Sandia Vista Elementary

Principal Monthly Newsletter

Note from Mr. DeSoto

As we begin the month of December I would again like to thank each and every one of you for your continued support of the staff and students of Sandia Vista. I would like to extend my thanks to the New Mexico State Police for their fly over and demonstration for our students to learn more about their mission in the state of New Mexico and how they support local and state law enforcement activities. Special thanks to Mr. Jose Salazar, Director of Security for RRPS for helping to coordinate the landing.

The Kindergarten choir performance was a tremendous success. Mrs. Cundiff and the kids did a phenomenal job. Everyone was excited and happy to show their parents all of their hard work they have been doing. Thank you to the generous families who have taken ornaments from our Giving Tree in the lobby of the school. Each ornament has either a student need or a classroom need. If you would like to contribute you are more than welcome to come and pick up an ornament.

Please keep an eye on your email and the calendar of events to stay up to date with all of the happenings here at Sandia Vista over the month of December.

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Elementary Report Cards

Parents and Guardians,

Elementary report cards are online. Parents will access their student’s report cards through the PowerSchool Parent Portal website. Once logged in, parents will be able to view the report card in English or Spanish. The RRPS PowerSchool Parent Portal is an online portal accessible anywhere on the web. Elementary parents can access their student’s report cards and attendance. Parents who do not have a current PowerSchool account will need to set one up. Parents with existing accounts can add their elementary students by following the directions linked below.

Creating Your PowerSchool Parent Login

Adding another student to your PowerSchool Parent Account

What do I do if I have forgotten my password? Please go to and click the "reset" password button. If you need further assistance, contact your school’s registrar or call 962-HOME to contact the RRPS Parent HelpDesk.

Parent/Teacher conferences are November 21-22. Your child’s teacher will discuss report card grades at that time.

Instructional Corner

In the month of December, we are gearing up for some fun learning and some much needed rest. In our ELA curriculum, we will be learning about Native Americans in Kindergarten, Early American Civilizations in First Grade, Cycles in Nature in Second Grade, Light and Sound in Third Grade, Eureka! Student Adventures in Fourth Grade and Don Quixote in Fifth Grade.

In our Math curriculum we are learning Comparison of length, weight, capacity and numbers to 10 in Kindergarten, Introduction to place value through addition and subtraction within 20 in First Grade, Addition and subtraction within word problems to 100 in Second Grade, multiplication and division with units of 0,1,6-9, and multiples of 10 in Third Grade, Multi-digit multiplication and division in Fourth Grade, and addition and subtraction of fractions in Fifth grade.

We are also utilizing our science curriculum in creative ways through our classrooms and STEAM lab to cover topic around forces of motion, matter and energy.


The Montessori method aims to educate not only the intellect but the whole child. In every Montessori classroom explicit instruction on social behavior called the lessons of Grace and Courtesy are equally as important as those of math or language. In the early childhood classroom, emphasis is placed on respecting themselves, others, and the environment. Children are explicitly taught manners such as how to greet others, when to say please and thank you, table manners, how to use a tissue, and polite requests or conversation. Many lessons involve movement as a young child learns to move slowly, carefully and purposefully in the classroom. Pushing in chairs, closing doors, and carrying a tray of work are all lessons explicitly taught, modeled, and practiced daily. The early lessons of Grace and Courtesy are the foundation for self-control, cooperation, and collaboration, all important prerequisite skills for concentration and learning at school.

As students mature into the elementary classrooms they continue to refine their social skills and the emphasis shifts to personal responsibility and community. The elementary Montessori curriculum explicitly uses modeling and stories to teach social behavior. Students learn about heroes and heroines both past and present and are inspired to elevate their own interactions with others.

Dr. Montessori understood the value of introducing children to the routines of their social environment. Children who can communicate respectfully and who understand their society’s social norms are more comfortable in their environment and in their interactions with others. Now that we are several months into the school year, with many Grace and Courtesy lessons the students are comfortable, and the Montessori classrooms are thriving with cooperative and collaborative learning. In the Kinder/1st grade classrooms the older students are mentoring the younger students with reading partners and classroom jobs. Ms. Britton’s 2nd/3rd grade classroom is studying physical and cultural geography. Recently, students were divided into "clans" and given a destination with a specific landform to colonize such as the desert, mountain, forest or river. The students created appropriate names for their new group. Next, they figured out how to meet their basic needs of food, water and shelter, and what kind of economy they could support. Each group discussed the benefits and drawbacks of their area, and created a large picture to share with the class. Together, the students decided which colony would survive the longest, based on self sufficiency and resources. The next step will be to create a unique culture for each group, and decide what kinds of celebrations of customs are important to the “clans”. Ms. Koons’ 2nd/3rd grade classroom created Yayoi Kusama inspired fall pumpkin art and discussed our gratitude pumpkin. The students specifically discussed how words and inner dialogue supports wellbeing and health. Ms. Jacquez and Ms. Buyer’s 4th/5th grade students collaborated in research projects about animals. They worked together to create amazing slideshows, then presented them to the class. Recently, the students created castle dioramas to go along with our Middle Ages unit. Students collaborated on design and used a bartering system for castle materials. Students were required to write a description of each castle using correct terminology and then presented to the class. We will look forward to more exciting student led projects as the year progresses.

Attendance For Success Policy

Congratulations to Ms. Sandoval's 3rd Grade Class and Mr. Pichette's 4th Grade Class for winning the Attendance for Success Award for the month of November!

Please reference attendance policies and procedures by clicking the button below.

Just to remind:

  • There are no excused absences for vacation.
  • Calling in a student does not automatically excuse the absence.
  • Please be as specific as possible when reporting an absence on the attendance line to ensure the absence is recorded correctly.

Attendance now has a button! It is on the main page in the middle next to the "counselor's corner" button. This is where parents can upload doctor's notes or other excuse notes and it will come directly to the SVE drive.

Attendance Document Upload

Example: Doctor Notes, etc..

Counselor's Corner

We would like to help Sandia Vista families that are in financial need this holiday season. Please take a minute to fill out this Survey if you could use support for the holidays for your children. Survey responses will be collected until Friday 12/2.

If you have any questions please contact our school counselor, Jaime David at

Thank you!

Survey- holiday support

Nursing Updates

Reminders from Nurse Nina:

Few Reminder for student illness and return to school:

  • Fever (temperature 100 or greater) - To minimize exposing other children and school staff to a communicable illness, your child must stay home from school until he/she is fever free for 24 hours (without the aid of Tylenol/Advil or other fever- reducing medication).

  • Vomiting / Nausea / Diarrhea / Stomach ache. To minimize exposing other students and school staff to communicable illness, your child should stay home from school until he/she can tolerate a soft diet without vomiting, nausea, or diarrhea. Students may not come to school if they were vomiting or have diarrhea the evening before or the morning of a school day.

  • Sore throat or headache. Students may return to school when their sore throat or headache has improved to the extent that they can participate in normal activities. Students may not come to school if they develop a fever. They must remain at home until they are fever free for 24 hours without the use of fever reducing medication such as Tylenol or Motrin.

THANK YOU to all the families who have donated supplies to the health office.

SVE Health Office Website

Library News

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Rio Rancho School Calendar

Instructional Calendar

Lunch Money

Parents who would like to put money on their child's account can do so by this following link.

Free & Reduced Lunch Applications

We offer free and reduced meals for those who qualify and reasonably priced meals for all other students (breakfast and lunch).