Arithmetic in the Second Grade

What an exciting time it is for the Grade Two class!  Not only have they been hearing a variety of stories about strong men and women, but they’ve also been writing about them and doing so much arithmetic that many children are probably counting in their sleep (by 7’s and 8’s no doubt.)

For the past few weeks, the students have been working with addition problems up into the thousands that require carrying.  Prior to doing all of this work, they were introduced to a gnome who collected gems deep underground, yet could only count them up to ten at a time, for he only had 10 fingers.  This gnome, though, was so smart he built a shelf in his home that had a spot for single gems and when he got 10, he put them in a basket and moved them to a spot for the ‘tens.’  Once he collected 10 baskets of gems, he needed more space, so he bundled them into a sack which were moved to a spot on the shelf for ‘hundreds’, and thus the story went up to ten-thousand.  As you may imagine, it was great fun to actually place gems into baskets and bags, moving them around our own Gnome Shelf.

This work of re-grouping items when adding, was helpful when introducing the concept of re-grouping (or “borrowing” as many of us were taught) when subtracting.  In coming weeks they will continue working on these two processes, as well as becoming acquainted with basic multiplication tables.

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