Happy Halloween!

Brookside WON this year!

We didn’t let a rainy day spoil our Halloween celebration! The students were greeted by the Brookside faculty and staff dressed up as Disney characters.

The second grade and Mrs. Mullins are having a cheery day!

Thank you to all the families who donated treats for our party. Special thanks to Maddox and his mom for the awesome treat bags!  After celebrating in our classroom, we joined the rest of the school for the Halloween Parade in the cafeteria! What a fun way to end the month of October!

We love Mystery Science!!!

In October, we worked on a Science animal biodiversity unit. Some of our favorite lessons were with Mystery Science.  After watching the Mystery Science video lesson, the students sorted animal cards by their traits or characteristics. Here are some photos of the students working with a partner on a hands-on lesson Science lesson.
We also watched a Mystery Science video in which the students learned that different frogs make different sounds. We listened to the sounds of two different habitats and tried to identify the frogs that made the sounds. But the big surprise for the students was when Mrs. Riordan brought in a frog she found so we could observe an actual living frog! There was a rich discussion over whether it was a frog or a toad. After observing the frog, Mrs. Riordan released it back into its habitat.


We wrapped up the animal unit by watching a Mystery Science video on birds and then we did a hands-on STEM activity where the students designed and created their own bird feeders. They needed to take into account what type of bird they wanted to attract and how to create a bird feeder that would work to attract that type of bird. I was so pleased that the students really were engaged in this hands-on activity!

October Visits from Zero the Hero and our September Lunch Bunch!

We started October with another visit from Zero the Hero. 

Zero challenged us to estimate the number of candy pumpkins in this jar!

We used statistics (median, mode and range) to examine our estimation data!

Congratulations to these C8 students who earned a spot in the September Lunch Bunch with their exemplary behavior and responsibility for the entire month.

Another visit from Zero on September 16th! This time the students had to estimate the number of “eyeballs” in the jar. After we shared our estimates we were able to share the treat in the BOO bag….Halloween Oreos!

Zero visited one more time on October 30th! This time he gave us a different challenge! We had to roll two dice, make the largest number we can with those digits and then add and subtract 10 FOUR times! When we completed the challenge, we each got a clementine dressed up like a jack-o-lantern!

A September to Remember!

The students reading the note from Zero the Hero!

On the 10th day of school the C8 children found a note left by Zero the Hero. Zero is a math superhero who visits our class and provides the students with math challenges. If they succeed at meeting the challenge, they get a treat from Zero. The first math challenge was to draw a picture of what they think Zero looks like. Then Mrs. Riordan read this book that Zero left for us.  He also left us a jar full of zero treats….AKA Life Savers.

The children can’t wait to see what will happen on Day 20!

Arrgh! Check Out Our Pirate Crew!

We also celebrated “Talk Like a Pirate Day!” on September 19th. The children (and Mrs. Riordan) had the opportunity to dress up like pirates and learned how to talk like pirates. We had pirate music playing, drew pirate flags and read pirate stories. We did a pirate math worksheet and wrote a pirate story. If someone clipped down, we called it “walking the plank!” Twas a fine day to be a pirate!  

We have been celebrating Say Hello week at Brookside this week. We are learning the importance of including others and being friends.

Here’s a photo of us saying hello! (If you can’t read the sign, look below!)

Thank you to the parents and guardians who took the time to come to Curriculum Night!

Last Wednesday was Curriculum Night. Parents and guardians had the opportunity to come to school, see the classroom, meet Mrs. Riordan and learn about the second grade curriculum.

Here is a copy of the presentation from that night. Second Grade Curriculum Night presentation

Here is a view of our classroom for those who were unable to attend Curriculum Night.

We have been studying about our community and our place in the world in Social Studies the last few weeks. We made these flip books and displayed them on Curriculum Night.  

September is almost over but our second grade adventures have just begun!

 

We’re Starting the School Year Off Right!

We have had a very busy, fun filled  September learning what is expected of us now that we are second graders. The beginning of the school year involves learning the routines and expectations in a new grade and classroom. Now that we are second graders, we are learning how to write in our homework notebooks each day. 

We mark our lunch count with our paws!

Here is our behavior and  responsibility clip chart.

We wrote our “C8 Class Constitution” and all signed it.

                             We displayed our Math About Me pages in the hallway.

Making Learning fun in March!

If you looked at our March Madness post, you might think that March was all about fun and games. Well, we did have lots of fun in March and we did play some games. But they were learning games!

Here are some photos of our C8 students practicing telling time by matching analog and digital clocks.

We also worked with literacy matching puzzles on a full moon rainy Friday afternoon!

The students were fully engaged practicing and reviewing literacy skills like compound words, silent letters, digraphs and blends, irregular plurals, and more. (Some even worked on analogies!) Plus they got plenty of movement breaks as they moved from one station to another. 

We ended the month last Friday with a special buddy math time. Mrs. Messer’s third graders came to our classroom and used whiteboards to work with our class on subtraction with regrouping. They were expecting to have to tutor our students but they were surprised at how well they were doing and kept giving them harder problems to challenge them! It was nice seeing the two classes working so well together and rewarding to see how much my former students have grown and learned as third graders!

Thank you Third Grade math buddies!!
Finally thank you to the families who assisted their children in getting their World Map posters done and turned in on time! They came out great and were hung on the wall outside our room for all to see!

March Madness!

Our wonderful PTO made this awesome bulletin board!

We started off the month of March with our school-wide Read Across America event. This is a special day where important people from our community join us to share and celebrate reading!

Principal Smith kicks off the celebration!

Roseann Sdoia, Boston Marathon Bombing survivor, was our special guest speaker this year!

Mrs. McCarthy, our Reading specialist, Roseann Sdoia and Principal Smith

Lots of special readers ready to read to Brookside students.

Showing the way for our guest readers.

The Canaligator and Rowdy greet the students as they leave the assembly!

My sister, State Representative Colleen Garry, read to our students on the following Monday as she was unavailable to attend on Read Across America Day.

This was the special book that was purchased this year for each classroom and read by each guest reader.

Since she had to come another day, Rep. Garry stayed extra long to read TWO books to our class and answer lots of questions!

But that wasn’t the only special visitors we had this month! We had a PTO sponsored storyteller named Tony Toledo come to share his storytelling skills with us!

But the craziest visitors we had were from Ireland!

At first things were a little unusual. 

Irish books were left out with Irish stamps as a bookmark and a piece of leather???

Mrs. Riordan’s leprechaun decoration kept moving to different locations around the classroom.

And it appears they had a messy tea party while we weren’t here!

Then they got into even more mischief! Check it out!

They stacked up our library chairs and hung stuffed animals, puppets and dinosaurs all over them!

Samil noticed that they stacked up our computer stools and topped it off with our globe!

We knew that we had to do something to stop the madness. Eight creative and resourceful children made leprechaun catchers to try to capture the little mischief makers. 

We can’t figure out how they managed to move all those chairs!

This is what we found on Monday morning March 18th! Those leprechauns not only weren’t caught….they had made a real mess of our classroom AND had stolen from all the leprechauns catchers! And then on Monday afternoon, our school secretary, Mrs. Treska, called our classroom and said that she heard a tiny man’s voice…and saw a small green hat… before he disappeared….leaving this for our class. And underneath the gold candies, we found all the things the leprechauns had stolen from the catchers!

Maybe they aren’t so bad after all!

Chloe holding the pot of gold left for us!

100+ Days of Second Grade – Part 3

We came back in 2019 ready to learn! We worked on money with some math games…”Roll to a Quarter” or “Roll to a Dollar.” Mrs. Nelson, Mr. Marion and I supervised and assisted the students in playing these learning games.

We have been studying the polar regions of the Arctic and Antarctica as well as matter in Science. That means hands-on experiments that we wrote up in writing as lab reports. The students got to experience what it was like for polar animals to survive in icy water habitats. They put their hands in ice water first. Then they did it again with a “blubber glove” and felt the difference. Below is just one photo of this experiment. You can see more under the Student work 18-19 tab.

Annesta demonstrating the “Blubber Glove”.

The students also did experiments with matter. We saw water change state of matter by putting ice cubes on our heater. We also did an experiment with making a chemical change by mixing vinegar and baking soda to make a gas. Here is the photo of this experiment.

Samil and Nathan assist in this experiment. The students were excited to see the balloon fill up with the gas created by the vinegar and baking soda.

We culminated our matter unit with matter projects that the students made at home and shared with us at school. Here are most of the matter projects. Individual photos can be found on the student work 18-19 tab.

Oops . . . I almost forgot to post the photos of these matter projects that came in late.

Although we haven’t had any snow days, there have been many days that have been too cold to go outside. Luckily we have lots of things to play with indoors. Here are some photos of some of the students creations at indoor recess.

On the 100th day of school we had another challenge from Zero the Hero. He brought 5 containers and the students had to estimate the amount in each container. They also had to decide if that number was greater than, equal to or less than 100.

When they were finished with the challenge, they were able to receive a baggie with three cookies from Zero that they had to use to build 100.

It’s been a busy 100 days of learning in C8 and the rest of the school year will be just as busy!

100+ Days of Second Grade – Part 2

Our students joined the other second grade classes in the cafeteria for the culminating activity for our Traditions and Customs unit which was a special feast on the early release day before Thanksgiving. They shared food made from recipes that reflected their family heritage. It was a tasty way to celebrate the diversity of our classroom. Thank you to all the families that sent in food for the feast and to our parent volunteer, Ms. Hibbard who assisted with the set up/clean up. Individual photos of the foods can be seen under the Student Work 18-19 tab.

Ann Biese demonstrating a breathing technique.

Johnny the K was very engaging and entertaining.

We were fortunate to attend two assemblies with special guests. The first was Ann Biese, an author who wrote the book “Worry Bee” and spoke to us about how to handle our worries and emotions. The second was the performer, Johnny the K who played his guitar and wore crazy hats to teach us how to be kind and to get along with each other.

Safety is important so we practiced our bus evacuation drill. The upper grade students assisted us.

We have also had fire drills and Alice drills this year.

We had a visit from Zero the Hero who left a treat of latkes for completing his challenge.

We also did some stations where the students worked on math and literacy skills with a holiday theme.

Gabriella and Devin working on building holiday themed compound words.

At this station the students were measuring holiday images with inch and centimeter rulers.

Before we headed off for the December holiday break, we made Ice Castles out of mini-marshmallows, frosting and lots of candy. Thank you to all the families who sent in the supplies and donated extra candy. Thank you to Ms. Allore, Ms. Hibbard and my daughter Catie for helping with the Ice Castle projects. Here is Sabella with her Ice Castle. More examples of their Ice Castle creations can be seen under the Student Work 18-19 tab.

We also made special snow globe ornaments that we sent home to share with their families. Here is a photo of some of these snow globes.

More to follow in Part 3!

100 + Days of Second Grade – Part 1

I want to share with you all the wonderful things we have been experiencing together in our first one hundred days of second grade.  We ended October with our Halloween Party and school-wide Halloween Parade. Unfortunately it was so busy, I didn’t get any photos of the students in their Halloween costumes but here is a photo of the watching a Halloween DVD waiting for dismissal after the parade.

Zero the Hero even got into the Halloween spirit by bringing clementines with “Jack-o-lantern” faces as a reward for solving his math challenge.

On November 9th, we finally got to go on our field trip to the Boston Museum of Science.

We arrived just in time to see the live animal show.

The live animal wasn’t just any snake. It was a python!

After the show, we were able to go to the stage and touch real snake skin.

We got to see and learn about  dinosaurs and lots of other interesting things!

Mrs. Riordan and C8 students in front of a giant T-Rex model.

State Rep. Garry was one of our chaperones. Here she and some of the students standing in front of an actual stegosaur fossil.

Davian and Jacob explore electricity!

Some of our C8 girls learning that a seesaw is more than just playground fun…learning about force, motion and simple machines.

Investigating a model of a one room schoolhouse.

C8 students learn about heat and energy.

The students had fun climbing inside this model of the waterways and found a statue of a river otter!

Thank you to all our chaperones!

The students got to be paleontologists themselves back in the classroom. They were given dirt from a dig site, magnifying glasses and identification charts to help them find fossils.

Quinton using the chart to identify the fossil he found.

Jayden identifies his fossil as Gabriella looks on.

Here are some more photos of students searching for fossils. Thank you to Ms. Allore and Mr. Santee for supervising our paleontologists during this hands-on science exploration.