Writing is an activity that combines many different smaller skills, which is why children at Grade 2 level need lots of time and opportunity to practice writing. Before your second-grade child puts pen to paper, or their fingers on the keyboard, they will need to have a broad vocabulary, skills in grammar and spelling, and finally the confidence in their handwriting and/or typing proficiency, whilst also being knowledgeable in the topic they are writing about.
With this many moving parts, you can see just how difficult writing can be for children in second grade. This is why it is important for teachers and parents to break down these skills and provide children with plenty of activities to enable them to practice and hone their skills.
This article focuses on the skills needed to compose an excellent piece of writing at a second-grade level. We also have supporting articles (coming soon!) on second-grade grammar, spelling and punctuation which will be helpful in guiding you through all of the necessary skills your child needs to become a confident, creative and successful writer at this level.
There are three main text types that children need to compose at Grade 2 level. It is advisable that you prepare your child for this level by surrounding them with as many examples of the following texts as possible:
They should familiarize themselves with the features of these text types and understand the purpose of each one.
When children are composing opinion pieces, there are four key elements that they must include:
If your child can master these key ingredients, then they’ll be in an excellent position to succeed when writing opinion articles in second grade.
Practice Tip: Your child can work through the opinion writing lesson series on nightzookeeper.com to help practice the basics of writing in this genre.
In order to write a great informative piece, your child will first need to acquire the knowledge they need to compose the article, which requires the skills of research and note-taking.
Practice tip: Challenge your child to pick out an informative text at home and write down three key facts they have learnt on each page.
Once they have acquired the knowledge to write their article, they can begin their first draft. Your child should aim to include all of these key features:
It is a great idea to ask your child to label each section of their work to ensure they have included all the necessary features. You can also help your child by providing feedback on their composition, whilst also checking whether they have included the most important facts that they collected during the note-taking phase.
In Grade 2, children are expected to write stories that include a short sequence of events. They are expected to include detail about actions, thoughts, and feelings. Time connectives and openers should be used to show the sequence of events and the story should have a clear ending. They can take inspiration from stories they have read. Often, retelling one of their favorite stories is a perfect place to start their learning journey in this particular genre.
Grade 2 Story Checklist
I have included:
Practice Tip: Challenge your child to write a story on nightzookeeper.com using the story prompts and helpful story openings. This activity will provide your child with the inspiration to get their story started, whilst also the guidance to structure their opening paragraphs in an interesting and varied style.
Nightzookeeper.com is a great place for your child to put into practice the many skills they have learned in first and second grade. There are hundreds of learning activities and games to help your child consolidate their learning and revise some of the most important writing skills. Plus, there are dedicated lessons that are designed to help them develop in the core writing genres that they will focus on at this level.
Grade 2 Spelling
Grade 2 Punctuation