by Soraya Mohajeri

Pardis Primary & Preschool is a response to the government's plan to invest into new school buildings. The design is based on the concept of a ’15 Minute City’; the idea that everything a resident will need is within a 15 minute walk, so the school not only provides education, but has varied community activities: a growing space, food bank, free library, exhibition space, adult evening learning, and a soup kitchen. Pardis is Persian for paradise. The school is set around a series of ‘secret gardens’, with each classroom having an indoor and outdoor learning space, developed in accordance with theories from the Forest school and the Reggio Emilia approach. The building follows the ideas of a ‘third teacher’, by harvesting rainwater and using it within the building, as well as an extensive biodiversity roof which provides a space to aid learning and support local wildlife. In using natural building materials such as hempcrete, cork, hemp corrugated panels and prefab timber frames, the children can learn about sustainably and the environment.