This week we finalised our thinking about ecosystems being a complex balance of living things. The children identified that everything within an ecosystem is interconnected and if we were to remove one thing, it would cause an imbalance in the ecosystem. From their research on habitats, the children further explored food chains and food webs and organised information to explain how different living things were interdependent in this way. Look at the photos below to see the different steps in the sorting process.
Just a reminder about the busy week next week.
Monday - Swimming gala. Children come to school as normal and should be collected from the pool at 1pm. Parents are invited to come and cheer the children on.
Tuesday - No swimming.
Wednesday - End of Year Celebration at 1pm in the MPR. Parents are invited to come along and join in the fun!
Thursday - Last day of school. School finishes at 12pm.
This week the children completed the final part of their process and prepared their presentations about the habitat that they had researched. Lana said "I've really liked doing this," and Jan said "Yeah, it's been lots of different pieces of work to make this final bit of work." It was really good to see the children talking about and understanding the journey that their thinking and knowledge has gone on and to hear how proud they were of their final presentations. After the children had presented their information about their habitat, they received feedback, in the form of 2 stars and a wish, from other students in the class. The children have learned to give feedback in a diplomatic and fair way and have also learned to take it in a positive way that can improve their learning. One of the biggest areas that the children identified as needing to improve was the volume with which they present. However, they also identified the courage that it had taken for some children to present to the class as it is something they feel shy about doing. Please take a look at the presentations below. I'm sure you will feel just as proud as I do!
This week the children have been using their good research skills to collect information about different habitats. They collected their information from videos and books and used it to draw and label pictures of what their habitat looks like. Next week they will make connections between all of the things in their habitat, to explain how they all depend upon each other. Finally, they will present their findings. Next week I will put their presentations on the blog for you to watch. For now, have a look at some of the finished drawings of the habitats that the children researched.
One of the Learner Profile attributes is to be Balanced. We have talked about what this means as it connects with the Central Idea that ecosystems are a complex balance of living things. The children identified that if the ecosystems were not balanced, then the things in the ecosystem would not work properly. They linked this to themselves by saying things like "if we only do work and never play, we will not work so well because we will be tired" and "we need a balance of food and sleep and learning and play for us to be healthy." Here are some photos of the children enjoying play time with new toys.
This week we have been busy finishing our exploration and composition of poetry. We wrote haikus about living things, which helped us to formulate a question connected to our Unit of Inquiry - Are all things that move living? We have been looking into this and everyone agreed that it needs to be able to move by itself in order to be a living thing.
In Math we have been finishing our work on fractions. In fact, the children took part in some challenging Math investigations where they needed to find the fraction of a number when the numerator was more than one. See the photos below for how we did it!
The work on fractions led very nicely into multiplication and division. Many of the children have good number fact knowledge and can recite their times tables confidently. However, when we talked about what 5x6 means, the children found it difficult to explain. Today we investigated multiplication a little further to gain a greater understanding. Students were given a number, and using cubes, had to create arrays of different ways to make that number. This also led to an interesting discussion and investigation of what a prime number is. Have a look at the great thinking that went on!
Ending each day on a positive note is a great way to encourage children (and adults) to reflect upon and feel proud of their successes that day. Here you can see the children sharing What Went Well for them on Wednesday. It was also great to see the children encouraging each other and demonstrating how caring they are.
A Message From Ms Kate
The Book Swap is coming!
Over the next couple of weeks, please help your child to check your bookshelves for gently used books that they do not want to read anymore, and be ready to bring them to school between Monday 23rd and Friday 27th May.
Students will receive tickets for 3 different types of books; chapter books, picture books (including non-fiction) and books in languages other than English.
On Tuesday 31st May, if students have a ticket for a chapter book, they can go to the MPR to swap it for a chapter book, if they have a picture book ticket, they can swap it for a picture book, and so on.
Having spent time digging a little deeper into our Central Idea that 'Ecosystems are a Complex Balance of Living Things,' we concluded the week with a field trip to MacRitchie Reservoir to see living things in their natural habitats. The children were excited to see what living things we might find, especially as some students shared their experience of seeing monkeys there! We weren't disappointed! We saw monkeys, dragon flies, birds, pond skippers, turtles and lizards to name a few! The children talked about why those organisms might live in that habitat and what other living and non living things they depend on for survival. We will continue to look into this next week. Here are some photos of our field trip adventure -
This week we have been exploring poetry and thinking about what makes a good poem. We have enjoyed reading some funny poems by Kenn Nesbitt and identified similarities and differences between the poems. We looked for rhythm, rhyme and layout and then used this knowledge to write our own versions of Nesbitt's poems. See below for some examples. I'm sure you'll agree that we have some talented poets in Grade 2!
We also were introduced to our new Unit of Inquiry with the Central Idea 'Ecosystems are a complex balance of living things.' We identified some very tricky words in this Central Idea and spent time this week finding out what these words meant. Students used teamwork and research skills to find the meaning of these words and have already started to make connections to habitats, life cycles and food chains. Next Friday, we will go on a field trip to MacRitchie Reservoir where we will look at living things in their environment and talk about how the living and non living things all depend on each other. A letter about the field trip has been emailed to you today.
The students have worked very hard to complete their work to present in the Art Gallery which took place on Friday morning. They carried out research about their favourite artist and turned their notes into sentences to create a biography of their artist. They recreated art by their artist, choosing media which they felt most resembled the media used in the original artwork. Finally, they collected all of the work that they had produced during this Unit of Inquiry and independently organised it onto presentation paper. They were incredibly proud of their work - and rightly so! I was very proud of the children's finished work, but most importantly, of how they have been committed to producing the best work they possibly could during the process.
Student Led Conferences
We also had an opportunity to share our learning with you earlier in the week when we had our Student Led Conferences. The children were excited to show you some examples of the kinds of learning activities that take place in their classroom and to also show you examples of their work. I know many children and parents talked about the difference in their work from the beginning of the year to now. It is great to see the children reflect on their learning and to feel confident about the work that they are producing now.
I have been so proud of the students this week. Across all learning areas, the children have shown commitment, perseverance and have completed their work to a very high standard.
The class have been working on writing stories during their Work On Writing time during Daily 5. In particular, they focused on ensuring their story had a good structure (beginning, build up, problem, resolution and ending) and using interesting vocabulary to make their stories delicious! The children went through the whole writing process by making a plan, writing a first draft, revising and editing it, and then publishing their neat copy. I know that they are excited to share them with you, so please take a moment to read them on the wall outside our classroom when you come to your child's Student Led Conference next week. We definitely have some budding authors in Grade 2.2!
During our Inquiry into images and how they express meaning, the students became animators. With a partner, they thought about a message that they wanted to convey through a set of moving images. They created a storyboard, thinking about how they can communicate this message without writing any text. They then drew simple pictures and made slight amendments to them, taking a photo of each picture one at a time. This is still a work in progress and we will share the finished product with you when they are ready. But for now, take a look at the children in action -
SLCs and Book Fair
The children are excited to show you their work at their Student Led Conference on Tuesday. While the SLCs are happening, there is a Book Fair taking place. If you would like to have a browse through some books, please head to the library before or after your time slot. I'm looking forward to seeing you on Tuesday and seeing the children show you how proud they are of their work.
On Friday we would like to invite you to see the children present their work to you to complete their Unit of Inquiry exploring how Images Express Meaning. We will be transforming our Grade 2 classrooms into Art Galleries where each child will display their work and talk about their ideas and understanding. Please join us between 8.30am and 9.30am on Friday 22nd April to celebrate their learning.
Finally, we had a special guest come to visit us in Grade 2 this week. Frank Winterstein from the Australian Sevens Rugby team came to talk to the children about the importance of learning and sport to have a healthy life and to be the best that you can be. The children were very excited to have a professional sports player come to see them!
I hope you all had a wonderful holiday. It was great to see the children return to school on Tuesday, enthusiastic and ready to learn. The children have impressed me with their thinking this week, especially in Math where they have been given increasingly tricky challenges when trying to extend a pattern. Here is an example -
The numbers of small cubes in each big cube are 1, 8 and 27.
How many cubes would there be in the next diagram of the sequence?
During our Inquiry into images and how they express meaning, the children began to take photos around the school. They explored the idea that digital images can also express meaning and used this as an opportunity to remind people to throw litter into the bins, take care of nature and to walk up and down the stairs the correct way. Here are some photos of them in action -
There has been a buzz of excitement during our Math lessons this week as we have been exploring patterns in different ways. We recognised that when counting in 2's, 3's, 4's etc. that we can find a pattern in the tens and units columns to help us to predict what would come next. For example, when counting in 2's the pattern 2, 4, 6, 8, 0 repeats in the units column. We later began to create 3D shapes and to identify how to make the pattern grow or shrink. We had to think about the rule and how many we needed to add or take away each time. We also had to think about colour and sequence. Take a look at some of our growing patterns -
Images Express Meaning
On Wednesday we went on a field trip to the High School to explore the artwork created by the Grade 10 students. We enjoyed using our inference skills to try to work out the meaning of the images. Then the Grade 10 students told us whether we were correct and talked about the inspiration behind their work. We had a great time working with the older students and came back to school excited to create our own meaningful images.
Thank you once again for all your help and donations for the fun fair. It was a really successful day and because of all of your help we managed to raise a huge $447! We are still missing a glass cake stand. If you have seen it anywhere, please let me know so that I can return it to its owner.
Grade 2.2 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.
Mr. Pinchbeck - Principal
Ms. Janienne's Blog
Ms. Dell and Ms. Sophie's Blog
Ms. Caz's ART Blog
Elementary PE Blog
Ms. Marnie's MUSIC Blog