“Success in life depends in every case on self confidence and the knowledge of one’s own capacity and many-sided powers of adaptation. The consciousness of knowing how to make oneself useful, how to help mankind in many ways, fills the soul with noble confidence.”
– Maria Montessori

The Santa Cruz Montessori Adolescent program (named “Wavecrest”) is located in beautiful facilities at our Winston campus. The curriculum, classrooms, seminar rooms, science and art lab, computer resource center, gardens, and playing field were specially designed to create a nurturing environment where adolescents are respected and cared for. This provides a safe place for students to develop autonomy, initiative, and collaboration. Adolescents at Wavecrest have ample opportunities to perform service that cultivates responsibility for the planet and humanity; to work hard, be challenged, be responsible; and to build and define themselves as citizens of a community and the world.

Designed to foster self-discipline, confidence, and a personal vision of the self-working in society, the Santa Cruz Montessori Adolescent program encourages students to be active participants in the educational process. Guides work closely with parents during this crucial stage of development to support our students as they transform from children into young adults.

Our Wavecrest staff consists of a Montessori-credentialed director, trained guides from the AMI Adolescent Orientation, specialty instructors, and resource specialists. Working closely with one another, with the students, and with the families, these guides coordinate curriculum, and extracurricular activities.

Specialty teachers (local experts and parents) are invited to work with the students on a regular basis in the areas of music, physical education, and team sports. Students organize coffeehouse presentations where they can explore their creative self-expression. Here they may dance, sing, share poetry, or produce a play.

In addition to their studies on campus, Wavecrest students explore the Monterey Bay Area and the Central Coast and take a biannual trip to Washington, D.C., and Ashland, Oregon. Wavecrest students have the opportunity to participate in the Santa Cruz Montessori after-school intramural sports program playing teams from other schools. They are actively involved in community service projects.

Live Earth Farm

Wavecrest students work at the organic Live Earth Farm every week in four areas of interest: field studies, health and wellness, art, and micro-economy. The farm experience gives the students the opportunity to perform real work: work that gives the student a sense of worth and the ability to cooperate within the social fabric of the community. The work consists not only of practical experience but also of intellectual growth achieved through formal lessons.

Washington, D.C.

Santa Cruz Montessori’s adolescent students travel to Washington, D.C., and visit Mount Vernon, Colonial Williamsburg, the Jamestown settlement, Monticello, Arlington National Cemetery, the Library of Congress, the FDR Memorial, the Lincoln Memorial, the World War II Memorial, the Vietnam Memorial, the National Gallery of Art, the Smithsonian Institution, the Supreme Court, the White House, and the U.S. Capitol.