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Arkie Education

Arkie Wahroonga is designed for children with child-friendly indoor and outdoor spaces

The Arkie Early Learning Space

Arkie Early Education Centre is purpose-built and designed in partnership with architects, engineers and consultants, who place the needs of the child at the centre of the design.

We collaborated with an installation artist to create beautiful installations in every classroom designed to tend to the imagination of a young child. Our objective was to create calm yet playful spaces that were a little fantastical whilst still highly sophisticated for adults.

Each room, was allocated its own motif, which formed the narrative, treatment and palette for each space. Our direction was inspired by the earthy tones of the established greenery in our local area. It was important that every room had its own character and sense of arrival.

Wherever possible we minimise artificial lighting and make use of natural daylight. We champion the outdoors and try to make use of our spacious outdoor areas as much as possible for learning and play.

Arkie Studio
Arkie Bertie
Arkie Art Studio

What children learn does not follow as an automatic result from what is taught, rather, it is in large part due to the children’s own doing, as a consequence of their activities and our resources.

Playspaces that are engaging, inclusive and natural

We recognise that the physical environment is “the third teacher” according to the Reggio philosophy on Children’s Development.  Behind families (the first teacher) and educators (the second teacher), physical spaces hold the potential to influence what and how children learn.

Our inhouse design team used a restrained colour palette, light oak flooring and inspiring visuals to create a gentleness, balance, and sense of flow between each space. Ultimately, we wanted these spaces to be both stimulating and nurturing.

Our environments have been designed in partnership with a conservationist/urban farmer who has over 20 years of experience in creating sustainable green spaces. These installations include vertical gardens that look like horizontal park lands, a turtle and fish tank and sustainable vegetable gardens with integrated worm farms.

Having an environment that introduces educational programs such as, harvesting, feeding wildlife, creating a no waste ecosystem and analysing the symbiotic relationships between the species of plants and animals aligns with our belief of contributing to our world both through community and caring for nature.  It also teaches Arkie children where their food comes from and the importance of caring for our natural resources.

Our green wall and associated green space teaches children about the roles that water, food, plants and animals play within the ecosystem. As fish waste feeds the plants, the plants filter the water and return it to the fish clean. Any excess residue will be highly nutritious organic fertilizer that will then be added to our worm farm. This essentially creates a no waste ecosystem and is a unique teaching tool that models our sustainability practices to our children.

Ultimately, our outdoor area has been designed to combine different materials, resources and equipment in a way that invites exploration and connection to the natural environment.  Children love watching, feeding and interacting with our resident fish and turtle or jumping aboard the restored Volkswagon Beetle and imagining they are on a great adventure!