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Welcome! ๐Ÿงญ

Pathfinder is an independent learning center located in Arlington Center of Arlington, Massachusetts. Many students don’t feel challenged, inspired, or supported in traditional school. At Pathfinder, we provide a space which re-engages kids and teens in their own learning. Pathfinder is dedicated to helping members feel respected in their environment, allowing them time to invest themselves in their interests, goals, present, and future. We are committed to supporting our members, ages 10-19, through their individualized educational journey.


Our independent learning center is a school alternative focusing on self-directed learning. Self-directed learning, sometimes known as unschooling, is a learning method which places focus on kids learning, instead of adults teaching. At Pathfinder, we honor the wants and needs of our members, and strive to help them pursue an education which feels important and worthwhile to each individual.


Our space has many rooms to create in, learn in, play in, socialize in, and explore! We are just a short walk away from the Arlington Library, Spy Pond, the Arlington Boys and Girls' club, the Minuteman Bike Trail, and a number of stores, restaurants, and other businesses. At Pathfinder, all members are free to take advantage of the outside world.



Supporting Self-Directed Education

Community ๐Ÿ’ฌ

We are a small and welcoming community serving a diverse group of learners.

Mentoring ๐Ÿ™Œ

Each of our members have a staff mentor that they meet with each week, to plan and reflect.

Classes ๐Ÿ““

Our optional classes represent the wide range of interests of our members.

Portfolios ๐Ÿ“Œ

We document each member's learning pursuits for use in homeschool reporting, college applications, resumes, and more.

Opportunities ๐ŸŒž

With freedom and flexibility, members can access myriad resources and possibilities.

Independence ๐Ÿฆ‹

We encourage members to take greater responsibility for their lives. We foster the skills that bolster autonomy and self-reliance.

Interests ๐Ÿฉท

Members have the time and space to pursue their interests in depth. Our staff provides ideas, resources and guidance.

Flexibility ๐Ÿ”€

Our learning environment is highly adaptable to meet the individual needs of the members. We support varied learning styles, family needs and schedules.

Out in the World ๐ŸŒ

Join us on field trips. Take or sit in on college classes. Volunteer in an area of deep interest. Find internships.

Parents and Members Say:

"Being in charge of her own education as well as the supportive staff who have a genuine interest in our daughter's success have made a world of difference in her approach to learning and her outlook on life."
"My high school aged daughter moved over to Pathfinder and never looked back!"
"Pathfinder is a wonderful place for any child to explore and learn what they need and love. Your childโ€™s education will be fostered through the one on one support and guidance of the terrific staff and teachers."
"I love Pathfinder!"
"The center has given me the resources to figure out who I am, what I enjoy doing, and the person I want to be."
"Pathfinder learning center is a dream come true... As a parent, itโ€™s very inspiring to see my children have the freedom to be themselves and discover who they are and what they want to pursue in life."
"A game-changer for me... Pathfinder instilled in me newfound excitement and confidence in myself and my future."

Who is Pathfinder for?

We are here for kids and families who want a different approach to learning. Those who: feel bored, unchallenged, and want more; have learning differences that schools don't address; want more time for a passion; feel lost or bullied at school; or find the structure and values of school confining and frustrating.


Are there state requirements?

All members who enroll at Pathfinder must register as a homeschooler in their school district. We are happy to assist with this process.


What happensย after self-directed learning?

Students who self-direct may choose to move on to high school, college, work, internships, or travel as a next step. Outcomes are often very similar to students who pursue traditional learning paths, but the possibilities are rich and endless!



Pathfinder Learning Center is committed to being accessible to all. We work with families from all financial backgrounds. Contact us or check out our application page to learn more about becoming a member.

Let's Connect!


Email: [email protected]

Phone: 781-640-3709

Address: 731 Massachusetts Avenue Arlington, MA