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Journeys 2

nd
Grade
Daily Journal Prompts
High-level Thinking Questions
Developed by Mr. Rice, 2
nd
Grade Teacher, Pittsburgh, PA
Explanation
With the implementation of the rigorous Common Core
Standards, it is important that students learn how to answer
difficult questions in writing at an early age. These daily
journal prompt questions correspond with the stories in the
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Journeys series for 2
nd
grade. The
questions for each story are based on Blooms Taxonomy, and
are scaffolded by difficulty, starting with a comprehension
question on the first day of the lesson, then moving to
application, analyzing, evaluating, and synthesizing. Enjoy!
Rules for Daily Writing
Always writing in paragraph form (indent).
Begin with a topic sentence that restates the question, and end
with a closing sentence.
Your journals should be at least 6 sentences long.
Be sure to proofread for spelling and punctuation, and make
sure it makes sense. You are not finished until you correct any
mistakes.
Use your neatest handwriting.
When sharing with the class, use a loud speaking voice.
When others are sharing, listen quietly.
Henry and Mudge
Day 1- Understanding
Describe a time that you wanted
something very badly. What did you
want, and how did you try to
convince someone to get it for you?
Henry and Mudge
Day 2- Applying
If you were Henrys parents, what
questions would you ask him before
agreeing to get him a dog?
Henry and Mudge
Day 3- Analyzing
What are some of the problems
Henrys family may come across if
they decide to get a large dog?
Henry and Mudge
Day 4- Evaluating
Do you agree with the decision that
Henrys parents made to get a large
dog for Henry? Defend your position
(or tell why you agree or disagree).
Henry and Mudge
Day 5- Synthesizing
What would happen if Henrys
parents decided not to get him a pet?
My Family
Day 1- Understanding
Take a picture walk through the
story My Family. What are some
differences between your family and
the family in the text?
My Family
Day 2- Applying
How would you use a family tree to
learn more about a persons family?
My Family
Day 3- Analyzing
What conclusions can you draw
about the family in the text? (What
things can you tell about the family
that the author does not say?)
My Family
Day 4- Evaluating
Do you believe that the family in the
story is similar to the families where
you live? Why or why not?
My Family
Day 5- Synthesizing
What changes would you make to
this story if it were about your own
family?
Henry and Mudge Under
the Yellow Moon
Day 1- Understanding
Take a picture walk through Henry
and Mudge Under the Yellow Moon.
Tell what youThink is happening
from the pictures and the title.
Henry and Mudge Under
the Yellow Moon
Day 2- Applying
How would the information in this
story be useful if you had a visitor
coming to stay with you?
Henry and Mudge Under
the Yellow Moon
Day 3- Analyzing
How was this story similar to the
first Henry and Mudge book that we
read in lesson 1?
Henry and Mudge Under
the Yellow Moon
Day 4- Evaluating
How would you compare the
characters in this story to the people
in your family?
Henry and Mudge Under
the Yellow Moon
Day 5- Synthesizing
Create the next chapter in Henry
and Mudge Under the Yellow
Moon.
Diary of a Spider
Day 1- Understanding
Describe a book, movie, or television
show in which a character changed
from the beginning to the end.
Diary of a Spider
Day 2- Application
Spider did not do very well in the
vacuum drill. What would you tell
Spider to help him better prepare for
the next vacuum drill?
Diary of a Spider
Day 3- Analyzing
What is the relationship between
Spider and Fly? How does it change
throughout the story?
Diary of a Spider
Day 4- Evaluating
Do you agree with the actions of
Spider when he gives him a piece of
his lunch? Why or why not?
Diary of a Spider
Day 5- Evaluating
In gym class, Spider learned how to
use his silk to sail to far away places,
but he had a difficult time. Can you
invent a better way to teach Spider
how to travel to far away places?
Teachers Pets
Day 1- Understanding
Take a picture walk through
Teachers Pets. Where and when
do the story take place? What tells
you this?
Teachers Pets
Day 2- Applying
What are the results of Miss Fry
allowing all of the children to bring
their pets to school?
Teachers Pets
Day 3- Analyzing
What inference can you make about
Miss Fry based on her actions in the
story? (What can you figure out
about Miss Fry that the author does
not directly say?)

Teachers Pets
Day 4- Evaluating
Do you think it was a good idea for
Miss Fry to allow her students to
leave their pets at school until the
last day of school? Why or why not?
Teachers Pets
Day 5- Synthesizing
Can you propose an alternative (or
tell a better way) of allowing
students to show other students their
pets?