2nd Grade Arts
Drama: The foundation of drama in 2nd grade is formed from curriculum-enhancing scripts designed for elementary school aged children. Students stage and perform them in the drama room theater, giving our 2nd graders the opportunity to experience preparing a show to “readiness.” The essential acting skill of responsive listening is practiced in scenes and theater games that strengthen students’ ability to recognize, depict, and respond to an array of emotions. Movement work and storytelling connect to other classroom activities and curriculum. Voice and articulation, as well as maintaining posture and making oneself seen and heard, are constant themes.
Art: In 2nd grade, studying other artists is incorporated into the curriculum. Their first project, inspired by Sophie Taeuber-Arp, Jean Arp, and Alma Thomas involves manipulating paper to get a specific shape by tearing or combining it. Students also make a skull rattle using newspaper and plaster that ties into their studies of Dia de los Muertos. During a unit on printmaking, students learn how to create a reduction print inspired by one of the animals they are studying in their social studies “travels.” As they study Japanese artist Yoshitomo Nara, students gain inspiration from her work to incorporate musical instruments into their oil pastels. Second graders also create a self-portrait blending colors using chalk pastels, continue to practice mixing colors, and work on incorporating different tones into their work.
Music: Music at Mark Day School is an outlet that promotes creativity, inspiration, positivity, empathy, community, self-expression, self-esteem, and fun! The K-3 music program is based on the practice of Orff Schulwerk, a holistic approach to music education developed by the composer Carl Orff and his colleague, Gunild Keetman. We are grounded in the premise that every child is innately musical and naturally loves to play, sing, and dance. This methodology enables every child to find their place within a dynamic, engaging, and creative learning environment. Special Orff instruments include xylophones that offer immediate quality sound. Played together in a small orchestra, their use helps children become sensitive listeners and considerate participants leading up to five-part Orff orchestrations and original compositions. We also support children’s discovery and invite them to include piano, guitar, ukulele, and any other instrument that ignites their curiosity. Our music curriculum is sequential and standards-based, aligned with project-based learning and Responsive Classroom, multi-cultural and socially relevant, integrated with the academic curriculum, accessible to aural, visual, and kinesthetic learners, and most of all – collaborative.
In 2nd grade, students shift their focus for the year to a specific study of jazz. They listen to music and watch videos by Miles Davis, Nina Simone, Louis Armstrong, Ella Fitzgerald, Billie Holiday, and more. They study the origin and development of this genre and compare its sounds to modern music they hear on popular radio today. Then, students learn jazz compositions on Orff instruments, utilizing the five part Orff model to explore this genre, complete with walk up drones, improvisations, and jazz scatting.
- 2nd Grade