Advanced Academics and Talent Development

Welcome to Advanced Academics and Talent Development at MPSA!  Please take a look through the helpful links in the menu on the left to discover more about what MPSA has to offer our growing scholars.

Ms. Joanna Yamashita


My name is Joanna Yamashita and I am the Advanced Academics Coach at MPSA. I am very excited to be working with your children and their teachers this year.

My career in education began when I trained to be a Montessori Elementary teacher at the A.M.I. Washington Montessori Institute. I have since worked at the upper and lower elementary levels for over twenty five years. I became interested in differentiating curriculum for higher ability learners a few years ago; this led to me going back to graduate school to earn my Gifted Education Endorsement. I also hold a Master’s Degree in Curriculum and Instruction. Along with my love for Montessori theory and pedagogy, my passion is connecting with families and students and ensuring equity of access for all children to critical and creative thinking opportunities.

Arlington Public Schools is dedicated to maximizing the strengths and potential of all students so they may become self-confident, well-rounded, responsible and productive citizens. Many gifted students need opportunities to think abstractly, work at various rates and levels of complexity, and pursue tasks independently. In addition, students eligible for gifted services need opportunities to learn with others of like abilities, as well as opportunities to develop social relationships with others of all abilities.

More information about APS Gifted Services