Welcome to Second Grade at
Shady Side Academy Junior School
Second Grade Overview
Welcome to Second Grade! We know we are going to have a wonderful year together. We will be taking many adventures in social studies and language arts as we learn about the Rain Forest, Africa, Timelines, Pittsburgh, and Fairy Tales. We'll be reading all kinds of books related to our units by authors like Lionni, Henkes, Van Allsburg, Steig, De Paola, and Polacco. The children will read to us and we will work on building their comprehension skills with various picture books and chapter books. In writing, we will strive to use complete sentences with proper punctuation, interesting action words, and descriptive adjectives. As we write, we'll be writing about what we read, things we're thinking, and many other topics too! In math, we will begin to use the math series, Math in Focus. This program will be teach the children how to visualize a problem versus memorize. There will be ten spelling words and one or two "Must - Know Words" assigned weekly. We will have additional challenge spelling words for our expert spellers on some weeks. We will also begin to practice writing in cursive.
In second grade the students work at their desks alone, and they also work in small groups all around the room. Some days they are busy problem solving with their math or monthly center activities and other days they are interacting on our SMART Boards. On Thursday afternoons, the children usually earn an extra "bonus recess" and have another chance to play outside on the big playground. Most of the time we finish our week watching a special movie about something we learned about that week or playing games. We watch movies on the rain forest, Africa, the desert, famous authors, Pittsburgh, holidays and many other topics.
In second grade we take several special field trips. We visit the zoo and Phipp's Conservatory in the fall. Later in the year we wrap up our Pittsburgh Unit with a trip to the John Heinz History Center.
The children should expect to spend fifteen minutes per night on written homework in addition to fifteen minutes of reading. This reading should be recorded in their book logs. The students have spelling homework on Monday and Tuesday nights and they have math homework on Wednesday nights. Generally, the weekend homework is just to empty out their Friday folders. Second Grade is a busy, busy, year!!
The Junior School is nut free. Please be aware when packing your child's lunch, snack, and bringing in birthday treats.
My name is Jennifer Riscili. I have been living in Pittsburgh for the last 15 years. I was born in Niagara Falls, New York and lived there until I was 14 years old. My family then moved to Vienna, West Virginia for my high school years. I attended Duquesne University where I received my Bachelors degree with an emphasis in Marketing. I then continued my education to receive my Masters in Elementary Education. I have had the privilege to work at Shady Side Academy Jr. School for the last ten years. I began my career at Shady Side Academy as the Library Assistant, After-School director, Before School instructor, and substitute taught for 2 years. I then worked as the first grade associate teacher for 3 years and have spent the last two years in kindergarten. This will be my second year in3rd grade! I look forward to having a wonderful year with you and your child!
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