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Integrating Community Into The Classroom

A meaningful relationship between a school and its community enhances the core curriculum and the future of its local economy. This K-12 conceptual school features supporting learning spaces located around a center atrium allowing community integration. Each space within this school is designed to capture creativity, experimentation and student exposure to real-life lessons and professional mentorships.   

Studies indicate that playing, learning and relaxing in a natural setting can defuse stress and anxiety. Kids who had grown up around the lowest levels of vegetation had a 30% higher risk of neurotic, stress related, or psychosomatic disorders. Each space within this school incorporates access to natural light, views of the outdoors, and access to biophilic elements that will not only reduce student stress but build a stronger framework for Social Emotional Learning (SEL) strategies.

Indoor Food Market
Indoor Food Market

Outdoor Lounge and Community Space
Outdoor Lounge and Community Space

Indoor Food Market
Indoor Food Market

Indoor Food Market
Indoor Food Market

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Life Skills Lab
Life Skills Lab

Cafeteria
Cafeteria

Life Skills Lab
Life Skills Lab

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Every child's education should incorporate curriculum centered around nutrition. Where does our food come from and how do we develop a healthy diet? These are questions students need to explore early on. The dedicated communal spaces in this school encourage students to grow and make their daily meals; developing basic skills and uncovering students interest in agricultural innovations.

This space is a bright blank canvas allowing students to create and draw from their own inspiration without feeling overwhelmed. Enrolling students early on in the arts teaches them critical thinking skills, problem solving skills and how to appreciate others work. Not only will this help students prepare for their adult careers but is another opportunity to develop SEL skills. 

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Classroom Space
Classroom Space

Classroom Space
Classroom Space

Classroom Space
Classroom Space

Classroom Space
Classroom Space

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In math and science it is important for students to connect conceptual equations to physical real-world scenarios. A typical row-by-row classroom will place limitations on innovative teaching methods. The built environment needs to adapt to students and teachers not the other way around. Young learners are welcome to interpret this space in their own way, utilize every surface whether to write on or build on and challenge their math and science skills. 

Two new studies from the Brain and Creativity Institute at USC show that as little as two years of music instruction has multiple benefits including a boost in engagement and brain development. By providing a dedicated space to explore music students can focus their attention on new ways to express emotion. 

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