Right in the middle of South East Northrein Westphalia in Germany a new elementary school has been built to accommodate the school reform of the federal state. Rather than classrooms and hallways the Berlin Based Danish Architect Sigurd Larsen and his team developed a new vocabulary of spaces. Places for group work, project based teaching and individual homework as well as creative and physical activities will take place on the school ground. The building itself forms a row of courtyards that over the years will be inhabited by various tree sorts. A long internal street connects all building volumes and hosts all common facilities. A concept of different sound levels was developed to influence the material choices and locations of the various new space typologies.
LOBBY, CENTRAL PLAZA AND HALLWAYS – Ground level and upper floors.
Sound level: Medium
Located by the main entrance an information tower with a town hall clock, screens and student posters forms natural meeting point that leads further into the main hallway and canteen. A village of furniture shaped like houses speak to the playful and creative side of children and young people, but serve to create intimate spaces in the natural center and heart of the school. Some houses contain glass displays that can be used for exhibitions. As the houses gradually continue into the library they are wrapped in bookshelves and offer rooms for group work or a quiet place to read or concentrate.
The perpendicular hallways leading to the classrooms contain long stretched furniture for sitting and standing, organized as a belt in the wide corridors.
LIBRARY / SELF STUDY ROOM
Sound Level: Medium
Since searching for information has moved to the internet, books remain for inspiration and fiction as well as periodicals. Inside the house shaped furniture group- or individual work can take place as well as individual concentrated homework. In the library a domestic feeling is further created by benches and niches for reading or conversation. As a supplement to the media lab computers are available for homework or information search.
Canteen and Theatre hall – Ground floor
Sound level: Medium-Maximum
The Canteen is the lively, colorful and social center of the school. It encourages creativity, movement and social activities. By the help of light tables and light curtains the room can easily be transformed from canteen into a stage with an audience of 500 people, a dance floor or separated into smaller spaces for group work. Multiple activities can take place at the same time due to the acoustic performance of all surfaces in the room.
Sigurd Larsen Architekten GmbH
PASD Feldmeier Wrede Architekten
Igenieurgemeinschaft Bröckling Vullhorst GmbH
W+W Sachverständige und Ingenieure für Brandschutz GmbH & Co. KG