Room 9 Updates

Tuesday, November 13, 2018

HI All,

It was very nice meeting all of you and having a chat about your wonderful kids! Report cards will be sent home on Tuesday, November 20th.  There is no school on the 21st.

This Friday we will be having a test on the current math unit (multiplying bigger numbers, using a variety of strategies.)  The kids will bring home a practice test on Wednesday, so there will be a chance to review problem types before the assessment. We are also reviewing in class this week.

We are beginning lots of new content as well! In reading, we are starting an Island of the Blue Dolphins read aloud, and kids will be researching and reading about California Indians.  We will also begin a science unit on Energy. Finally, kids are working on their "Expert" informational writing. In this project, the kids write a book on a topic they are already knowledgeable about, and focus on organizing it using chapters written with various text structures (problem/solution, chronological, comparison, cause/effect, descriptive.)

Have a great week, and a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday!

Carroll Mayer


Sunday, October 28, 2018

Hi All,

As the days get shorter, the weeks seem to be more and more scheduled!

First of all, a big thank you to the parents who came on our terrific aquarium field trip as chaperones. Thanks to Jeanie, Lisa, Carlos, Steve, Ronda, John, and Kristy!  Without parent support, field trips would be very limited!

In addition, thanks in advance to Jeanie and Tarah, our Room Parents. They’ve planned a fun Halloween party for the kids, immediately after our Halloween parade at 8:30. They’ve reached out to Room 9 families, so you should have received a note from them in your child’s folder last Monday. On the Halloween topic, please remember to keep costumes elementary school appropriate, which means no weapons, and not too too gory.

Parent-teacher Conferences are happening the following week, beginning November 5th. I will send home a notice with the schedule, and have some flexibility if you realize you have a conflict. Please arrive promptly for your conference, as many of them are set up back-to-back.

This week we will be wrapping up our Social Studies hyperdoc on California’s Regions. Students who don’t complete the project will need to work to finish at home during Conference Week. We are continuing to focus our reading on Informational Text, and will begin an Informational writing project in a week or so.

Have a great week, and I’ll see you soon!

Carroll Mayer

Saturday, October 13, 2018

Hi All,

First of all, many thanks for your continued support for Rio Del Mar Elementary, as well as Room 9 in particular. We have benefited from family support in so many ways: from your presence in class, at the Harvest Festival, on next week’s field trip, and delivering your children to our SBC Day, to your ongoing financial support through the Drive For Schools fundraiser, class donations of supplies, and funds. Thank you all, for the many ways you help make our school a thriving and joyful place!

This past week, our class was busy, busy, trying to finish up our fictional narratives. The kids wrote so much—yay!—that many needed extra typing time. We will celebrate publication with Mr. McMillan’s and Mr. Avey’s classes this Wednesday. After that, we will begin a short unit on “internal punctuation”, AKA commas, dashes, and semi-colons.

We also took a bit of time away from our story writing to compose short notes to fellow students in Canada. We attached the notes to postcards about Santa Cruz County. Our class will be sending additional postcards to kids across the US and Canada, who we are connecting with via the Global Read Aloud. All our contacts are classes reading the book A Boy Called Bat this month, right along with us. We still need many more postcards about SC County.

In reading, instruction has shifted from fiction to nonfiction. All of the lessons are built around strategies that address skills needed to read nonfiction well. In class, kids split their independent reading time between fiction and informational text. Kids may continue to read any type of book for their nightly reading, and should also be doing 20-40 minutes of work on the Lexia program per week. If your child is below grade level in reading, he/she should have two 20 minute sessions, in addition to the class time on Lexia. On-level students should work on the Lexia program at home once a week, for 20 minutes, and mark it on their homework Choice Board.

In math, we’ve been focusing on the area model (open array) in multiplication. Ask your child about it. I think it’s a neat, and very clear way to learn about the Distributive Property in multiplication!

Finally, this Friday our class —and Mr. Avey’s—will be heading to the Monterey Bay Aquarium for our field trip. Students should bring a lunch and drink, but no money; there will not be shopping opportunities for kids. Kids should arrive to school on time, as we’ll be leaving around 8.

Have a great week!

Carroll Mayer


Sunday, September 30, 2018

Hi All,

Wow!  It’s October!

This week the class will begin the second Math Unit on multiplication and division, after a fast week of discussing the metric system. Overall, the class did a strong job on the first assessment, and seems well-prepared to work on multiplying bigger numbers.

We finished Tiger Rising, and are nearing the end of The Wild Robot. I’m going to begin reading A Boy Called Bat to the class this week, as part of the Global Read Aloud. This week we will be sending postcards to a class in Canada who is also reading the book, and communicating digitally as well during the next month. Donations of Santa Cruz county postcards ( inexpensive at CVS) would be great!

We’ve begun a geography unit in Social Studies, and will soon be moving into a unit on California’s regions. Kids received their first issue of Studies Weekly, which is a weekly consumable newspaper with articles on California history and geography. They were allowed to keep them in their book box to read in class, or take them home to read during their nightly homework time. Parent Alliance pays for Studies Weekly with the funds you raise!

On that note, many of you have participated in the Drive for Schools fundraiser by selling or purchasing raffle tickets. If you haven’t yet, please consider putting some time/money into this event.  This is one of the few fundraisers that returns 100% of the proceeds to our school, so it’s an especially good way to support Rio.

Finally, this Friday is a teacher training day for the district, so there’s no school for kids. However, you should have received an invitation from me last week for kids to participate in an hour of Writers’ Workshop, from 10-11 in Room 9. The kids get to help out with the training!  If your child wants to participate, please let me know.

Have a great week!

Carroll Mayer


Sunday, September 16, 2018

Hi All,

Room 9 Students had another fun and productive week! As anticipated, we wrapped up our first Science unit and will be moving into Social Studies. This week, we will also complete the first math unit, and will have a test on Friday. The kids will bring home a practice test on Wednesday afternoon, and can use it to identify any challenge areas that require extra review.

If you volunteered to drive on the aquarium field trip, and haven’t submitted paperwork this year, please do so immediately.

Last Monday, we set up “Khan Mappers”. Once registered, kids were given a list of lessons on Khan Academy based on their MAP test scores. We are taking some in-class time to use the site, but this is one of the great technology activities listed on the Homework Choice Board. Feel free to contact me, or send a note with your kid if there is any confusion about how to access Kahn Mappers.

Have a great week,

Carroll Mayer

Sunday, September 9, 2018

Hi All,

It was very nice to see so many of you at Back-to-School Night!

If you signed up to drive for the field trip to the aquarium, please submit your paperwork, including the Driver form, with copies of your CDL and insurance information attached. Papers can be dropped directly at the office, or sent through your child. We need these done this week.

Book orders are also due this week. I sent a paper flyer home last Tuesday. Orders may be made using the flyer, and sending a check made out to Scholastic, or by going to the website and submitting our class code, your order & a credit card.

I have posted a hyperdoc about senses on the Google Classroom, and it’s there as an extra credit activity. Kids may do this during their homework time. I will review it with the kids on Monday and answer any initial questions at that time. I anticipate wrapping up our Mystery Science unit on”The Human Machine” by the end of the week, and moving into Social Studies next week. We will begin with a general geography lesson, and then move into a unit on California’s regions.

Have a great week!

Carroll Mayer

Sunday, September 2, 2018

Hi Parents and Families,

Just a few short notes on this Memorial Day Weekend...
  • This Thursday night is Back-to-School Night; please try to attend and learn about the class. 
  • On Thursday night, there will be opportunities to sign up for volunteer time in the classroom, and for November Parent/Teacher Conferences. Bring your calendar!
  • The weekly Homework Choice Board was due this Friday  Most children remembered theirs, but if your child forgot, please help them build a routine that supports this habit  
  • Mayer Moola was introduced this week  Ask your kiddo about it!
  • Our Library Day is Friday, so kids should bring their books to return on that day.  Handy that all things are due on the same day!
See you Thursday Night!

Carroll Mayer