Ground Breaks On Innovative Outdoor Campus At Rochester, New York School

Written by
Adam Bienenstock
on
August 31, 2018

Ground Breaks On Innovative Outdoor Campus At Rochester, New York School

Our team had the pleasure of breaking ground on an innovative outdoor campus at The Harley School in Rochester, New York – a project that will engage students while also enhancing child development and at the progressive school.

“The natural playground and outdoor learning center at The Harley School has been a year and half in the making, and we’re looking forward to its completion this fall,” says Jeff Lindstrom, our Creative Director and Senior Designer, who proudly participated in the August 20 groundbreaking ceremony alongside students, staff, and stakeholders.

“Through a comprehensive process of developing concepts and technical drawings, we landed on a final design that will ensure the school’s outdoor environment reflects the impressive work the students and faculty are doing inside its walls.”

A rendering of the Winslow Natural Playground and Outdoor Learning Center.

Once complete, the Winslow Natural Playground and Outdoor Learning Center will provide outdoor learning opportunities to complement the school’s challenging indoor classroom curriculum, which emphasizes academics, music, athletics, arts, civic engagement, and experiential learning.    

“Established to honor the school’s centennial, the outdoor campus will focus on learning through nature play, and will consist of two unique spaces – one for nursery-aged children and the other for lower school students,” Jeff explains.

Together, the spaces will cover more than 7,000 sq. ft., and will include more than 100 trees and shrubs through which children can joyfully explore, while also piquing their curiosity in the natural world.  

Additionally, each space will feature an outdoor classroom, as well as a number of natural play features that encourage social, cognitive, creative, and sensory play.

Play features, such as a double tree mash, promote learning through play.

A special thanks to The Winslow family, who have played an integral role in making this project possible as lead donors, and to Fields Construction for generously contributing to its completion through in-kind services.

“It’s our hope The Harley School project serves as a catalyst for redefining play and nature-based education in Rochester, and the Upstate New York area,” Jeff adds.

The Harley School is an independent school catering to about 500 students in nursery through to Grade 12. To learn more about this project, and how it will promote powerful learning experiences for students, check out this video.

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