Chess – We spent much time learning new chess words/tactics. We practiced the Italian Opening and 2 Knights Defense. We also discussed/observed tactics such as forks, pins, and skewers. For a drill we played Black Queen vs. White Pawns. The Queen should ALWAYS win this game using forks and attacking from behind/side. It’s a good drill to help one understand the power of the queen as well as using a pawn structure for defense.
Chess words: Fork, Pin, Skewer – discussed/observed) (Fianchetto, Zugzwang – briefly mentioned)
Math Maven - Math Maven mysteries incorporate reading comprehension as well as math/logic to solve a mystery. Today’s mystery incorporated a sense of logic as well as understanding the concept of multiplication/division. Since today was our first Math Maven mystery, students solved the mystery in groups. Although today’s mystery involved division (a concept foreign to many 2nd graders), we discussed having the ability to solve the mystery using skills we possess: logic, skip counting, illustrations, etc.
PBL – How can we design the best habitats for animals in local zoos or aquariums? After reviewing the desert and arctic tundra, student groups worked to compare/contrast the 2 biomes. Groups of three decided jobs among themselves: researcher, writer, presenter. Students collaborated to find animals in each biome, find commonalities/differences between deserts & arctic tundra, and present their findings to the class.