Mathematics in grade two builds on what the child has already learned; experience in using math is a process of continuous growth. Although second graders are introduced to new, more complex forms of math, the study of mathematics remains far more concrete than abstract -- numbers stand for something that the children can see.
Children are encouraged to see that mathematics is something logical, not merely a random collection of facts, and that numbers are linked together by relationships that can be grasped. Second graders use math in the course of working with science, cooking, health, social studies, reading, and writing. They are able to read numbers into the hundreds, both as numerals and as words. Their conceptions of ordinal numbers will reach to "twentieth."
The idea of zero will become clearer, and children will use it in their computations. Second graders learn the position of 1s, 10s, and 100s; they gain an understanding of fractions such as 1/4, 1/8, 1/3, 2/3, and 1/10 and their relationship to wholes; they begin to estimate more confidently; they conduct precise measurements in inches, feet, yards, ounces, and pounds; they learn about the calendar -- days, weeks, months, years; they begin using graphs to represent numerical comparisons; and they gain more understanding of money, learning the value of all coins and of one-dollar and five-dollar bills. In grade two, children become increasingly aware of the patterns of mathematics. They also do more computations in the form of word or story problems.
Reprinted from 101 Educational Conversations with Your 2nd Grader by Vito Perrone, published by Chelsea House Publishers
Copyright 1994 by Chelsea House Publishers, a division of Main Line Book Co. All rights reserved.