Second Grade News

April 12 - April 26th

Second Grade Team

Olivia Claiborn: Ext. 325

Ana Owens: Ext. 322

Lakeshia Peters: Ext. 323

Anne Yarbrough: Ext. 324


We just began our insect unit and are busy raising silkworms. They have just hatched, and we are looking forward to observing them grow. We need some help from you in providing a reliable food source for the silkworms. They eat mulberry leaves and ONLY mulberry leaves! If you or anyone you know has a mulberry tree, we definitely need the leaves! Please send the leaves to school in a plastic bag. To keep the leaves moist, please wrap the mulberry leaves in a damp paper towel. Thank you for your help!

Thank You for a GREAT State Fair!

We are so proud of our second grade tour guides. What a fantastic job they did preparing for the first grade visitors. They had a wealth of knowledge to share, their project posters and signs were top-notch, and every bite size sip and sample was out of this world. Thanks again to all parents who helped support this event and what a job well done!

Literacy: Poetry, Poetry, Poetry!

April is National Poetry Month and second graders are celebrating the importance of poetry this month. We will be exploring and using different poetry forms as well as deepening our understanding of the figurative language usually found in this style of writing.

There are so many ways to participate in the festivities from home with your family.

  • Read poems as a family – In the car, at dinner, before bedtime, you name it!

  • Dear Poet – Your child can send a letter to a beloved poet in response to favorite verses. See the Academy of American Poets website:

  • Keep a handwritten favorite with you all day to share with others.

  • Add a few poetry texts (from the used bookstore or library) to your bookshelf at home. See below for some of our favorites!

In a recent article on educators were outlining the benefits of poetry in young readers and writers. “Reading poetry aloud with your children helps them fall in love with words and gives them the tools they need to become enthusiastic readers. By emphasizing the sound and rhythm of language, poetry builds children’s phonemic awareness, or sensitivity to the smallest sounds of speech, laying a foundation for beginning reading. Also, poets’ inventive, skillful use of language introduces children to new vocabulary words and concepts.”


Everyday Math Unit 10 will focus on money, decimals, and place value.

The students will:

  • Review dollar-and-cents notation and equivalent money amounts.
  • Learn to enter money amounts into a calculator.
  • Compare prices and solve problems about price differences.
  • Estimate costs and then calculate exact cost.
  • Make change by counting up and estimate totals by rounding to the nearest 10 cents.
  • Identify, read, and write place-value notation for ten thousands.
  • Learn the use of parentheses in number models.

Vocabulary: decimal point, counting up to make change, place value, cube, long, flat, big cube, ones, tens, hundreds, thousands, ten-thousands, parentheses, parenthesis

Literature: Sold, How the Second Grade Got $8,205.50 to Visit the Statue of Liberty, Betcha!, Alexander, Who Used to be Rich Last Sunday, Follow the Money, How Much, How Many, How Far, How Heavy, How Long, How Tall is 1,000?, On Beyond a Million: An Amazing Math Journey, How Much is a Million?

IXL at home:

  • ·M.3 – Place value models - up to thousands
  • ·M.6 – Place value - up to thousands
  • ·M.8 – Regrouping tens and ones
  • ·M.11 – Convert to/from a number – up to thousands
  • ·M.12 – Convert between place values – up to thousands
  • ·M.14 – Convert from expanded form – up to thousands
  • ·P.16 – Least number of coins
  • P.20 – Making change

Also in math, the second graders have been busy raising silkworms. We began with 100 eggs and are now caring for approximately 80 silkworms. The students will be writing observations about the silkworms and measuring their lengths. The students will be feeding the silkworms and cleaning their habitats daily.

Interesting facts:

  • Silkworms were discovered in China close to 5,000 years ago.
  • At full grown, the silkworm will weigh 10,000 times more than when it first hatched.
  • When the silkworms are at their largest, they will eat one large mulberry leaf a day.
  • A cocoon makes one single thread. When unwound, the thread can be up to one mile in length.
  • It takes 3.000 cocoons to produce one pound of silk.
  • To make ten silk blouses, 8,000 silkworms have to eat three hundred fifty pounds of mulberry leaves.
  • To collect the thread, farmers boil the cocoons. The pupa inside the cocoon will die.

Earth Day at the Arboretum

On Tuesday, April 19, 2016, students are headed to the Arboretum for an early Lower School Earth Day Celebration. We will be exploring and enjoying the day together in the main garden and children's area. Students should wear Lamplighter t-shirts (preferably red ones if possible) and bring a lunch in a disposable container or bag.

SATs Special Area Teachers

Environmental Science with Mrs. Cauley
Your second grader continues their rock study by exploring sand this month and discovering there is something even smaller than sand in earth materials! Ask your child what that could be. Microscope use is a fascinating way to study sand materials and opens our students’ eyes to the world of miniatures.

Since their team terrariums are flourishing, we added earthworms from our compost bins, counted and added them to our terrariums. In May we will empty our terrariums onto trays and count how many earthworms are still alive. Sometimes we get lucky and have baby wormlets to count also!

April will find us planting zinnia seeds, recording their growth in their journals and eventually bringing the zinnia home to live in a sunny spot in your yard. We will also be exploring creek habitats and searching for evidence that proves who lives at our creek in the spring.

Science with Mr. Burton
Second grade students have been learning about basic robotics. We explored the Lego mindstorms motors and sensors and learned how to create basic programs that operate the robots. Currently, they’re in the midst of a roller coaster design challenge where they must build a device to launch a ball onto a roller coaster track. Once that challenge is complete, we’ll design and build things that go.

Technology with Mrs. Ogden

Second graders are currently wrapping up their state projects in preparation for their state fair! We will soon return to Tinkercad for one final project for the year. Our second graders have taken to CAD creation in an amazing way! Students are enjoying making their ideas a reality in Tinkercad. Students are encouraged to continue to create with Tinkercad at home, and build incredible new 3D objects.

Media Center with Mrs. Vermillion
April is National Poetry Month. Students enjoy reading from a wide range of poets. From Douglas Florian, a former Dooley author and his insect shape poems, the word play of Shel Silverstein’s Runny Babbet, who speaks a topsy-turvy language, to Myra Cohn Livingston’s selection of poems from A Song I Sang to You.

We have discussed four ways that poet Billy Collins, a Poet Laureate, suggests for reading a poem out loud.

1. Read slowly.
2. Read in a relaxed, normal voice.
3. Pause only when there is punctuation.
4. Use a dictionary to look up unfamiliar and hard to pronounce words.

Lamplighter Barn
by Myra Cohn Livingston. “I can play in the prickly hay and I can find where the chickens lay and take off my shoes and stay and stay in the tickly hay on a rainy day.”

Ask your child...

  • What's your favorite type of poem?
  • What is alliteration?
  • What is an onomatopoeia?
  • Why is the decimal point important when writing dollar-and-cents notation?
  • How are parentheses used in math equations?
  • What is the life cycle of a silkworm?
  • What is molting? Why do silkworms molt?
  • What is Earth Day?
  • How can we better take care of the planet in our home?

Important Dates to Remember

  • Tuesday, April 19 - Arboretum Field Trip - Students will need a disposable lunch and we want them to wear Lamplighter t-shirts, preferable red ones!
  • Friday, April 22 - Earth Day Assembly - Remind your child to wear GREEN to school that day to celebrate!
  • Saturday and Sunday, April 23 and 24th - Earth Day Texas at Fair Park - There will be a booth sponsored by the Lamplighter Faculty and Staff Green Team and families are invited to attend. The event is open on both Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. and admission is free!
  • Monday, April 25 to Friday, April 29 - ERB Testing