Second Grade Science

Life Cycles

Science Content


All living organisms have life cycles that include being born, growing up, reproducing, and eventually, dying.

Offspring tend to resemble their parents.

Cluster 1:  Humans

Humans have a basic life cycle that includes birth, growth, reproduction, and death.

Rapid physical growth is a characteristic of the human life cycle prior to adulthood.

Making and strengthening connections in the brain is the basis for intellectual growth.

Humans have basic survival needs, as well as intellectual and social needs.

Cluster 2:  Trees

Scientific investigation requires careful observation, measurement, and record keeping.

Deciduous trees shed their leaves in the fall, are dormant in the winter, and unfurl new leaves and flowers in the spring.

Trees in temperate climates add one growth ring each year.

Trees have an annual cycle within their life cycles.

Cluster 3:  Seed to Seed

Seeds have an embryo, stored food, and a protective coating.

Seeds and plants grow best when their basic needs of light, air, and water are met.

Flowers have characteristics such as smell, taste, shape, and appearance that determine the pollinators they attract.

A flower’s ovary becomes the fruit; the egg becomes the seed.

Cluster 4:  Butterflies

Butterflies have life stages that include egg, larva, chrysalis, and adult.

Metamorphosis occurs during the chrysalis stage of development.

Butterflies are different in structure and behavior than caterpillars.

Before butterflies die, they lay eggs and propagate another generation.



Science Content

Cluster 1:  Describing Rocks

  • Rocks have distinct properties.
  • The earth continuously forms and changes rock.
  • Some of a rock’s properties are a result of how it was formed.
  • Geologists classify rocks into three major groups (igneous, sedimentary, and metamorphic), based on how they were formed.
  • Field guides are used to identify rocks and learn more about their properties.

Cluster 2:  Rocks and Minerals

  • Rocks are made of minerals.
  • Some of a rock’s properties are a result of the properties of the minerals it is made of.
  • Minerals have distinct properties that can be observed and tested.
  • Minerals provide many of the resources we use.

Cluster 3:  Fossils

  • Fossils are made of rock and contain evidence of ancient life.
  • The living material in most fossils has been replaced by rock.
  • Fossils preserve the shape and texture of ancient organisms.
  • There are different types of fossils.
  • Different types of fossils form in different ways.



Science Content

Cluster 1:  Sound is Vibration

  • Sound originates from a source.
  • Sources all around us produce sounds.
  • Sounds are made by vibrations.
  • A vibration is a regular back and forth motion.

Cluster 2:  Sound Travels

  • Sound vibrations travel through many things.
  • Sound vibrations travel through some things better than others.
  • Sound travels by causing vibrations in the air or other materials through which it passes.
  • The shape and parts of the ear allow sound to travel through it so that we can hear.

Cluster 3:  Changing Sounds

  • Pitch is a characteristic of sound that describes how high or low a sound is.
  • Volume is a characteristic of sound that describes how loud or soft a sound is.
  • Differences in vibrations (rate and size) produce differences in sound (pitch and volume).

Cluster 4:  Making Instruments

  • Musical instruments are based on creating vibrations that produce sound.
  • Musical instruments often include mechanisms that allow the pitch and volume to be changed.
  • String, percussion, and woodwinds are types of musical instruments.
  • Design, construction, evaluation, and revision are all elements of product development.

Other Resources

State Science Grade Level Content Expectations for Second Grade

District Hands-On Elementary Science Brochure

Second Grade Skills Sheet 27kb PDF

Second Grade Report Form 492kb PDF


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