5 Ways to be Selfless

Each month at Baymonte Christian School we highlight a positive character trait with a corresponding Bible verse. September’s character trait is Selflessness.

“Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others.” Philippians 2:4

5 Ways to be Selfless

It’s easy to get so absorbed in your own life that you lose track of what’s important. Becoming more selfless could change the way you see yourself and the world. Jesus said it is the second most important of all God’s commandments: “You shall love your neighbor as yourself”. Mark 12:31. If you’re interested in doing more for others, try these 5 ways of being selfless.

  1. Volunteer Your Time and Talents

Find volunteer opportunities in your community that match your talents. At BCS we have many volunteer opportunities. Our upcoming Tech Trek event takes many volunteers to be a successful event. If you’re available to give an hour or more of your time the week before or day of the event, please let us know! A list of needs is coming in an email soon.

  1. Foster Empathy to Understand Others Better

Empathy is the ability for one person to understand how another person feels. You can increase your empathy by paying closer attention to the experiences of others. A way we foster empathy at BCS is by taking our seventh grade students on a mission’s trip to Rancho de Sus Ninos. Rancho is an orphanage in Tecate, Mexico. The children at the orphanage have been taken from unsafe homes and live at Rancho with loving house parents. We take our students into the community to see how others live in poorer parts of Mexico. By bringing our students into these areas, where kids are without loving biological parents and/or living in poverty, we hope to instill a sense of empathy for others. Last year our eighth graders went to Houston to help with the hurricane relief efforts as well.

  1. Make Giving a Daily Act

To become truly selfless, you can integrate giving into your daily life. Big gestures that you only do once or twice a year are great. Everyone appreciates those acts. But, daily giving takes you to a higher level of selflessness. Daily acts of giving could include helping a lost person find directions, giving someone a cold bottle of water on a hot day, or offering smiles to random people on the street. Another way to give is to make a meal for a family who may be going through a transitional time (welcoming home a new baby, healing from a surgery, grieving a death, etc.). At BCS our Family Cares Committee makes meals for families. If you need a meal or would like to be part of the committee to provide a meal you may sign up here.

  1. Know How to Receive as Well as Give

Learning how to accept help when someone offers it is a form of selflessness. Give other people opportunities to develop selflessness by accepting gifts graciously.

  1. Donate

Choosing to give is an act of selflessness that benefits the entire community. Look for charities that you have an interest in. It’s the sacrifice that makes your giving selfless, not the size of your contribution.


Encyclopedia Britannica Online Access


Summer Reading Turn In

It’s time to turn in summer reading logs to the library!

Students can now turn their summer reading logs into the library to redeem their incentive prizes! The best times to redeem summer reading prizes are during recess, middle school break, lunch or after school. Students may also redeem their prizes during media time, but it is preferable that they come during non-class time.

If your student has lost the reading log, there are extra copies available in the library or you may have your child record the titles read on a piece of lined paper. All recorded books should have been read during the summer – books read since August 29th do not count as summer reading. It is also important that the reading logs are signed by a parent or guardian.

The last day to turn in summer reading logs is September 19th.

Questions? Email Mrs. Upton: catherine@baymonte.org


Five Back-To-School Tips

Back to school can be a challenge for the whole family. Here are 5 quick tips to start the school year off right.


  1. Get Enough Sleep

Getting enough sleep is critical for a child to be successful in school. Studies show children who do not get enough sleep have difficulty concentrating and learning as well as they can. Set a consistent bedtime for your child and stick with it every night. The optimal amount of sleep for younger children is 10-12 hours per night and for adolescents (13-18 years of age) is in the range of 8-10 hours per night.


  1. Eat Healthy

Studies show that children who eat a nutritious breakfast function better. They do better in school, and have better concentration and more energy. Pack a healthy snack for morning recess and lunch for midday. Baymonte’s hot lunch service begins Tuesday, September 4 and our menu can be found here. Hot lunch tickets can be purchased in the school office for $5.


  1. Develop a Morning Routine

Take steps to make the morning less hectic and get everyone out of the door on time. This may include packing backpacks and school lunches, and choosing outfits the night before. Be sure to wake up earlier to give everyone time to get ready and to school on time. Our school start times are posted here. If you arrive late your child must get a tardy slip in the school office.


  1. Developing Good Homework & Study Habits

Create an environment that is conducive to doing homework starting at a young age. Children need a consistent work space in their bedroom or another part of the home that is quiet, without distractions, and promotes study. Schedule enough time for homework after school each day.


  1. Get Involved

There are several ways to get to know your child’s new teacher, meet other Baymonte families, and get involved.

  • Baymonte’s Parent Teacher Fellowship is hosting a coffee social the first day of school, Wednesday, August 29, 7:30am-9:00am. Enjoy a cup of coffee and chat with our teachers and other parents.
  • Save the date for Baymonte’s Back To School Night on Thursday, September 6 at 7:00pm.
  • Attend PTF’s first meeting on Tuesday, September 18 at 3:00pm.
  • Save the date for Baymonte’s annual Tech Trek fundraiser on Saturday, October 13 at 8:00am.

ArKIDtecture Field Trip to the City

“The sun never knew how great it was until it hit the side of a BUILDING!!”

Fun and sunny day in the city with our budding young architects and designers as they visited one of the few “net zero” efficient buildings downtown, home of DPR Construction’s Design/build offices.  We learned about “vampire switches,” efficient “GREEN/LEED” construction practices using solar panels, natural lighting, oversized fans, interior green garden walls and recycled materials.  
The kids had great questions and even scored some cool DPR swag. Of course, after all that education, we hit a famous corner pizza spot and walked over to the Palace of the Fine arts for a bit of architectural sketching… 
Great day of hands on learning!
Lauri McNeill 
McNeill Design Architects

2018-2019 Class Supply Lists


Please click the links below. Bring supplies to school on the first day of school unless otherwise noted.


First Grade

Second Grade (supplies provided)

Third Grade 

Fourth Grade

Fifth Grade

Middle School


Prevent the Summer Slide

Attention Parents: 

Even though school is almost over, it’s not too late to help your child become a better reader. Summer is an important time for students to keep reading and improving their language skills. Help prevent the Summer Slide before the new school year begins next fall.


Here are 10 facts about the importance of reading during the summer:


ALL young people experience learning losses when they do not engage in educational activities during the summer. Research spanning 100 years shows that students typically score lower on standardized tests at the end of summer vacation than they do on the same tests at the beginning of the summer. 1

READING is the most important subject in school. Why? Because a child needs reading in order to master most of the other subjects. It’s extremely difficult to do word problems in math if you can’t read the words. How can you answer the questions in social studies or science if you can’t read and understand the textbook? 2

LEARNING or reading skill losses during the summer months are cumulative, creating a wider gap each year between more proficient and less proficient students. By the time a struggling reader reaches middle school, summer reading loss has accumulated to a two– year lag in reading achievement. 3

REGARDLESS of ethnicity, socioeconomic level, or previous achievement, children who read four or more books over the summer fare better on reading-comprehension tests in the fall than their peers who read one or no books over the summer. 4

TEACHERS typically spend between 4 to 6 weeks re-teaching material students have forgotten over the summer. 5

IT is estimated that the “Summer Slide” accounts for as much as 85% of the reading achievement gap between lower income students and their middle- and upper-income peers. 6

READINGas a leisure activity is the best predictor of comprehension, vocabulary and reading speed. 7

3RD graders who can’t read on grade level are four times less likely to graduate by age 18 than a proficient reader. 8

HAVING reading role-model parents or a large book collection at home has a greater impact on kids’ reading frequency than does household income. 9

AN overwhelming 92% of kids say they are more likely to finish a book they picked out themselves. 9


So now that you know why summer reading is so important, what are some ways you can encourage your child to read? 

    • Visit your local library or bookstore – often. Having access to as many books and reading materials as possible ensures that your child will always have something to read.
    • Make sure your child participates in a summer reading program (such as those offered by the Santa Cruz Public Libraries or the Baymonte School Library). Summer reading programs offer incentives and a variety of fun activities that promote reading and learning.
    • Have your child record their books so they can keep track of their progress.
    • Read aloud. Children of all ages love read alouds and it is a great way to spend time together.
    • Be a good example. It’s hard to encourage your children to read if you’re not reading yourself.
    • Check out or subscribe to kids magazines (Sports Illustrated for Kids, National Geographic Kids, etc.).
    • Read about your vacation destination before you go.
    • Read about something you want to do together (hiking, planting a garden, working on motorcycles).
    • Turn off the TV and substitute one half hour of reading. Make reading a family event by having 15-30 minutes of family reading time every day.
    • Print is everywhere. Read cereal boxes, newspapers, comics, magazines, books, ebooks, street signs, etc.
    • Carve out time for reading, even when your schedule is packed. This will show your child that it is a priority.
    • Listen to an audiobook while reading along in print.
    • Always include books in your bags whenever you go somewhere, for your kids and for yourself. Reading is a great activity to beat boredom or fill in downtime.  
    • Encourage social reading. If your child wants to read a book because other kids are reading it (and you don’t have personal reasons why you think your child isn’t ready for the book), by all means get a copy. You could even create a Book Club for your child and their friends.
    • Check out a few book lists for students to get new ideas.             
    • ALSC Summer Reading Lists
    • Scholastic Summer Reading Lists
    • Common Sense Media Summer Reading List





1. White, 1906; Heyns, 1978; Entwisle & Alexander 1992; Cooper, 1996; Downey et al, 2004.

2. Ten facts  parents should know about summer reading: Jim Trelease.

3. Summer Reading and the Ethnic Achievement Gap, Jimmy Kim, Journal of Education for Students Placed at Risk, 2004

4. Ameliorating summer reading setback among economically disadvantaged elementary students, Richard Allington, April 2007

5. Lasting Consequences of the Summer Learning Gap, Karl Alexander, Doris Entwistle, Linda Steffel Olson, April 2007

6. Why Summer Matters in the Rich/Poor Achievement Gap, Richard Allington and Anne McGill-Frazen, August 2009

7. The Power of Reading, Stephen Krashen, Libraries Unlimited., 1993

8. Annie E. Casey Foundation, Hernandez, Donald J., 2011

9. The Kids and Family Reading Report™ 4th edition conducted by Harrison Group and Scholastic, 2012.




Outdoor Science School Adventure

The sixth graders embarked on a journey at Ponderosa Lodge for their Outdoor Science School (OSS)! It was an experience that they were not very used to doing, but I am extremely proud of them for taking up the challenge of sleeping on a bed that was not theirs, learning from a teacher they did not know until that Monday, and going on adventures that may have tired their feet. OSS definitely kept the kids on their feet, with occasional times of rest in their cabins. The 6th graders tried so many different activities, such as making a candle, climbing the rock wall, learning a dance, performing a skit (in front of all six schools!), and going on night hikes with their trail group and Naturalist. Climbing the rock wall was a definite experience to be shared! About half of the 6th graders were really nervous about climbing the rock wall and ringing the bell at the top because it was high and the only control they had was their hands and feet. They had to place their complete trust in their Naturalist in keeping them safe. All of them, but a few, took up that challenge and climbed up to the bell. Some climbed half way, yet took another turn in climbing the wall with the goal of reaching the bell. A few even climbed the wall blindfolded! They trusted their instincts and trusted their Naturalist in keeping them safe. Overall, I would describe the experience as exhilarating and a life lesson to be learned in placing our trust in the Lord. Even though we take part in some “control” or responsibility in our lives, God is in control of everything. We can trust that He will take care of us!

Preparing for Science Camp took a lot of hard work; however, seeing how much fun the 6th graders had made everything worth it!

Jeremae Reyes, Middle School Science Teacher


Baymonte 4/5 Band Rated “Excellent” at CMEA Festival 

Baymonte 4th and 5th grade band students performed at the the California Music Educators Association (CMEA) Festival held at Santa Cruz High School. The band performed for a panel of three professional adjudicators and music directors, and received a unanimous rating of “Excellent”. Afterward, they received a clinic workshop which focused on strengths and suggestions for improvement.

Overall, God blessed us all with a great experience, and a fun way for our Baymonte music students to perform out in the community along with other bands from all over the California Central Coast. A huge thank you to the students for their hard work and a special thanks to the parents for their support and generous help with the event.


Jason Braun, Baymonte Music Director


Baymonte Students Recognized at County Science Fair Awards

Baymonte 7th Graders Bennett Cocherell, Ashlyn McDaniel, Sam Freeman, and Nicolette Negrete were recognized at the awards ceremony for the Santa Cruz County Science Fair last night.  Bennett received a Project of Merit Award.  Ashlyn placed second in her division and earned a special award from the Botanical Society.  Sam placed first in his division for his project about removing E. Coli from water.  Nicolette placed first in her division and was the overall runner up, winning a cash prize of $250 for her project on leaf yeasts.  Ashlyn, Sam, and Nicolette were also invited to represent Santa Cruz County in the California State Science Fair.