Outdoor Classroom Project Documentation:
Problem Statement: We need an outdoor classroom at Alsion to better facilitate gardening efforts throughout the school. There are wide-ranging possibilities for this classroom which is meant to eventually hold all the gardening supplies from the tool shed nearer to the top of the hill. Problems with the environment include an uneven ground and a slanted roof that currently exists for the frame of the classroom. There are benches there but outdoor furniture is limited and there are also beams of wood located outside the art room.
The main goal of the design of the outdoor classroom is adapting the current structure present in the garden into something which can have multiple functions. These functions include an area to teach students about the intricate nature of soil composition and how to garden sustainably and also an area to provide tools and contraptions that can be used practically to help foster the growth of various crops.
Requirements: The requirements for the classroom are entirely subjective. However, some of the specified requests for this area are some cabinets, a whiteboard, some wooden lattice, and a roof to cover the students when the classroom is raining. There are various ways to approach solving this problem.
While the roof is currently slanted, trying to create a level surface to place the roof was another expressed priority. This would be a difficult task as wooden poles that comprise the majority of the structure have already been inserted into the ground. lengthening them or trying to fix the slanted roof becomes a very sloppy process, and the nature of this mistake can be used to help naturally eliminate water accumulation on top of the roof of the classroom. Furthermore, pioneering some sort of water collection system, while also considering the negative effects of accumulating stagnant water can be a priority. The function of the classroom is to be throughout the entire year, so making sure that the cabinets and the various pieces of furniture chosen to be a part of the classroom can be sustainably implemented.
Another part of this process will be incorporating the space surrounding the actual classroom. While there is a substantial amount of space within the confines of the classrooms, two large triangular shade providing cloths are located outside of the classrooms reach. Using these cloths and creating a roof will be an important part of the process in determining how we can use materials already present within the classroom area to create the experience of what the outdoor classroom will eventually become.
Identifying what exactly the role of the classroom will be in the future, and how it is meant to be shared between interaction with the students and the environment will be very important in determining the true functionality of the classroom. There are also some pieces of outdoor furniture scattered throughout the school. This is why creating an inventory of all of the available materials will be very important: it is a question of efficiency.