As the first phase of a long-term master plan for Prairie Grove School District 46, this new lively classroom addition not only contributes to the much needed capacity for the school, but continues the District’s vision of creating learning environments that are tailored to the needs and influences shaping education.

The design of the new addition was driven by a contextual approach to the site. The use of stack bond masonry and a rhythm of vertical masonry fins were inspired by the linear land patterns of the surrounding farmland and prairies. Careful selection of a masonry blend that compares to the existing building help ensure the addition was the right fit for context in which it was built.

Daylight and collaboration are two pillars upon which the planning for this new addition was built upon. By combining natural illumination and collective exploration, the learning environment becomes a transformative space where knowledge is note merely imparted, but actively constructed.

Daylight, with its innate ability to regulate the internal clocks of students and boost their moods, nurtures optimal conditions for learning. Continuous ribbon windows and large expanses of glass allow daylight to breathe into the classrooms and collaborative areas. Careful consideration was given to mitigating heat gain and glare with vertical shading fins and overhead trellises.

Equally vital is the concept of open collaboration and diversified learning. Small group rooms, break out areas, and collaboration hubs are as commonplace as the classrooms. In these dynamic spaces, students and teachers are allowed to be more active participants in learning. This arrangement and mix of learning spaces transcend the limitations of solitary study, cultivating a sense of belonging and celebrating the notion of community.

Prairie Grove Classroom 01
Prairie Grove Classroom 07
Prairie Grove Classroom 04
Prairie Grove Classroom 02