OUR PHILOSOPHY OF LEARNING

We believe that:

Clear thinking leads to good decisions,

Good decisions lead to the right habits,

The right habits lead to character, and

Character becomes destiny.

SPARK

(Lower Elementary)

Ages 5-7


The purpose of our Spark Studio is:

  • to foster academic, physical and emotional independence through developmentally appropriate works inspired by Maria Montessori;
  • to spark curiosity through hands on experiences and play-based challenges, and;
  • to equip learners for the next steps of their journey by applying the Hero’s Journey philosophy.

DISCOVERY

(Upper Elementary)

Ages 7-11


The purpose of our Discovery Studio is:

  • to develop self-awareness and independence through reflective processes and freedom within boundaries;
  • to discover a joy for learning through a balanced learning design, and;
  • to ignite curiosity through a wide range of challenges and experiences.

A LEARNER-DRIVEN COMMUNITY

  • Students create and sign a Studio Contract describing how each individual will act and the consequences for violating community norms.
  • Mentor teams encourage younger and older students to listen, affirm, set goals and hold each other accountable.
  • “Learn to Be” badges celebrate character and completing leadership challenges.

21st CENTURY LEARNING

  • The latest in educational tools and technology for self-paced mastery of reading, writing and math skills.
  • Deep Socratic discussions about heroes, history and self-governance to hone critical thinking skills and the ability to powerfully think, write and speak.
  • Hands-on project based Quests to master the tools and skills needed to solve problems in the real world.
  • Written promises and covenants that form a tightly bound community of individuals learning to form authentic friendships and honestly resolve interpersonal problems.

MEASURING MASTERY

Young heroes celebrate the mastery of tools, skills and character by earning badges, assembling portfolios and taking part in public exhibitions.
  • Parents use badges to track academic progress in Core Skills like reading, writing, math and spelling and character development in “Learn to Be” Badges.
  • Portfolios and the Journey Tracker (our internal goal-setting and tracking software) captures rough drafts, photos, and other creative work. 
  • Public exhibitions at the end of most Quests allow young heroes to present work to experts, customers or the public for a real-world test.

PERSONALIZED TOOLS

At AANWA we utilize the latest in educational tools and technology for self-paced mastery of Core Skills (like reading, writing and math, etc.)

EXPERIENCE "A DAY IN THE LIFE" OF AN ACTON ACADEMY LEARNER

PARENT TESTIMONIALS

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