Riojas Elementary School

April 22, 2020

School Rules: Be Safe. Be Responsible. Be Respectful.

From the Principal

School Closure through the End of the Year

Parents,

I know this is disheartening news to you and our staff. We were really hoping to be back together in the physical building before the end of the year. Please know that whenever we are able to gather with each other safely, we will make sure to have a celebration for the end of the 2019-20 school year, providing an opportunity for classes and teachers to be together again!


As we plan for the end of year in our Remote Learning environment, we are making plans for all the May items we always do including packing up classrooms for summer cleaning to occur. We are also making preparations for the addition of the Dual Language program students and staff. We are going to grow a bit for next year! We will make sure that we gather students' personal belongings to be returned and let you know how and when you can get them.


But for now, the LEARNING MUST GO ON! The dedicated Riojas teachers are planning and delivering lessons to students each day. They are contacting families each week to offer support as needed. Are any of you parents considering becoming certified teachers now? I am sure you are getting the hang of this! I am doing what many of you are doing each day, too, and it can be very difficult to manage a job and your childrens' learning and entertainment! But parents, WE NEED YOU!


Across the nation, families and educators alike are worried about the impact the school closures will have on student achievement. We need you more than ever to keep teaching your children and ensuring they are maintaining their skills. Teachers have begun taking grades again and will work with the students and you to ensure passing scores on all required assignments. Take it one day at a time, one week at a time. Before you know it, we REALLY will be on Summer break.


Enjoy the time with your family. Enjoy the rest from the usual race we run all year. And remember: Be safe, be respectful, be responsible and BE ONLINE.


I hope to see you at online school sometime soon,

Christi


Attendance

As you know, we have been working hard to maintain a high attendance rate this school year. I wanted to make sure you are aware that attendance still counts for our students, but it is super easy for you as the parent and teacher! :)


We are not collecting attendance in the traditional sense, as in completing a roll call, during remote learning. As long as we provide emergency remote learning opportunities for our students, attendance will take care of itself.

  • Pursuant to Texas Education Code (TEC), Section 48.007, a district or charter school that provides educational resources and guidance to a student’s parent/guardian so that instructional programs can be provided to the student at home when the student is absent, whether due to concerns about the potential of illness or actual illness associated with COVID-19, can count the student present for average daily attendance (ADA) purposes.

Our intent is to make sure our students are okay, they have the resources they need, and to offer support to our parents as they now assume the majority responsibility for educating their student(s).


More Fun on Facebook

Please keep a close eye on our Facebook page! Follow us and watch all the fun each day, especially announcements. Coming up over the next few weeks, announcements will be hosted by each team of Riojas teachers!


RES Announcements

We will be posting the daily RES Announcements. Yes, video announcements! Teachers will be able to send out the links and you can see them on our RES Facebook page. Watch and enjoy!


RES Family Stories

I have had a few families respond to our request. You can see their ideas below. I hope you will share your ideas and fun stories with me and our RES community by using the link: RES Community Stories.


Please stay safe and healthy. Take care of each other, follow the CDC guidelines and wash your hands! www.pfisd.net/coronavirus will be the best place to check updates on PfISD decisions.

Spring Pictures

If you ordered Spring Pictures, we will be working on a pick up/delivery system for them. Our picture company will be delivering them to our office. We will let you know how to get your pictures as soon as we receive them.

Report Cards - 3rd Nine Weeks

Parents, you should have received your report cards for the 3rd Nine Weeks. PK-1st grade were emailed to you and 2nd -5th grade were "snail" mailed to your home. Please contact your child's teacher if you are missing a report card.

Scroll to the bottom to get the Special Area Menus!

School Supply Pickup

Are you out of paper, pencils, crayons? Need a fresh supply? Some of our amazing staff, working together but following distancing rules, created small school supply bags. Each bag contains 2 spiral notebooks, 6 sharpened pencils and a box of crayons for you to come to Riojas and pick up. If you are in need of supplies, please email us and we can arrange a COVID compliant pick up, as long as supplies last.

Do you need devices or Internet?

Don't forget to fill out the Technology Assistance Survey if you need devices or Internet access at home for your student.

Leagues for survey and distance learning are here: http://ow.ly/dojV50z0gam

Art to Remember Through May 1st

Big picture

Message from the Riojas ART room:

Hello Kinder - 2nd Grade families! We are heading into the final days of our fundraiser! This is just a reminder that Art to Remember has created a Riojas website that will allow you to purchase keepsake products customized with your child's art completely online. There are over 50 products and many are less than $15. These make great gifts and a percentage of every purchase goes right back to our school! Click on the link below and enter your child's first and last name to search for their artwork. Then, have fun shopping!

The extended deadline for purchases is May 1st!

https://arttoremember.com/school/THW4H3

If you have questions, contact me via email: brianna.hinchey@pfisd.net

From Our Counselor - Mrs. Patterson

Dear Riojas Family,

During these uncertain times with school closures and significant shifts away from normal routines, you may have had some of these thoughts: I'm not doing a good job, I don't have time for my child to finish their assignments, I can't handle all this right now. I want to encourage parents in the Riojas family to remember the big picture. This is a time to focus on — and be grateful for — your family’s safety, health, and well-being. Make building strong family relationships a priority. Reach out to neighbors, friends, and others in your community to check in, offer support, and connect virtually. We will get through this together. Just know that you are doing an amazing job!!!


Each family is experiencing this time differently depending on the work commitments the adults are juggling, and the unique needs of each child. I know that educators are working hard to meet the needs of all of their students to the best of their ability. If the workload feels like too much for your child and your home situation, give yourself grace and know that it's okay!!


For families concerned that their children are missing out on academic content, remember that at a time like this, less is more. I encourage you to broaden your definition of learning and focus on playtime, downtime, and family time. As a family, discuss and agree to a routine that might include the following:

  • Reading for Pleasure – Time spent reading is strongly linked to academic achievement. For kids of all ages, this is one of the best “academic” areas for you to encourage. Re-reading childhood favorites, reading aloud, reading interactively with a family member, and listening to audiobooks are all excellent ways to support literacy skills.
  • Social Time – Kids will likely be missing the social aspects of school more than the academics. Encourage them to connect to friends near and far through Facetime, social media, phone calls, and even handwritten letters. Leave chalk messages on driveways or ask kids to brainstorm other creative ways to interact with neighbors and friends.
  • Family Time – While you might feel like you have nothing but family time right now, make sure you actually spend time together as a family unit. Prepare and eat meals together, play games, or take a walk. Use this time to check in on how your family is coping; calm fears and let your children know that you are there to keep them safe.
  • Chores – We often believe that our children are too young or too busy to help with household chores, but contributing to the family in this way can foster responsibility and independence. Use the time now to practice important skills like cooking, doing laundry, mowing the lawn, or cleaning the bathroom.
  • Exercise and Meditation/Deep Breathing – This is important for kids and adults alike. Go for a run, do family yoga, coordinate with friends to do virtual workouts together, or put on some music and dance. This is a great way to build in family time while also developing positive coping skills.
  • Good Sleep – Most kids do not get the 9-11 hours they actually need each night. Use this time to develop good sleep hygiene by keeping devices out of bedrooms, turning off screens at least an hour before bedtime, and getting to bed at an appropriate hour. Be sure you are getting enough sleep too
  • Sensible Screen Time – Try to balance work time (yours and your child’s) with ample breaks and time to connect. It might feel like everyone is spending too much time on screens right now, especially if you need to use the television or the computer to keep kids occupied while you get some work done, but it’s ok. Try to strike a balance with non-screen activities as much as possible, especially during evenings and weekends.

If you set up a routine that includes the suggestions above, your child will be learning important academic and social and emotional skills that will prepare them for returning to the classroom and help them thrive in school and out. So be gentle on yourself. Be patient with your kids and your partner. Have empathy for teachers and express your gratitude for them and others. Try to embrace and enjoy this family time and stay healthy.


Warmly,
Mrs. Patterson

Lori.Patterson@pfisd.net

From RES PTO

The PTO is still working hard to make sure we are supporting the RES community. Here on some highlights:


PTO events for the rest of the year will be cancelled but that doesn't mean the fun stops. Please follow us on FB or join @riojaspto on Remind to keep up-to-date on what we have planned for you.


We are encouraging our RES community to support all the local businesses that have been so generous to us over the years. We are highlighting them on our FB page almost every day.


Yearbooks are still ON SALE. Our amazing team completed the book before Spring Break. It is chalked full of all the amazing school memories we are missing so much. Go to www.balfour.com to order. Delivery will happen in May via door drop or pick-up depending on what is going on in the world.


School Supply Kits for next year will still be on sale towards the end of April. More info to come shortly.


We are beginning to recruit for board (elected) and chair/committee (appointed) members. If you are interested, go to www.riojaselempto.com to see what is available. Any parent or member of the RES staff can hold a role. Fill out the below google forms to express interest.


Board will be voted on May 18th (either live or virtually).

Board Form: https://forms.gle/JsrrnDcGUxhjKV736

Committee Form: https://forms.gle/U3sHpBxQbThJor3M7


Stay safe, stay home and stay in touch!

Live Interaction Opt-Out Survey


ONLY COMPLETE THIS FORM IF YOU DO NOT WANT YOUR SON / DAUGHTER (S) TO PARTICIPATE IN LIVE INTERACTIONS WITH PfISD TEACHERS AND STAFF.


Dear Parents and Guardians:

Teachers and staff have the opportunity to use Zoom as a way to connect with your child (ren) to provide instruction and support through technology. Zoom is the leader in modern business video communications, with an easy and reliable cloud platform for video and audio conferencing, collaboration, chat, and webinars on mobile devices, desktops, phones, and room systems.

As we start educating with Zoom, we want to share some rules with you and give you the opportunity to exclude your student from live interactions.

All meetings will be held under district-established guidelines.

Click this link to see more details and fill out the form.

Opt-Out Form Link

RES Community Stories & Ideas

We are hoping you will fill out our Stories and Ideas with some of the fun you are having around the neighborhood! I haven't had any new submission since the last news edition...


If you would like to submit your story, please click here!

RES Community Stories and Ideas

One of the critical factors to ensuring the success of our students and families at this time will be continuing our sense of family and community. In an effort to share our stories and our fun, or even our frustrations, I have created a google form. Please submit your stories of how you are spending your time, your funny anecdotes of things like “You’ll never believe what my kids said!” or “You’ll never believe what I learned when I was home schooling my child!” and any other great ideas you have. You can ask that your story be anonymous or include your family’s name, but I will put them together to include in my newsletters over the next few weeks.

RES Community Stories and Ideas Link

Need a Conference with your Teacher?

If you need to reach a teacher to set up a discussion about your child's progress or answer a question, they are available through email during our normal school day hours. The 9-12 hours are set aside for student support or parent help, but if you need to have a longer conversation, please contact them to set up a phone conference, or even a zoom meeting. Email to arrange a time that works for all.

Make Sure You Are Getting Our Emails

We have many email addresses and families that are on this email list, however, if you hear that someone is not receiving my emails or district emails, please send their email address and name to me at Christi.Siegel@pfisd.net. Spread the word by forwarding: the more informed we are, the better.

Food Service & Paper Packets

PfISD has implemented a plan to distribute lunches to all children at ten campus locations across the District.


Grab-and-go meals will be available for curbside pickup from 8-9 a.m. for breakfast and 11 a.m.-1 p.m. for lunch.


Locations

Pflugerville High School

Dessau Middle School

Kelly Lane Middle School

Park Crest Middle School

Westview Middle School

Copperfield Elementary

Northwest Elementary

Pflugerville Elementary

Wieland Elementary

Windermere Elementary.


Remote Learning Packets are now available via newspaper mailboxes at the above locations.

We strategically placed them at the grab-and-go meal locations across the district. Packets should be returned at the same locations from 8-9am and 11am – 1pm on Mondays .

PreK and Kinder Registration Postponed

Please spread the word to your neighbors with young children. Those of you wondering when this will take place, please monitor the PreK page of the district website for updates.

www.pfisd.net

7 Habits of Happy Kids

The Leader in Me website has great resources for families and others. I hope you will enjoy these!

https://www.leaderinme.org/family-resources/


The link below is to the amazon page with ordering information for the kid friendly book 7 Habits of Happy Kids by Sean Covey. I'm sure you can purchase this book from many other vendors as well.

The 7 Habits of Happy Kids

Reflex Math Practice at Home

At Riojas, students use a variety of tools and resources to practice and retain their addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division facts. When students are fluent in their facts, they are able to gain confidence in their problem-solving abilities and free up mental resources needed for learning.


Here are a few ways you can help at home:

  • Games – Games provide real, relevant, connected, and fun ways to use math facts repeatedly
    • War: This game is played with a deck of cards (minus the face cards). Each person turns one card over, and the first person to announce the sum takes both cards.
    • Go Fish with Facts: Instead of looking for the same number as in the original “Go Fish” card game, players try to pair cards with equal sums.
    • Domino Top It: Have players place dominoes face-down between them. Each player turns over a domino and calls out the sum of the dots on the two halves.
  • Traditional/Triangle (Fact Family) Flash Card
  • Students 1st - 5th Grades can log on to http://reflexmath.com using their teacher provided login and password.

ABC Mouse

Mrs. Quinney created a code for Riojas students to access ABC Mouse for free from home while we are closed.

View the attached PDF file for more information.

Special Area Menus

Some information about the PDF’s for the Special’s menu: If you have no issue opening the menu, I hope you and your student are enjoying some of the activities and lessons we have found during this time.


If you are having issues opening the PDF, you have some options.

Option 1 – Download adobe on your device for FREE. Just go to the website https://get.adobe.com/reader/ and click download.

Option 2 – If you do not want to download a program onto your computer, there are websites online that will read the PDF for you. You can google PDF reader online and many will come up. It takes a little longer to load, but it works without downloading anything. Here is one I tried where the links all worked - https://allinpdf.com/pdf-reader

Just drag the PDF into the blue area and wait for the magic to happen.

Boosterthon Support for RES

Thank you to our friends at Boosterthon! Our Fun Run Director, Walker Burns, sent this for us!


Hey Riojas Team!

I hope that you are doing well and spending some quality time with your family. Please stay safe and healthy!

After schools started closing around the nation, we decided to open up our Character Video Library to all of our partners. You may have gotten an email about that on Friday from our founder and CEO, Chris Carneal. If you didn’t get the email or haven’t been able to register yet, here is the information:

  • www.BoosterthonCharacter.com Click on Register. (Access Code: home)
  • There’s no cost to register
  • 75 + streaming videos with character topics and fitness exercises (PBIS, SEL, STEAM, etc.)

We hope this resource serves not only as a helpful diversion while the kids are home, but also as an opportunity for families to engage in character-building conversations while also staying active at home. Please feel free to share this resource with your school community, family, and friends!

Stay healthy and safe!


Walker Burns

Program Director

(817) 269-9042

walkerb@boosterthon.com

ChooseBooster.com

Special Areas Menus