Class and Activity Descriptions
Every day begins with a devotional reading and prayer time in the classroom. Students and teachers attend a special, age-appropriate chapel every Wednesday morning. It is a time of worship with song and Bible teaching from our Spiritual Life Director. Our Bible curriculum is Finding God’s Promises, Positive Action for Christ. The life of Moses is the major emphasis of this curriculum. Bible verses are given weekly for memorization. Godly character is also taught and students are encouraged to follow in the footsteps of Christ in everything they say and do.
Donelson Christian Academy knows the importance of a strong, balanced literacy program. Teachers incorporate guided reading, self-selected reading, writing and working with words to provide a program that meets the needs of all students.
The Scott Foresman Reading Street series is used as a basal text in second grade. The six units cover responsibility, exploration, traditions, creative ideas, our changing world, and working together and are 50% fiction and 50% nonfiction. Progress is monitored on five success predictors: phonemic awareness, phonics, fluency, vocabulary, and comprehension. Weekly story assessments and fluency fresh reads are given. The program provides a connection with leveled readers that teach science and social studies standards. The basal text, leveled readers, and assessments are all available online for teachers to assign for student and parent access.
Star Read is used to assess reading levels through the year. It provides each student with a reading range, an individualized program and goals. Accelerated Reader is used to track the goals set and as a reading incentive. Renaissance for AR testing is used. Renaissance Home Connect is provided for school-to-home connection. This allows parents and students to log in and view their child’s reading practice and progress toward the goals. Parents receive emails with automatic updates on their student’s progress.
Scott Foresman writing, grammar, research and study skills are all connected and taught daily to coincide with each week’s literature selection. Sentences, nouns, pronouns, verbs, adjectives, capitalization, and punctuation are taught throughout the units. A unit assessment is given to check mastery. The students learn to write a personal narrative, a descriptive writing, and to write to express an opinion. The writing process is a wonderful part of the second grade program. The students culminate the year by writing their own hardcover book. The complete writing process is followed from rough draft to final copy.
The Envision Math program by Scott Foresman is used in second grade. This program challenges the children in the areas of reasoning and problem solving. There are many opportunities through technology to engage the student in learning at home and school. Many hands-on materials are also used in math instruction. Star Math is used to assess individualized math levels and skill mastery throughout the year. The Accelerated Math program is used in the classroom and at home to provide personalized practice assignments, including math skills and math facts, based on student performance.
The Accelerated Math program is used in the classroom and at home to provide personalized practice assignments based on student performance.
The MacMillan/McGraw-Hill science curriculum is taught at DCA in first through fifth grades. The three main units of study in grade two are Life Science, Earth Science, and Physical Science. The program provides a variety of inquiry experiences and fosters conceptual understanding. The students enjoy the online practice and activities that are narrated and animated with interactive quizzes. Leveled book selections provide multi-level science content in trade book format and allow for small group or one-on-one instruction of essential concepts. Hands-on activities are ongoing throughout each chapter. Assessments are given at the end of each chapter and unit. An “Invention Convention” is held every spring, following a mini-unit about American inventors.
The People and Places series by Scott Foresman is used which contains geographical skills such as maps, globes, symbols, location/direction, and landforms. Students explore the geography, history, culture, and economics of the state of Tennessee, along with the steps the government and the advancement in technology will have on peoples’ lives. Unit reviews and creative hands-on activities contain questions and goals that encourage critical thinking. Tests are used to monitor student progress and to promote success on standardized testing.
Promethean boards, ActiVotes, and iPads are used in second grade to provide interactive learning. Teachers are able to provide practice for newly introduced skills and a challenge in every area of study for those students who need to work at an accelerated pace. Testing is accurate, more frequent, and skill specific with these tools.
When second grade students attend library/media classes they are instructed in two different areas. First they explore the nonfiction section of the library and learn how these books are arranged on the shelf. Second, they learn beginning technology skills which includes beginning research and mastery of a drawing program. They use the drawing program to create a product that presents that information gathered from research.
Zaner-Bloser Handwriting is used and proper letter formation, spacing, and slant are emphasized. This is a continuation of the instruction used in our first grade classrooms. Cursive writing is taught at the beginning of the second nine-week term in second grade.
Special Events and Activities
- Gentry Farm (life cycle of plants)
- Native American Presentations and Feast (history)
- Children’s Theatre
- Discovery Center (study of animals)
- Tennessee Agricultural Center (history)
- Dr. Seuss Literature Week
- Poetry Week