Please read for important information and updates.
MMS Monthly E-Newsletter | June 2022

Dear MMS Families,

"Oh, the Places You'll Go!"

The title of a Dr. Seuss book captures the spirit of this time of year at MMS, as we wind down and prepare for new adventures in 2022-23 and beyond.

This year brought us together in new ways as we embraced change and challenge, ending on a bright note of hope and promise with the return of many beloved in-person school traditions and exciting plans for the future. Seeing the happy faces of our students and families at events such as the talent show, spring concert, gala, and field trips has been wonderful. I look forward to seeing more of you at the end of year picnic and at our summer events!

As the year draws to a close, we our proud to recognize the eighth year students who will be moving on to high school in the fall. It has been our privilege to guide and work with these outstanding young people over the years--we have no doubt they will continue to amaze us and make the world a better place.

Please join me in congratulating our graduates:

Eleanor Hoblitzell
Warrick Staten
Devin Taylor
Zarmeen Zahra
Danny Zanabli

As they and you will see in the alumni update below, there's no limit to where an MMS education can take our students. We are proud of all of the 1,000+ children who have been a part of our school over the past 45 years and can't wait to see what's ahead for them--and us!



Creativity and community are two of the threads running through the colorful and rich tapestry of our 45 years. These two themes were stitched together by Upper Elementary I students in their contribution to the 2022 Spring Gala art auction--a vibrant quilt paying tribute to the legacy of the late Charly Hamilton, a WV artist who inspired and shared his talents with our students for two decades.
I always jump at the chance to help,” Charly once said about working with MMS students. “Kids enter every activity with an anything-is-possible attitude. They always pick the biggest brush and the brightest paint. Their attitudes inspire and feed into my own work.” In their quilt design students, chose their colors from bright and bold fabrics, honoring this memory of Charly.
"With the brightness and hope that children bring into the world, we are truly building the future one child at a time here at MMS," said UE I Lead Guide Emily Christian.


Elementary Step Up Days (Primary to Lower Elementary, Lower to Upper Elementary), week of May 23

May 25 | Sixth Year Project Presentations

May 30 | Memorial Day, no school

May 31 | Tie Dye Day-Staunton campus. Bring one 100% cotton shirt per child. All other supplies provided.

June 1 | Tie Dye Day-20th Street campus. Bring one 100% cotton shirt per child. All other supplies provided.

June 1 | MMS On-Campus Tour | 6:00 p.m. | Staunton campus | In-person visit for parents of prospective Primary-Middle School students who have participated in a virtual admissions session (request session here).

June 2 | Eighth Year Graduation

June 3 | Last day of school | Early dismissal | All-school picnic at Kanawha State Forest | All students will be dismissed starting at 11:45 a.m. and families should proceed directly to Kanawha State Forest (shelters #8 and #9) for our end of year picnic! Sign up for Picnic Volunteer Opportunities

June 7 | Toddler Information Session/Open House | 1:00-2:00 p.m. | 20th Street campus |open to parents interested in the Toddler program as well as those already enrolled for the 2022-23 school year. Session will also be available via Zoom.

June 12-26 | FestivALL Art-for-ALL Juried Student Art Exhibition | Clay Center | selected MMS student work (Primary through Elementary) will be showcased

MMS Campessori: June 13-July 29. For information, contact Alasha Al-Qudwah

Sunday, June 26 | Awards Presentation-FestivALL Art-for-ALL Juried Student Art Exhibition | Clay Center | Noon-1:00 p.m.

"When children come into contact with nature, they discover their strength." ~Maria Montessori. A three-day outdoor learning and leadership trip to Spruce Knob--a cherished MMS Upper Elementary tradition--returned this spring. Nothing can match the magic of the mountains!

As part of their anatomy studies, Upper Elementary students made anatomically correct and proportioned models of blood, using beads, sequins and vegetable oil to represent red and white blood cells, platelets and plasma.
Gagana Sidineni, an MMS fifth year student, participated in the 17th Annual All-Girls National Chess Championships in Chicago in April. Gagana is the WV elementary state chess champion and the only player from WV at this prestigious competition. We are so proud of her, MMS Chess Team Coach Evan Young, Parent Coordinator Samantha Hicks, and all of our dedicated chess team members this year!
Celebrating a birthday the Montessori way with another trip around the sun!

Like these photos? Then you'll love MMS on FacebookInstagram and Twitter. Photos, school updates and Montessori news are posted nearly every day!

MMS celebrated our dedicated teachers and staff with daily recognition activities during Teacher Appreciation Week, May 2-6. We are so grateful for their heartfelt commitment to nurturing the potential of each child, every day, all year long. Thank you MMS teachers.... and kudos to the School Life Committee and volunteers who presented such wonderful gratitude events!

Upcoming parent volunteer opportunities: Your help is needed for the annual MMS picnic on June 3 and the make-and-take art booth at the FestivALL Children's Art Fair on June 25. Details and sign up here.

The annual MMS Talent Show, a project of our Middle School students, returned this spring bigger and better than ever. Special events such as this are integral to the Montessori adolescent curriculum, offering students opportunity to develop real-life project management, creative, financial/budgeting, marketing and administrative skills.


Work continues apace to enhance indoor and outdoor learning environments at both campuses. Recent updates include installation of toddler-sized wooden play structures from Community Playthings at 20th Street and arrival of new picnic tables built by students at Carver Career Center for the Primary program.

MMS is also beginning plans for aesthetic enhancements to the front of the Staunton campus, including a new school sign and entrance improvements. We are very grateful for the expert design recommendations from Jill Watkins of Jill Watkins Design Works, who is advising us on a pro bono basis. Jill has left her mark on some of our area's most high-profile buildings and developments and also guided upgrades to our Middle School facility when it was located on Bridge Road. Thank you, Jill!

Please continue to watch for news on the many projects underway to enliven and improve your child's learning environments! Your support of our fundraising helps make these changes possible.

Oh, what a night! Thank you to everyone who came together to celebrate our 45th anniversary in such a special way at "Creating the Future, One Child at a Time," the 2022 Spring Gala on May 13. It was wonderful to see such a great turnout for this annual event, which benefits MMS financial aid, teacher appreciation and facilities funds.

Thanks to our amazing list of generous sponsors, great guests, phenomenal class art projects and exciting auction items, it was a huge success. Special thanks to our phenomenal committee, co-chaired by Becca Stevenson and Brooke Young, along with Minor Swing, MC Jim Strawn, DJ Vinyl Village, Pama Rutledge/Edgewood Country Club, and photographer Mark Wolfe!

A few items are still available for purchase on the gala platform. Don't miss this second chance to win some wonderful prizes and support your school.

Spring is a time of announcements and accomplishments. We love sharing news about our alumni. Here's what some of them are up to these days.... please share your alumni news with
George Washington High School graduate Shannon Rogers is bound for the University of Maryland-College Park this fall.
Ukiah Cordell heads to the University of San Francisco after graduating from GW.
Hayden Carriger, who will graduate from Charleston Catholic as a National Merit Finalist, will study engineering at the University of Alabama in the fall.
Mary Catherine Platz, who earned a PharmD from WVU this month, matched with WVU Community Residency Program and will be working at the Kroger Pharmacy within Marietta Memorial Hospital next year.
Frank Baer IV, who works in insurance underwriting in New York City after graduating from the University of Georgia in 2015, ran the Boston Marathon this April. He began marathon running years five ago.
MMS alumnus Miles Krompecher, third from left, was a member of the West Virginia Academic Showdown Championship team from George Washington High School-congratulations!
Dr. Hannah George was honored as the Outstanding Student in Emergency Medicine by the WVU School of Medicine during graduation week events. She will begin her residency at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill.
Elena Lieu will begin Harvard Law School this fall after graduating from the University of Kentucky in May.
Following five years with Carleton Varney and Dorothy Draper & Co., Merriweather Franklin is the lead designer for Greenbrier Interiors. She graduated from WVU with a degree in art history.
Former MMS classmates Robert Simmons and Max Gottlieb connected at the May 13 Spring Gala.
Minnah Gayed graduates from Wayland High School in Wayland, Mass., in June, and will pursue biology/pre-med studies at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst this fall.
Campessori theme weeks have been announced!

Students will explore, expand and enjoy their world and all it has to offer during seven amazing weeks of enriching and fun activities. Separate tracks for Primary and Elementary are offered, and very limited space may still be available at certain levels and weeks.

For details, contact MMS Campessori Director Alasha Al-Qudwah. Don't wait--this popular program fills every year.
The Annual MMS Spring Concert was back in person this month. Congratulations to our student musicians and thank you to MMS Music teacher Karen Morris, Strings Instructor Bernard DiGregorio and Spanish Teacher Maria Leon Kershner for your work with the children this year!

Ethan took his math studies to whole new level by color-coding different types of fractions in this poster.
"Do you want to meet our turtle?"
The Spring 2022 Middle School pedagogy of place program took seventh- and eighth-year students throughout the state and around the city for immersive studies of our communities, history and culture. During this whirlwind week, students explored the New River Gorge, Matewan and Williamson in Mingo County, Bechtel Summit, The Greenbrier, Droop Mountain Battlefield State Park, Beartown State Park, Lewisburg, Charleston's West Side, and more. Whew! See the MMMS Facebook page for details and loads of other photos on this amazing week.
Thank you for reading your "M" News!

Current and past newsletters are always available on our virtual newstand.
Mountaineer Montessori School
4801 Staunton Avenue SE and 308 20th Street SE
Charleston, WV 25304
304.342.7870 | Email | Website