Learning & Teaching - Inquiry Learning

Mary MacKillop Primary School adopts an inquiry-based learning approach to the successful integration of all areas identified within the Victorian Curriculum.


Inquiry-based learning allows for children to engage in learning experiences that promote content and skills across a range of areas and concepts contained within the Victorian Curriculum areas, including:
Health and Physical Education

The Humanities

  • Civics and Citizenship
  • Economics
  • Geography
  • History


The Arts


  • Design and Technology
  • Digital Technology


  • Creative and Critical Thinking

  • Ethical Capabilities
  • Intercultural Capabilities
  • Personal and Social Capabilities

Mary MacKillop has developed a two-year Inquiry Cycle which ensures coverage across the Victorian Curriculum.


The focus within inquiry-based learning is on 'how we know' rather than 'what we know', with students actively involved in the construction of their own knowledge. There is a shift away from a content driven approach towards one that provides children with the skills and resources to discover knowledge for themselves. Children are often posed a question and given the skills and resources to explore, investigate and search for answers.


The aims of an inquiry-based learning approach are to:

  • nurture and develop the students’ natural inquiring mind, helping them to become life long learners who continue to learn how to learn
  • develop the students’ ability to pose questions and plan, research, investigate and search for answers and solutions
  • develop the skills needed to convert information and answers into useful knowledge that can be applied to new situations and prompt further learning
  • provide students with different ways of viewing the world, communicating about it and successfully coping with the questions and issues of daily living
  • develop an understanding that all knowledge changes over time as people challenge, shape and contribute to it
  • demonstrate that there are often multiple perspectives for looking at, analysing and understanding things
  • provide learning opportunities that are more relevant as concepts are learned in context and relate to existing knowledge and experiences.