The biophilic learning environment : an alternative to the current New Zealand Innovative Learning Environment model
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Citation:Rigden, S. (2017). The biophilic learning environment: An alternative to the current New Zealand Innovative Learning Environment model.Explanatory document. An unpublished research project submitted in partial fufilment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Architecture (Professional), Unitec Institute of Technology, New Zealand.
Permanent link to Research Bank record:https://hdl.handle.net/10652/4236
Education in New Zealand is undergoing a sizeable shift towards 21st century innovations; by where child focused flexible learning environments are the new standard. The Christchurch Earthquake of 2011 gave an immense opportunity for the redevelopment of numerous schools; however, the architecture being delivered offers little more than an enclosure to house this new pedagogy within. Nature is an essential aspect of a child’s development and learning, as it is inherent in the human makeup. The environment delivers physical and mental experiences that nothing else can, and separation from the environment is proven to have negative impacts on development, health and well-being. This project addresses the missing link between nature and educational settings in New Zealand. It uses architecture as a mechanism to compose natural experiences in the learning environment to help encourage and facilitate learning. Hence, it proposes an alternate pedagogy: the biophilic learning environment. This biophilic learning environment will be conceptualised through the complete redesign of a Christchurch primary school. The objective is to harmonise architecture with nature, in which nature becomes the educator, the resource, and the content. An experiential journey becomes the lesson, as like the path that curiosity takes us through nature.