Henderson College Y5-8 & Home Economics

Located in the township of Irymple in rural Mildura, the Y5-8 and Home Economics Building for Henderson College replaces two existing portable buildings whilst providing four general purpose classrooms, flexible and collaborative learning spaces, and dedicated classrooms for textile arts and food technology.

The boomerang-shaped plan of the Home Economics Building extends its arms to interface with the existing school buildings, creating a cloistered courtyard for student activities within. The warm external brickwork is informed by the surrounding buildings, but the light metal cladding and roofing is unabashedly new, visually lifting the building whilst reducing solar heat gain, a boon in the semi-arid climate of Mildura.

The dual-aspect spatial layout capitalises on the site’s natural beauty, with collaborative learning spaces facing inward to the courtyard, whilst all classrooms and staffrooms have views to the kitchen garden and campus vineyard. Upon entering the building, students are greeted by an exuberantly faceted ply ceiling that unfolds its way through the flexible learning and collaborative spaces, guiding students to their classrooms and morphing into faceted tiered seating and benches at floor level. The general classrooms and food technology classroom have direct access to sheltered outdoor learning spaces and the kitchen garden beyond, facilitating a hands-on, farm-to-table learning experience for students.