Aurinda Esteves-Simpson and Kelly Montagna
The curriculum in Grade 2 provides rich learning activities that build new academic and social skills focusing on supporting independence. Through our Responsive Classroom philosophy students see themselves as part of a learning community.
Our program supports young readers through involving students in stories, poems and non-fiction works. Our school uses the readers and writers workshop model to instruct our students as independent learners focused on reading and responding to literature, communicating with others, and understanding English language conventions. Our program emphasizes a balanced approach and includes interactive read aloud, shared reading, guided reading, independent reading, word study, literature study, writers' workshop, and independent writing.
Our program is based on Math Investigations, which allow students to develop their own mathematical reasoning and use their communication skills in small groups. Concepts of time, calendars, money, distance, temperature, predicting the probability of events, and solving word problem extend second-grade math to the "real" world.
Science is taught so children develop a sense of wonder about the natural world around them. This includes a focus on solids and liquids and plants and socials in the second grade curriculum. The skills of observation, description, measurement and communication are developed through our inquiry based program. Our classrooms offer a rich variety of materials from which children ask questions, make predictions, design experiments, and answer their questions by careful observation and measurement.
Our social studies program focuses on the role of community, citizenship, map skills, and famous Americans. Students create a school wide postal service. By exploring the lives of a few extraordinary citizens, students come to understand how people can make a difference in the world. Maps and globes are used so children can discover their place in the world.
Students in second grade participate in weekly instruction in Art, Music, Physical Education, Library Media, and Spanish. The Physical Education curriculum begins to include swimming in Grade 2. Students also have the option to participate in Chorus.