Maria Ferrari

Acton Academy SV Founder
Education without conformity

A letter from our Founder

Acton Academy Silicon Valley is an innovative learning environment, where individuality is not just embraced but celebrated. Our private school is designed around the belief that every child is a unique learner, and success doesn't require conformity. In our classrooms, we've leveled the playing field, dismantling the traditional formula of education that often leaves many learners feeling left behind. Here, your child doesn't have to change to succeed; they thrive by being exactly who they are. Success at Acton Academy is as diverse as the beautiful individuality of each learner we welcome.


Your child is the hero of their unique story.

At Acton Academy SV, we draw inspiration from the timeless power of the Hero's Journey - a narrative of deeply rooted in human experience.

But it’s more than good material for a superhero story. It's the kind of story ordinary individuals use to discover their unique strengths. For our learners, it’s the constant thread running through everything they do. Whether tackling challenging lessons or engaging in thoughtful discussions, our learners develop the heroic skills of resilience and perseverance, and learn that failure is a stepping stone on the way to success. At Acton Academy SV, learning isn’t the destination but rather a journey of limitless possibility.


A school designed for innovation

Self-paced Progression Through Mastery
At Acton Academy SV, learners progress at their own pace, and only advance after demonstrating mastery of each concept. This helps build a deep and lasting foundation for all future learning.
Multi-disciplinary, Project-based Curriculum
Our curriculum is driven by hands-on projects, sparking curiosity and practical problem-solving. Through real-world applications, learners not only acquire knowledge but also develop the skills needed to tackle challenges in diverse contexts. Our multi-disciplinary projects encourage learners to connect ideas across various subjects, cultivating a comprehensive understanding of the world around them.
Portfolios & Exhibitions
Rather than traditional grades, we build comprehensive portfolios that showcase a learner's journey, projects, and achievements. Regular exhibitions provide opportunities for learners to present their work to their peers, parents and school community
No Homework
Learning at Acton Academy SV is concentrated within school hours. With no homework, learners have time for family, extracurriculars, and pursuing personal interests, allowing for a balanced and meaningful life outside of the classroom.
Socratic Guiding
At Acton Academy SV, our Guides are mentors, facilitating the learning process distinct from traditional teaching. They inspire curiosity, provide guidance, and foster a student-driven environment, empowering learners to actively take charge of their education.
Mixed-aged Learning Environment
In our mixed-aged Studios, learners collaborate across age groups. This dynamic environment mirrors real-world interactions and fosters mentorship, collaboration, and a sense of responsibility among learners.

Explore the Studios of Acton Academy SV


Nitty Gritty

Ages 2-5
A nurturing preschool program with flexible 2-day, 3-day, 5-day and half or full day options.
Read More

Nitty Gritty

Ages 2-5
Nitty Gritty Studio provides flexible schedule options tailored to your child's needs. Choose from our 2-day, 3-day, or 5-day programs, available in half or full-day sessions.

Our preschool is thoughtfully crafted to support the developmental milestones of young learners. Here, in a nurturing and stimulating environment, we ignite curiosity and cultivate a deep-seated love for learning.

Stepping into Nitty Gritty Studio marks the beginning of a child's educational journey. Beyond a traditional preschool, it's a place where young minds flourish, laying the foundation for future academic achievements and a lifelong passion for learning.
Attend Admissions Event
Grade K-1


Ages 5-7
Spark Studio ignites curiosity, creativity, skills through quests, discussions, and play-based learning, preparing for academic excellence.
Read More
Grade K-1


Ages 5-7
Spark Studio taps into the inherent love for learning, innate curiosity, and creativity within each learner. It provides an authentic, Montessori-inspired environment where learners engage in hands-on quests, age-appropriate Socratic discussions, team building challenges, and play-based learning. Within this environment, learners practice basic goal-setting and earn learning "badges." The Spark Studio lays the groundwork for reading, math, science, citizenship, and independent learning skills, preparing young individuals to excel in the Elementary Studio.
Attend Admissions Event
Grade 2-5


AGES 7-11
Elementary learners embrace hero's journey, mastering core skills, teamwork, quests, fostering growth mindset.
Read More
Grade 2-5


AGES 7-11
The Discovery Study is specifically designed for our Elementary-aged learners. Here, our learners accept their calling of a hero’s journey and embark on an adventure of learning and self-discovery. Through the mastery of foundational core skills, engaging introductory Socratic discussions, collaborative teamwork, and immersive real-world quests, our learners delve into the realms of arts, sciences, history, and the natural world. Integral to the Discovery Studio is a strong emphasis on character development, teaching decision-making skills crucial for a fulfilling life.  Our lactively cultivate a growth mindset, perceiving failure as an opportunity for personal growth and development.
Attend Admissions Event
Grade 6-8


AGES 11-13
Learners delve into challenges, fostering growth through Socratic discussions, practical application, and community-building.
Read More
Grade 6-8


AGES 11-13

In Exploration, learners are propelled into a distinctive realm of challenges that foster self-discovery and growth. Featuring deeper Socratic conversations and an emphasis on practical knowledge application, young heroes cultivate clear thinking, effective decision-making, and the development of positive habits. Navigating freedom within boundaries, these heroes become adept decision-makers and form a close-knit community valuing authentic friendships and honest resolution of interpersonal issues. The Exploration Studio empowers older students to seize control of their education, guiding them to learn, do, and be with purpose, strength, and meaning, cultivating kind, resilient, resourceful, and creative young minds prepared for the challenges of today's world. Within the Exploration Studio, learners engage in challenging real-world quests, push boundaries, and deepen their understanding of contemporary issues—a journey marked by growth and critical thinking.
Attend Admissions Event
Thriving every day

Inside the vibrant world of our learners

From the moment they step into the studio to the closing reflections, each day unfolds as a unique adventure for our learners. Our daily rhythm is carefully designed to foster curiosity, independence, and a love of learning through immersive exploration, collaboration, and self-discovery.

From engaging in Socratic discussions to hands-on projects and Quests, our young heroes are encouraged to embrace challenges that celebrate their individuality. You won’t find the buzzing energy within our mixed-aged studios in traditional classrooms. It’s what happens when learners of all ages encounter real-world models and are given the unique opportunity to interact, experiment, and grow together.


Acton’s approach to lifelong learning

Learn to do

Through hands-on projects and experiential learning, learners in our programs master essential problem-solving skills and cultivate the values of teamwork, hard work, and perseverance.

Learn to Learn

Moving away from traditional lectures, we present intellectual challenges and “Quests,” guiding learners to discover the skills, tools, and materials necessary to construct their own answers.

Learn to be

Stepping back to allow each learner to step up, we foster qualities essential to curious, independent, lifelong learners. These qualities include character, collaboration, and citizenship.

Learn to know

Our learners not only master the foundations of core academic subjects (Math, English, and Civics) but also engage in daily practices honing their language skills (listening, speaking, writing, and reading).

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the significance of mixed-age studios, and how does it benefit learners?
Mixed-age studios at Acton Academy SV create a diverse learning community where older learners are able to mentor younger ones. Mentorship develops high-order thinking skills in our learners, which deepens their engagement and mastery of the subject matter.
Why is there no homework at Acton Academy SV?
Acton Academy SV prioritizes in-class mastery, eliminating the need for homework. This allows learners to delve deeply into subjects during school hours, promoting a balanced lifestyle and family engagement in meaningful activities.
What role do Guides play, and how are they different from traditional teachers?
Guides at Acton Academy SV are mentors, not traditional teachers. They facilitate exploration, encourage critical thinking, and provide guidance, empowering learners to take ownership of their education and fostering a student-driven approach.
Can you explain the Mastery Badge System and its significance?
The Mastery Badge System at Acton Academy SV goes beyond traditional grades, emphasizing mastery and real-world application. It recognizes and celebrates a learner's achievements, motivating learners to pursue excellence and showcasing their unique strengths and accomplishments.
How does Acton Academy SV prepare learners for the real world beyond academics?
Acton Academy SV emphasizes skills like critical thinking, problem-solving, effective communication, and collaboration. Through project-based learning and real-world challenges, learners develop adaptability and resilience, preparing them for success beyond academics.
How does Acton Academy SV balance structure and flexibility in its daily schedule?
Acton Academy SV strikes a balance between structure and flexibility, providing a framework for core learning while allowing freedom in choosing projects and exploration. This approach cultivates discipline, independence, and a love for learning within a supportive environment.
Can you explain the role of Socratic discussions in the learning process?
Socratic discussions at Acton Academy SV encourage learners to explore ideas, articulate thoughts, and engage in meaningful dialogue. This method promotes critical thinking, effective communication, and a deeper understanding of complex topics.
Can Acton Academy SV learners transition seamlessly to traditional high schools?
Acton Academy SV learners can transition seamlessly to traditional high schools. The emphasis on critical thinking, self-direction, and a strong academic foundation equips them with the skills necessary for success. Additionally, California schools accept over 300 types of transcripts and therefore enrollment will not be an issue as your child transitions from Acton Academy SV to their high school of choice.

Have more questions about Acton SV?

Ask our Admissions team

The Children’s Business Fair

Empowering Young Entrepreneurs

At Acton Academy SV, we believe in nurturing not just academic skills but also the entrepreneurial spirit in our learners. The Children's Business Fair is a testament to this commitment. This unique event allows our learners to turn their creative ideas into real businesses.

Real-World Application

During the fair, young entrepreneurs get to showcase their innovative products and services. From concept development to marketing strategies, learners experience the entire business lifecycle firsthand. It's not just about turning a profit. It's about honing essential life skills like problem-solving, communication, and resilience.

Fostering Independence

The fair provides a platform for learners to become architects of their own success. Through brainstorming, planning, and execution, they learn the value of hard work, adaptability, and customer interaction. This hands-on experience contributes significantly to their personal growth and self-confidence.

Connecting with the Community

Beyond the classroom, the Children's Business Fair fosters community engagement. Parents, peers, and local community members attend, supporting our young entrepreneurs. It's a celebration of creativity, innovation, and the spirit of enterprise, reinforcing Acton Academy SV’s commitment to holistic education.

Admissions are now open

If you're seeking an educational experience that goes beyond the ordinary, where your child can embark on a journey of self-discovery, critical thinking, and real-world exploration, Acton Academy SV was made for you and your family. Join us in shaping the future of education and unlocking the unique potential within each child.