ramat gan kindergarten占地100平方米，周围是广袤的菜地。里面有两个教室，一个是1.5—2.5岁年龄组的小班，一个是2.5—3.5岁年龄组的大班。
Pictures of kindergarten by Amit Geron
The kindergarten in Ramat Gan is yet another project in Sarit Shani Hay’s oeuvre, who specializes in the design of public spaces for children. Located in an agricultural training farm, it covers 100 sq. m. and is surrounded by an extensive vegetable garden. The building is divided into two classrooms for two age groups: a younger class for 1.5-2.5 year-olds, and an advanced class for 2.5-3.5 year-olds.
The kindergarten’s location in an agricultural area, was a source of inspiration for its design, which used the natural theme as a recurring element in diverse variations. Marked by Shani Hay’s idiosyncratic formalist language, the kindergarten design is typified by simple, concise lines, incorporated with concrete images from the animal kingdom, a reduced color scheme to avoid clutter, and various textures imprinted into the wood furniture.
The design comprises soft, hand-sewn objects befitting the users’ young ages to ensure utmost safety, while also encouraging the children to use their imagination in the different play stations. The dimensions of the kindergarten space called for a targeted design based on needs and functionality. The result is an intimate kindergarten which offers a unique experience.
The design is essentially circumferential. All the interior walls are lines with bookcases and cupboards, whereas the center is occupied by movable seating and reclining areas. The logical arrangement is the result of observations performed by the designer on site and a fruitful dialogue with the pedagogical team which listed the children’s needs.
The cupboards are laminated with Formica —relatively inexpensive and durable materials, congruent with the user-friendly PVC flooring and extensive use of leatherette. The choice of relatively inexpensive materials is juxtaposed with the discernible formal wealth. The bookcases along the walls offer storage of toys, and their height is accessible to young children. The space further incorporates specially-designed domestic objects: a house, a kitchen, an oven, a hospital bed, which enhance the sense of belonging and provide children with practice in life skills. Children’s armchairs are modeled as little bunnies with protruding ears, large alligator-shaped chaise lounges enable reclining, and market stands with red and white racks are scattered in the space, enabling practice of shopping and selling skills.
Each kindergarten class is centered on a main play object: one is a large-scale mushroom consisting of steel construction cushioned with vinyl and Acrylene, serving as a house, a hiding place, a play station; the other is a wooden house with windows and a red roof, which one may enter to play, surrounded by bookcases modeled as evergreen trees. Together, all these elements generate an experiential setting which prompts the child to use his/her imagination via play, test his boundaries, while feeling safe and free.
The overall design concept reflects Shani Hay’s world view adhering to imaginative design and creativity which place the child at the center both metaphorically and ergonomically.
Sarit Shani Hay’s practice transpires on the line between art and design. As post graduate of Chelsea College of Art and Design in London, Sarit launched her design studio in Tel Aviv 16 years ago.
The studio focuses on planning, design, and production: from the design of furniture and accessories to the total planning of private and public spaces.
Primarily known as a designer of furniture for children, who specializes in the design of pedagogical environments (such as libraries for young children, kindergartens, play areas, and rest corners in hospitals), in recent years, Shani Hay has expanded her practice to span design for adults as well.