Global Learning

Global citizenship and international awareness are the foundation of the IB program at Alto. Alto’s Global Learning Program emphasizes collaboration, community involvement, and a sense of adventure. We encourage our students to be risk-takers, explore the diversity of our world, and develop the skills necessary to take on the challenges of today’s and tomorrow’s world.

Upper School International Trips

Starting in 8th grade, Alto students travel internationally. The majority of our trips focus on community service, while others focus on cultural awareness. Some recent and future destinations include Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Iceland, Germany, and the United States. The emphasis of these trips is to explore new things, push personal boundaries, cultivate open-mindedness, and raise cultural and global awareness.

Explore Alto’s travel journals to learn more about recent trips:

Exploring California

Starting in 5th grade, students participate in an overnight field trip each year. Alto students explore California, with destinations ranging from the redwood forests and the Sierra Nevada to Yosemite National Park. All outings emphasize learning, as well as trying something new. Students might tackle a high rope course, participate in a challenging hike in Yosemite, or go whitewater rafting on the American River.

Duke of Edinburgh Award


Alto International School is a member school of The Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award. The Award is an internationally recognized program for young people, age 14 and up, building their skills to equip them for life and work. By creating opportunities for young people to develop skills, get physically active, give service and experience adventure, the Award can play a critical role in their development.

The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award was founded in 1956 in collaboration with German educationalist Kurt Hahn by Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, who remains the Parton of the Award. In the past sixty years, millions of young people in over 140 countries have participated and received Awards, with millions more benefiting from its impact in communities around the world.
Students design their own Award program set their own goals, and record their own progress. They choose a service, physical recreation, skills activity, go on an adventurous journey and, to achieve a Gold Award, take part in a residential project. The only person they compete against is themselves by challenging their own beliefs about what they can achieve.

To learn more, visit the Duke of Edinburgh Award Website.

The IB program has a unique approach that teaches children the love of learning, curiosity, risk taking, self confidence and independence. Our kids are thriving.

Alto Parent