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ENRICHMENT & AFTER SCHOOL PROGRAMS

Many of our students stay with us for extended days and many parents are excited to be able to offer their children the joy of fun after-school classes, without the logistical hassle of driving the children around all over town. That’s why AIM offers a highly regarded after-school enrichment program. Below are some programs you can choose for your child.

LEGO ENGINEERING/PRE-ENGINEERING

Power up your engineering skills with Play-Well TEKnologies and over 100,000 pieces of LEGO®! Students will learn to design and build motorized machines, catapults, pyramids, suspension bridges, buildings, and other constructions. The students will explore concepts of physics, mechanical engineering, structural engineering, and architecture while playing with their favorite creations.

SHAOLING KUNG FU

Kung Fu is a traditional Chinese Martial Art dedicated to enhancing the capacity of the human body and mind. Introduced by the Shaolin monks of China, it is renowned for its defensive methods and elaborate animal forms.

MOCHA ART CLASS

The MOCHA teaching artist will introduce students to the fundamentals of visual art, then build upon these basic tools through hands-on art lessons that utilize a wide variety of materials and techniques. MOCHA is locally and nationally recognized for program excellence and has established a reputation for quality, sustainability, and dedication.

SOCCER SHOTS

Using creative and imaginative games, weekly sessions focus on basic soccer skills like dribbling, passing, and shooting. We also highlight positive character traits each session such as respect, teamwork, and appreciation. Soccer Shots will expose your child to the fun of soccer and provide the foundation needed to get started in the sport.

KARATE

Students will learn basic techniques of Japanese Karate in a fun, safe, and supportive environment. Upon building a strong foundation, students will learn more advanced techniques, drills, and combinations. There will be an emphasis on having good form, respect, and discipline. Fun exercises will encourage balance, focus, and coordination.

IN-CLASS ENRICHMENTS & PLAYGROUND LEARNING

Children’s experiences at AIM extend far beyond the Montessori classrooms. Our students enjoy outside play each day before the start of the school day, before or after lunch, and after school. This playground time is a great opportunity for our students to work on gross motor skills, learn how to form friendships, and be active outside.

The play environment at aim offers a wide variety of open-ended play equipment from tricycles and balls to hula-hoops and wood building blocks. On the elementary side, children are able to garden and take care of the multiple trees and plants. The children are also able to care for and feed the chickens we have on campus as well! Elementary students and older Children’s House students love their builder boards, where they build multi-story forts, make hurdles, or use them together with 2×4’s and our redwood stumps to build elaborate structures. All in all, recess time at AIM is a very active, creative, and child-led experience. 

Enrichment happens outside our classrooms in many different ways:

REGULAR MUSIC PROGRAMS

Toddlers and preschool children have weekly engaging music experiences with the Thingamajig program. Children sing and make their own instruments under the leadership of a trained musician. In the elementary program, students have weekly one-hour choir classes under the leadership of Melanie DeMore, a professional performing and recording artist with two decades of experience teaching acapella singing to children.

 YOGA AND KARATE

Twice a week, our elementary students participate in yoga and karate. Taught by dedicated teachers familiar with the Montessori approach, these classes are a great way to bring physical activity into the middle of our elementary school day—and the students just love them!

FIELD TRIPS & IN-CLASS PRESENTATIONS

We regularly invite parents and community organizations to come into our classrooms and bring the world to our children. Whether it is a Japanese calligraphy demonstration by a visiting relative, an oral health experience offered by a local dentist, or a visit by the Berkeley fire department, these experiences enrich the children’s understanding of the world they live in.

CULTURAL EVENTS

AIM is a vibrant community of people from different backgrounds. Throughout the year, our students experience the cultures of China and Japan in their classroom experiences—and, of course, we also celebrate the major American holidays!
Here are some examples of the seasonal cultural experiences your child will have in a year at AIM:

SETSUBUN – 節分

The day before the beginning of Spring. Celebrated on February 3rd, children throw roasted soybeans to scare away the evil spirits for the year to come.

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FIELD TRIPS & OUTINGS

CHILDREN'S HOUSE FIELD TRIPS

ELEMENTARY PROGRAM FIELD TRIPS

  • MOCHA – Museum of Children’s Art 

  • Lindsay Wildlife Museum 

  • Lawrence Hall of Science 

  • Sacramento Railroad Museum & Amtrak Ride 

  • Tilden Pond Study & Hike 

  • The Nutcracker Ballet 

  • Asian Public Library 

  • Sulfur Creek Nature Center

  • Point Reyes

  • San Francisco World Music Festival

  • Children’s Creativity Museum

  • Kids by the Bay

  • Redwood Ranch

  • Piano Restoration Workshop

  • Exploratorium

  • The Bay Model at the Bay Area Discovery Center

  • Japan 

  • China

Montessori education is very much about letting children experience the wonders of the world we live in. That’s why all of our children, starting in Children’s House and increasing as they get older, participate in a series of carefully organized field trips. Here’s just a small selection of the events your child will experience:

In addition to these major field trips, elementary students also regularly engage in smaller "going out" experiences. In these local smaller-group outings, students explore the neighborhood near AIM, identifying flats, visiting local businesses, or looking for plants they’ve become familiar with in their classroom studies.

Finally, at the end of each school year, the elementary class embarks upon a multi-day camping trip. In 2013, this trip took us to the south fork of the American River, for a camping and rafting experience. Students were able to see the work of wind and water, which they had studied in class. We also explored the local habitats, and a mining museum—and applied many Montessori independence skills in action such as preparing food over our campfires.

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