Grade 2 News

Newsletter #1: How the World Works

UOI 1: How the world Works

Transdisciplinary Theme:

An inquiry into the natural world and its laws; the interaction between the natural world (physical and biological) and human societies; how humans use their understanding of scientific principles; the impact of scientific and technological advances on society and on the environment.

Central idea: Living things go through a process of change

Key concepts: Change, Connection , Causation

Related concepts: Life Cycles, Adaptation, Basic Needs, Habitats, Researching, Observation, Collecting Data, Shape, Color,

Lines of inquiry

  • Life cycles and how they change over time (Change)
  • Similarities and differences in the way that living things grow and change (Connection)
  • Factors that can influence life cycles (Causation)

UOI Field Trip Maryland Science Center

Our focus this Field trip is to understand that all living things grow in different ways. We will also learn that one way that we are able to organize our information about the many different living things on our planet is through classifying animals. Students will learn how we identify and class animals as birds, fish, mammals, reptiles etc. Students will also compare different life cycles across these groups for similarities among living things. For our trip to the Science Center, we will be exploring the Kids Space Room in which they are able to participate in hands on experiences including observation of an underwater sea habitat using tools as well as explore different animals with costumes and physical movement acting out the life cycle and growth of different types of animals. Along with this activity students will also be participating in a hands on museum class titled “Bugbytes” In both of these activities students will explore the different types of life cycles compared to those that we have learned in class and in our unit so far. Students will also have a chance to explore the museums other exhibits with a focus on the ‘Blue Crab Exhibit’ classifying and the ‘Dinosaur Exhibit’ linking many of the prehistoric creatures to reptiles and birds that exist today!

What Are We Learning This Unit?

Math Thinkers

This unit in Math we will be focusing on Place Value, adding and subtracting larger numbers, and understanding what was formerly known as regrouping or borrowing and is know referred to as decomposing.

  • Represent and solve problems involving addition and subtraction.
  • Use addition and subtraction within 100 to solve one- and two-step word problems involving situations of adding to, taking from, putting together, taking apart, and comparing, with unknowns in all positions, e.g., by using drawings and equations with a symbol for the unknown number to represent
  • Use place value understanding and properties of operations to add and subtract.
  • Fluently add and subtract within 100 using strategies based on place value, properties of operations, and/or the relationship between addition and subtraction.
  • Add up to four two-digit numbers using strategies based on place value and properties of operations.
  • Add and subtract within 1000, using concrete models or drawings and strategies based on place value, properties of operations, and/or the relationship between addition and subtraction; relate the strategy to a written method.
  • Understand that in adding or subtracting three-digit numbers, one adds or subtracts hundreds and hundreds, tens and tens, ones and ones; and sometimes it is necessary to compose or decompose tens or hundreds.
  • Mentally add 10 or 100 to a given number 100–900, and mentally subtract 10 or 100 from a given number 100–900.
  • Explain why addition and subtraction strategies work, using place value and the properties of operations. (Explanations may be supported by drawings or objects.)

Math Homework:

Students will be given a weekly homework assignment for them to complete (Assigned on Monday- Due on Friday) The idea behind this assignment is for them to practice a variety of skills expected in second grade that we have, will, or we're currently covering. This way students will not forget what we have learned as the year progresses. I will try this to see if this is a little easier and more substantial than Zearn- However we will still be using Zearn as a resource so students can continue to use their devices at home progressing through Zearn as we will also access it in class- however this is no longer mandatory and therefore will not count in the 20 minute homework expectations.

English Language Arts

In English Language Arts, students will be exploring many different concepts including:

Reading Goals:

  • Explore the overall structure of a story, including describing how the beginning introduces the story and the ending concludes the action. We will be connecting this to cycles of life and how it has a beginning middle and end.
  • Identifying the main topic of a text as well as the focus of specific paragraphs within the text.
  • Exploring the meaning of words and phrases in a text.
  • Understanding how specific images (e.g., a diagram showing how a machine works) contribute to and clarify a text.
  • Identifying how reasons support specific points the author makes in a text.
  • How to use context to confirm or self-correct word recognition and understanding, rereading as necessary.
Writing Goals
  • Use a variety of digital tools to produce and publish writing, including in collaboration with peers.
  • Completing a shared research and writing projects (recording science research and observations through writing).
  • Practicing how to work with others in a shared group project using our social skills and problem solving while intentionally implementing the Learner Profile Attribute
  • Write informative/explanatory texts in which they introduce a topic, use facts and definitions to develop points, and provide a concluding statement or section.
  • With guidance and support from adults, use a variety of digital tools to produce and publish writing, including in collaboration with peers.
Speaking and Listening Goals:
  • Follow agreed-upon rules for discussions (e.g., gaining the floor in respectful ways, listening to others with care, speaking one at a time about the topics and texts under discussion).
  • Build on others’ talk in conversations by linking their comments to the remarks of others.
  • Ask for clarification and further explanation as needed about the topics and texts under discussion.
  • Ask and answer questions about what a speaker says in order to clarify comprehension, gather additional information, or deepen understanding of a topic or issue.

Language Foundation Goals:

  • Use collective nouns (e.g., group).
  • Form and use frequently occurring irregular plural nouns (e.g.,
  • Use reflexive pronouns (e.g., feet, children, teeth, mice, fish).

ELA HomeWork:


Students need to be completing their monthly reading log for January coloring in each time they read for twenty minutes. I have also sent home a genre challenge which counts towards their reading log but encourages them to read different types of text from newspaper articles to biographies. This is an effort to get your child out of reading the same type of text which can limit the challenge of reading various types of writing. Reading logs must be turned in with a parent signature in order to be counted.


Weekly spelling tests have resumed, I have switched the test day to Wednesday- students will receive their new word lists on Thursdays and be tested on Wednesdays- be sure to study these words by reading, spelling and how to use them in sentences!


Students will be exploring the plant life cycle. Students will learn to use simple past, present, and future tense. Students will learn vocabulary related to different stages of the plants and insects life cycle such as egg, caterpillars, cocoon and butterfly .

Students will also learn occupations. Lastly, student will learn to use incomplete verbs ( (كان واخواتها in the past, and future tense.

ACTFL Standards:

Interpersonal communication:

1. I can answer questions about what I am doing and what I did

Presentational Speaking:

1. I can present information about my history and future

Presentational Writing:

1. I can write about something I have learned

2. I can write out a draft of a presentation that I plan to present orally.

Science & Social Studies


Our class is beginning a scientific study of mammals, birds, fish, reptiles, insects and plants. We will be caring for and investigating several different animals, and growing a plant from seed, to find out about their life cycles. Some of the animals that we have visiting our classroom is the turtles (as seen in the pictures below), the guinea Pig is representing mammals, and we will hatch baby chickens in a few weeks. We will also be planting a plant and watching it go through its entire life cycle! Your child may demonstrate a heightened interest in animals, insects and plants over the next several weeks. One goal of our work with living things is to help the children develop a deeper appreciation for the diversity of life and to cultivate a sense of respect for all living things that Allah has created.

Our Science Skills Focus:

  • Observe carefully in order to gather data.
  • Identify or generate a question or problem to be explored.
  • Plan and carry out systematic investigations, manipulating variables as necessary.
  • Consider scientific models and applications of these models (including their limitations).

Science Learning Outcomes

  • Plan and conduct an investigation to determine if plants need sunlight and water to grow.
  • Make observations of plants and animals to compare the diversity of life
  • Develop models to describe that organisms have unique and diverse life cycles but all have in common birth, growth, reproduction, and death.

Social Studies:

Learning Outcomes and Skills we are practicing

  • Discuss words and word meanings as they are encountered in texts, instruction, and conversation
  • Make connections to prior knowledge and new vocabulary by listening, reading, and responding to a variety of texts
  • Identify and question what did not make sense
  • Engage in conversation to understand what has been read
  • Identify and use sources of information on a topic
  • Use note taking and organizational strategies to record and organize information
  • Identify prior knowledge about the topic
  • Pose questions about the topic
  • Find relationships between gathered information
  • Display information on various types of graphic organizers, maps, and charts


Students will.....

· Read and memorize Surat Al-Mulk with fluency and Tajweed.

· Review from Surat Al-layl to Surat An-Nas with fluency and Tajweed.

· Know the general meaning of Surat Al-Mulk.

· Write this Surah after the memorization.

· The rules of the letters of Madd and applying the rules during reading surah Albaqarah.

Islamic Studies

Students will learn:

· Duaa when looking in the mirror (to see Allah’s beautiful creation)

اللهم كما حسنت خَلقى فحسن خُلُقى,

· Duaa when it’s raining اللهم صيبا نافعا

· Seerah: Prophet Muhammad’s children.

· Fiqh: The fasting, why we are fasting and how we do the correct way of fasting.

· History: prophets Nuh, Hud and Saleh stories.


Art experiences

  • Students will explore the connection between Art and insects’ forms and anatomy.
  • Students will sculpt different insects from Maryland using air dry clay.
  • Students with experiment with acrylics paint/ color theory.
  • Students will continue their yarn weaving.

Targeted MSDE Standards

  • 3.0 Creative Expression and Production: Students will demonstrate the ability to organize knowledge and ideas for expression in the production of art.
  • 2.0 Investigate a variety of ways that artists develop ideas and organize the elements of art in response to what they see, know, and feel
a. Identify sources for ideas and procedures used to create artworks

b. Identify color, line, shape, texture, form, space, and selected principles.

Upcoming Events

Here are some things to look forward to!

  • January 8th-12th- MAP testing for grade 2 (Make-up will be scheduled over the next week)
  • January 13th: Benefit Gala
  • January 15th: MLK Day- No School for teachers or students
  • January 17th: Discovery day (Invite your friends and neighbors!)
  • January 18th: Spelling Bee (English)
  • January 19th: Sundae Ice cream celebration for reaching our Spelling Bee Goal
  • January 22nd: PD Day for teachers- No school for students
  • January 25th: Arabic Spelling Bee
  • January 26th: Second Grade Bake Sale! (More information to come)
  • February 1st : Field Trip to the Maryland Science Center

Be sure to check out our 'Events Newsletter' as well for more information and more dates:

Announcements and Reminders

Scholastic Orders: I was able to submit January orders this week- only one student ordered from this catalog. So far I have gotten about 10 free books as well as free stuff for the classroom and even some math supplies from the points that your orders have earned for the class! So keep building your at home library! Scholastic book order forms for January were sent home this week- January 2nd. They are due January 26th and the order will be submitted by January 31st InshaAllah- Please feel free to go online and order if you have lost the catalog or if you are looking for something different (our class code is PW3TF).

Weekly Spelling Test: test day has been moved to Wednesdays- Words assigned this week are in each students blue folder and the test for these words will be January 10th (this coming Wednesday) this is also listed on managebac as well!

Reading Resource: Reading A to Z is a website that we are currently using in reading in class, this website provides your child access to books online even if they cant make it to the library, I will be encouraging students to use this website at home as well for their reading time home work which can be recorded on their reading logs. I will be assigning books for reading at home that are related to our Unit of Inquiry so that students will not only get exposed to this content in class this will also extend to home. Please keep a look out for login information which will go in your students blue folder so that they are able to access it at school and at home independently.