Boy is it good to be a kid in Denmark today. Well Copenhagen anyway. Well I don't know about all the kids in Copenhagen but the ones who attend Ørestad College sure seem to have it good. Opened in Spring of 2007, the high school (yeah, high school) was built to account for a 50% deficiency in "study space" caused by a recent glut in the Danish teenage demographic.
Designed by the Danish architecture firm 3xn, the framework of the building consists of "four boomerang shaped story decks" that "rotate in relation to each other like the shutter of a camera" and the school features various lounge-like study spaces. With particular emphasis placed on open space and light, it seems to me that the structure remains true to progressive Scandinavian design principles of beauty and style within function. Wireless internet access is also widely available throughout the school and laptops are provided for each student.
I don't know about you but my high school looked nothing like this. There were actually no windows in any of the classrooms. In fact I seem to remember some rumor about it being part of a study to see if a lack of windows would reduce distractions and help students to focus in class. Can anyone I went to high school with (that reads my blog) corroborate this story? I mean, it's not impossible that I made that up but I'm pretty sure that someone told me that once. Either way it certainly looked nothing like Ørestad College.
I wonder how the high school experience of someone who attends Ørestad College would vary from that of someone who attended a school with a more traditional (North American or European) structure. Do you think the educational and social experiences would be heightened or somehow improved or positively influenced by this sort of space or would the novelty eventually wear off quickly giving way to the standard ebb and flow of high school life?
Lots of pictures on the 3xn website - certainly worth a click.
Via The Coolhunter.