A Slam Dunk: Sports & AACA

Five Almond Acres middle school athletes and their coach gather at a Cross Country meet

Almond Acres may be a small community school, but our sports offerings are anything but! 

AACA is proud to offer a robust athletic program that includes after competitive teams and intramurals. It’s just another way the entire Almond Acres community is working to grow the whole child: heart, mind, body and soul

In addition to our health and recreation programs and top notch academics, we nurture our students to grow into the best version of themselves through skills gained by being part of a team. Our athletes develop confidence, leadership skills and life-long friendships. They learn to win with grace and handle disappointment with dignity. 

There is no greater time to find a sense of belonging and community than the middle school years. Our middle school sports offerings are designed to give students a chance to showcase their skills and learn new things. Sports are a social outlet and they’re a lot of fun! 

If your middle school student is looking to grow his/her athletic development and have fun at the same time, we offer the following sports: 

Fall

Flag Football (Co-ed)

Volleyball (Girls)

Cross Country (Boys & Girls)

Winter

Basketball (Boys, Girls & Co-Ed teams)

Spring

Track & Field (Boys & Girls)

Volleyball (Boys)

Ultimate Frisbee (Co-ed)

Almond Acres is part of a regional league that competes against nine other schools in the area. Middle school athletes play against other schools our size, preparing them for more competitive teams when they reach high school, but still allowing a fair playing field. In cross country, competitions are divided by age group and open to everyone in our area, regardless of school size. 

The brand new gymnasium at Almond Acres Charter Academy for K-8 sports and physical education. 

Our elementary students don’t miss out on any of the action, either. Sports at Almond Acres are open to all students so they can experience being part of a team and explore their skills and interests. Sports provide our elementary students the opportunity to be with friends, move their bodies and have fun in a low risk environment, as well as prepare them for middle school athletics. 

Fall

Volleyball 

Cross Country (all grades)

Winter

Basketball (3rd-5th grade)

Flag Football (3rd-5th grade) 

Spring

Track & Field (all grades)

Ultimate Frisbee (3rd-5th grade)

Sports teams at Almond Acres extend our mission of developing the whole child beyond the hours of a typical school day. We know that kids who play sports show increased confidence, sharper brains, sleep better and develop stronger hearts and lungs.  All things essential for children to grow into the best version of themselves. Sports at AACA are a win-win!

Join us at Almond Acres as we cheer on our athletes–there’s a team for everyone here!

About AACA

Almond Acres Charter Academy is a public, tuition-free K-8 school that employs credentialed teachers and administers state-mandated testing to provide families in northern SLO County an additional choice in public education. Located in Paso Robles in a newly built, state-of-the-art facility, AACA is open to all students from all communities. AACA’s mission is to help students succeed academically and socially by educating the whole child: heart, mind, body and soul. We grow great kids! 

Brain Power: What Kind of Learner Am I?

What type of learner am I? 

A  life-long learner with high self-awareness. At Almond Acres we spend the first few weeks of school each year empowering our kids to uncover how they are smart. The question is not “am I smart?” This journey of self discovery is very much focused on HOW I’m smart. 

We are all smart in different ways. Everyone has intrinsic intelligence and our AACA kids get to figure it out for themselves. They’re in the driver’s seat uncovering how they learn best! 

Starting in kindergarten, our students take ownership of their education. Understanding this helps each student know themself; giving them both confidence and increased autonomy towards their learning. 

We start by explaining how the brain works.  We include the biology and mechanics of the brain. Our brains do so much for us – from recognizing objects, to problem-solving, to processing emotions. Understanding this from a young age can help demystify learning and everyday habits we never think about like breathing and digestion. When we understand how our brains interpret and work, we can better understand and take ownership for our bodies, our responses and our lives. 

Graphic of how the brain works: http://www.mayfieldclinic.com/pe-anatbrain.htm

Our students identify their strengths and struggles by answering questions about their preferences and tendencies. Our AACA kids observe their own behavior and interests which makes learning easier and more fun!  

We all learn in a VAK-uum! 

When it comes to learning, some of us are visual learners — we need to see it. Some of us need to hear it — we are auditory learners. Last but not least, some of us need to do it. We’re the kinesthetic learners

We are each a combination of the three. Most often we are stronger in one area. Whether in our AACA in-person classrooms or A-HA online program, knowing your learning style is as valuable as knowing your ABCs.

There are eight intelligences

Gardner’s theory of the 8 intelligences graphic: https://www.simplypsychology.org/multiple-intelligences.html

Here are a couple of examples:  

Someone who has strong interpersonal skills will learn better when working with a partner or team.  

Someone with strong kinesthetic abilities may learn sight words better if they do jumping jacks while they spell words out loud.

As Bob has shared with our AACA community previously,

Take inventory of of the amount of learning your child has accomplished…if you account for each intelligence: interpersonal, naturalist, kinesthetic, visual-spatial, logical-mathematical, linguistic, musical, and intrapersonal, you might just experience some wonder and awe. 

This growth is the result of constantly believing in the unique capacity of our children’s mind and encouraging them to learn something new everyday. 

Constantly remind your child that today is the first day of the rest of their life. Carpe Diem.  As we wake to each new day, opportunities, challenges, and wonders await!

One ACCA parent summed it up so well — here is our brain power in action: 

We spend the first three weeks of every school year focusing on self discovery and setting goals for the year – even in kindergarten!  Students work with their parents and teachers to identify strengths and struggles in all areas of their lives: heart, mind, body, and soul.  

In a student-led parent-teacher conference following this self discovery period, the student shares what they’ve learned about themselves and challenges themselves to grow – or stretch – their skills.  For example, a student may choose to learn to play an instrument, participate in the school play, or improve their reading fluency by learning 100 sight words.

Explore your child’s brain power with us

Self discovery awaits! We’re still enrolling.  It’s not too late to give your children the gift of high self awareness and a lifelong love of learning in a tight-knit, small public school. 

About Almond Acres

Almond Acres Charter Academy is a public, tuition-free K-8 school that employs credentialed teachers and administers state-mandated testing to provide families in northern SLO County an additional choice in public education. The school is located inSan Miguel and is open to all students in all communities. AACA’s mission is to help students succeed academically and socially by educating the whole child: heart, mind, body and soul. We grow great kids!