Skip To Main Content

Mobile Navigation

Open Inquiry Track

Lower School students

Open inquiry track
(Preschool–3rd grade)

Rooted in progressive educational philosophy, Calhoun’s Open Inquiry track draws on a range of methods to engage and challenge your child as an individual learner and member of a larger community. Our emergent curriculum means lessons often arise from students’ questions and interests, which expert teachers hone to build subject-matter mastery as well as crucial social and emotional skills. All this means your child begins to take charge of their learning, even at this early age. 



In preschool, children begin to engage with numbers and words through a wide range of tactile activities that are woven into the fabric of every school day. They build, create, communicate, and collaborate. Most of all, they start to discover who they are—developing self-confidence, curiosity, and compassion for the world around them.

Preschool class

Kindergarten technology


In kindergarten, your child delves into social studies, language arts, and math, focusing on concrete, interactive experiences that engage our senses and amplify our understanding. In the second half of the year, each kindergarten class embarks on a multi-disciplinary project that emerges from a shared topic of interest, allowing us to expand our skills as a community of thinkers. We expand on our classroom work with explorations in STEAM, Spanish, world music and physical education.

1st–3rd Grade

In these grades, students continue to build self-awareness, confidence, and insight as individual learners and people. We emphasize hands-on experiences that account for each student’s interests and learning styles, as expert teachers adapt lessons to engage and challenge every child. 

Projects frequently make connections between disciplines and with the world beyond the school, whether it’s creating detailed urban utopias from recycled materials, or simulating a classroom economy for a math project. As we give them more opportunities to demonstrate their knowledge in a variety of ways, children grow more invested in their education. At the same time, as they explore, learn, work, and play together, students increasingly become contributing members of their communities.

2nd grade reading

Explore More

Learn about how the two Lower School tracks come together in 4th grade, or connect with us to see Calhoun learning in action.

Learn more about the ongoing student experience at Calhoun in the 4th grade.

Connect with our Admissions team to learn more about Calhoun.

Explore our campus to see Calhoun learning in action.