Acton Academy Nashville | Lead Guide Position
Do you want to change the world? If your goal is to instill your love of learning in others while advancing your own professional growth, this is your chance to get in on the ground floor of one of the world’s most innovative schools.
Acton Academy Nashville is a non-traditional school with innovative elements such as quest-like projects with real-world application, Socratic discussions, apprenticeships, and the Hero’s Journey in a learner-driven, multi-age Studio.
We utilize a homeschool-hybrid model so school takes place three days per week (Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday) and the children homeschool on Monday and Friday. The Guide will work in the Studio Tuesday through Thursday with additional weekly scheduled hours outside of the school day for planning, documenting, communicating with parents, and administrative tasks.
This position has part-time “classroom” hours with full-time pay and allocated time to prepare outside of the classroom. The Lead Guide will be working in a classroom of children aged 7-9. Lead Guides are expected to lead Socratic discussions each morning, inspire our heroes to explore, be curious, and take ownership of their learning, monitor student progress on our self-paced curriculum, and create life-oriented projects that nurture student curiosity and culminate in public exhibitions for the Acton community. The Guide’s main role will be to move learners on a journey to understand and develop their most precious gifts, discover their deepest passions, and explore how to use these passions to serve others in a meaningful way that brings them joy. The Guide role is NOT a “teaching” role and all ego is to be removed. We believe our learners will go on to change the world in a profound way.
Acton Nashville has a deep focus on growth mindset and mindfulness. The Guide must have a solid understanding of and willingness to align with these elements.
The Guide will work with the Program Administrator and Founders to:
- Affirm students, holding them accountable to their promises and to deliver “the best work they can do” as they discover and pursue a calling on a Hero’s Journey.
- Create meaningful exhibitions, ceremonies, and celebrations that reinforce the rules of engagement, and personal and group covenants to provide and strengthen a safe learning community.
- Act as a role model as an independent learner on a Hero’s Journey.
- Launch and lead Socratic discussions.
- Guide Quests (projects), including daily challenges and curating world-class examples.
- Supply Studio environment and set up Studio as inspiration for learning.
- Incorporate Acton programs and self-directed materials and lessons into ‘Core Skills’ work time. Observe and track each child’s progress.
- Encourage young learners to track their progress and create portfolios to show parents, peers and apprenticeship employers what they can do.
- Uphold promises to students, parents and fellow Guides made in relational covenants.
- Communicate with parents.
- Pass along each of these responsibilities to the children as quickly as possible, so as to allow them to lead themselves.
- Thoughtfully observe each child as an individual and the group as a whole to help inspire them along their personal and group journey. A willingness to be more of an observer than a doer.
- Complete an onboarding “training” period directed by our Program Administrator.
- Embody a growth mindset and incorporate it into all aspects of the program including the Guide’s own personal development.
- Innovative and entrepreneurial spirit required
- A deep curiosity about life and love of lifelong learning
- Montessori-training and experience preferred but not required (Primary or Elementary)
- Project-based and/or experiential learning training is helpful
- Proven excellence in written and oral communication skills
- A degree in education is not necessary. If you have launched a business or not-for-profit organization or led a major project, these are also suitable qualifications. Traditional teachers have the most difficult time adapting to the Acton model.
- A master of observation
- Evident passion for being on a Hero’s Journey
- This is a position for an inspired and independent learner who can work within the framework of the Acton model under the guidance of the Program Administrator and Founders; someone who likes to collaborate, experiment, evaluate and continually improve; someone who has a deep respect for all children believing that each human has genius within; and someone who is a flexible problem-solver. It is essential that this person can learn fast, loves to work hard, and is an active reader and writer.
- There will be an onboarding “training” period directed by the Program Administrator. The Guide must be willing to complete these learning exercises and remove all ego that he/she already knows best and be excited to understand the Acton method on a deep, philosophical level.
Start time for this position is flexible, although we would like to fill this position within the next few months. School begins late August/early September each year and is an 11-month program. We run on 5-6 week sessions with 1-2 week breaks in between sessions. We are closed for six weeks in the summer (half of July and month of August.) The Guide should be available to learn and prepare throughout the summer.
This position is salaried.
Please thoroughly review our website and the main Acton Academy website before writing your cover letter. If you feel you understand and connect with our vision, please send us a resume and thoughtful cover letter addressing why you would like this opportunity and why you feel that you are the right fit for it.