Kosasa Community for Grades 2 – 5

The Sidney and Minnie Kosasa Community for Grades 2 – 5 represents Punahou’s educational philosophy for the 21st century. It incorporates the latest research about the neurology of learning into an instructional vision based on personalization and flexibility to create learning that is relevant and enduring. 

Kosasa Community is alive with running, laughing, climbing, exploring children. In the same way that the indoor environments are designed to facilitate as many types of learning experiences as possible, the diverse outdoor environments run the gamut from open, grassy lawns for running freely, to quiet corners for reflection, to the adventure of exploring a native forest environment or the adrenaline of kinetic play structures. 

“The world that our children live in and will move into is one that will continue to change. Knowledge is everywhere. It’s important to us that we engage with kids beyond content.”

Paris Priore-Kim ’76, Junior School Principal 

Experience Punahou’s newest learning environment through the eyes of our students.

New Structures

Seven two-story classroom studios with 28 new classrooms overall. Classrooms measure 1,220 square feet, each with its own spacious lanai. Each floor contains two classrooms that can be unified via moveable partitions and a shared breakout room.

The centerpiece of the new community is a nearly 20,000-square-foot Learning Commons for Kindergarten – grade 8 students. This includes technology/media facilities; design and fabrication spaces; administrative, instructional and conference rooms; flexible creative, social gathering and outdoor areas; and traditional library and research spaces.

Through an interdisciplinary integration of music, movement, speech and drama, students build their capacity for self-expression with an approach that values experimentation, improvisation and creative problem solving. Patrick H. Quilter Lab for Creative Arts – a 10,000-square-foot visual and performing arts building adjacent to the Learning Commons – supports students’ learning and provides opportunities to translate their questions, interests and passions into concrete forms.

Reaffirming Punahou’s connection to its historical, geographical and spiritual center – the fresh waters of Ka Punahou – was a hallmark of Jim Scott’s tenure. The Kosasa Community celebrates that connection in a tangible way through its thoughtful incorporation of the New Spring into the design of its outdoor environments. This playground for grades 2 – 3 will always ring with the sound of children’s laughter as they grow and learn near this symbol of the School’s renewal.

Kosasa Community Construction Timelapse