Our International Tasting Party Starring C8 Family Recipes!


Cecily’s mother brought in this lovely Swedish cinnamon roll ring. You can also see Katie’s Pepparkakor, a Swedish spice cookie and Hailey’s Russian Tea Cookies!


Salvatore’s parents brought in homemade Italian pizza warm from the oven! You can also see Maggie’s Kourabiedes (Greek cookies) and Avery’s Italian cookies!


We had special Indian treats from Khushi and Oorjaa, delicious Columbian rice pudding from Julian, Jayden’s yummy French food and Italian chocolates and Pizzelles from Ryan and Kendra’s families.


Fatima’s West African Meat Pies share the table with Danielle’s Gorton from Canada. You can also see Kiara’s Irish soda bread, as well as Jacob and Thomas’ special Columbian treats!

Today we had our International Tasting Party with the C8 Families sending in DELICIOUS food made from cherished family recipes from around the world! The wide assortment of food represented the ethnic backgrounds of our C8 Families which range from South and Central America, Europe, Africa and Asia! We are very thankful for all the families who took their time to make and send in these delicacies for us to sample. You helped to make it a very special day for the students! I hope everyone has a safe and happy Thanksgiving!


Special thanks to Mrs. Rhodes and Ms. Morning for helping me to set up the Tasting Party! Things wouldn’t have gone as smoothly without you both!!

Learning About Chinese Culture & Traditions from Ms. Chen


Thank you Mrs. Lord for arranging this visit with Ms. Chen!

As part of our study of Traditions and Customs, we were so lucky to have Ms. Jinyun Chen, the Chinese Teacher at Dracut High School, come to visit the second grade to teach us about the tradition and customs of her Chinese homeland. In addition to a PowerPoint, Ms. Chen brought in lots of things to share her Chinese culture with us.  Mrs. Lord used the Chinese stamp to stamp each child’s homework notebook with a special Chinese character.


Here are some of the objects that Ms. Chen taught the children about today.



We learned about special Chinese dresses and Chinese lanterns. We noticed that red is an important color for the Chinese people.

We learned about Chinese food, sports, arts, writing, celebrations, and so much more.


Ms. Chen taught us about Chinese character writing. We learned that they use a brush, ink and water to write from top to bottom. She had a special scroll that would work like “magic” and the characters would disappear so we could use it again and again to practice!


Fatima was just one of the students who got to try to “write” with the brush on the Chinese scroll. All the children will get to try this when the scroll comes to their classroom.













Maggie and Jacob try shuttlecock. While they had some power, they need to work on their control! (Mrs. Riordan ducking from rogue shuttlecock!)


Everyone enjoying trying Tai Chi!

Some of the children got to try a Chinese game of shuttlecock. Mrs. Riordan even tried it! Then Ms. Chen taught us all Tai Chi which is a slow moving martial art.  We ended the presentation by learning to sing a song in Mandarin and asking questions. Thank you, Ms. Chen for sharing your knowledge with us so enthusiastically! The children had wonderful time and we want to thank Danielle’s mother (and DHS Foreign Language Dept. Chairperson) for setting up this wonderful experience.

Oh and don’t forget that our Tasting Party is tomorrow! I can’t wait to sample all the yummy ethnic treats!

Immigration Projects and Parent-Teacher Conferences


Cecily’s trunk impressed the whole class. Very realistic and creative!


A peek into Cecily’s trunk to see what she decided to “bring to the new country”!











As part of our social studies unit on Traditions and Customs, we are studying immigration. Last Friday, the students shared their “Suitcase/Trunk Project”. They packed a suitcase or trunk with the items they felt were important to bring with them if they were traveling to a new life in a new country.  Each student shared what they brought and we discussed what they chose to bring and what they may have forgotten. It was especially neat to see the old photographs that Kate L. shared of her ancestors and the ships they traveled to America on. Thank you for helping your children with this project!

Our next project is the recipe project. The students need to choose a recipe from their heritage and to fill out the form that went home on Monday. We will take these family recipes and make a class recipe book.  Please have all the recipes to school by the due date on Friday.

On the half day before Thanksgiving, we will be having our “Tasting Party”.  We would love it if you could prepare the recipe you child chose for the recipe project and send it to school on the morning of November 27th so we can all sample some foods from other cultures. It will be a wonderful way to share and celebrate our different heritages with our classmates.

Thank you to all the parents who took the time to come to Parent-Teacher conferences last night. It was nice to have the opportunity to meet with you and discuss your child’s progress. We all have the same goal of supporting your child through this second grade experience and I hope we can continue to work together to help them all have a successful school year! Please feel free to contact me with any questions or concerns you may have as the year goes on.


Report Cards, Certificates and Reminders!


Celebrating two of our Xtramath Superstars!

Today we celebrated two of our second graders who earned their Xtramath certificates for addition for demonstrating mastery of the addition table by answering all basic math addition facts in under 3 seconds per fact.  Tierra accomplished this on October 25th and Danielle completed hers this week on November 12th. They are now working on mastery of subtraction facts. It is important to note that we have another Xtramath superstar, Salvatore who completed both addition and subtraction while still in first grade and is currently working on mastering his multiplication facts!

Our second graders received their first report cards of the year today. Please review the grades with your child and return the signed card as soon as you can. The oral reading grade is graded on a S+, S, S- or U and is based on their Fountas and Pinnell testing and the reading level (1, 2 or 3) indicates if your child’s reading above, on or below grade level. The reading skills grade is based on the written reading assessments/tests. Science and Social Studies is also graded with S or U. I will be happy to discuss any questions or concerns you may have on these or any grades at the Parent-Teacher conferences on Monday, November 18th.

We are currently working on a combined ELA and Social Studies unit on Traditions and Customs. We will be talking about the students’ heritage/family history and the first project is the suitcase assignment which is due tomorrow. The students have to put themselves in the place of immigrants and pack a suitcase or backpack with the objects they would bring if they were immigrating to a new country. I have not assigned math homework tonight to enable the children to have extra time to finish this suitcase assignment. The children will be sharing what they packed tomorrow in class.

A second optional assignment on the Statue of Liberty was sent home today. It involves using the internet and since not all families have access to the Internet, this is not mandatory. The students who choose to do this will get extra credit (and a treat!) Speaking of treats, I sent home “homework passes” today with the eight children who had parents who commented on our class blog/website so far this year. Anyone who comments for the first time is still eligible to receive a homework pass for their child.

Another reminder that the Scholastic Book Club orders are due tomorrow (November 15th) if you plan to order any books by sending paper order forms and paying with cash or checks. If you want to order online, I can keep the online ordering open through Saturday as I probably won’t get around to placing the order until Sunday. Thank you to Hailey, Fatima, Tierra and Katie for their orders!