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Second Grade: Math Small Groups

January 27, 2021 | Melia McHugh

Second Graders have been working in small groups in Math. Students may be working at 2 or 3 different stations during Math. They are seamlessly moving between Teacher’s Group, using IXL on the computer, and playing games to practice and reinforce the concepts that they have been learning.

Here, a student uses her Clever badge to log onto the platform that we use at school and at home. On Clever, she can access the Seesaw app, Kidz A-Z (for reading), and IXL.


On IXL, she can choose from many activities that have been assigned by the teacher to practice past skills and to reinforce concepts currently being taught in the classroom. As she works, she will earn points toward a reward or badge. The app also gives teachers feedback on how each student is doing on the skills being practiced. This allows the teachers to focus on areas where the student may need further skill reinforcement.


Students also have a chance to work in a small group for direct instruction from the teacher. Here, students are working on story problems with an “unknown change”.


Second Graders have been working on several strategies to solve story problems. On the left, this student has written an equation and used a number line to solve an addition and subtraction problem. On the right, she used “Sticker Notation”. Here, a line represents a group of ten and a dot represents a single unit.


A favorite station in the classroom, is playing a game. Many of the games in our math curriculum can be played individually or with a partner. A new game to us in the past week is “Collect $1.00”. Students roll 2 dice and record the sum of the roll. They are also collecting coins of the same value as the roll. On their next turn, they add together the total that they rolled and then add it to their previous total. They are trying to reach 100 cents, or $1.00, while collecting coins of an equal value. Ask your child what their favorite math game is to play. Maybe they could even teach you how to play!


Melia McHugh

Teacher, Grade 2 Forests Class

Melia McHugh first started working with young children at a private school that cared for children from infancy through third grade while in her early teens. She enjoyed her experience working with all age groups, especially her time during college when she taught arts and crafts to kindergarten through third grade students during the summer camp season. After completing a degree in Anthropology and working as a trainer in the Human Resources industry, Ms. McHugh returned to her first passion and got a degree to teach and work with children again. After seven years of teaching high school social studies, Ms. McHugh decided to stay home with her two children.

Ms. McHugh and her husband discovered Mustard Seed School when it was time for their oldest son to enter kindergarten. Soon after he started school, she started to substitute teach at Mustard Seed and later worked part-time in the Nest and as a maternity leave replacement in grades four and five. Ms. McHugh enjoys watching every child, including two of her sons, thrive in the community and environment that Mustard Seed excels at providing for each and every student. When not at work, Ms. McHugh enjoys spending time at the beach or outdoors with her husband and three sons. Ms. McHugh also loves history, reading, and resting.

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