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Article Summary: "This is a critical learning time for children and very important for parents to keep an open line of communication with the teacher so that the work can be supported at home as well. Keep math fun!"

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What Math Concepts are taught in Second Grade?

Second grade is a very impressionable time for children and this is usually when they begin to master their addition and subtraction. Normally this is when they are introduced to double and triple digits. Most will begin learning the most basic fraction problems. Fractions at that basic level would include learning what a half is, a quarter is, a third and so on. Second grade math includes use of ordinal numbers to 100th, comparing and ordering whole numbers to 1000, and will also learn the grouping of numbers.

Second grade curriculum includes counting by 2s, 3s, 5s, 10's, 25, 50s and 100s. They will also master counting backwards starting with various numbers. The concept of odd versus even numbers is conquered as well as the ability to recognize money values by adding various coins that would equal one dollar. By the end of the year second grade math students should remember addition and subtraction facts from memory.

Second grade math students learn which units are best to use when measuring something such as inches, centimeters, feet, miles or kilometers. Further they will also learn such things as linear dimensions, weight, capacity, and temperature. Second grade also teaches the measurement of time using clocks and calendars. They are taught the concepts of minutes, half-hours, hours, days, weeks, months, and years. Using both Fahrenheit and Celsius thermometers, second grade math students learn to demonstrate an understanding of temperatures.

Second grade also teaches the children the basic use of a calculator and how to predict and create patterns. Second grade math students learn to identify real-world patterns that are repeating, rotational, tessellating, and patchwork. They use the symbols >, =, and <. During this time they will learn to answer math questions that are posed with multiple choice answers and the very basics on reading and interpreting simple graphs and charts. This is also a time for the second grade children to be introduced to probability at its most basic levels. Basically at this point they would just determine whether or not an event is certain, probable or impossible. Posed with various circumstances such as coin tosses, for example, children will determine if events are equally likely, most likely, or least likely to occur.

The basic concept of math is about problem solving. When children are given math problems and allowed to come up with a chance to figure out the problem themselves they usually do quite well. Second graders tend to do better if math problems are read to them. For example they would be asked if 5 + 7 is the same as 7 + 5. Then they should be allowed to explain why they know that the solution is correct. Then they should be allowed to justify their answers. Second graders seem to do very well with visual reasoning. For example if you have a bag of candy and they can actually see the results of dividing the bag between friends. If there is a bag of 30 pieces of candy and they divide the bag in half with their friend then they are only left with 15 pieces for themselves. Lessons such as this produce very good results.

This is a critical learning time for children and very important for parents to keep an open line of communication with the teacher so that the work can be supported at home as well. Keep math fun! Play games like, I'm thinking of a number.....it's less than___ and more than____ etc. Take your child grocery shopping and let them see transactions that deal with cash money. Allow the child opportunities to estimate and predict outcomes to see if they are right or not.