- About MMS
Preschool and Kindergarten Program
Our Preschool and Kindergarten program is a Montessori-based classroom that blends developmentally appropriate lessons with exploration and imagination. Our setting inspires children to learn social skills, gain confidence, expand thinking skills and develop appreciation for beauty and the creative process. The classroom environment invites children to interact with materials that encourage all areas of development. The child is our curriculum and we are committed to nurturing feelings of self-worth and a sense of independence within each child. We cultivate a love of exploration and learning, as well as positive values and trusting relationships that continue to grow with the child and are the stepping stones to higher learning (more details).
Elementary Program - Grades 1 - 5
The primary goal of the Elementary program is to provide a stimulating, secure environment where students discover a love for learning, build a strong foundation of thinking skills and develop a positive self-image. Exploration, critical thinking, inquiry and problem solving are employed with the understanding that children learn best by doing. Basic skills are taught within the context of an integrated curriculum in language arts, mathematics, science, social studies and health by a credentialed classroom teacher. Students have enrichment classes with additional teachers in Spanish, Dance, Physical Education, Music, Art, Science Lab, Martial Arts, Library and Computer Science. Our Performing Arts program builds confidence, public speaking skills and familiarity with creative expression as students perform for audiences three times per year. Field trips expand the program beyond the classroom environment and grades 3-5 have a few overnight trips to science camps and Sacramento that are built into the course curriculum. Optional after school participation in athletics begins in grades 4 and 5 (more details).
Middle School Program - Grades 6 - 8
The Middle School Program is attuned with the social-emotional, intellectual and physical growth of our middle school students. The unique nature of this age group requires both teaching and learning to be congruent with the students’ developmental needs.
To address the social-emotional needs of these students we have an Advisory Program where small groups of mixed 6th-8th graders, boys and girls, meet with a mentor/advisor for 20 minutes, twice a week. Advisory provides a home base in an otherwise busy week. The program gives older students opportunities to lead and to take care of younger students, encourages cross-age friendships and connects the middle school classes. Parents and students benefit from a faculty ally on staff who will be in touch regarding fun things and difficulties that may arise. In Advisory, the focus is on building supportive school and home relationships, raising school spirit and having fun.
At this age, genders have significant differences in their social-emotional and physiological development. We honor these differences by offering Communications Classes separated by gender and grade level. In Communications Class, students discuss personal and social issues and are facilitated by faculty who have been trained as counselors. The faculty supports students to develop age-appropriate responses and build communication skills. MMS Middle School begins each year with a 3-night outdoor science camp adventure. This trip integrates new students and faculty, provides a wonderful outdoor learning adventure and helps students transition from summer to school.
We offer a challenging and well-balanced academic program, including English, Social Studies, Science, Math and Spanish. All students participate in Performing Arts (music, dance, and acting), Visual Arts and Physical Education. The schedule provides longer blocks of time for uninterrupted study. These longer classes invite deeper investigation and connections between classes. We offer interdisciplinary studies through school-wide chosen themes and have a Social Studies in Action Program which is the service learning component of our academic program. Service Learning enables students to perform meaningful service projects. Combining community service with classroom teaching enriches students’ learning, personal growth and sense of civic responsibility.
The athletic co-curricular program includes volleyball, basketball, flag football and cross country for boys and girls. Students compete in private school leagues in both Santa Clara and Santa Cruz Counties. Students participate in Dance and Physical Education classes weekly during their school day. The daily schedule also includes time for recess, snacks and playing to support the middle schoolers’ active bodies (more details).
High School Program - Grades 9 -12
Mount Madonna High School prepares students to lead, serve others, take responsibility, discipline themselves and care for one another. The majority of our students go on to four year institutions of higher learning and our curriculum prepares students for the most elite colleges in the country. Our A-G courses are approved by the University of California and we are accredited grades K-12 by CAIS and WASC. We require that students have four years of English, Mathematics, Laboratory Science, Social Studies, Performing Arts and three years of Second Language Acquisition. Honors courses are available in these subjects and when interest and ability warrant, classes at local community colleges can be arranged. Advanced Placement courses are also available in some academic subjects.
In order to foster students’ growth, we offer a challenging academic curriculum, exceptional performing arts program, visual arts and philosophy classes, including Values in American Thought and World Religions. Our travel-study program provides academic enrichment, opportunities for leadership, self-discipline, reflection and critical thinking. Students travel on extended field trips with faculty to broaden their world experience and go to Washington, D.C., in either their junior or senior year.
At MMS, our high school begins the year with a rafting trip on the American River that serves to bond friendships and create an environment of cooperation and team work. Students participate in a community service program and have a weekly advisory or communications class. Our high school students are the leaders of the campus and act as mentors for younger students. They have a Student Government that represents the student body and organizes events for the students.
Our athletic program offers a premier volleyball program for boys and girls in the Santa Cruz Coast Athletic League. Students have also competed in cross country and surfing. Student interests generate other programs such as Model U.N. and Mock Trial, literary magazines, film making/photography, etc.
While our program is highly successful, our definition of success is not limited to where our graduates go to college, but rather how prepared our graduates are to achieve their goals and contribute to the world as young adults (more details).