My School, Lucknow

Standing amongst older residential neighbourhoods of Lucknow, the 950 sq metres, My School stands out as a progressive and iconic phenomenon. Designed to accommodate around 350 students, the school has one of the best primary campuses in all of Uttar Pradesh. And the credits go to a joint vision of the school authorities and EDI.

EDI designed this pre-school with an interactive and collaborative approach. The idea behind the creation of such an inviting campus was to give a new definition to learning, both inside-out, by letting the spaces speak for themselves.

In an impeccable display of innovation, EDI designed the form for the school as an inspiration from the Rubik’s cube – an activity proven to develop cognitive skills, pattern recognition and analytical abilities. The vibrant colors of the Rubik’s cube have been incorporated in the buildings too, making the campus playful, simple and yet very inviting to a child. On the whole, it communicates the energy and activity inside the building to the surrounding neighborhood.

The entrance of the building, with its colorful walls and landscape, provides a sense of security and personalization. The entrance trail made of unorthodox railway sleepers, pebble stones and grass pavers, focus on the enrichment of the sensory experience of a child trying to absorb the surroundings. The walkway is contrasted with active play areas on either side to enhance the outdoor experience of a child.

Internally, EDI embraced the ‘open spaces, open minds’ policy by designing the whole school without any interior walls for the academic zones. The freedom thus understood by the children proved to be a major step towards the creation of spaces for inspiration, thought, curiosity and involvement. The loft areas are designed with age-appropriate, lower ceiling heights to provide a sense of security and a place for retreat for children, at the same time offering a visual connection to the rest of the floor spaces. The building has two amphitheatres- one on the ground floor and one on the second floor – to be used for various activities like story-telling, dramatics or group work.

Interior spaces have been very creatively maximized within the tight constraints of the site areas. Furniture arrangements define various learning and activity zones inside the spaces. The large square windows bring in ample natural light into the interior spaces and also provide a visual connection to the outdoors. The walls are also an extension of the child’s expression by means of writable surfaces, puzzle walls or walls depicting stories. Thus, exterior and interior spaces together celebrate learning through transparency. From massing of the blocks to the selection of materials, careful attention has been paid to understand a child’s psychology and to celebrate childhood.

The fundamental understanding of vision led to the creation of such a large volume with smaller spaces to live, play, learn and create. The vision of creating a perfect blend of indoor-outdoor exposure, as seen by EDI and the school authorities, has thus shaped up.

School Architects and innovative school design

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