Haruto very kindly brought in some excavating kits as a special treat for the class. The children worked in small groups to get some hands-on experience of excavation. They were problem-solvers and gathered extra tools they thought they needed such as water and brushes. A dusty, exciting dig, with some students making themselves look like more authentic archaeologists...
Grade 2 has been leading World Water Day in ISS this year. We watched some videos and thought about ways that we could help protect the Earth's water.
We came up with three main actions:
Singapore's theme for this year is Make every drop count and they suggest 5 small actions you can take to help conserve water.
1. Wait until you have a full load before washing in a washing machine
2. Use half-flush on toilets when you can
3. Use a mug when you brush your teeth instead of a running tap
4. Take shorter showers
5. Wash fruit and vegetables in a container
The children have made pledges and posters to raise awareness of World Water Day, which is on 22nd March. We will also be organising a Donation Drive for the Salvation Army when we return after the holidays.
We learn about the past from things like fossils. It is hard but it is fun.
It has been another busy week in Grade 2. The children have been researching about Pompeii, making notes and sharing their findings.
We have begun thinking about what the past can teach us about how people lived. We noticed that archaeologists found artefacts and features in Pompeii that told them about the houses and buildings, the things people did for entertainment, their jobs, some of the tools they used and what they believed in.
Through reading the book, Pompeii, Buried Alive, we learnt that people heard about Pompeii because of letters written by Pliny (a boy who saw Mount Vesuvius erupt). Many years later, people found a stone with the word Pompeii carved on it. From these facts, the children were able to deduce that people from the past gave places names, could write and had tools to carve on stone.
Another observation was that archaeologists found the remains of a dog on a chain. This told the children that people kept animals in Pompeii, either as pets or guard-dogs. They then connected this with how people still have pets today.
We also had some children sharing about their own countries' civilisations and cultures. We learnt that:
As part of our inquiry into mapping and grids, Mr. Gallagher came to support the children in exploring how the Beebots work. They had to work in groups to find out how to create a maze for the Beebot to travel on.
The skills of measuring, discussing, testing, planning, compromising were all practised by the children. As the Beebots operate by following a sequential series of instructions, this is also developing the children's understanding of coding.
When finished, they will share their mazes with the Kindergarten students.
We extended our knowledge of maps and grids by using simple co-ordinates to design games of Treasures or Traps to play in class.
This week the children have been finding out more about what archaeology is and what archaeologists do.
We read the book "Archaeologists dig for clues" and then in groups the children explained the process in a flow-chart after some research. They have also been planning a non-fiction text about archaeology. This is consolidating their understanding of how we structure explanation texts.
We have also had some independent student action with some children exploring excavation sites at home- building their own versions using Lego and blocks. Stormtrooper archaeologists and re-purposed tools!
Some children also brought in artefacts and posters that showed connections to civilisations in their home countries. We will be exploring more of these in the weeks to come.
The children re-visited the visible thinking routine of I see, I think, I wonder, while observing miniature models of well-known building from various civilisations. They are creating a list of shared features of all civilisations- buildings being one of them. Again, this will continue to be explored during the inquiry, particularly in relation to Pompeii, which is our case-study for this unit. They also worked collaboratively and took on different roles (Data-collector, Illustrator, Explainer and Question-collector) within their groups, while observing and recording information about artefacts.
Next week, we will use Pompeii as a way of deepening the children's understanding of how and what archaeologists can learn from studying archaeological sites and artefacts.
Finally, the class is also in the process of creating a mini excavation site in class.
This week was ISS Literacy Week. The children have enjoyed several book-related activities including:
We also began Tuning In for our new unit of inquiry. The theme is Where we are in Place and Time and our Central Idea will be We learn about civilisations from what was left behind.
We began creating our own time-lines and really enjoyed the connections with Andy Chua's talk about fossils (things that have been left behind and preserved which we learn about the past from).
The children also went on a book hunt the library to find books which they thought connected to our central idea. We are investigating and analysing various artefacts from the not-too-distant past. The children thought about what the object might be (form), what is might be used for (function) and how it might be connected to other things (connection).
In maths, as a precursor to our multiplication inquiries, the children explored whether there were patterns connected to multiplication that could help us. We then considered whether we could use these patterns to predict which numbers might be in certain multiplication tables.
We have had a busy couple of weeks during which we celebrated Chinese New Year and also the annual ISS Fun Fair.
The school community enjoyed a Lion Dance performance to mark the Year of the Dog.
The children completed their Arcade game designs, having followed the 5-step Design Process, during which they tested and evolved their designs with a little help from Mr. Gallagher in the Design Lab. In class, they enjoyed testing each others' games and giving feedback.
Finally, ahead of the ISS Fun Fair, they wrote instructions on how to play their games with a focus on using imperatives and short sequenced sentences.
The Grade 2 Arcade Stall was a fantastic opportunity for the children to show what they have been learning and to enjoy watching other people play their creations.
It was a wonderful way to wrap up all our inquiries into exchange systems (money for vouchers, vouchers for goods and services at the fair), how they can help our community (using recycled materials, bringing our community together through play, money raised being donated) and probability and chance (applying these concepts to their games).
We also continued our engagement with the school environment through our second response to art displayed in school. We connected our own learning in Grade 2 with some Market scenes created by Grade 5.
Hi, I am Josh and I liked the filed trip to the museum because it was fun and interesting. I found out about four explorers called Zheng He, Marco Polo, Sang Nila Utama and Ibn Battura.
Grade 2.1 are a class of 7 and 8 year old students who attend ISS International School in Singapore. We learn together and play together and enjoy sharing our discoveries with you.