Gardner Elementary School : incorporating multiple intelligence theory in design : an honors thesis (HONRS 499)

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Geringer, Jamie L.
Underwood, James R.
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Thesis (B.?.)
Honors College
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The kindergarten through third grade elementary school will be based on Howard Gardner's seven multiple intelligences and in concept will be similar to Key schools found across the country. Most important to Gardner's theory and central to the innovative Key schools is the importance of a well-rounded education that prepares students for excellence in the community. This theme of community will be found throughout the design of Muncie's Gardner Elementary School.Situated along the White River and near cultural amenities such as Minnetrista and the Cardinal Greenway, the site offers unique interaction. There will be easy access to both local facilities and to on-site amenities. A nature park and agricultural field will be found on-site for the children's education. The school will be site specific, acknowledging the terrain and slopes leading to the White River. It will also be based on an open, transparent plan, reflecting the ideas of community and nature as one.Many spaces will be capable of opening up into one another, creating a plan that is adaptable for different uses. The building itself will "open" onto the site, at times creating a limited barrier between interior and exterior. Spaces may not necessarily be defined by walls, but clear distinctions in use may preside. For example, a commons space may be defined by a terraced seating arrangement, but may be part of a more open corridor.Constructed, the elementary school will take on an educational role in itself– expressing unique characteristics through the use of materials. Exposed materials such as wood and brick will not only reflect a greater sense of transparency between the indoors and outside world, but will also enhance visual, spatial, and textural educational cues with richness in form, texture, and color. Finally, the building will function based on natural heating and cooling proposals. Exterior walls and rooms may serve to naturally heat the building at night, while keep it cool during the day. Incorporating the terrain as a wall or roof may add to natural heating and cooling benefits as well. Heating and cooling equipment will serve only as a back-up system.