It’s December! There are just a few weeks until winter break and I am here to share my plans with you for the upcoming weeks. I chose the following themes and you can check everything out in my FREE downloadable December lesson plans for 2nd grade:
- Winter Holidays
- Trees and Traditions
- The New Year
Teaching in December
There has definitely been a shift in my mindset about balancing December themes while being sensitive and inclusive to the different cultures inside and outside my classroom. I gave careful thought to my planning. I won’t be abandoning Christmas altogether because my students do celebrate and it would be remiss to pretend like it doesn’t exist within the four walls of my classroom.
However, the focus, as always, will be learning and sharing. In addition, I will be sprinkling some holiday cheer throughout the day in the form of read-alouds, math activities, and centers. Here’s what my plans look like:
This first week back from Thanksgiving is going to be all about winter holidays with a focus on Hanukkah
. I was fortunate to have a student last year who celebrated Hanukkah and wanted to share it with the class. He came in and taught a lesson about the history of Hanukkah, his traditions. We played Dreidel and he even brought in gelt for everyone! It was really special!
As we read books and informational passages, we will focus on the features of fiction/nonfiction text, connections, and using context clues to figure out unknown words.
In writing, students will design a holiday sweater
and write a descriptive piece. For grammar, we will review proper nouns
, homophones, and compound words–a little whole group but mostly in centers. Since we are off today and I planned for 5 days, I left a little flexibility in there. Our week is sure to fill up with extra activities (i.e. testing, assemblies ect.) so I likely won’t get to everything.
This week is the one I am most excited about! I just LOVE all the beautiful books about evergreen trees. One additional book I forgot to include that I love to read is Night Tree by Eve Bunting. It goes PERFECTLY with Winter at Long Pond. It was a happy accident I stumbled upon last year and I made sure to snap a picture of the book so I wouldn’t forget about it this year.
We will work A LOT with vocabulary
, more text features, and activating background knowledge. For grammar, we will review verbs and phonics will be all about vowel teams ai and ay
. Lastly, for writing, students will share their favorite traditions.
So it may look like I am getting ahead of myself focusing on New Year’s Eve/Day before it even happens BUT hear me out. Also, I am all about getting ahead by prepping our New Year’s bulletin BEFORE we leave for break. I don’t want to have to get back in January and feel like I need to take down all the Christmas/December stuff. My team will be doing Christmas Around the World this week as well so I am not totally skipping it.
Lastly, here are my math plans for the month. We have been working on 2-digit addition and I have s l o w l y introduced regrouping. We will take another week to work on it then move on to telling time. If needed, we will revisit it again before moving on to 3-digit addition in January. I also left the entire week before the break as flexible as possible so we can review as needed.
Phew! Ready or not, it’s time to go back and make it a memorable three weeks!