Halifax South Peninsula Elementary School, Halifax, Nova Scotia
The new South Peninsula Elementary School in Halifax is currently in the Schematic Design phase. The school will replace the existing LeMarchant St.Thomas Elementary School built in 1923. The new building is focused around a central core of collaborative learning. This space is made up of a multi-purpose space, a visual arts space, the cafeteria and the library. The combination and form of these spaces create a flexible, collaborative learning environment that can accommodate several classes participating in a range of activities at the same time. Because the spaces are predominantly open to each other, their functions can blend to foster integrated learning, or allow for larger groups to make use of the entire space. We refer to the main space in this zone as the Da Vinci studio, as it promotes the integration of art, math, science, and literature. The studio became the organizing factor and other important learning spaces hold key positions in relation to this ‘heart’ of the school. The heart acts as the hinge where the academic wing and the gym wing meet. Importantly, it is also where the main entry is located.