Architecture Education Sustainable design

HGAA designs Vietnam kindergarten within garden space for children to experience and learn from nature

August 17, 2020

Montessori is an educational method originating in Europe in the early 20th century, and has been developing in Vietnam in recent years. This method respects the independence of children, creates an environment for them to explore and feel the world through their own senses. My Montessori Garden is a Montessori-oriented preschool. We, together with the investor, want to create a garden – a natural space for children, a classroom between the trees and flowers.

Over the past few years, Montessori education has become popular in Vietnam as the preferred kindergarten curriculum. My Montessori Garden, a project by HGAA Architects is located in a residential area in Ha Long City, Quang Ninh, one of the fastest-growing cities in Vietnam.

Keeping in mind that the land lease of the premises is valid only for 10 years maximum, the architects decided to go with a simple construction structure that can be quickly installed, has little impact on the existing land, and can be easily relocated to another location when needed.

The architects came up with a steel structure solution, creating two blocks of steel frame classes, surrounded by gardens. Outside these two blocks is a trellis system of steel frame and wire mesh, creating two gardens, one with big trees on the ground and one with fruit vines above, all connected by a system of three iron stairs and overhead walkways, forming a continuous cycle of circulation within the garden.

This provides children with more space to move from the ground to the top and back down, while also making it an interesting discovery space. It presents an experiential space where the children can run around and look at the plants, touch them, and watch them grow every day. In this garden, children can learn how to plant and care for fruit vines, seasonal vegetables, and their favorite flowers.

Although the land area is relatively compact at 600m², the school operator has dedicated more than 50% of the land to the garden, to create a learning space close to nature in which children can learn, connect and interact with nature more often than the regular classes.

In terms of micro-climate, the tree garden surrounding the classroom also creates a cool and quiet atmosphere for the classrooms, while creating views and green landscapes for all classes. In an effort to seek change from simple but bold architectural solutions – creating a classroom in the middle of a garden right in the heart of the city, the architects hope to contribute to improving the quality of educational spaces, and effect a positive change in this direction.

Project details:

Manufacturers: INAX, Bạch Mã, Conwood, Hoa Phat, Xingfa
Lead Architects: Nguyen Van Thu
Design Team: Nguyen Minh Duc, Nguyen Van Tinh

See the full image gallery here:

Photos: Duc Nguyen

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