Monday, November 13, 2017

Descriptive Writing

After our visit to the Islom Ota Mosque, we wrote about our experience using descriptive words. We thought about what we had seen, felt, touched and heard. As well, we thought about how we felt during our visit. After our Fall Break, we met the following Monday and described a place from our holiday  to our friends. We used descriptive words to communicate what we heard, felt, touched, tasted and saw there. Then, our partners had to guess where we had been by our descriptive words. Afterwards we used this plan to write a recount in our journal about our vacation.

While learning about indigenous architecture around the world, we continued to think about descriptive words. Students were given a description of Ndebele houses of South Africa, and had to draw a sketch, based on this description.

Then, they took turns describing different indigenous housing from around the world, such as tents, igloos, houses made from totora reeds in Peru, and stilt houses in Panama, etc. Their partner had to listen to the description and sketch the picture that their friend had created in their minds.

In our guided reading groups we read about some indigenous architecture around the world. After becoming “experts” on this housing in our groups, we then “speed taught” our classmates what we had learnt.

Learning About Symbols

With Ms. Nigora we learnt about different symbols that can be found in tilework in Uzbekistan.

In class, we designed our own symbols for values that we hold, such as friendship, taking turns, family, and being creative. We then shared our symbols with our classmates.

Mister Youssef, who designed and created the tiles for the Islom Ota Mosque, visited us and explained the process for creating tiles.

Then, with Ms. Nigora, we began to create our own tiles that symbolize a value important to us.


We have been learning how feedback can help us throughout this unit. Students have been developing their understanding of what effective feedback is like. We have learnt that it is specific and positive (kind). In class, students chose a building design that they found the most aesthetically pleasing. Then, they drew a sketch of the house as accurately as possible.

Next, students met and gave each other feedback about how their sketch could more accurately look like the original drawing. Students stated what they thought their friend had done well, along with how they could improve it. Then, students made a second draft of the houses.

 Finally, we reflected on how feedback can help us. Some student reflections:

  • it helps you to know what to change
  • it gives you more confidence
  • you can make your sketches better after feedback
  • you know exactly what is good about what you did


We began looking at shapes by sorting shapes according to characteristics that we had defined ourselves.

Then, we practiced identifying, describing, and sketching different 2D shapes.

We made predictions of how many smaller shapes would fit into a bigger one. Students used their knowledge of this and skip counting to make accurate predictions.

We have also explored describing shapes by different criteria while playing “Guess My Rule.”

We have thought about how to order rectangles from biggest to smallest and used tools to get accurate answers.

Retelling Stories

In guided reading, we have practiced retelling stories using retelling cards. Students are prompted to identify the setting, characters, problem and solution, as well as to recount the beginning, middle and end of stories.

We have also been learning about nouns. While listening to the Magic Treehouse begin read aloud we identified different nouns. Then we played a game where we chose a noun and described it with 3 clues. Our friends had to try adn guess our noun!

Attitude- Creativity

One of the attitudes this unit is creativity. We read Not a Box and thought creatively about different things that a box might become if we used our imagination.... a trick-or-treat bag, a turtle shell, or perhaps a television!

Design Cycle

We have been learning about the phases in the design cycle- Ask, Imagine, Plan, Create and Improve. We had a design challenge in class where we went through the cycle to design a house for a stuffed animal.

 First we read the story The Big Orange Splot. Then, we began designing the house of our dreams!

We asked ourselves what do we value, and what are our dreams?

Then, we asked ourselves which of these dreams/values did we want to express with our house's design?

We imagined what this would look like, and then gave feedback to each other. 

Then, we planned the materials we would use and steps we would take.

Afterwards, we began to create!

Then, we gave each other more feedback. We thought about what we saw in our friend's design that made us think they had expressed their value, or dream. We asked our partner a question, and gave some suggestions.

Important Dates!

Not So Neat Street Grade 2 Exhibition- Monday, November 20th 11:00-12:00