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PK-8
Private
Chicago, IL
 

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4770 S Dorchester Ave
Chicago, IL 60615

School website
(773) 924-2356
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Map of Ancona School address.

August 03, 2015
Our son is in the All Year Montessori program at the Ancona School, and he--and we!--could not be happier with the experience. While we had no prior connection to Ancona (nor were we very familiar with the Montessori approach), we have found it to be such a wonderful and welcoming community, and a perfect fit for our family. The AYM program features a dual Spanish/English curriculum, which was a stand-out feature for us. The teachers are absolutely amazing at identifying each child's strengths and helping them develop at an individualized pace. They have shown such warm enthusiasm for my son's interests and have nurtured his curiosity for learning about the world around him. Whether learning about the solar system, our city's architecture, or African dance, the teachers work WITH the students to develop creative projects that inspire a holistic understanding of the material, often taking advantage of the city's rich resources for real world experiences. Whatever the lesson, I appreciate that the emphasis is about intellectual exploration and true understanding, not memorizing for a test. Beyond the classroom, I have also found the staff to be exceptionally kind, professional, and connected to the students and families. The parents, too, are involved and invested in the school, yet without the sharp competitive edge that sometimes exists in private school environments. Parents are not doing assignments on behalf of their children here, much to my relief. To touch on the broader mission of the school, Ancona encourages its students to be independent problem solvers who are respectful and responsible members of their community. In addition to the academics, students are shown how to be kind to one another, and how to work together to solve problems, and how to appreciate diversity in its many forms. I am always impressed that even the youngest children here will look adults in the eye and speak to them with confidence. In sum, this is the educational experience I wish I would have had as a child (a somewhat anxious, high achiever who felt constrained by an exam-driven curriculum). I am so glad we found Ancona, and I look forward to many more years of joyful learning for my son.

- submitted by a parent

July 31, 2015
Ancona is an extraordinary school. It offers a world class education but that is not what makes it so special in my opinion. It's values are what really sets it apart from other school. Ancona is committed to social justice and that thread runs through everything the students do. It is also the most diverse school in Chicago but not just in terms of the student population (which is 60% students of color with a wide variety of backgrounds represented) but in terms of the curriculum. There is a significant emphasis on creating a peaceful community. It is truly a beautiful place. I also love that kids are kids here - there is daily recess (often twice daily) and a very reasonable homework situation. They want kids to have time to play. What a relief! Finally, the families who come to Ancona are extraordinary - we have made so many amazing friends. It's a privilege to be a part of a community that shares your values. We want our children to receive an excellent education (and get into the city's top high schools), have fun, and help make the world a better place.

- submitted by a parent

February 19, 2015
"I just love Ancona!" That was music to our ears after enduring weeks of ranting about leaving his friends. Transferring our son to Ancona for his 8th grade year was risky, but a very necessary decision. We had become so disenchanted with the CPS system and its rote approach to learning and that we had to make a leap of faith. The Ancona family made us, and more importantly him, feel right at home! Our son met new friends and teachers who cared about him as a person and not just a letter grade. The holistic approach to learning was exactly what he needed, and what we had been looking for! Our only regret was that we didn't send him sooner. We were so pleased that we immediately transferred our second son to Ancona. We are happy to say that he is a thriving 6th grader and is excited about learning!

- submitted by a parent

May 01, 2014
I have been an Ancona Parent for 8 yrs now. My daughter has flourished and grown in every way a parent could ask for. The teachers are kind, interested, academically motivated, curious, gentle and rigorous. Their concern for every child is so manifest. The trips away to camp and later Mexico build character and create confident risk takers. Spanish is available from the time they are 3. Montessori works, it REALLY does....Plus, Building the pink tower is the best. I can not find enough good things to say about this place or it's people. Teachers, staff, parents, EVERYONE! Sending your child to Ancona will be a choice you will be glad you made. I promise.

- submitted by a parent

August 06, 2013
The Ancona School is perhaps the only private, independent school in Chicago that has consistently maintained its integrity as a school implementing progressive-based and Montessori practices. Ancona has almost always been completely true to its mission: providing an exceptional educational experience, while celebrating a racially, ethnically, religiously, socially diverse population. It's a gem that shouldn't be so "hidden". Too many people searching for so-called "good" schools go after a name or a reputation, while their children end up lacking the kinds of interactions that really prepare them for the so-called "real world". Ancona is about a real as it gets. No hiding, no bait-and-switch, just real. Not perfect, but real. I am very impressed by the tremendous education my child has received at Ancona.

- submitted by a parent

April 14, 2013
Ancona is a truly exceptional place with strong leadership, exceptional teaching, and a warm social environment. All of these basics facilitate what the school is all about -- creating in each student an open-minded, confident, creative risk-taker. I have a sixth grader and a fourth grader in the school now. But prior to arriving at Ancona, we had sampled four other schools. No comparison. Ancona manages to balance the many important aspects of cultivating young minds and emotions: academics, self-expression, importance of community, skills, play, values, self-discipline and respect . . you name it. Strongly recommended to anyone considering a move to Chicago or a shift from another local school.

- submitted by a parent

February 19, 2013
A wonderful, nurturing school. Each child receives individual attention and support as he/she develops into in a critical thinker.

- submitted by a parent

February 19, 2013
We are so happy with Ancona. Our kindergartener is reading out loud, says math is fun, knows all the countries in South America, and talks about civil rights. What an amazing place! The teachers are kind and patient and can handle a "spirited" child. The community is incredibly diverse. Choosing Ancona was absolutely the right decision.

- submitted by a parent

February 11, 2013
This is my daughter's sixth year at Ancona. We love the small, nurturing environment, the commitment to peace and social justice, and the truly exceptional teachers. I understand that this sounds like an advertisement, but really each one of those things is true. The curriculum is challenging, the teachers can meet individual students at their own level, and my daughter is developing her abilities to work with all her classmates, not just her friends.

- submitted by a parent

February 10, 2013
As a parent, I see the academic and personal growth in my children practically everyday. I really like all the opportunities for parent participation.

- submitted by a parent

February 10, 2013
Ancona is simply an amazing place. I have never found another school so committed to children's individual learning and development.

- submitted by a community member

July 12, 2012
I have never seen a private school in Chicago so diverse. The teachers are more concerned with how your child thinks and relates to the world around her versus the latest gadget or trend. One of the best educational institutions that focuses on the whole child.

- submitted by a teacher

June 27, 2012
The curriculum is nice, but you're treated differently depending on how much money and influence your family has. I remember the politician's, lawyer's and doctor's children being treated better and chosen for more things than me and my lowly mail carrier / elementary school teacher parents who saved every dollar for me and my siblings to go here.

- submitted by a community member

February 21, 2011
Ancona is a wonderful creative school. The staff is fantastic. Are experience at Ancona has been entirely positive.

- submitted by a parent
no rating
October 21, 2010
Because at Ancona, children are educated wholistically. They're taught to think critically about the world around them, and the exposure to all facets of life and education are presented in everything done within the school. The faculty is phenomenally brilliant, and they enjoy sharing themselves and what they know to the children and their families. All schools should model The Ancona School!

- submitted by a parent
no rating
October 15, 2010
Because our kids love going to school...

- submitted by a parent

March 05, 2010
My daughter is in her third year at Ancona as a second grader. Her positive overall development I attribute in a large part to Ancona. She is an engaged, empowered and balanced child, but even more importantly she loves to learn.

- submitted by a parent
no rating
November 07, 2009
This is our 1st year at ancona and my son is in the pre-primary program (K) and he's having a wonderful experience. The teachers/staff are wonderful and really take the time to get to know the children. My son is thriving in this environment. A wonderfully diverse community.

- submitted by a parent
no rating
October 12, 2009
They truly put the child first, the whole child!

- submitted by a parent
no rating
October 09, 2009
Every day that I drop off my daughter, Ancona makes me happy. She is flourishing in her class with a fabulous pre-primary teacher. The Montessori style combined with the best of progressive and caring education is awesome. Also, Ancona is super diverse, both racially and economically, so our family fits in very well there.

- submitted by a parent
no rating
October 07, 2009
I was a parent of two students at The Ancona School (PK through 8), who loved Ancona and made many friends there, both students and faculty. I also taught there myself for 5 years. It is an exceptional school, focusing on the whole child. Very parent-involved also.

- submitted by a parent

December 18, 2008
Wow. This is our second year at Ancona and we cannot say enough about the teachers, the administration and the curriculum. We always feel welcome, the teachers engage the children in projects that have so much depth it is amazing. Great place for above average learners, the teachers keep the children challenged.

- submitted by a parent

October 16, 2008
After 4 fours of experience with Ancona (one child who recently graduated and one who is an 8th grader) I continue to be impressed by the degree that programs are tailored to the needs and ability of each child. I also am impressed by the racial, social, and economic diversity within Ancona's educational community.

- submitted by a parent

October 15, 2008
We have two children that attend Ancona School. I am pleases with the teachers and their use of a curriculum that constantly challenges my children to think and work as problem solvers.

- submitted by a parent

October 07, 2008
Ancona has been a pleasure on so many levels. The teachers are committed, passionate and truly gifted with children. The curriculum is innovative and student centered -- yes they teach the basics and core curriculum -- but the kids get to express their interest in various subjects and delve into the topics that interest them at deeper level. The school encourages the students to take academic risks and try new ideas and as a result they have exceptional problem solving skills. The school is small and nearly every teacher and administrator knows every student's name which means that every child is well cared for.

- submitted by a parent

May 28, 2008
I am the parent of a student who graduated from the Ancona school in 2007. I can only say that the true test of your child's ability and knowledge will come during their freshman and sophomore years of high school. My daughter is so far ahead of her peers that I had to question her high schools academics to determine if she was being challenged enough. She is ranked #4, with a 3.9 GPA and is in all honors courses. My daughter consistantly receives the highest grades in Spanish more so than children who speak it as a first language. The critical thinking skills, sense of community, and socialization skills that Ancona prides itself on are quite evident in my daughters approach. She is very involved, volleyball, cheerleading, campus ministry. I could go on and on. Ancona is worth every penny.

- submitted by a parent

March 15, 2008
This is our first year at Ancona. My daughter is a preprimary student and I absolutely love the school, the teachers and the administrative staff. I couldn't have asked for a more nuturing, receptive, Montessori based school. The school has a small family atmosphere which allows you to take an active role in the school if you would like to do so. I am very pleased with Ancona and I'm glad I made the choice to attend. My daughter is flourishing academcally, socially and emotionally. The Montessori curriculum may not be right for every child or every family, but if it is, ANCONA is the place to be!!!!! K. Jackson

- submitted by a parent

January 26, 2008
I am a parent of an 8th grade student, who has been at Ancona since pre-K. This was an excellent choice - an excellent academic program, outstanding, caring teacher and a true partnership between the school, parent and child.

- submitted by a parent

January 03, 2008
This is our first year at Ancona and we could not be more pleased. We have two preprimary kids, both with very different personalities, and both are flourishing. Their academic work is as much as we could have asked for, but more importantly their daily experience with teachers, students and administrators is both nurturing and engaging. The school is culturally diverse, understands the need for recess, PE, music and other subjects too often pushed aside in some schools; and gives kids the chance to explore their own capabilities. We are thrilled with it.

- submitted by a parent
no rating
October 26, 2007
exceptionally strong preparation and backgrounding in the basic subjects. very strong reading, math, and science programs. Focus is on children learning at their own pace to experience the power and the joy of learning

- submitted by a parent

October 21, 2007
Ancona is a wonderfully economic and ethnically diverse school that offers an innovate, child-centered curriculum. My kids have excelled here and I have seen tremendous progress in their academic and social evolution.

- submitted by a parent

January 10, 2007
Hello. I goo to the ancona school. It is a very good school and takes extra time to help you or push you ahead in sujects you are good/ bad in. the have a very good sports program allowing 5th and 6th graders to play. I am very glad I go to this school even if I sometimes am upset with the curriculum. I give it 4 stars.

- submitted by a student

November 21, 2006
My daughter is definitely being challenged and she is thriving. The focus in the primary grades is reading, writing and math. Her educational experience has been enhanced by exposure to multiple teachers (Art, Music and Spanish are all taught by different teachers). I don't believe that Montessori is right for every child but I am thrilled that it is working with my child! The Ancona Parent Organization is very welcoming. There are several opportunities for Parental involvement. The school publishes a newsletter weekly which helps keep the parents informed. I wish the classroom and school website were updated more frequently.

- submitted by a parent

April 14, 2006
Great, small, Montessori-influenced school. Preschool-8th. Diverse student body. Experienced, dedicated teachers. Does best with core subjects: reading, math, science, etc. Spanish program is also excellent (Spanish is only foreign language offering). Enthusiastic parents. Kids learn about respect, and community.

- submitted by a parent

March 21, 2006
Ancona is warm and stimulating environment that allows children to find self-direction and work at a pace that suits their ability, while giving them many opportunities to learn. My daughter has flourished since she attended the pre-school program. Her teacher Peggy is so caring and calm and dedicated and in tune with each child's strengths and weaknesses that she is able to redirect and guide them to reach their potential. Part of the building has new facilities and part of the building is older.

- submitted by a parent

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Last modified: August 3, 2015

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Ancona School
4770 S Dorchester Ave, Chicago, IL  60615
(773) 924-2356
Last modified Ancona School is a Private school that serves grades PK-8
Ancona School Rating: 5 out of 5 based on 48 reviews. Top