House of Wonder Childcare, Cambridge - Smith Architects | ArchiPro NZ

House of Wonder Childcare, Cambridge

House of Wonder in Cambridge, New Zealand, has been designed as a series of ‘houses’ that are connected through gardens and walkways to create a community-focused village. Catering for 90 children, aged 0-6, the centre is a warm and welcoming environment that provides children with state-of-the-art facilities, bright open plan classrooms, and spacious outdoor play areas.

Fitting in with its countryside setting, the arrangement of classrooms has been broken down into smaller barn-like forms that are arranged around natural outdoor playscapes and covered timber walkways. Traditional gabled roof forms are given a modern feel with vertical corrugate and timber cladding, with planting and tall pine trees providing a lush, green backdrop.

A central philosophy for House of Wonder is that the child's environment is the third teacher. A connection to nature and the outdoors is vital, and indoor-outdoor flow is seamless with large sliding doors and covered timber canopies that create all-weather outdoor play spaces.

The centre also incorporates the Reggio Emilia philosophy in its curriculum, so designated art studios are included to provide a space for smaller groups of children to work on art projects and explore creative play.

Client: House of Wonder
Location: Cambridge, New Zealand
Construction cost: To be confirmed
Area: 630m²
Programme: Completed 2020

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