This year, Earth Day is on April 22nd. We had the pleasure of commemorating this day with the guidance of Mrs. Blake. We began by praying together and then sitting in quiet meditation. Then, Mrs. Blake read aloud, Reschenka's Eggs, a story about a magical goose that Babushka saves, and their beautiful eggs. Then, with the help of Mrs. Salaiz, we took some time to paint eggs of our own. While we waited for them to dry in the sun, Mrs. Blake shared the Pope's Earth Day video with us. We learned that it important to take care of our Earth because it is our home. We also discussed the importance of Earth's natural resources. Afterwards, we took our painted eggs and turned them into biodegradable pots by planting lettuce seeds in them. Before we ended our day, we wrote a reflection about our Earth Day activities in our journals. It was a great day!
The planters in our garden have different types of soil. Each student made a hypothesis about which type of soil would grow the best and biggest plants. We made observations and measured the the plants. We will go back to the garden soon to check on the plants' progress.
We celebrated Thanksgiving a little early, but what a celebraton it was! With the help of our loving parent volunteers, we had the best 2nd grade feast yet. We started off in our Community Circle and shared what we are thankful for: our family, friends, good food, and good health were among them. Then we got creative and made a turkey mask! After, the feast was served. We ate baked chicken, mashed potatoes, gravy, corn, pumpkin pie and chocolate chip cookies. MmMmMmmm.... It was delicious! We really enjoyed our 2nd grade Thanksgiving feast.
Our trip to Chinatown was a huge success! Thank you so much to the parents and Mrs. Lamadrid for keeping our Second Grade Stars safe and happy. Our tour guide, Linda, was fun and lively. She took us on a trek up and down the hilly streets and through small alleyways. First we visited a Chinese herbal pharmacy, where people can go to buy herbs and teas to help cure any ailment. Did you know that an herbalist can tell how healthy you are by looking at your tongue? After that, we visited a small fortune cookie factory where we got a quick glimpse at how fortune cookies are stuffed and folded. We learned that fortune cookies were invented by a Japanese man who worked at a Chinese restaurant long ago. Did you know that you can get fortune cookies at any Chinese restaurant around the world now... except in China?! After getting a taste of a flat fortune cookie, we moved on to a Chinese market. There, people can buy tropical fruits and vegetables, meats, seafood, and other everyday things.
Next, we passed by small souvenir shops, restaurants and bakeries while on our way to a Chinese school. This school was actually the Chinese school that Linda attended as a child every afternoon, AFTER going to regular American School during the day! While we took a water break at the steps of the Chinese school, Linda taught us how to read the Chinese characters for a few words like, one, two, three, four, man, big, house, door, and horse. Our next stop of the tour was at a Buddhist temple. Linda taught us about Siddhartha, his quest to find the meaning of life and how he came to be known as Buddha. Linda also showed us how to use these fortune sticks... Now I have to translate my fortune poem as homework! After our tour, Linda took us to our final destination: the restaurant! We had a delightful lunch: vegetarian egg rolls, chicken chow mien, fried rice, stir fried vegetables, beef with broccoli, and of course, fortune cookies!
I hope this trip has opened our 2nd graders' eyes into the history of our neighbors in Chinatown and how life is like today in that historical San Francisco district. Maybe your family can visit there soon!
We took a nice stroll through the neighborhood to the Tracy Historical Museum with our 6th grade buddies. We saw so many aritfactd that showed us what life in Tracy was like in the past. We even saw photographs of the original St. Bernard's Church.
Ms. King is the second grade teacher at St. Bernard's Catholic School. Her favorite treat is chocolate chip cookies.