COMMON CORE STANDARDS
Reading Informational Text
RI.2.1 Ask and answer such questions as who, what, where, when, why, and how to demonstrate understanding of key details in a text.
RI.2.2 Identify the main topic of a multiparagraph text as well as the focus of specific paragraphs within the text.
RI.2.3 Describe the connection between a series of historical events, scientific ideas or concepts, or steps in technical procedures in a text.
RI.2.4 Determine the meaning of words and phrases in a text relevant to a grade 2 topic or subject area.
RI.2.7 Explain how specific images (e.g., a diagram showing how a machine works) contribute to and clarify a text.
RI.2.9 Compare and contrast the most important points presented by two texts on the same topic.
RI.2.10 By the end of year, read and comprehend informational texts, including history/social studies, science, and technical texts, in the grades 2-3 text complexity band proficiently, with scaffolding as needed at the high end of the range.
W.2.2 Write informative/explanatory texts in which they introduce a topic, use facts and definitions to develop points, and provide a concluding statement or section.
W.2.5 With guidance and support from adults and peers, focus on a topic and strengthen writing as needed by revising and editing.
W.2.8 Recall information from experiences or gather information from provided sources to answer a question.
Speaking and Listening
SL.2.1 Participate in collaborative conversations with diverse partners about grade 2 topics and texts with peers and adults in small and larger groups.
SL.2.1(a) Follow agreed-upon rules for discussions (e.g., gaining the floor in respectful ways, listening to others with care, speaking one at a time about the topics and texts under discussion).
SL.2.1(b) Build on others’ talk in conversations by linking their comments to the remarks of others.
SL.2.1(c) Ask for clarification and further explanation as needed about the topics and texts under discussion.
SL.2.2 Recount or describe key ideas or details from a text read aloud or information presented orally or through other media.
SL.2.3 Ask and answer questions about what a speaker says in order to clarify comprehension, gather additional information, or deepen understanding of a topic or issue.
SL.2.5 Create audio recordings of stories or poems; add drawings or other visual displays to stories or recounts of experiences when appropriate to clarify ideas, thoughts, and feelings.
SL.2.6 Produce complete sentences when appropriate to task and situation in order to provide requested detail or clarification.
L.2.4 Determine or clarify the meaning of unknown and multiple-meaning words and phrases based on grade 2 reading and content, choosing flexibly from an array of strategies.
L.2.5 Demonstrate understanding of word relationships and nuances in word meanings.
L.2.5(a) Identify real-life connections between words and their use (e.g., describe foods that are spicy or juicy).
L.2.6 Use words and phrases acquired through conversations, reading and being read to, and responding to texts, including using adjectives and adverbs to describe (e.g., When other kids are happy that makes me happy).
DESCRIPTION OF UNIT
This Grade 2 unit titled “Listening Strand: Cycles in Nature” from engageny.org is intended to be completed in thirteen 1-hour lessons of integrated language arts and science instruction. The emphasis is on having students routinely draw evidence from scientific texts while listening to teacher read alouds. Speaking and listening skills are further developed through discussions in whole and small group settings. Activities help students gain background information on cycles in nature.
Connecticut teachers should be aware that teacher notes and preparation materials are extensive and will require familiarity to be used effectively. The unit would be enhanced with additional supports for students who are ELL or have disabilities. Instruction and activities within the unit do address all of the Common Core standards listed; however, in the summative assessment students are only evaluated on domain/academic vocabulary and core Science content. Teachers using this unit will need to create a more comprehensive assessment with an aligned rubric that provides sufficient guidance for interpreting student performance in all areas.
RATIONALE FOR SELECTION
This unit is a useful example of a how to build students’ content knowledge in science and their understanding of reading, writing, speaking and listening through the coherent selection of texts and classroom activities. Lessons provide detailed directions and materials needed for instruction.