Naweni Kindergarten II
Whilst conducting post occupancy surveys in 2018, CAUKIN Studio discovered that attendance numbers at the Naweni Kindergarten, completed in 2017, had more than tripled. Rising from 8 kids to 35. The school had also employed a second teacher to assist Salome with the tuition of so many pupils.
Although this was great news, it highlighted that anticipating usage and designing in flexibility are high on a project’s priority list. The original kindergarten had been designed to take up to around 20 pupils, more than double the initial number of attendees, but due to the unforeseen rise in numbers, it was evident that more space was required.
During July - September 2019, CAUKIN returned to Naweni once more to undergo construction of an additional classroom and playground extension. The addition of the extra classroom provides a separate teaching space for the second teacher, enabling the kindergarten to give access to early education for up to 50 students.
The playground, built previously by a local charity, was extended through the addition of an experimental tree structure. During the post occupancy surveys, CAUKIN observed that the existing tree on site was a hub for the children's parents to gather in the shade at the end of the day. They designed the tree structure to act as a gathering space, providing shade, whilst incorporating a tyre swing and some stepping stone obstacles which give the kids an opportunity to explore their creativity through play.
The design takes from the truss frames of the original building and adjusts its form to create interest. The mono pitched roof projects outwards onto the playing field and enables the tallest facade to harvest large amounts of light through the polycarbonate clad section. This facade can be opened up via the large pivot door, allowing an easy flow of access and views out onto the playing field beyond.
The new and the old are linked by two bridges which span across a small garden and allow quick access between the classrooms. Both ends of the kindi are clad with hit and miss timber, which increases airflow through the space, keeping it cool on the hottest days.