Room 9 Updates

Thursday, December 20, 2018

Hi Room 9 Families,

Have a wonderful Winter Break! 

Today, our class enjoyed such a fun party. A huge thanks to our wonderful Room Parents, Jeanie and Tarah. In addition, thank you to all the able assistants who stopped in and manned the stations: Kristi, Lisa, Leilani, and Natalie. The kids had so much fun making slime, playing a candy cane "Minute to Win It" game, crafting snowmen, building marshmallow structures, and putting together beads. They also had delicious, personally assembled trail mix. Thanks to all who helped make the party possible!

At the party, I was gifted with a fun card signed by the entire class, and a gift certificate to one of my favorite places: Aptos St. BBQ. Thank you so much! I love eating there, and hanging out listening to the music. If you haven't made it over there, I highly recommend it!

Finally, this is such a great time to reconnect with family and friends, and also have some unstructured time. However, if you'd like your child to keep up his/her academic skills, or if the time just starts to feel too unstructured, I recommend reading, board games, Khan Mappers, and science projects (for all, but especially for those who have signed up for the Science Fair.)

Have a peaceful, loving finish to 2018, and a wonderful kick-off to 2019. I'll see you in the new year.

Love,

Carroll Mayer

Thursday, December 13, 2018

Hi Parents!

I know it's a busy time of year, but the Room Parents asked me to forward this link so more people could participate and support our class party on the last day before Winter Break.

https://www.signupgenius.com/go/20f0c49aead22abfc1-4thgrade1

Also, please return permission slips for the mission field trip, and for the science fair.

Thanks,
Carroll Mayer

Tuesday, December 11, 2018

Hi Parents,

We are in the countdown until Winter Break! That means kids are having late nights, special activities, and sweets abound. We will do our best here at school to keep things calm, and I trust you will at home.  That being said, the kids have earned their Board Game party (for good behavior.) On Friday, kids may bring board games to play and share with classmates on Friday afternoon. I will provide the popcorn!

During the next week+, we will be wrapping up our reading of Island of the Blue Dolphins, our research on California Indians, and our writing about expert topics. We are also going to complete our math unit Module 1 (adding & subtracting, rounding, and comparing numbers into the millions.) There will be an assessment this Thursday on rounding and comparing big numbers. It is based on work we have done in Lessons 1-9. We are also having weekly quizzes, so you have a chance to assess how well your child is understanding the current math content. Links to Engage NY homework, and "Duane" on YouTube are on the blog.

Today (Tuesday) I am sending home Science Fair information with the kids who have requested it. This is an optional activity, but you need to review the paperwork and return the permission slip before we go off to break. The bulk of the Science Fair project should be done over the Winter Break. Last year,  many 4th Graders participated, and several placed in the top 10 for our school and were able to go on to the county Science and Engineering Fair. If your child does not bring home the paperwork,  and this is something you wish to do with him/her, send me an email note.

Kids brought home permission slips for our field trip to Mission San Juan Bautista yesterday. While the trip is not until March 1st!, the district is now requiring us to submit a lot of information 40 days prior to the scheduled date, and we didn't want to be in a panic in mid-January. Please return the permission (and $2) before break.

Finally, we are collecting donations for Second Harvest. On Wednesday, we will be sticking Ms. Green to the wall (Stick it to Hunger), and any money or canned food donations are eagerly accepted.

Have a wonderful, festive week,

Carroll Mayer

Wednesday, December 5, 2018

Hi All,

Just a quick message...

You will see your child bringing home many Engage New York math pages that are partially completed. We are doing a lot of additional work in class, on white boards and in math note books. Generally, I expect kids to complete at least one side of the paper, but many get started on the back. The back side of the math page is terrific additional practice, and a great way for your child to share their math knowledge with you. I've also linked Duane's YouTube lessons on the blog, if you or your child need some extra support.  He doesn't go over everything, but does address each day's big ideas. Finally, some children may bring home pages with a  "Finish at home" note. This means that I felt that your child was not productive enough in class, and needs some additional time with the content. Please supervise this "Finish Work." You do not need to send it back, but if you or your kid have questions,  feel free to send it with a note.

Best,

Carroll Mayer

Sunday, November 25, 2018

Hi All,

I hope you all had a peaceful, joy-filled Thanksgiving holiday.

Now, we push on for a strong finish to the calendar year! We are continuing our research about Native Americans, and are also reading the novel Island of the Blue Dolphins. In science, we’ve begun learning about energy, and got to build rubber band racers. We will also continue Information Writing on topics we know about.

One change beginning this week is our math program. We will be shifting from the Bridges curriculum to Engage New York. It is also a Common Core program. Under “Homework Help” on the blog, you will find links to YouTube videos that review a portion of each lesson, and another link to Homework to print. My expectations for Homework remain the same, but the printable math pages will align with our work better than the workbooks sent home at the beginning of the year.

Have a great week,

Carroll Mayer

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




Sunday, August 26, 2018

Hi All,

After a long week of testing, we are finally taking off! This week, I’ll be sending home the 4th Grade Choice Board, and that will be your child’s weekly homework for the year. Tomorrow, the kids and I will spend some time discussing it, but I will also clarify questions at Back-to-School Night on September 6th. I am also sending home the Bridges Math Home Workbook, which is one of the many options on the Choice Board.

We’ve begun the first math unit, which is on Multiplicative thinking. For many kids, it’s a big shift to think in multiples instead of adding. They will be learning many multiplication strategies beyond the arrays and memorization they worked on in 3rd Grade. In reading, we are building stamina, and learning comprehension strategies, including Notice and Note “signposts”.  We are having tons of fun in science, and are studying how eyes work. We are also beginning twice monthly singing, with the entire 4th Grade!

The Afterschool Program begins this Monday. I will be teaching 4th Graders on Monday and Thursday. If you are planning on having your child attend, please submit the forms sent home during Week 1, or available at the Afterschool link.

A thank you for the donations of classroom supplies, gift cards, and dollars!

Have a great week,

Carroll Mayer


Sunday, August 19, 2018

Hi All,

Here we go, a full week!

This week we will be doing some beginning of the year assessments —MAP tests and AR levels. MAP tests measure both reading and math. We will also continue with community building activities, our 2 Read-Aloud ( The Wild Robot and Tiger Rising), and begin our first math unit, on multiplication and division. Last week,  we also began our first science unit, on “Human Body, Senses, and the Brain”, and will continue with our investigations.  I will not be sending homework, but I encourage children to read daily. If you have not already done so, please return parent paperwork.

All the best,

Carroll Mayer

Monday, August 13, 2018

Hi Fourth Graders and Parents,

Welcome to 4th Grade!  I am excited to start a new year and have lots of fun ideas to share with you all. I have met many of you over the years, but here's a brief bio. I've taught at Rio del Mar for 15 years, and it's my 5th year in 4th Grade.  I have 2 adult children who attended Rio, and I live in the neighborhood with my husband. I love reading, including children's books, and play Bridge weekly (with Mrs. Clouse!) I love beach walks and am very grateful for the amazing summer we just had.
I also got to travel to Alaska, Oregon, Washington, and Hawaii!

I usually update the blog weekly, often on Sunday. Please try to check for new information regularly. Parents, if you subscribe to this blog in the space above, you will receive emails when I post. I won't be arranging volunteers until Back-to-School Night, on September 6th, but it'd be great if you submit driver information as we will have a field trip to the aquarium this the fall. We are required by the district to turn in all paperwork long before the actual activity, so updated info. is very helpful. If you wish to volunteer regularly, or even drive on a trip, you need to have fingerprints and TB tests on file with the office. Fingerprinting is done at the PV District Office.

This first week will be focused primarily on community, although we will be doing some great math activities from Jo Boaler's WIM (Week of Inspirational Math.) Google Youcubed if you want to read about it. Homework is assigned to the parents---you know the packet!  Please try to return it this first week. I'd also like you to email me with your preferred email addresses.

I will be reading two books aloud to the kids during these first few weeks: Tiger Rising and The Wild Robot. Kids may bring their own copies of these books to follow along if they wish. 

Finally, I have a small list of supplies, but provide all materials needed.  Our materials are mostly communal, and I find that many kids are distracted by cool new erasers, sharpeners, notebooks, etc. So I'd prefer you keep those items at home. If you wish to contribute to the class supplies, donations to the class are welcome.  I am also thrilled with gift cards to Amazon, Staples, Palace, and Bookshop Santa Cruz, as I make purchases throughout the year. Checks to our classroom fund are also handy!

Feel free to email with any questions,

Carroll Mayer


Friday, May 25, 2018

Hi Parents and Kids,

This is the homework that kids will need to work on next week. (Sorry it looks weird.) I will send home hard copies on Tuesday, but it's a short week, with lots to do, so here you go!

Have a great 3 day weekend!

Carroll Mayer

Special Homework for May 29th- June 1st


  • Practice Wax Museum speech.
  • Plan Wax Museum costume and bring to
  • school on Thursday, May 31st.
  • Read and finish books and take AR tests by
  • Monday, June 4th.
  • Practice for Friday’s Math Test-- Unit 6


Practice Problems for Math Test
  1. Six friends are going to Lake Tahoe.
  2. The trip will cost $150.
  3. How much does each person pay?
  4. Show your work.

  1. The friends stop at Safeway to buy snacks to share.
  2. They cost $16.50. How much does each person pay?  
  3. Show your work.
  4. How did you handle the remainder?


  1. Mrs. Green is ordering books for next year.
  2. She needs 200 planners for the 5th and 6th classes.
  3. She has found 3 half-boxes of 12 in the stockroom.
  4. If she orders 6 more cases of 24 planners,
  5. will she have enough? Show your work.

  1. The area of the Mr. Kyle’s  rectangular garden is 2286 square feet.
  2. If one dimension is 9 feet, how long is the other dimension?
  3. Use sketches and equations to solve this problem. Show all your work.

  1. Fourth graders are measuring the length of their long jumps.
  2. Make a list of the distance they jump. (You can make these up.)
  3. Draw a line plot using the information you have.
Additional practice problems can be found on pages 125-127,
and 129-130 of your Home Connections math workbook.

Monday, May 21, 2018

Hi All,


Phew!  What a week!!  I enjoyed seeing all of you on Thursday; Open House is always a fun and festive celebration of the year's learning.

Thanks again for my Hideout birthday gift card. I had a great time using it with a good friend!

While I am have most of the permission slips, I think I am still a bit short on drivers for our End of the Year Party.  As I don't know car capacity, I have assigned 3 kids to a car unless notified otherwise.


  1. Carole-Anne-3
  2. Julie C.-3
  3. Liz R.-5
  4. Sean P.-3
  5. Phil G.-3
  6. Tina H.-3
  7. Aga V.-7
  8. Chris K.-3
*Please let me know if you can take more than 3 kids. 


This week, the kids have one more district-mandated test: the ELA MAP test.  Next week we will have a small math test. Kids should know how/when to use multiplication and division to solve story problems.

We are also working on our final project; the Famous Artist Wax Museum. The kids have all selected artists (many of them pop musicians).  They are researching and writing a short first person statement about the life of the artist. Kids will bring it home to memorize as they complete the work this week, and the Wax Museum will be held in the Cafeteria on Thursday, May 31st in the morning (9:15-10:20). Parents are welcome to stop in and listen to the kids. The homework component of this project is:

  1. Memorize the speech.
  2. Put together a "dress-up" style costume.
We are also reading our final novel, Esperanza Rising.  If your child is absent, they should read 10-20 pages of the novel, or listen to the audiobook linked on Mr. McMillan's blog. You may also email me about the pages read. In Social Studies, the class is working on a hyperdoc about California's "Path to Statehood." 

Have a great week!

Carroll Mayer





Tuesday, May 8, 2018

Hi All,

Thanks for all the Teacher appreciating!  I’ve enjoyed the flowers, cards, and treats. I really love all the thoughtful notes from the kids. Also, the $50 gift card to Bookshop Santa Cruz is a great treat. As the kids know, I love books and reading!

Thanks for all your kind words and actions,

Carroll

Monday, May 7, 2018

Hi Parents,

A few reminders...

Kids should have a solid plan for their California project. In class, we are finishing up the writing and research; project is home work.

Jogging for the Arts is this Friday. Kids love this activity, and it's a festive way to support our school.

Open House is Thursday, May 17th. Please plan on attending. Information about dinner option is coming home today.

Today, be on the look out for a permission slip for our End of the Year Party!  We will be going to the Green Valley Cinema, and taking our own DVD with us.  This means that the entire 4th Grade can vote on a movie. The cost per student will be $7.00, and will include a Kid's Treat.  Each class will get 3 free chaperones, additional ones will cost $3.00.  So, if you'd like to go, let us know right away!  The first 3 responders will get the free admission. For those of you unable to attend, we are taking donations to offset the $3.00 per adult charge.

Finally, thank you so much for the beautiful flowers. I feel very appreciated! 

Have a great week,

Carroll Mayer




Monday, April 16, 2018

HI All,

We have another busy week ahead!

First of all, this is our final week of RTI.  After Thursday, all reading instruction will be done in homeroom. During this last week, we are learning about writer's point of view; not simply first vs. third person, but the way an author's perspective shapes their telling of a story. We have been reading about Christopher Columbus from a couple of different perspectives including: a Newsela translation of a Columbus letter and Encounter (an historical fiction version of the meeting between Columbus and a Taino tribe).

In math, we are nearing the end of our Geometry unit. We will review concepts by Friday, and have the Geometry test on Tuesday. Kids have learned how to measure and draw angles, the names of different angle sizes, names of polygons, and how to calculate area and perimeter.  It's a lot of information, and there are many, many terms to keep track of. Encourage your child to review early by doing the Chapter 5 homework pages in the workbook and/or Moby Max lessons.

We are also working hard on our California Research Report. Your child should be able to name their topic, and give you some interesting facts about the topic. They should also be able to name their sections, and give you an idea of what they are--or will be--about.

In addition, on Tuesday we have a presentation on Fire Safety from a representative of Aptos Fire District. Expect your child to come home with ideas and questions on that day!

Finally, a heads up that state testing (SBAC) begins next Monday. Please avoid absences, especially from 8-10:20, as that is when the bulk of testing will take place. Those kids who miss class will need to do makeups, and that may happen in the afternoon when kids are not as fresh or productive.

Thanks for all your support!

Carroll Mayer








Sunday, March 25, 2018

Hi All,

Happy spring!

We are entering our final week of Biography in RTI. When we return from Spring Break, we will have a brief 2 week Unit focused on Point of View and Author’s Purpose. After that, RTI will end, and reading instruction will be done in home room. We will be doing historical fiction book clubs, and using Esperanza Rising as our mentor text. Right now, the class is loving The Wild Robot Escapes as a Read Aloud. In math, we are focused on Geometry, and are also reviewing multiplication strategies. We are wrapping up our Social Studies chapter on the Missions, Pueblos, and Presidios, and the Hyperdocs have been homework for a couple weeks. Children have begun research for their California Report, which will be done in class over the next several weeks. If you haven’t heard, ask your child what topic they’ve selected!

While the rains have been welcome these past few weeks, the combination of spring fever and rainy day recess (inside) has pushed problem student behavior over the edge. Please remind your child of your expectations regarding behavior. One problem that has been coming up a lot is teasing. Please remind your child to be respectful to their classmates, and to be aware of others’ feelings. I am seeing hurt feelings escalate into other inappropriate behaviors, especially when the kids feel unheard by their peers.  On that note, this Thursday afternoon we will be having “The Big Spin” awards assembly that recognizes students with exemplary effort and behavior in Reading, PE, Citizenship, and Overall Academics. All kids with no pink slips are included in the Spin part of the assembly.

Finally, on Monday I am sending home the corrected Unit 4 Math Tests. For those interested in improving their results, there is a “Revise, Reflect, Review” form attached to the test. On it, I ask students to identify the problems on which to retest, revise them, reflect on the “why” of their error, and then review the type of problem so they can improve their understanding. Please return the test with form attached on Wednesday, in order to retest on Thursday before Spring Break.

Take care,

Carroll Mayer

Monday, March 5, 2018

Hi Parents,

A few things that are coming up this week:


  • Field trip to Cabrillo on Friday. I am still missing 8 permission slips! 
  • Math test on Monday, March 12th. The kids will bring home a Review Sheet on Friday. Important ideas are: Subtraction and Addition to 6 digits, Rounding, Elapsed time using a timeline, and story problems applying metric units of measurement.
  • Trimester officially ends on Tuesday, March 6th. Report cards will go home on Friday, March 16th.
  • The auction fundraiser is this Saturday. If you haven't bought tickets, there's still time to purchase them. It is going to be extra fun this year, and raise a lot of money for Rio del Mar kids!
Have a great week!

Carroll Mayer 

Sunday, February 25, 2018

Hi All,

I hope you’re enjoying a 2 day weekend; hard to squeeze it all in without 3!

Tomorrow, student who retested on portions of the fraction test will bring home their work. Everyone improved!  For some kids, fractions continue to be very confusing. I encourage you all to reinforce practice informally with cooking and construction projects, and formally on Moby Max and other web-based programs, and in the homework book.

The trimester ends on March 1st, and most of the class has met, or nearly met their AR goal. The kids have had many reminders in class, and lots of opportunities to read and to take AR tests throughout the term. There is still time to finish a book or 2 before March 1st, but I discourage kids taking tests on books they completed several weeks or months ago. It is rarely successful, and lowers their comprehension data if they fail. Kids in 4th Grade are expected to read daily outside of class, as it’s a key component of our weekly homework. If your child is struggling with meeting their AR goal, feel free to get in touch with me so we can address the problem, and put procedures in place for the final term.

Kids are also bringing home a permission slip for the next 4h Grade field trip, to Cabrillo College. We will be attending a presentation on the various STEAM (Science, technology, engineering, art, math) opportunities at Cabrillo College. County-wide, all 4th Graders visit Cabrillo College to promote College and Career Readiness. In later grades they visit 4 year colleges and universities. Please return both portions of the permission slip, as Cabrillo College has a separate one from PVUSD. Thanks to the 4 volunteers who have already volunteered to chaperone. Since we are riding the bus, that will be enough adults.

In addition, please plan on attending the upcoming —March 10th—Rio Del Mar Spring Auction. The organizers of this year’s event have worked hard to shake things up a bit, and make the evening fresh and fun.  Order your tickets now!

Have a great week,

Carroll Mayer

Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Hi Parents,

Just a few quick updates!

Field trip on Friday, February 2nd to the Wetlands. We will leave at 8:45 and return about 12. Kids will eat lunch at school, but should have a snack to take on the trip. Drivers are: Kessler, Christie, Caris, Redle, Stanford, Fields , Sigur, Klein, Dutra, and Maguire.  Please let me know if I left you out or if you are unable to drive.

Next Monday, February 5th, the kids will have their Fractions/Decimals unit test. We are doing a review sheet now, and students will bring it home on Thursday.

Finally, thanks to all the parents who came on our trip to the mission last week. It's an iconic 4th Grade Field trip, and very interesting! We appreciate your support so that we can continue to go.

Regards,

Carroll Mayer

Sunday, January 21, 2018

Hi Parents and Kids,

This week we will get back to our regular routine.  The Homework Choice Board will go home tomorrow and be due on Friday. The kids are also bringing home a permission slip for our field trip to Watsonville Wetlands, on February 2nd. That makes field trips on 2 Fridays in a row, as we will be visiting Mission San Juan Bautista this week. Please make sure that your child returns permission slips for both field trips; I’m still missing a couple for the trip this week. We should now be in good shape regarding drivers for both trips, and many thanks to all who have volunteered. Please make sure your information is fully updated in the office.

In writing, we are beginning work on Opinion, and developing  a well-supported piece on a topic of their choice. We are reading a couple of nonfiction selections over the next couple of weeks in RTI, and finishing up our math unit on fractions and decimals. Finally, in science we are completing our study of energy.

Have a great week,

Carroll Mayer


Saturday, January 6, 2018

Hi All,

Happy New Year!  I hope you are getting 2018 off to a great start!

I have been reading a lot, and wanted to share some terrific books with you!

I began vacation by finished the second book from the Unwanted series, on loan from Vincent and his mom, Audrey. They are well into the series, and loving it! This series is for a mature reader at our grade level. The blurb on it compares the series to Hunger Games crossed with Harry Potter, and I think that's pretty accurate. The main characters are teens, and there is magic and war in this book.

After Unwanted, I read Refugee. This is another book for a more mature reader. It's historical fiction, and follows the journeys of 3 different refugee children, and their families. The 3 stories, which begin in 1939 Poland, 1994 Cuba, and 2005 Syria, are told in alternating chapters. At first it's hard to shift between characters, but as you go more deeply into the stories it helps build the comparison the author is making. This is a great book for readers of historical fiction, and an engaging way to build knowledge of 20th Century history.  I loved this book, and will have a copy available in class.

Next, I read Rain Reign!  Ann M. Martin, the author of this book and the Babysitter's Club series, will be at Bookshop Santa Cruz this month, on our first day back in school. Rain Reign is a fantastic realistic fiction book. For the kids that love Wonder, Tiger Rising, Because of Winn-Dixie, Crenshaw.  The narrator of the story is a girl on the autism spectrum, and Rain is her dog. I think this will be our next Read Aloud, after we finish Island of the Blue Dolphins. 

The last kid book I read is The War I Finally Won, a sequel to The War That Saved My Life. Both books are available in class. These books are historical fiction, set in England during WWII. The narrator of this book is a young girl who saves herself from a life of abuse and neglect. The time period adds to the book, but there are many more emotional and physical challenges beyond the war. The two books can be read on many levels.

I have one more kid book to read this break, but first I'm going to read some grown up books, so I might not get to it. Remember to make some time for reading during your vacation too!

Carroll Mayer

I'm copying the note I sent before break. I'm not sure all of you read/ received it!



Hi All,

Thank you for the many wonderful food treats and kind gifts; I feel very fussed over!  I will enjoy the gift certificate to Cafe Sparrow from the class as well. 

In addition, many thanks to our fantastic Room Parents, Carole-Anne and Allison!  They put on a terrific party-- well-paced, engaging, and yet relaxing!  Thanks, also, to all the parents who were able to stop in and keep the party going smoothly!

Sorry to veer to business, but I forgot to mention that we have a field trip on February 2nd to the Watsonville Wetlands, as well as the January 26th trip to the mission. I am looking for drivers for both trips, although several have volunteered for the mission trip. 

But that's a few weeks away...

In the mean time, have a peaceful, joyous break with friends and family!

All the best,

Carroll Mayer