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Lower School (Grades Pre-K–6)


Learning is an emotional endeavor that begins from the moment a young child steps on our campus. There is no greater responsibility and privilege than to partner with our students and parents to ignite a love of learning and cultivate important habits of mind that are quintessential to success in school and beyond.

Kristine Theodoratos, Lower School Director

Lower school teacher and students from Sierra Canyon coloring together at a table.

Where Learning Forward Begins
Pre-K–Grade 2

On the exhilarating, sheltering green grounds of Sierra Canyon's Lower Campus, imaginative teachers and eager classmates cultivate your child's natural curiosity, exuberance, and empathy—so each new day and every new experience is met with ever-growing confidence, capability, and compassion.

In our nurturing primary grades, our expert teachers foster your child's intellectual and moral development in equal measure, paving the way to adventurous and meaningful achievement. Our Learning forward philosophy means that our thoughtful teachers meet their students where they are today and provide the tools and encouragement to push their students to the next level.

Teaching in small groups allows teachers to develop a deep relationship with each student. At the same time, through our intentional character education program, your child begins discovering how to be a kind and respectful community member. Learning and playing in a diverse, inclusive environment builds intellectual, emotional, and cultural agility to propel your child forward through the Lower School.

The Next Steps in Learning Forward
Grades 3–5

During their Lower School journey, your child develops an exceptionally strong foundation for lifelong learning. Our liberal arts curriculum is steeped in rigorous academic standards. Teaching strategies are dynamic, creative, and varied to keep students engaged and maximize understanding. Differentiated learning in reading and math ensures each child is challenged and that learning is a joyful enterprise.

Alongside classmates from uncommonly diverse backgrounds, your child builds confidence and poise through active questioning, real-world problem-solving, and thoughtful and challenging small-group work. In the globalized world we live in today, it is essential for students to be provided opportunities to engage with others of different backgrounds and lived experiences. Whether in the classroom, at lunch, or on the playground, every moment at school also provides opportunities for character education. Classroom lessons, discussions, and assemblies contextualize what it means to be a person of good character. Caring, imaginative faculty members inspire, guide, and prepare students for Sixth Grade and the crucial transition to Middle School.

A lower school teacher and two students from Sierra Canyon are working together on a numbers activity.

A lower school teacher and two students from Sierra Canyon are focused on their computers in a classroom.

Paving the Way to Middle School
Grade 6

Sixth Grade marks an especially exciting time in your child's Sierra Canyon journey. In the last year on our Lower Campus but the first year of Middle School, we continue to nurture your child's intellect, values, and confidence—while building self-advocacy, leadership skills, and independence. Students engage in intentional and collaborative learning experiences intended to broaden academic insight as they move from concrete understanding to abstract thinking. During this tentative age and stage of development, students learn how to navigate a Middle School schedule, balance a robust academic workload, explore new leadership opportunities, and manage multiple teacher expectations. Continued social, emotional, and academic growth during this transitional year lays the necessary foundation for your child to step out of our Lower Campus enclave and into our energizing Upper Campus.  


Every step in Sierra Canyon's Pre-K–Grade 12 journey adds up to one goal: readiness for what's next.

In our Lower School's verdant haven, your child discovers and hones indelible talents and abiding interests. Our program intentionally builds academic agility, genuine confidence, and compassionate character—preparing your child to thrive in the intensive intellectual classrooms of our Middle and Upper School.

From that capacious launch pad, Trailblazers set forth for college and beyond as an uncommonly self-aware, self-advocating, and self-directed young adult. We call that Learning forward.

Did you know?
Fast Facts about the Lower Campus:

Lower School Team

Guided and inspired by caring, imaginative faculty members, your child discovers how, what, and why they love to learn. By the end of the transitional grade 6 year, our students have grown into strikingly self-aware, self-directed young thinkers and citizens, ready for the galvanizing challenges of our Middle School.