Student Life

Student Travel

This is the power of an Ancona education.

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  • Learning should be experiential, rooted in empathy, and should nurture critical thinking.

In thoughtfully prepared experiential environments, Ancona students explore, evaluate, and grapple with real-world challenges. They observe, question, and explain the world around them. Our teacher-developed, scaffolded travel curriculum builds independence, curiosity, and engagement in the world. 

Our award-winning Outdoor Learning Space and playscape provide students of all ages with opportunities for physical, cognitive, and social growth. 

A 4,000 square foot farm maintained by our full-time Outdoor Educator provides a rich, communal learning environment to develop an understanding of the interconnectedness of life and our role as caretakers and stewards of the environment.

Every fall, preprimary students board a bus and travel to an orchard in Indiana for hayrides, apple picking, and community. 

Apple picking for 3, 4, and 5-year-olds grows to the Ancona in the Woods day trips for 1st & 2nd graders. Our 1st/2nd-grade faculty, students, and parents work together on activities and cooperative games and share a meal in a peaceful, natural setting. 
By 3rd/4th grade, our students travel for overnight camping trips practicing archery, rock climbing, and interdependence. 
Fifth and sixth graders spend a week at camp hiking, studying watersheds, and embodying environmental stewardship. 
Our 7th/8th graders travel by plane each year alternating between a Spanish language camp at El Lago del Bosque and a winter wilderness adventure involving dog sledding and snowshoeing. 
Our experiential learning program culminates with a week-long international journey and immersive Spanish-language experience for our 8th graders. 

While traveling internationally with fellow students may seem far off for our preprimary students, the experiences in the Montessori classroom cultivate the confident risk-taking and independence that underpins our students' success in high school and beyond.

Through programs like City Quest (7/8) and Gone Fishing (5/6) and partnerships with Court Theatre and the South Side Community Arts Center, Ancona students learn that the principles of collaboration, care, and understanding taught in the classroom can also guide them into meaningful connections with the wider world. 

These experiences promote strong relationships with teachers and peers and value the interests, identities, and cultures of our community.
Research shows that experiential learning in an integrated environment "...helps to reduce anxiety about difference, builds capacity for empathy and caring about others, develops leadership competencies and plants seeds for social change."
    • Affiliations

      Independent Schools Association of the Central States

    • Affiliations

      Lake Michigan Association of Independent Schools

    • Affiliations

      National Association of Independent Schools

    • Affiliations

      American Montessori Society

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