The start of second grade is ripe with opportunities for building long-lasting positive school behaviors and attitudes. Time spent building relationships and establishing social and academic expectations can pay dividends all year long.
Using a rich collection of diverse picture books to support this work lays the foundation for a classroom culture of appreciation and acceptance.
The Building Classroom Community Unit for Second Grade consists of eight read alouds and provides a structured approach for this important work, yet the lessons are flexible enough for you to teach language and behaviors specific to your students’ population, preferences, and goals. Each lesson is intended for multiple days so that from the beginning students are exposed to close reading and the value of multiple readings. We believe the first eight read alouds, or roughly the first two months of school, are critical to setting the tone of your classroom community, read aloud procedures, and expectations for engagement.
This unit combines relationship-building opportunities with direct instruction and guided practice in the art of thoughtful conversation. Then, by closely studying a variety of engaging protagonists, students learn to use characters’ thoughts, words, and actions to gather information about their emotions and goals. Discussions structured around graphic organizers, such as two-column charts and concept webs, help students begin to make connections between characters’ actions and the pro-social behaviors present in a strong classroom community.
Each lesson may be used as a stand alone, but we hope that using these books as a broad unit will help lay the foundation for a strong classroom community with strong learning expectations. We designed the unit to spiral. Additionally, each lesson and book can be adapted for other grades (and we hope you will do this!).
Book extension activities encourage exploration of these topics through writing, drama, and art, as well as lay the foundation for collaborative learning during your year.
Here’s to a meaningful year of reading!
Download the FREE Building Classroom Community Unit for Second Grade here
- FULL Unit
- Lesson 1 with The Hula-Hoopin’ Queen
- Lesson 2 with Grandfather Counts
- Lesson 3 with First Day in Grapes
- Lesson 4 with Strong to the Hoop
- Lesson 5 with Willie Wins
- Lesson 6 with Lend a Hand: Poems About Giving
- Lesson 7 with Under the Lemon Moon
- Lesson 8 with I Know the River Loves Me
Further reading on teaching literacy in SECOND GRADE
- How to Compare and Contrast in Second Grade
- Using Dual Language Books in Second Grade
- What Does Close Reading Look Like in Second Grade?
Guided Reading Collections from Bebop Books