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Early Childhood Education and Escarpments

Utah State University
Emma Eccles Jones Early Childhood Education and Research Center, Utah State University

We were asked to create an educational facility design that housed both children and adults; education and research. These two groups are interconnected in that they both share an energy for life, curiosity to explore, and motivation to learn. They inspire and educate each other in a cyclical process. They grow from one another: Research grows from teaching and teaching grows from research. Because of this inter-connectivity, we look to nature for inspiration. The Early Childhood Education and Research Center was certainly a design inspired by nature. We see the structural and formal link between these two different scales of people as analogous to an escarpment, which is defined as follows: A steep slope or long cliff that results from the earth’s forces, creating transition between two areas of differing elevation. This concept became the inspiration for our design.