Mustardseed Junior School is a newly founded private initiative with the aim of creating an exemplary kindergarten and primary school that provides an inspirational and practical curriculum. The school is located near Sentema, a village about 20km west of Kampala.
The inspiration for the design was to create a ‘large home’ for the children that functions as an enabling educational environment. The architectural ambition is not to be programmatically prescriptive, but rather to inspire teachers and students to inhabit spaces in multiple and creative ways, to (literally) think outside the box and to treat the entire school, not just the classroom, as one large learning environment.
At Mustardseed, no two classrooms are alike and none of them are in the shape of a rectangle. Spaces are organically shaped and characterised by a warm, natural materiality accentuated by playful and inspiring colours. The thick, earthen, undulating external walls, built using the earthbag technology, stop short of the roof allowing the flow of fresh air to cool down the spaces. Direct sunlight is filtered through the roof in selected areas filling the space with comfortable levels of natural light. Each classroom has a dedicated outdoor learning area shaded by trees which can be accessed through a series of colourful double doors.
Mustardseed Junior School is Localworks’ first end-to-end Design & Build project.