+ Language Arts

Speaking, reading, listening, and writing skills grow with language development. Mastery of language is a continuum that extends over a number of years and happens for children at different ages depending on their maturation, experience, and language background. Seven-and eight-year-olds vary in their rates of language development. The reading and writing curriculum adapts to individual needs that range from early reading to relatively advanced comprehension and vocabulary.

A set of B-VIII Grade standards provides the framework for our work in language arts. Below are listed some of the goals we have for Second Grade students in Language Arts over the course of the year. These are by no means all of the topics we cover, but rather an overview of some of the skills we expect children to master by the spring.

  • Chooses a book that is appropriate for their reading level
  • Knows all regular letter/sound correspondences
  • Decodes phonetically regular one and two-syllable words
  • Knows common word endings (ed, ing, plurals) and uses them to decode/use words in context
  • Reads at least the first 500 words from the high-frequency word list accurately and automatically
  • Reads grade-level text aloud accurately
  • Reads with comprehension
  • Generates ideas for writing
  • Forms printed letters from top to bottom
  • Sequences stories in an organized manner
  • Rereads own writing to others
  • Includes details in her/his writing
  • Spells at least 130 of the most frequently used words conventionally
  • Uses terminal punctuation and basic capitalization
Reading is taught individually and in small and whole groups, with the use of literature-based, phonetic and sight word approaches. Individual reading books, series readers, games, and worksheets are used to develop specific skills. Children are encouraged to choose their own books at appropriate reading levels from classroom and library collections. During individual reading conferences with teachers, children discuss the content of their reading, strategies for identifying unfamiliar words, and understanding of passages. They learn to read with expression and to critically evaluate content. Teachers read-aloud stories, poems, and factual books both to expose children to a variety of genres and to foster a love of books and reading.

We strive to help children use writing as a powerful means of communicating their ideas, imagination, and feelings. Children write on a daily basis in a variety of forms. Each child maintains a writing folder to promote the organization of ideas and technical skills. In the Writers’ Workshop, children explore topic selection, descriptive detail, character development, and the components of story. They engage in the writing process: drafting, revising, editing and publishing.

Phonics, Spelling, and Handwriting
The students participate in Fundations, an integrated multisensory program, each day for thirty minutes. The daily lessons build on the students’ prior knowledge while encouraging the growth of their skills in the areas of phonemic awareness, word study, vocabulary, handwriting, spelling, fluency, and comprehension.
617.520.5260      178 Coolidge Hill  Cambridge MA 02138           Association of Independent Schools in New England