Marie Altavilla

Marie Altavilla



“Focus on the whole person, teach the lesson and touch the heart…above all, teach your children about God’s love for them! Set your gaze on the future and strive to fit young people for the world in which they are destined to live.” ~ Betty Ann McNeil, D.C. on the teachings of St. Elizabeth Ann Seton

It is with great excitement that I begin my second year at Bishop Dunn teaching second grade! Although I have a special love for Fine Arts, my teaching background is in elementary education, especially in the primary grades.  I look forward to working with you and your children for this very special year of learning and growing in both wisdom and grace.


Welcome to Second Grade

The second grade religion program prepares the children for their first celebration of the sacraments of Penance and Eucharist.

The reading/language arts program focuses on the development and encouragement of fluent readers, articulate writers and speakers, and discerning listeners and viewers.

The math program stresses the child's need to know basic facts and skills, and provides reading strategies for problem solving.

The science program is based on the National Science Education Standards and NY State Science Framework. The second grade skills areas are Live Science - Plants, Animals, Fossils; Physical Science - Matter, Sounds, Heat, and Light, Force, Magnets and Electricity; Earth Science - The Earth, Weather and Seasons, The Solar System; Human Body - How Your Body Works, Nutrition, Keeping Healthy.

The social studies program helps the children explore their world and see how they can contribute as individuals. The key Social Studies strands are Citizenship, Culture, Economics, Geography, Government, History, Science and Technology.


The main goal for incoming second graders is to inspire an enjoyment of reading and to encourage regular reading habits.


Summer is a time for students to focus on reading what interests them the most!


A great goal for this summer would be to read at least one to two books per week.


Parents, it is wonderful to read to and with your child, I totally encourage this! Also, if possible, try to ‘set them free’ for a bit to read, then circle back and ask some simple comprehension questions (Who is the main character? Where did the story take place? What was a problem the characters encountered?) This will give your child independence but, then you can be sure that he or she has understood and retained the information read!


Your child’s ‘homework’ for this summer is simple! Pick a character from a favorite book and complete a ‘character sketch’ on him or her. Please check your recent emails from school to get instructions on how log in to you child’s google classroom. There, you will find the assignment and grading rubric for this activity.


Below, you will find some of my favorite authors and series. Your child’s character sketch does not have to be from one of these authors or series, these are just some suggestions.



Tomie dePaola (he’s my absolute favorite of all time!)

Ted Arnold

Marc Brown

Kevin Henkes

Leo Lionni

Peter Reynolds

Amy Krouse Rosenthal

Linda Kranz

Cynthia Rylant

Mark Teague



Series :

Caldecott Winning Books

Step Into Reading

Junie B. Jones

Ready to Read Books

Henry and Mudge

Magic Treehouse

Horrible Harry

Frog and Toad

Who Will Win? 


1 box Crayola Twistable colored pencils (12 pack)

2 boxes standard No. 2 pencils (Ticonderoga)

2 plastic two-pocket folders, both with prongs in the middle, please.

1 Mead Primary notebook (half page for writing with dotted lines, and the top half should have a blank space for illustrations)

1 standard size supply box, no bigger than 9 in x 5 inches and easy to open hard case, please

1 pair of scissors

2 pack of glue sticks 

2 boxes of tissues (I may ask for more in January)

1 container of Clorox/Lysol disinfecting wipes (just the boys, please)

1 small can of spray Lysol (just the girls, please)

2 containers of baby wipes

$7 cash or check to BDMS for Scholastic Weekly Magazine       

  ** I have spent some time in the classroom  this summer, and there are many brand new left over items from years past. I want to use these items this year and cut down on what you have to purchase :). Thank you for your time, help, and support.