architects Katarina Pirkmajer Dešman, Miha Dešman
project District Primary School, Sveti Jurij, Slovenia
written by Nataša Koselj


When we architects think about schools, we usually think about the school building, the shell, its composition and structure, lighting, materials and surroundings, that is, elements creating an aesthetic environment intended for learning and the transmission of knowledge. What we forget is that the educational content is far more important than the shell, that children could be learning the basics of space, composition and colour from an early age, which has long been the practice in the Scandinavian and other countries. The time has come to admit that learning about the colour spectrum and composition from little pieces of paper is no longer a part of higher education such as that of Gropius’s Bauhaus of the 1920s, Max Bill’s school of design in Ulm of the 1950s, or Ravnikar’s B-course of the Ljubljana school of architecture of the 1960s. Integrative and interdisciplinary school programmes should teach children these things as early as primary school – like the abc or the multiplication tables – or at secondary school at the latest.