Rooney & Harris Tribune


Quick Reminders

Dismissal is at 3:35pm.

PLEASE contact the office ASAP if you know your end-of-the-day routine will change for your child! Teachers are not always able to check email and phone messages prior to dismissal. Thank you for your help with this.

Boosterthon is Coming!

More details will be coming home soon about our Boosterthon fundraiser at Horizon.

Weekly Reflections

Your child will be bringing home their first weekly reflections today. Please look these over and sign them along with your child. These should be returned on Monday. Any questions, please let us know.

MAPs Testing

Reading and Math MAPs testing begins at the start of October. There are several links students could use if they want to freshen up on skills prior to testing.

Math --

Reading --

We are nut-free classrooms

Thank you for your help at the start of the year, ensuring nut-free snacks come to school!

Cheez-its, fresh fruit, animal crackers, yogurt, veggie straws, pretzels, carrots / veggies and dip, Nutrigrain bars, graham crackers, pumpkin seeds, cereal**, Goldfish crackers, applesauce, popcorn, rice cakes, string cheese, 100% fruit juice, Teddy Grahams, fruit cups, raisins, dried fruit, Ritz crackers, whole grain crackers.

*Students have the option of bringing in birthday treats for both classes. However, they are not expected to.

Horizon Parent Info/Orientation Night

Thank you to all families who could attend.

If you were unable to make the sessions, we are attaching a link to our presentation. Be let us know if you have any questions or concerns.

Presentation link --

What is going on?

The next weeks' schedule:

Monday, 9/19: Day 5 (Harris -- PE), (Rooney -- Library, PE )

Tuesday, 9/20: Day 1 (Harris -- Music, PE), (Rooney --PE, Music )

Wednesday, 9/21: Day 2 (Harris -- Art), (Rooney -- Music, PE )

Thursday, 9/22: Day 3 (Harris -- Spanish), (Rooney -- Art )

Friday, 9/23: Day 4 -- (Harris --Library, PE ), (Rooney -- PE )

What's Going on in Fourth Grade?

This section of our newsletter will give a quick update as to what is going on in the various curriculum areas:

Math: To warm up our brains for math this year, a new year-long activity will be to create "$100 words!" Ask your students just how this marvelous ticket winning opportunity can help them stay sharp with their math facts, and potentially earn them a reward!

We are now up and running in our online math program, Dreambox! Students know their login information, and we have worked out most of the kinks. Parents, you can learn more about the program by clicking this link: .

Direct link:

Reading & Writing: This week we worked on reflecting on ourselves as learners --what works for us and what doesn't. Ask your child what insights they had about themselves.

We worked on longer and stronger reading with something called S.Q.U.I.R.T. See if your child can recall what each letter represents during reading time.

Reading bookmarks began this week. You can link to our house website and the Reading section for more details and directions.

Students began working with their Tribe or PLN (personal learning network). We all have people we turn to when we need help or questions answered. Students will have a group at school for this, and they brainstormed who else is apart of their PLN outside of our classroom.

Keyboarding -- Typing Pals is the keyboarding program that students will use this year. There is also a link on the Language Arts section of our website. Students may work on keyboarding at home, but are not expected to for homework at this time.

The expectations for fourth graders are students will able to type at 20 wpm and at least 90% accuracy. We'd like them to be able to complete one typed page on a doc in one class period setting.

Spelling -- Students had their first word "preview" this week. On Monday, students will be receiving personalized spelling lists. (Please note units will not be a Monday - Friday routine.) Typically units take about 7-8 days. Watch your child's assignment notebook and the homework calendar for due dates.

How Students Grow in Fourth Grade -- from Mrs. Farrow, HZ Guidance

Where are nine year olds now?? Here are some characteristics you will see emerge:

  • They want to put some distance between themselves and adults, and may rebel a bit against authority.

  • They need to be part of a group.

  • They seek independence.

  • They possess a high activity level.

  • They are starting to express a wide range of emotions and may verbalize easily, but may not always be clear with details to communicate all of what they want to.

  • They should begin to empathize more often.

  • They can think independently and critically, but are tied to peer opinions.

  • They begin to increase their sense of truthfulness.

  • They waver in their level of confidence.

Where are they going and how will they change??

Your child is learning how to make decisions and set standards for him or herself.

You can help by encouraging your child as s/he:

  • Begins making decisions - Walk them through how you make decisions and how to weigh both sides of an issue.

  • Gains a greater sense of responsibility - always increase chores and privileges as a child grows so they become more comfortable in having to be independent when they need to be.

  • Sets personal standards (for quality of homework, for hygiene, for neatness of their room, etc.) - Be clear and consistent in repeating your standards for them in every area of life.

  • Develops personal interests and abilities - Certain personalities love to try anything and others hang back until they know more. Help them generate ideas but respect the introvert and the extravert part of your own child’s personality and accept that they may be different than you.

  • Develops social skills - Model, model, model.

  • Learns to engage in group decision-making - They will be learning in groups for a very long time and there will be plenty of times that group conflict arises. Based on their personality, ask them to think about how they can solve group conflict, what can they add to a group, or how they might need to change so they are a better group member. Use examples from your own work about good group processes.

Fourth Grade: What Will They Learn?

School changes quite dramatically for students in fourth grade.

Your child will be applying reading skills in content area subjects such as social studies, science, and health.

Study skills will become very important as kids will now be asked to write reports and handle long term assignments.

Divide by one-and two-digit numbers. ·

Use calculators and computers.

Add and subtract fractions.

Use contextual clues to discover the meaning of words.

Understand and use the steps of the writing process, from pre-writing to the final draft.

Write research reports.

Locate information in the library.

Use encyclopedias, newspapers, atlases, and magazines as resources.

Understand the history and geography of their state. ·

Recognize how science is at work in the world around them, especially through technology.

How else can parents help their fourth graders adjust?

Kids this age are not ready to reject their parents' approval, but they are beginning to exert some independence. This can make for a few power struggles, but hang in there. As schoolwork becomes more demanding, parents need to help kids learn how to structure their time. Hammer out a homework schedule together and stick to it. Role model for them what is looks like to sit and read with self discipline and build reading stamina or writing stamina. You may not be able to answer all their questions about homework but you can get a feel from the teacher about how they discipline themselves in class and are they putting in the effort during the day so homework goes easier at night.

We are a TRIBES community

This year students will not only learn academics, but many socialization skills utilizing the program Tribes.The clear purpose of the Tribes process is to assure the healthy development of every child so that each one has the knowledge, skills and resiliency to be successful in a rapidly changing world.

How It Works

Tribes is a step-by-step process to achieve specific learning goals. Four agreements are honored:

  • attentive listening

  • appreciation/no put downs

  • mutual respect, and

  • the right to pass

Students learn a set of collaborative skills so they can work well together in long-term groups (tribes). The focus is on how to:

  • help each other work on tasks

  • set goals and solve problems

  • monitor and assess progress

  • celebrate achievements.

The learning of academic material and self-responsible behavior is assured because teachers utilize methods based upon brain-compatible learning, multiple intelligences, cooperative learning and social development research. If you have further questions, you can ask Ms. Rooney or access the website at

Growth Mindset

This year students will have many opportunities to practice using a growth mindset. What is growth mindset? How can you help?