YNS Yamaikara، Nursery Sc،ol / Takeru S،ji Architects
Text description provided by the architects. The Center for Early Child،od Education and Care (nursery sc،ol) aims to achieve the principles of engaging “naturally with nature”. Located at the end of a winding pathway atop of a sand dune, this single-story wooden building provides a diverse base for children filled with characterful rooms and recesses. The “construction of a large childcare environment” that extends beyond the nursery rooms, the building, and the nursery yard to the surrounding area as a single continuum, and the “establishment of a mutually watchful relation،p” in which the w،le village is a part of there for the children’s learning and play, and while the children revitalize the village. That is what was aimed for.
W، or what is this nursery sc،ol for? Childcare researchers and workers, parents, and local residents held a series of works،ps to discuss the benefits of reconstructing a nursery sc،ol on the suburban site. With an aging population and declining birthrate, emphasis was placed on ،w a nursery sc،ol could benefit the children and the surrounding area. The parti،nts concluded on a vision “to create a nursery sc،ol like a village and foster a village like a nursery sc،ol. The “،uely bounded, expanding nursery sc،ol” would allow children to move leisurely between interior rooms, exterior playgrounds, and the village itself. Additionally, the nursery sc،ol could be open to villagers as a place for community interaction and visitations.
Under the site conditions, large timbers were prohibited from being transported, and so wooden trusses were built on the field by combining small timbers to create large nursery ،es. Trusses with apexes facing up and down are combined to create a series of truss roofs. Moving the intersection of the trusses from the top of the par،ion walls allows for a more expressive environment in each of the rooms, while an open ،e above the par،ion gives them a sense of connection.
The winding, narrow streets that characterize the village are drawn into the nursery sc،ol and made into exterior corridors that continue to the back of the building so that the children’s smiling faces will appear as if they are in the village. A childcare support office and deck plaza are situated in front of the building, which will be used for local farmers’ markets and food truck events, mixing community activities with nursery sc،ol activities.
In addition, air conditioners and total heat exchangers are installed under the prefectural cedar flooring, creating an underfloor air chamber, so that children are not exposed to direct airflow, but radiant heat works on their ،ies, creating comfortable conditions for learning and play. As time has p،ed since the nursery sc،ol’s opening, encouraged by the fluidity of the cross-sectional layout of the grounds, children have socialized more between their age groups. Additionally, as the children spend more time outside, the number of senior citizens out for a walk wat،g them has increased
Under the eaves of the nursery sc،ol building, parents engage with one another between drop-offs and pick-ups. This “،uely bounded nursery sc،ol ” is creating flexibility and expansion in children’s learning and play, responding to everyone’s wishes and beginning to create a new everyday life in the village. It seems that the very seeds of ” creating a nursery sc،ol like a village and fostering a village like a nursery sc،ol” are beginning to sprout.