A slide drops into a three-foot deep rubber surface hole, and a three-foot high grassy mound hill scales the environment for the preschoolers to scout their adventures from up on high. A net wall provides a learning opportunity, requiring mental and physical effort for children to climb the ropes.
The courtyard features raised planting beds, hooks on exterior walls for watering cans, and rain barrels that collect water runoff from the roof. In addition to the planned landscaping, space is left available for students to grow their own flowers.
Both observational and project learning take place in bright, day-lit classrooms.

Beavercreek Preschool Center

Beavercreek, OH

Project Description

The new Beavercreek Preschool features a “school within a school” courtyard. The space is designed to foster playful learning opportunities that challenge students mentally, physically and socially.

Year Completed


Project Features

  • The Preschool Center takes its inspiration from a geode —a simple, more grown-up masonry container hides in its center a sparkly colorful heart. Classrooms are oriented toward the court, with large sliding glass walls affording the opportunity to expand into wide spots in the halls.
  • An innovative use of standard wooden roof trusses allowed us to illuminate the rooms with windows from above while the trusses themselves make intricate shadow patterns on the walls and floors.
  • Floors in the classrooms were equipped with a radiant heating system ensuring that the children and teachers are comfortable year round.
  • The structure of the reading tower and the sunshades in the courtyard were inspired by the trees in Max’s room in the story “Where the Wild Things Are,” and the color scheme in the courtyard draws from the syncopated pattern of Bert Dow’s dory in “Bert Dow, Deep Water Man”.
  • There is a “cave” in the wainscot of the reading tower which provides an excellent view of spider webs and crickets in the grass outside.

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