Interior Environmental Design

I-Lung Lin

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The SO-UNITY School, a unique primary school in Fiji which is designed to keep the strong connection between the community of the Soa village and the school, and provides the kids with a safer and playful environment during their education. The project is according to the experience of teaching at the local school in Soa, Fiji. The main core of the design is to join the primary school (includes kindergarten), playground, and the community gathering space together. The three different units represent their own belief. School relates to education and knowledge, playground shows the lively side of kids, and as the villagers gathering space, it presents the role of social and interactive. The intention of the project, first of all, is to ensure the safety of the students at school and reduce dangerous arrangement of the structures and unreliable layout. Secondly, having a bright, vivid adventuring building to replace the dull and grey concrete classrooms gives children the motivation to come to school. Last but not least, as the largest building complex of the village, 95% of the students are locals, which leads the frequent communication in between. Therefore, school is no longer only prepared for children, but also a place for villagers.

Photo of I-Lung Lin

The SO-UNITY primary school is a school that is also built to be a community gathering space for the villagers in Soa village in Fiji, which can become an environment that pleases both adults and children.

The issues addressed to rebuild the school is to give the students a more secure and safer learning environment. The school now is landed on an empty land with five concrete-built building and not many classrooms. There’s much risky stone and layer difference around the school due to the natural-setting which can simply cause students injured. Besides, since the school has nothing else, but concrete built classrooms, primary school kids are full of energy at their age, therefore, creating a joyful and challenging playground is one of the goals.

Last but not least, due to the connection between school and village, villagers are more than welcome to visit the school. Plus, depending on the rituals of their weekdays, gathering at school is an ordinary and everyday event.

Furthermore, the project is planning not just building a school or having a structure, but also bringing in a new learning method to the village, learning from the neighbours. That allows the students to learn not just indoors but also around the building. There are no set classrooms for each year of students, but depending on where their teacher would bring them to have the class.

The main proposal of the SO-UNITY school is hoping to introduce the new thoughts on teaching and learning to the village. At the same time, to create a more comfortable environment for the village to socialize.

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