"A Journey of Exploration"


We started our new unit by peering into a mystery treasure chest full of various items. Students discovered a backpack, compass, camera, notebook, passport, library card, flashlight, and many other items.  Students inferred that someone who travels or explores uses all of these items.  They also came up with the idea that people explore so they can discover!  They came very close to the central idea of the unit.  

Central Idea:  People explore our world which leads to new discoveries and understanding.  
                    Lines of Inquiry
               Why people explore
                                                                   How people explore
                                                      The impact exploration has on the world

Some of our initial inquiries are:  Who were the first explorers?  Who are Lewis and Clark?  Where did they go?  What did they discover?  Who has explored space?  How do people explore?  How does the compass work?  Who are the explorers we will learn about during this unit?  Who explored Hawaii first?  

During this unit we will learn about many explorers; from Lewis and Clark, John Glenn, Sacajawea, Jacques Cousteau, Captain Cook and more.  Students will keep their new learning organized on a graphic organizer.  We will also conduct inquiries on maps and compasses.  Part of the summative assessment  is for students to make an accurate map (using all of the features of a map- compass rose, coordinates, legend, etc… )  Students will also take on the role of explorer and document their new discoveries during the unit.   
  Please consider being a guest speaker and sharing your own journey of exploration.  A short 15-20 minute presentation addressing the experiences and joy of discovering would enhance our unit. 
Upcoming Field Trips 
February 8th- Bishop Museum 
February 14th- Windward Aerospace Lab 

I am attending IB/ PYP Academy training in Savannah, Georgia from January 30- February 4.  Your children are in the very capable hands of Ms. Barina for the next few days.  If you have any questions or concerns  please communicate with her through the student planner.  Thank you for your support!  

The students have worked hard to synthesize their new knowledge about our Sharing the Planet unit.    Please check out the informative brochure on your child's blog!  *You must use a computer for viewing, the iPad doesn't seem to support the embedded document.   A hard copy will be sent home next week.  

We are working on our portraits in art class.
We are learning about the features of nonfiction text. We studied pictures with the captions covered up. We recorded our inferences, observations and inquiries. When we read the captions we wrote down our new learning and shared it with our classmates. We will continue to examine the important features of nonfiction text.
We are having fun writing fantasy stories describing our life as a worm.
We are working on putting the final touches on our Sharing the Planet brochures. Look for these on our blogs soon!

It is a short week so there will not be a word check up.. We will be "exploring" our new unit this week. More details coming soon!
We had a fantastic field trip to Olamana Gardens.  Olomana Gardens is a fully sustainable garden that is tucked away in Waimanalo.  We enjoyed seeing this amazing learning garden.  We fed horses, ducks, geese, chickens and fish.  We learned the important role that each animal plays in the garden.  Students also saw Farmer Glenn's amazing aquaponics garden and his water pumps.  Ask your child what their favorite animal at the garden was and why it was important.    We will be finishing up our Sharing the Planet unit this week and designing brochures that teach how to conserve and maintain earth's resources.    
Thank you to Mrs. Machida for chaperoning this fun and informative field trip!  
I will be updating the photo page soon with pictures from our Sharing the Planet Unit and the Field Trip.  Check back soon!  
I hope everyone had a wonderful vacation! It is great to be back! This week we are learning about-
*the features of non fiction text
*math, algebra
*words with ar. WORD STUDY TEST FRIDAY
*preparing for our summative assessment task- designing a brochure that teaches people one way they can conserve and maintain healthy soil
Check out our "Twitter Talk! We wrote about our memories of 2012 and our goals for the new year.
Reminder- Field Trip Friday
Pre Show Jitters!
What a beautiful holiday performance!  It was  great to see the second graders perform with joy and confidence!   What a wonderful way to celebrate the season.  
The classroom is a busy place as we continue to learn about healthy soil and our role as caretakers of this natural resource.  In the picture below students worked collaboratively to make a poster and teach  about soil horizons, erosion, soil as a natural resource, what's in soil and how soil is formed.  
After we learned about soil horizons students made edible soil horizon models.  
"Jingles Stealth Elf" is making surprise visits to our classroom.  He even left snow for a snowball fight but students were thrilled when he made the call for NO HOMEWORK!  
Enjoy the season!  
The second grade pedologists are digging our new unit, Dirt Made My Lunch.  We have been busy investigating and observing earth materials.   Play dough models of the inside of the earth along with the Layers of the Earth Rap Song (go to the "Websites on Sqworl" tab on the top to see websites and songs to go with our Sharing the Planet unit)  are helping students understand planet Earth from the inside to the crust.  Our petrologists (scientists who study rocks) classified rocks and put them through a series of tests to determine hardness, lustre, weight, etc...  We used sieves next to sift our rocks and look at the different sizes of rocks ranging from pebbles to silt.  This week we will make mudshakes, horizon snacks  and look at the role of decomposers in healthy soil.   
Our lines of inquiry will inform and guide us as we look at ways we can act responsibly and care for soil.  Please check your child's blog for their inquiries about this unit!  

The summative task for this unit is for students to synthesize the information learned and create an informative how to brochure that will teach others how to conserve and maintain earth materials.  
Some examples are - How to; Compost, Vermicompost, Stop Erosion, Stop Land Pollution, Recycle, and Take care of a Garden

HOLIDAY PERFORMANCE December 12th at 4:00 
Students are busy practicing for the Holiday Performance.  

Upcoming Curriculum-
Language Arts
Reading- Identifying the features of nonfiction text
Writing- 6 Trait Focus* Word Choice, Ideas*
Descriptive Elf, Creating an informative how to brochure
Grammar- Daily Oral Language (editing marks, punctuation, spelling, etc...)
Word Study-  Review of all word patterns learned so far, Word Check Ups will always be on Friday from now on
Strategies for 2 and 3 digit Addition and Subtraction Problems
Subtraction Fact Fluency 
Science & Social Studies
Properties of earth materials, worm bin investigations, the role of decomposers, food chain, and the garden cycle
How we can conserve and maintain earth materials to sustain life

*Parent Teacher Conferences this Monday.  Thank you for using the sign up genius form.  I am looking forward to sharing and celebrating your child's progress with you!   

HPU nursing students visited our class today and taught us the importance of eating healthy.  We learned about healthy foods and healthy bodies.  We learned that if we eat healthy foods our hearts will be able to pump easily.  They gave us each a glass of water, some pudding and a straw.  When we sipped the water it was smooth, easy and not too hard, just like a healthy heart works.  We tried to sip pudding through the straw, we did it but it was super hard, just like how hard our heart has to work if we eat lots of unhealthy foods. They did a great job teaching us how to stay healthy! 
Remember to sign up for parent teacher conferences by clicking on the green sign up link on the right side of this post.  
Thank you so much for attending our 2nd Grade Art Gallery!  Your docents were  proud to share their new knowledge and talk about the many impressive masterpieces on display.  Many students reflected that this was their favorite unit so far because they learned about so many artists and artistic styles.  Students communicated their messages through a great variety of styles!  I was so proud of their hard work!  Click on the picture page to see more pictures of the show.  Thank you so much to Ms. Ferandin for adding her pictures to our site.  Please visit your child's blog to see their color poem and a short reflection on the unit.  
We will "dig" into our new unit this week!  More details forthcoming!    


Turkey Trot is Friday the 16th at 1:00.  Wear Green!  Bring spare change to donate to the Hurricane Sandy Relief Fund.  

Parent Teacher Conferences December 3rd-  I am looking forward to sharing your child's progress with you!  I have created a button on the top right side of this site.  Click on the green Sign Up Genius.  Once you choose your time slot -sign up and put your name where it says comment.  

No School Fall Break 
November 16th - November 25th

Holiday Program K-2
December 12th  4:00-5:00


We enjoyed a refreshing birthday treat today!

We are looking forward to being your docents tomorrow at the Grade 2 Art Gallery.  The masterpieces are stunning!  Please meet us at the classroom at 8:30 and we will escort you  to the Art Gallery.  

Curriculum Update-  

Word study check up on oa and ow words will be Friday.  There is a word list on spellingcity.com that students may go to, just search for spelling list.  Put my name in and look for Kathy Thomas at Le Jardin Academy. 

We are finishing up our geometry unit this week.

End of trimester writing assessment coming up on Friday. 

New Unit begins on Tuesday! 
Conference Schedule will be up next week.  Check back to secure your spot!  

  *Reminder no school on Monday! 

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