Dare to Make a Difference: Learning More, Creating Change!

As part of our economic inquiry, we have worked in Action Teams to MAKE A DIFFERENCE.  This step in the inquiry came after exploring what influences the food we eat and buy (most commonly marketing, price and sources of ingredients); some processes involved in food production and also discovering that we can be a bit wasteful. We also developed our understanding that the season of Lent had actions that really connected to this learning: prayer, FASTING and ALMSGIVING.  Lent is a time to reflect on ways we are wasteful or extravagant in our living in order to give them up (fast) and also to give alms.  Giving alms is about reaching out to those in need.  At our school we do this annually by supporting the work of Caritas through Project Compassion.  So we put these two things together (economics & faith) to take our learning further…

All the Year Twos worked through an inquiry process to plan and promote a fundraising day for Project Compassion.  After coming up with the idea to have a topsy turvy day (students as teachers and teachers as students), each action team was allocated a grade to be responsible for.  They then allocated different jobs to each other.  There were team mates who created PowerPoints to explain the work of Caritas and Project Compassion.  There were team mates who created advertisements.  There were team mates who created a booklet of ideas for teachers to use on the day.  When all jobs were completed, the teams presented to the Year Five and Six classes.  They did an amazing job 🙂

The action day arrived and the school was full of students dressed as teachers and some brave teachers dressed in school uniforms.  There was even a guess the teachers photo display – some have changed a lot and some have not at all.

We would thank everyone for dressing up and donating a gold coin to help us carry out our action plan for inquiry.  We had fun learning about new activities such as, yoga, origami, calligraphy, Indonesian words and sign language.  Everyone seemed to have enjoyed this fun filled day especially the students who were able to dress up as their teachers.  It was really fun to see the teachers dressed in school uniforms as well.  Some teachers even had pigtails and braids.  Thank you to the whole school for working together to make this day a success.  We are so proud that as a school we have raised $1024.85 to donate to Caritas.

Our learning was called “Dare to MAKE A DIFFERENCE” and we really did.  I am so proud of 2MS.  What a wonderful first term of learning!

Maths App Suggestion

I just came across a category of Maths App you may like to consider:  Math Slide


I have checked out “Math Slide: hundreds, tens, ones”  It’s free (there are In-App Purchases so be careful with your settings) and it provides good practice of the place value concepts we have explored!  

Repeated Reading Fun


A strategy that is used regularly in my teacher focus groups is “Timed Repeated Reading”.  Timed repeated readings are an instructional practice for monitoring students’ fluency development. Repeated readings, under timed conditions, of familiar instructional level text can increase students’ reading speed which can improve comprehension.  You can also use this strategy at home as part of your child’s nightly reading.

This clip explains how you can use repeated reading at home:

I read the text “Let’s Go Skating.”  With fluency and accuracy, it took me 57 seconds.

Let’s Go Skating

I wonder how long it takes you to read it with fluency and accuracy (that means you have to re-read it many times so you make no errors & don’t forget to stop at full stops).

Partner check up

Dare to: Keep Greensborough Great!


The Year Two teachers will be working this week to plan and prepare for Term Two.  The next focus for RE/Inquiry learning is going to be called “Dare to: Keep Greensborough Great!”  This inquiry learning will help students develop skills and understandings in the areas of GEOGRAPHY and MAPPING.  Students in Year Two need to develop their understanding of the local community.  Some questions we will be exploring include: What is a place? How are people connected to their place and other places? What factors affect my connections to places?  We will also be exploring the sacred places that are important to our faith tradition, as described in bible stories.

Before planning we always find out what students already know about our focus and any questions they might like to investigate.  The students in 2MS have come up with some great questions about Greensborough and what they would like to learn about geography.

I wonder what the mums and dads would like us to learn about the local community of Greensborough and geography? Your comment would be greatly appreciated 🙂


Flipped Learning: Addition Strategies

Want to get a jump on our next Maths unit?  It is going to be all about ADDITION.

In Year Two:Screen Shot 2016-03-14 at 8.08.11 pm

It is important that we are familiar with ten facts:

We will also be exploring the strategy of bridging through ten:

What other strategies do you know to help solve addition equations? Do you know some facts automatically?

Bridging through ten when counting to 1000

We have just completed a Place Value unit.  There has been a lot of great learning that has happened.  Students have been able to model 3-digit numbers using MAB.  They have developed an understanding of standard form and expanded form (234 = 200 + 30 + 4).  They have used arrow cards to demonstrate that each digit holds a value – especially the internal zero (307 = 3 hundreds, 0 tens and 7 ones).

There is one thing that has been tricky for many of the students in 2MS – counting & writing the next numbers in a sequence, when the numbers are three digits and have to bridge over ten or into the next hundred.  For example, when writing the numbers that come next in a sequence such as 126, 127, 128… many students recorded 129, 200, 300, 400 as the next 4 numbers in the sequence.

Bridging through ten is an important skill.  It would be beneficial for Year Two students to practice counting to 1000 over the holidays.  Here are some resources that could be used to assist your child develop this understanding:

I also have some number charts that can be emailed to parents who are interested.  Let me know in the comments or through Dojo if this may be useful.

Starting our day with God & stillness

We begin each day in 2Ms in our prayer circle and the children are invited to participate in Christian Meditation.  Meditation is a universal spiritual wisdom and a practice that we find at the core of all the great religious traditions, leading from the mind to the heart.  As we gather together in communion with each other, students are asked:

to quieten their bodies. (to quiet the mind; become aware that we are in God’s presence: that God is around us  in this room and God is also inside of you).

to close their eyes. (to sit straight with their spine upright; to breathe normally from their stomach; to breathe slowly in and out)

When they have become quiet, together we say “Come Lord Jesus, ma-ra-na-tha” and the singing bowl is rung.   We remain still and silent until the bowl is rung again.  The prayer is completed with an echo prayer or traditional prayer.


It would be very helpful if all students could be on the line at 8.50am so we enter the class together each morning and our prayer time is not disrupted by students coming in after the first bell.

Many student also find it very difficult to be still during our meditation time, even for 30 seconds.  You may like to encourage your child to practice stillness and meditation at home,  to help them build their stamina to be still.

If you would like to know more about meditation you could check out the Coming home website

A few weeks ago we were also lucky enough to participate in a wellness workshop.  Much of what we practice in our Christian Meditation was spoken about during this time…