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moving to 2nd grade


Junior Member
Hi everyone,
I am moving to 2nd grade next year and was wondering if anyone can tell me things that I can't live without as a 2nd grade teacher. I have only taught 4th so I am nervous and excited about moving down. So any advice or items that I need to get, please fill me in. I want to be prepared for the little ones!




Senior Member
Me, too!


I'm moving to 2nd from 4th, too. I'm like you...excited and nervous at the same time. Fortunately, the second grade team at my school has been wonderful to share resources, ideas, etc. One of the things that I've been told I need lots of are leveled books. Many of the math manipulatives for 4th can easily be used in 2nd. I look forward to seeing others responses to your question.



Debbie Miller's Reading with Meaning is a good book to model your language program on. Our primary teachers are all using it.

Eli O.

2nd grade

I've taught 2nd grade for 7 years. I would definitely suggest a Word Wall, leveled books also, and lots of books obviously. Second grade is fun and the kids are enthusiastic (a little too much sometimes). Throughout the years I've supplemented my units with a lot of arts projects--they love it!
The math manipulatives are a MUST. I've learned that a 5-10 minute math warm-up every day works wonders, especially with time and money. Just do it from day 1 and they will be so good at it at by the end of the year!!
As far as behavior, have a good plan is system because they are hyper. They work well with routines and need a lot of listening skills!
Oh--wipe boards and dry-erase markers if you can get them
We are using the Six Traits for writing.

Hope this helps!!
Good luck!


Senior Member
Second Grade needs

Remember, they have just finished first grade and will not have any of the skills you see at the beginning of the year in fourth grade. Morning meetings are really important at this age. This will set the tone for the rest of the day. Many times the kids really need to share something with the class and this is a great time to get that done.
I use chalk boards a lot, but I noticed the poster before me suggested dry erase boards. Which ever you prefer, make sure you have lots of markers or chalk and maybe they have an old sock in their desk to erase the boards. I use these for sight word, word family work, DOL and when we are working on new math concepts. This way each child is responsible for their own work and I can see quickly if they have the problem correct or not.
Big books are still good for this age. Big writing pads are too. The 2ft x 3ft size. I use a spiral notebook for journals. They are looking really nasty now, and I am deciding if I want to use them again, or go another route next year.
Manipulatives, lots of them for math. I use the plastic ties that comes on bread and buns for mine. They come free with the bread and I can always get the kitchen staff to save them for me. Since the beginning math is working addition and subtraction from 1 - 20, if you have a small class, it doesn't take long to get them saved.
I'm starting to ramble, just have fun with the little ones. You will wonder why you taught older children!


Senior Member

I second the poster who said Debbie Miller's book... I integrated all my second grade curriculum with it. It is AWESOME.

Also-- like a different poster said, morning meetings are key. I recommend the responsive classroom's Morning Meeting book. It outlines all the components of a good morning meeting and even has some great appendices from which you can choose some really new and creative community building games and fresh ideas for ways to greet each other in the morning.

Any book on organizing a reader's workshop are helpful too.

Second grade is not nearly as paper pencil as fourth, so anything you can do to provide the kids with ways to show their learning in a more hands on way will keep thier attention and help you see what they know. (i.e. small wipe boards, manipulatives, journals, reading response journals, teaching them sign language for yes and no, etc...) I also agree with someone else who said you need big books. They are perfect for reinforcing decoding strategies as well as comprehension strategies.

One more thing-- you probably already have a lot of good picture books from fourth, but just make sure you have some that really have meat to them. They are what I exculsively use to teach comprehension strategies. All of the ones that Debbie Miller suggests in her book are awesome.

Good luck!! :D