiday

2nd - Spirit Night at Hugo Caliente

Fever Reminder:
With the cold, flu and other things going around, please remember that your child must be fever free for at least 24 hours before returning to school.  'Tiss the season to use Hand Sanitizer...

Cold Weather:
In case you have not had a chance to see the news, we will be dropping temperatures tomorrow.  I am unsure what it is going to be like in our temp building - so please plan to layer clothes!  Also - be sure you write your child's name in their coats / jackets.  Those can add up! 

Dress Code Reminder:
  • Shorts, skorts, dresses and skirt lengths must be finger length when arms are extended down a child's side. (The child's fingertip must be touching fabric, not skin.) No shorts or pants with words or logos across the back. When wearing a skirt or dress, shorts or tights must be worn underneath.
  • Sleeveless shirts are allowed. However, crop tops, halter-tops, tube tops or one-shoulder shirts are not allowed. Tank tops and shirts with spaghetti straps are allowed, but only if a shirt is worn OVER/UNDER them.
  • During our time at the South Transition Campus we are requesting that all students wear tennis shoes.  The walkways are slick and tennis shoes provide the best traction.  Therefore, athletic type shoes are the preferred shoe attire and must be worn for Health Fitness class. No flip-flops or shoes creating a safety issue are allowed

Special Thanks goes out to Heidi Castaneda & Han Wright.  They helped some of the class with the Little Bits on Friday.  They seemed to have enjoyed it!  We are looking forward to some more fun this next week!

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Week of November 3rd

I just wanted to let everyone know that I will be out tomorrow.  My transmission bit the dust on Saturday - so I am currently in the market for a repair service center to have my car towed too.  Unfortunately, the shop we have it now, does not deal with transmissions.  I also need to make sure I'm not taking it to a place that will charge me out of the roof!  I have a great sub coming and learning will still take place!  I'll be in early tomorrow to get things ready for her.  

On another note - we do have a lot of exciting things going on this week!  

Language Arts:  

Reading:  We will focus on Informational Texts with an emphasis on Expository Literature.  Expository conventions (Non Fiction) will be identified and discussed.  We will also be on the look -out for these features in our small reading groups.
Writing:  This week we will be experimenting with Expository and Procedural Writing.  We will also be finishing up our Narratives.
Word Study:  New words will be sent home.  I found a mistake in my Yellow Group video and will remake it.  

Math:  We will review our Subtraction Strategies.  There will be a video Monday, Tuesday & Thursday.  These are new videos that the kids have helped to make using our GoPro Cameras.  Your child is going to LOVE them!  We will have a chapter review on Tuesday and a test on Friday.  I'm also going to start Modeled Drawing with the class - this is coming up as our next chapter of study.  

Science:  We will be completing our unit on sound and energy. Our next unit will be on Balance and Motion.  

Social Studies:  We will be finishing up on Holidays and  leaning about Landmarks Local and State.  We will also be learning about maps.

I've organized all the Little Bits and would love to test them out this Friday.  I'll have a small group rotation - maybe 2/3 kids at a time working together each week.  Some will be working on circuits, others will be working on computer programming, and others will be creating videos for our class to learn from.  If you are interested in helping us out, please let me know.  

Week of October 27th

Language Arts:  We will be monitoring our comprehension as we read aloud, as well as, in small groups.  We will be practicing this using post – it notes.  We will also be using our inferencing skills to help guide our understanding.   We will continue writing narratives based on personal adventures.

Math:  We will continue to practice our subtraction with regrouping based on individual needs.  There is a homework video tonight, as well as, Thursday.  

Social Studies:  We will wrap up our government study and begin learning about Holidays.  We will also be working towards understanding maps.

Science:  We will finish our unit on Matter.  We will begin learning about sound, gravity, light and much more.  


Halloween:  Kids are NOT to dress up on Friday! 

Book Fair – Barnes and Nobles

Have a great week!

Week of October 20

Language Arts:
Given a just right fiction book. TLW reflect and respond to questions by filling out a variety of graphic organizers independently.  In writing, we will be working on stories from our lives.

Please note - there is a change on the homework sheet.  Your child will have a video to watch on Tuesday.  There might be others on the blog, but they will be used in class.  Feel free to review them if you wish.
We will continue to learn and practice our 3-digit subtraction with regrouping.  We will also be showing the kids some great strategies to use to help them!

We will be finishing up our study on Matter and Energy.  

Social Studies:
We will be discussing our government leaders.  

Early Dismissal: Thursday & Friday @12:15

Picture Retake:  November 4

Week of October 13

Language Arts:  We will review inferencing.  (Inferencing is when there are enough clues from the author / artist that someone can come up with an idea that is intended and not explicitly told.  This Friday, your child will have to sort and spell their spelling words.  If they are struggling to understand how to sort them, they can ask their teacher, or watch the video on our blog:  http://2ndrce.blogspot.com/p/word-study.html 
I’m also sending home today a little reading passage.  Kids will earn extra Dojo Points for completing it.  If it is too hard for them to read independently, please feel free to read it to them.  This will help them become better prepared for the 3rd grade curriculum.
Social Studies:  We will discuss our government leaders.  We will also compare and contrast the mayor and the governor using a venn diagram.
Math:  We will begin our next unit in math - Subtraction with Regrouping.  We will start small and work towards 3 digit numbers.  This is such a HARD task please be patient with your child and encourage them to keep trying!  Your child will have a video to watch for homework on Tuesday and Thursday.  We will be checking to see if they have completed this in their journal.  An extra practice sheet will come home on Wednesday.  Again – it’s optional but the kids who complete it, will get extra points.  J
Science:  We will be learning about how heat changes things.  
Book Orders:  I will be placing these this Friday.  Your child should have brought home a coupon for a free book.  
Fall Festival:  Friday, October 17th (4-7 pm) Don’t forget to return your raffle tickets.  You never know if your ticket will be the big winner!  Mrs. Trevino and Ms. Foster will be walking around taking candid pictures for the yearbook.  Don't forget to have your picture taken!  :)  See attached document for more information!
Sweaters & Jackets:  As our temps start to change, please make sure your child's name is inside his / her jacket &, or sweater.  It makes is much easier to locate when people know who to take it to.  
Go Pro Cameras:  A huge thanks to Han Wright for agreeing to be our Ginny pig and test out the camera.  As soon as I debrief the “do’s and don’ts” with her, I’ll be deploying them.  I hope to have them ready by Friday.  We will draw names based on those interested.  When your child brings them home, please put them up in a safe spot away from dogs, small children, etc.  They are water proof up to a certain depth - but please double check the “housing” before submersion.  I’m excited to get some cool footage to add to our flipped learning math instruction.  
PTA Reflections is a competition for all students to show their creativity in many different ways:  art, photography, music composition, dance and more.  Information about Reflections can be found on the RCEPTA website.  (Including the required forms.)
The theme this year is “The world would be a better place if…”
Watch this animoto to get your children inspired.  Anything is possible.  This theme is a great one to try.  
Any student who turns in a Reflections project will receive a gift certificate to the Yogurt Spot.
Due Date in October 24th.
Have fun Creating!!!!!
Have a great day!

Monday, October 6, 2014

Week of Oct. 6

Language Arts: 
We will be making inferences by using our schema and clues from the text.  We will continue working on writing stories that have a beginning, middle and end.  Your child will be expected to turn one in for a grade!

We will continue to practice 3-digit addition with regrouping.  Kids will also be reviewing what they have learned.  We will have a test on Wednesday.  Our next topic of study will be focused on subtraction.  (This is extremely hard for the kids to do and master - please be patient with them and us!)  There will be a homework video on Wednesday.  We will also have on in class on Thursday.  Feel free to re-watch these with your child.  
If your child is struggling with the 3-digit addition, I'll be happy to work with them before school at 7:30.

This week we will be looking to see how heat changes things.  We will also be looking at the ways things are constructed.
What are physical properties?
What materials would you use to construct a house? Why?
How can combining materials help us to build a tower?

Social Studies:
This week we will be wrapping up our study on US Symbols.  Our next unit of study will be focused on the US Government.  More specifically, the services that they do and how people get paid for their jobs.

GenTX Week:
This week is focused to encourage and raise awareness about attending college after high school.  Students and teachers are encouraged to wear their favorite college apparel.

Tuesday:  Los Tios Spirit Night

GT Referrals
The deadline for parent referrals for the gifted and talented program assessment for kindergarten through 5th grade is Friday, October 10. Anyone may refer a student for the GT program, not just teachers.  If you want to refer your child for the GT program, please be sure that you return a Gifted and Talented Program Parent Referral Form to our school counselor by Friday, October 10.  If you have any questions, please contact Jennifer Buchert at 713-251-6700.  More information is available on the GT page of the Spring Branch ISD web site, www.springbranchisd.com.   Click on Site Index, then click on Gifted and Talented Program. 

Fall Festival:
October 17th will be here before you know it!  A form went  home on Friday - don’t forget to check your child’s folder!  Just a reminder, the festival will be from 4 - 7 at our RCE Transition Campus!

Exciting News: 
I just wanted to share with you that Chevron has fully funded another grant!  What does that mean?  Well, it means that your child will have an opportunity to help create their own learning videos using Go Pro Cameras.  We will have 2 that can be checked out for the week / weekend.  These cameras will come with attachments accessories and a carrying case.  (If you have an animal that loves to chew on things - please confiscate the cases and place them up high - out of their reach!  We want to protect this investment and keep it in great condition for as long as possible!)  After the kids have video taped an activity, they can download the video into a brand new MacBook Pro.  They will learn how to use iMovie to create these videos.   

Little Bits Update:
We have received the devices and they are really cool.  Helen He is helping us keep them safe and organized.  As soon as we get the cases and can organize the circuits, we will begin exploring and building.  :)
I hope everyone has a great week!  The weather is just phenomenal!  

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Monday, September 22, 2014

Meet Kayla!

I'd like to introduce you to a very sweet, outgoing Stratford Student, Kayla!  She will be joining our class this year as she gains experience about becoming a teacher.  I am excited to have her here in the morning, so she can help out with our Daily 5 and other special projects.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Week of September 22

Language Arts:  We will be discussing Character Traits this week as we read fun stories.  We will also continue to model story arch’s as we discuss the beginnings, middle and endings.

We will also be finalizing our DRA’s.

Writer’s Workshop:  We will continue to write stories that have structure.  Along with our read aloud(s), we will make sure these stories have a beginning, middle and end.  

Word Study: Word study will begin this week.  Your child will keep the same list of words for 2 weeks.  During this time, they will be sorting and looking for patterns within their sort.  If for some reason, your child get’s stuck, encourage them to look at our videos at:  http://2ndrce.blogspot.com/p/word-study.html

I have a sweet parent who has volunteered to input these words into Spelling City.  Hopefully, by Wednesday, that should be up and running.  Until then, you are welcome to type your words into the program and use that for your child’s spelling homework.  

Social Studies: We will continue to learn more about our US Symbols.  We will focus on these following symbols:  flower, seal, Uncle Sam Liberty Bell, American Flag, Pledge, and the Star Spangled Banner.  

Science:  We will be talking about how matter changes.  Kids will be able to participate in some fun experiments with ice and salt.  

Math:  Using manipulatives and a place value mat, students will practice 2-digit and 3 digit addition without regrouping.  Don’t forget to visit our blog - as their homework movies will pop up on the designated days.  If you haven’t had a chance to make your beansticks, please visit the blog for a “How To” video.  

There will be an extra video on Wednesday.  This just reiterates what we taught in the classroom.  It is not mandatory to watch, but if your child would like to practice or review, it will be on the blog.  

Field Trip:  Please DO NOT forget to return your child’s permission slip to us ASAP.  You need to make sure you have filled out both sides!  We will be heading to the museum this Tuesday!

Boosterthon:  The Boosterthon Fun Run kicked off Wednesday with a fun Pep Rally and I am super excited about this year’s program. The Boosterthon Fun Run program involves all students in a fun, team building, fitness event while helping our school raise much-needed funds. The central focus of this year’s character program is COMMUNITY. This year’s character theme is ROCK’N TOWN LIVE, and the Boosterthon Team will take students on a fun-filled journey teaching them the importance of building community with this fun, music festival theme.
Through the Boosterthon, our entire school is raising support to go toward an Outdoor Learning Center and Water Bottle Filling Stations for our new school! So far we are almost at $20/lap.  We are off to a great start and as of Friday our class was in the lead of the other 2nd grade classes! Yay! 
Here’s how you can help:
REGISTER YOUR STUDENT TO RUN - Please register your child on funrun.com using our class access code 6803-4376
. The access code is also on your student's pledgebook. Students receive a FREE GIFT just by having their parent or guardian register them on funrun.com.
GET PLEDGES by connecting your student with 10 sponsors. Funrun.com has many ways to use social media in the pledging process and pay online. Be sure to capture and record the e-mail address of each sponsor, as they will have an easy opportunity to pay for your student’s pledge by credit card online.
This weekend is a special challenge—the “Weekend Challenge.” Any student who gets $3 per lap OR $90 flat donation over the weekend will receive the bonus "All Day Flex Frames on Monday. The students are super excited to rise to the challenge!
Thank you for supporting our classroom and our school! I look forward to seeing you next week at the Boosterthon Fun Run!

COME TO THE BOOSTERTHON FUN RUN NEXT WEEK! Remember, students will be running 30-35 laps on the Boosterthon Speedway, and we would love to have lots of support for our team!

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Class News - September 15

Dear Parents,

We have a lot going on this week!  

Language Arts:

We are continuing our DRA testing!  We will let you know how your child did as soon as possible.  We will also be focusing on making connections and discussing character traits.  

This week we will be learning more about nouns.  We will be emphasizing that all proper nouns are always capitalized.  

We will continue writing brief stories that include a beginning, middle and end.  We will also discuss punctuation marks including those at the end of the sentence. 

We will be working on our problem solving skills and mastering our Place Value and number sense.  A review will come home on Wednesday.  Be prepared for a chapter test on Friday. 

This week we will be learning all about weather.  We will practice using thermometers to measure and record the weather such as the air outside at different times of the day.  We will also be looking at other weather instruments, such as a rain gauge, and why we use them.  .  

Social Studies:
We will be finishing up our study on citizenship.  Be sure and ask your child these questions:
  • How have you been a bucket filler?
  • How have you helped the classroom be a happier place?
  • How have you been a good citizen in the classroom?
Not only will be learning about the state symbols, but also the symbols of the United States. They should have a great understanding of the symbols by Friday, so be sure to you ask your child these questions:
  • What symbol makes you think of freedom?
  • What symbol inspires you to be creative?
  • Which symbol makes you feel like a proud American?

Important Dates:
  • 9/17 Boosterthon Pep Rally (This is our 1 fund raiser for the year! Students will raise money by running laps during their HF time on September 26.)
  • 9/18 Open House @ 5:30 pm (Because of limited space, Mrs. Harn is asking that children do not attend.)
  • 9/23 Field Trip - Altheratta Yeargan Museum
Mystery Reader:
I have finally set up a calendar on Sign - Up Genius for Mystery Reader.  Don't panic / or worry if you do not get a spot - I will make sure to ask you first for the Spring Semester.  :) If you didn'tget an email, please visit this link: www.SignUpGenius.com/go/20F094FA8AE2BA64-2014
We will do Mystery Reader starting this Friday 10:15 - 10:45.  Please make sure you have books to read.  If you need one, let me know ahead of time and I will find one for you.

Scholastic Book Clubs:
I will be sending home the catalog sheets on Monday.  I think that our classroom will get a free book if you order online.  
Shop Online: www.scholastic.com/readingclub 
One-Time Class Activation Code: GQVZL
I plan on submitting the orders next Monday, 9/22.  

Spirit Wear:
If you are wanting to purchase spirit wear, please visit this link:  http://rcepta.com/rce-pta-shop/spirit-wear-2014-15-sy/

Hope you have a great week!  I can't wait to see you on Thursday!

Monday, September 8, 2014

Class News - Sept. 8

Dear Parents,

Language Arts:
·       Reading:  As we are reading with the class, we will be focusing on how to infer using the evidence from the fiction texts.  We will use ideas to make and confirm prediction and practice inferring using textual evidence.
·       We are also continuing to set up our Daily 5 rules and procedures.  Lastly, your child may be asked to read with his / her teacher as we assess their independent reading level.  These do take a while to complete – so please be patient.  We will let you know what your child’s DRA Level is as soon as possible.
·       Writing:  We are continuing to set up our rules and routines for our writer’s workshop time.  This week, we will be focusing on writing a brief story with a BME (Beginning, Middle & End) and using a story arch to help with the prewriting stage.

Math:  We will be practicing our place value skills (Hundreds, Tens & Ones).  We will also be comparing and ordering numbers.  Your child will also learn some really cool math fact games this week that they can play at home for homework.  All you will  need is a deck of cards!

Social Studies:  Energy Bus – We have been reading this book and looking for ways to create positive energy.  Our next rule, #3, will talk about Bullies.  Your child will practice a 3 step plan for dealing with this problem.  We will connect it with bucket filling and bucket dipping.  Rule # 4, will focus on loving your passengers.  We will talk about what it means to love your passengers and how this important. 

Science:  We will be learning about the Properties of Matter.

Homework:  A new homework sheet will go home today.  I meant to pass last weeks out on Friday so that you could sign it and return it, but forgot.  I do apologize.  Ideally, it will go home on Friday so that you can see your child’s conduct for the week.  It will have their reflection on how they think they did and then mine.  Over the weekend, sign it and return it the following Monday.

Class Dojo:  This is a website that I’ll be using to help reward your child and keep them on task.  I will sporadically be awarding points, as well as taking away points, for specific behaviors: Following Directions, Staying on Task, Being a Bucket Filler, etc.  I have not yet inputted your email address, but when I do, you will get a weekly report on what was observed in the classroom.

Counselor Lessons:  Jennifer Buchert is our new full – time counselor!  She will be coming into our classrooms to do little mini lessons (once a month) on our social skills!  We are delighted to have her!

Mini Grant Awards:  Our class, in conjunction with Ms. Foster’s class are jumping with excitement!  This summer, we submitted a grant to obtain some circuit devices for programming.  Our grant was for Little Bits.  Little Bits are an “open source” library of electronic modules that snap together with magnets.  These magnetic circuits allow students to prototype, learn, and create just about anything.  As students manipulate these devices, they are learning how to use different circuits to create just about anything that they can dream up.  As they place these circuits together, they become a network – each circuit working off of each other to create light, sound, movement and much more.    We can’t wait to purchase these cool devices!

You can see more about Little Bits:

Mystery Reader:  This week, I’m in hopes of putting together a Sign-Up Genius for Mystery Reader.  I’ll email you the link when it has been created!  

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Class News


I’m so happy to hear all the wonderful stories that your child shared with me today.  Sounds like everyone had a wonderful, relaxing Labor Day! 

I just wanted to let you know what we will be focusing on this week:

Language Arts:  We will continue to learn more about the Daily 5.  We practiced Read to Self today and Read to Someone.  We are really working on building our stamina so that during this time, I can meet with a small reading group.  We also talked about the different parts of speech.  We plan to get more into detail with that – isolating them for further study. 

Math:  We continued to practice our Flipped Learning with our Blog.  You will learn all about that at our Back To School Night.  If your child would like to go and re-watch our lesson, they can!  www.2ndrce.blogspot.com  I highly encourage that you have conversations with your child about place value.  Today, we talked about writing 3 digit numbers 3 different ways.
Standard Form:  437
Expanded Form: 400+30+7
Written Form:  Four hundred, thirty seven

It would be helpful for you to verbally practice this while you are cooking dinner or getting ready for your nightly routine.  You can say, I’m thinking of a number… when it is in the expanded form, there are 4 hundreds, 3 tens and 7 ones.  What number do you think it is?

Social Studies:  We are doing a book study on The Energy Bus.  Today we create a life goal.  We will focus on say “Thank You”, filling more buckets, identifying bucket dippers and showing love to all! 

Science:  Today we discussed different ways we observe and how our 5 senses play a huge role in experiments.  We will continue practicing our observations skills with various objects this week.

Homework:  Homework went home today. I explained my expectations for the class.  They also have spelling words attached.  It would be helpful if you could give them a pretest tonight to see which words they need to focus on.  

Monday, September 1, 2014

First Week of School

We’ve had a great week! It’s as though we’ve been here a month already! The kids have been very quick to learn our new routines and schedule. Please keep sending chilled water bottles, the water fountains here are not very cold, so ice helps!!

Check out our 2nd grade blog spot! It has lots of good information!!! www.2ndrce.blogspot.com
On this site you will find our math flipped learning! You will also find other information - just need to click on the tabs. :) Children are welcome to watch the short videos whenever they want! It's also a great tool for the parents - as it shows how we are "teaching them" here in class.

We’ve also been practicing the “Daily 5” Language Arts routine. Ask your child about what they should be doing during “Read to Self” We are working on building up stamina to read independently for 20 minutes. We are focusing on using the “5 finger rule” and making sure they are “Just Right” books for us!!!

Also, ask your child what “Work on Writing” should look like! We have been discussing the Correct and Incorrect way to do these 2 of the 5 Daily 5 activities. We’ve discussed and modeled how “Read with Someone” should look, but have not practiced it yet…that will happen on Tuesday. Ask your child what “EEKK” style should look like! (Elbow to Elbow, Knee to Knee, I’ll read to you and you read to me!)

We’ve been working on being a BUCKET FILLER throughout the day! Make sure to praise your child when they are doing kind and thoughtful thing at home or with siblings, we are really trying to focus on being a good citizen!!!

If you have any additional questions, please drop me an email!

Have a wonderful Labor Day!