Week 10: 10/19 – 10/23/2020

Dear Bella Mente Families,

I hope this finds you all well and healthy. As I speak with parents, I hear how difficult this time can be with all the other responsibilities parents have. It is not an easy time for anyone right now, but I have no doubt that through teamwork, collaboration, kindness, grace, and flexibility we will be able to not only make it through this time, but do so successfully! You are not doing this on your own, we have staff available to help from 8am to 7pm. Please take advantage of this assistance. 

A big thank you to Mr. Hank for making October fun. I appreciate and enjoy his visits to farms and his cooking videos. How many of you shared pictures of the meals you cooked while watching a fun movie? The no-bake chocolate chip cookies looked really good! Mr. Hank helped remind us how important earthquake preparedness is! Thanks Mr. Hank!

Our Upper Elementary students are participating in a Reader’s Theater Showcase today! Another shout out to our teachers who are coming up with great ideas for learning online!

We had our first Answers with McQuestion. I miss sitting in a real circle in the MPR with you, but we made it work virtually! As always, it is nice to meet and talk with you! Mr. Hank is going to continue his October fun with a Parent Workshop next week with cooking as his topic. Please join him on Thursday at 5pm for English and 6pm for Spanish. Last, but not least, is Super Hero Day on Friday, October 30th. I think parents and teachers should dress as Super Heros too, as all of you are!!

If you haven’t noticed, I tend to mention attendance a lot. I do this because I know how very important it is for your student to attend daily and complete assignments to progress in learning. Our staff spends hours daily calling families to find out how we can assist to get ALL students attending and completing work. The staff at Bella is doing their best to be available to you throughout the day and evening to support your students learning. We do need you as parents/guardians to help your students use these valuable resources available to them.

Some issues that parents have shared with me that students are reporting: 

  • The Zoom meeting needs a passcode. All passcodes have been turned off for Zoom meetings.
  • The teacher didn’t tell me about any homework.  Each day students will have work to complete in the online apps.  Wonders, Aleks or IXL, and Studies Weekly. Aleks or IXL has daily recommended time to work on the program. So there is always Math to do. 
  • Zoom keeps kicking me out. Generally, that is because of the unstable internet. Leaving the Chromebook plugged in and turning it on and off each day will help with this issue.  
  • Our helpdesk is always available during school hours to support your student in online learning.  Please email helpdesk@bellamentecharter.org

As always, we at Bella want to thank you for your trust, patience, and kindness as we work together to make this a great year for all!

Enjoy your weekend and stay safe and healthy!
Dr. McQuestion

“As we observe children, we see the vitality of their spirit, the maximum effort put forth in all they do, the intuition, attention and focus they bring to all life’s events, and the sheer joy they experience in living.”  Maria Montessori

Upcoming Parent Workshops: 5 pm in English; 6 pm in Spanish

October 28, 2020 – Cooking with Mr. Hank

Zoom Links:

Spanish: https://bellamentecharter-org.zoom.us/j/82100003056


January 27, 2021 – Time Management with Mr. Chalmers

February 24, 2021 – Getting the most out of Wonders with Ms. McGraw

March 31, 2021 – Teaching the Montessori Way with Mr. Bareno

April 28, 2021 – Restorative Practices with Dr. McQuestion

May 26, 2021 – Let’s prepare for High School with Ms. LaBlond and Ms. Marter


Montessori Musing


Independence is one of the most important ideas in Montessori education.  Allowing your child to complete work on their own will build self-confidence and security.  At home have your child be responsible for certain chores (children as young as 2 can help around the house)  and let them help in planning meals (shop with you, too).  Let your child dress themselves and clean-up after themselves.  Also, let them solve their own problems by asking them “what do you think you should do?” 

Here is a link to a free printable “Age-Appropriate Chores for Children”