Skip To Main Content

Pre-K 3 to Grade 8: The Advantage of Being a Woods Lifer

Pre-K 3 to Grade 8: The Advantage of Being a Woods Lifer

When a child begins at The Woods Academy at age 3 and graduates in Grade 8, we call them a “Lifer” - they will have spent more time at The Woods then they will in high school and college combined. This is a place where many of their firsts happen - first field trip, first science project, first musical, and more. This is a magical time in their life, being at The Woods from age 3 - Grade 8, and we are honored to play a role in their educational development.


So why should families commit to a Pre-K 3 to Grade 8 model? There are many advantages, including:

  • Consistency and Continuity: Staying in the same school through their early education years allows students to stay in a familiar environment, which can positively impact their emotional and social development. Each morning, as the Lower School students walk in from morning carpool, you consistently see them stop to give their former Montessori teachers a hug before they move along to their new classrooms. This interaction is so special and gives comfort to our students knowing their former teachers continue to love and care for them, and root for them on the sideline!
  • Holistic Development: The Woods Pre-K 3 - Grade 8 model along with a smaller school environment allows the holistic development of students by addressing their cognitive, social, emotional, and physical needs throughout their formative years. This approach helps build a strong foundation for future academic success. A parent of an alumni recently wrote to the school saying, “As a parent, I can say that The Woods Academy was one of the best gifts I could have given my child. It encouraged his love of learning, made him feel appreciated as an individual, and joyfully taught him the value of connection and community. “
  • Strong Community: Over the years, students, teachers, and families can form strong relationships within the school community. This sense of belonging and connectedness can contribute to a positive and supportive learning environment for our students. Last year, a Woods Lifer and Grade 8 graduate said, "I will miss the tight community, where everybody knows each other, and feels comfortable. That feeling in the morning when you walk into school and everyone knows your name and says hi to you.”
  • Smooth Transition Periods: Transitions between divisions (such as moving from Montessori to Lower School and Lower School to Middle School) can be smoother in a Pre-K 3 to Grade 8 school. Because of our small size, teachers already know their students before they enter their grade level. Our teachers, from one grade level to the next, work closely together throughout the year to make sure our students are growing and thriving by knowing their individual needs and learning styles, making transitions less stressful.
  • Smaller Learning Environment: Pre-K 3 to Grade 8 schools, like The Woods Academy, have smaller student populations compared to larger middle schools or elementary schools. This can create a more personalized learning environment, allowing teachers to provide individualized attention and support. More importantly, this allows students to feel safe and cared for throughout their time at the school.
  • Reduced Stress for Students: Students in a Pre-K 3 to Grade 8 school may experience less stress related to transitions between schools. They can focus on their learning without the added pressure of adapting to new environments, teachers, and peer groups multiple times.
  • Leadership & Growth: When children spend a significant part of their life at one school, they feel comfortable to lead and take risks. They know their teachers will love them unconditionally and are more inclined to try new things. Our Grade 7 and 8 students, for instance, are confident to be tour guides at our Open House where they show adults their school and feel comfortable sharing their experience with them.

At The Woods Academy, we nurture the whole child throughout their entire time here through academic excellence, spiritual enrichment, and character development. Our hope is that our graduates leave The Woods well prepared for what lies ahead.

Learn About Our Profile of a Graduate


We are grateful for the support that The Woods community provided after graduation. By attending The Woods Academy, we all realized the enormous benefits of attending a smaller school (which influenced where our son wanted to attend college). The Woods Academy also provided the foundation that has led to more incredible things. We would have never imagined that he would have been selected for numerous collegiate merit scholarships, served in national and statewide leadership roles, received state and national service awards, and secured three competitive Computer Science internships.