Lalor Gardens Primary School

Project Details

Patrick Architects

134 Kingsway Drive Lalor, Victoria 3075 Australia

Patrick Architects

$8 M

Project Overview

Lalor Gardens Primary School is an entirely new type of school. It is designed to facilitate the implementation of a new pedagogy that encourages flexibility in teaching and learning styles and encourages collaborative learning involving teachers to students; students to teachers; students to students; peer groups; and varying age groups.

The original Lalor West Primary School building was an outdated and restrictive 1970’s teaching facility with classrooms flanking long dark corridors. The new Lalor Gardens Primary School has learning spaces of varying types and sizes that provide flexibility for individual and collaborative learning and fosters collaboration among students and teachers. This flexibility also enables the customisation of the curriculum to meet individual students' needs and better integration and coaching from more staff members.

Creativity and problem solving skills in children and adults are stimulated by the new building's bright, interesting spaces and décor; vivid and continually changing displays, ready access to resources such as IT, books, art & craft materials and other age-specific learning tools.

The School is organised into Junior and Senior sub-schools, each of which is divided into two learning communities and connected to the Administration hub at the centre. The interconnected plan enables easy legibility of the building for users and visitors, better management and supervision and most importantly, very convenient internal access and communication. The welcoming entrance invites exploration by the wider community and the forms and colours promote optimism.

The most significant aspect is its subdivision into four learning communities of 110-120 students each with:

This creates a sense of ownership and respect for “their” facilities.

Each of the learning areas has external doors for direct access to outdoor learning opportunities. The school has been designed to create wind protected courtyards, regardless of the wind direction; which is an important consideration for its location in these windswept Northern suburbs.

Access to the school is controlled by the central administration area which is the obvious and only point of entry to the school with its welcoming entrance canopy. The general office and principal’s office overlook the front of the school and the entry. This is an important requirement for the safety and security of these primary school age students.

The building is designed to optimise the orientation of learning areas to natural light and minimise exposure to east and west sun. Wide verandas are provided on all sides to exclude summer sun from the internal spaces and to provide better thermal comfort. They provide important shaded and covered areas that extend the learning areas and facilitate under-cover outdoor learning activities and play areas.

The new Lalor Gardens Primary School is a wonderful, stimulating and flexible new learning facility that also contributes architecturally to present the school as a unique and special place of learning. Students are engaged, enthusiastic and are capable of achieving greater outcomes than were possible in the old school. To quote one child; "The learning spaces are big enough to allow for groups of students to learn and cosy enough to let me learn alone”.

This page last updated: Thursday 3 April 2014