Circular ring shaped structure around the soil, water and green
A nursery school of two-story building with rooftop terrace features 3-dimensional and circuit style structure located in Funabashi city. The concept of its design is to provide enough space for 160 children to play around in the nature and also for all their parents and nursery staff to feel safe.


The south quarter of the site is used for entrance walkway, and the rest of the part is for nursery space. Placing rooms for office staff, nursery staff and cooks on the border between entrance and nursery space achieves both simplicity and security. We designed the circular ring shaped structure that provides enjoyable playground for children and easy access to escape route in case of emergency, having the courtyard in the middle, planting trees along the outer edge, and installing the deck, slopes, stairs, and the bridge along the circle between them. Covered with the solid trapezoid-shape wall and roof outside, its overall structure achieves to protect children’s pleasure with its strength. Its O-shaped building surrounding the courtyard with outside corridor with eaves for weather protection also provides comfort and a sense of safety to adults. This structure helps busy parents to drop and pick up their children quickly without taking off shoes and nursery staff to help each other on the other side.


Outer space of each floor provides not just open space outside, but also various changes, such as sunny spot and shade, higher eaves and narrower space under eaves, slopes, hills and cavities produced by changing the direction and the height of floors and roofs, so that children to spend the whole year here do not get bored. The half-circle-shaped spot garden to help ventilation also nurtures children’s affection to the nature by planting greens in the center. From the perspective of dietary education to develop children’s appreciation and interest toward food, we place the vegetable garden on the rooftop and glass-walled kitchen on the first floor. The floor level of kitchen is settled lower to let children look into kitchen, in the same time, it is able to keep an eye on the courtyard in a cross shape to compensate for blind spot from the office.

为了彻底节约能源,我们采用了屋檐来控制阳光,用点状花园来改善通风,用屋顶平台和菜园来为屋顶隔热,用地管采暖系统来利用地热,用河流和池塘来回用雨水,用太阳能板来产生循环电力。在日常生活中观察这些建筑,孩子们可以了解到 “自然”,包括植物或风和雨的现象。

Environmental Plan
For thorough energy saving, we adopt the eaves to control sunlight, the spot garden to improve ventilation, the rooftop deck and vegetable garden for heat insulating of rooftop, Earth Tube heating system to use geothermal heat, the river and the pond to reuse the rainwater, and solar panels to produce circulating power. Watching these structures in daily life, children can learn about “the nature” including phenomenon about plants or the wind and rain.


Detailed Design
Round chamfering was done for walls and railings necessary for safety reasons and also for the edge of light and skylight in every part of the building using it as a motif of design. The half-circle-shaped spot garden brings children the affection to the nature by catching their attention to the green planted in the center.

为了让孩子们在学习材料名称的同时感受其原有的质感,我们尝试用 “木为木,钢为钢,石为石 “来保持每种材料的原有质感。从这个角度来看,我们没有使用原色。相反,我们利用三维和所谓的 “类原色 “结构,利用各种空间特征和环境提供对比性的体验。

Finishing work of Interior and Exterior
In order to give children the opportunity to learn the name of materials with feeling its original texture in the same time, we try to use “wood as wood-like, steel as steel-like and stone as stone-like” to keep the original texture of each material. From this perspective, we didn’t use the primary colors. Instead, we exploit the 3-dimensional and so-called “primary color-like” structure to provide contrasting experience using the various spatial features and environment.

“Amane “是日本汉字之一,代表着 “圆形”、”周围 “或 “全方位”,它代表了幼儿园希望让孩子们感受到全方位自然的祝福,也代表了其围绕树林的圆形建筑特点。我们希望孩子们能在建筑内外转转,感受周围的一切,并滋养他们的感性和思考能力。

“Amane” is one of the Japanese kanji that stands for “round,” “around” or “all-around”, which represents the wish of the nursery school to let children feel the blessing of the all-around nature and also its architectural feature of circular shape around the woods. We wish that children can go around both inside and outside of the building, feeling everything around here, and nourish their sensibility and ability to think.

Architects: Aisaka Architects’ Atelier
Area: 2051 m²
Year: 2015
Photographs: Shigeo Ogawa
Structural Engineer: Kanebako Structural Engineers
Site Area:2,051.59 sqm
Total Floor Area:1,493.54 sqm
Architect In Charge:Kensuke Aisaka