Most modern education facilities have hard linoleum floors and bland, featureless furniture,
valued only for its functionality. But have you ever imagined a school in the clouds? For the
designers at X+Living, when they began planning the Zi Ling Changxing kindergarten in
Huzhou, China, that was their goal.
The construction experts completed this private, 137,000 square foot school in 2021. When you
step into the gorgeous lobby, an absolute white palette and reflective white terrazzo floors exist.
Thus, creating a feeling of floating in fluffy clouds. According to X+Living founder and chief
designer Li Xiang, in order to mimic the shape and feeling of clouds, they used a lot of curves in
the design of the various functions of the school.
The kindergarten’s 28 classrooms prompt students to be creative, to think independently, and to
explore. Although each classroom contains a different design, there remains a common theme. While being both playful and whimsical, these modern education spaces are intended to encourage a sense of freedom for the students. As Xiang explains, every classroom serves as an art gallery, a miniature science center, and a cultural space. Each room inspires children to learn about different disciplines.
Inside the auditorium, the designers chose a more minimalist approach for this open space. They
used pastel colors such as purples, pinks, and yellows. The color palette at the Zi Ling
Changxing school is meant to calm students, not distract or overload them. Thus, X+Living
intentionally worked with this harmony of cool and warm tones. This is in contrast to the usual
bright colors normally used in schools.
The indoor swimming pool is one of the schools’ most spectacular rooms. Large windows, an
undulating ceiling, and the curving pool itself remind the students that they are in a setting of
imagination and exploration. According to the designer, soft light from the hidden pale-pink light
band and the ball lamp embedded in the ceiling suffuses the scene, which not only protects
children’s eyesight but also strengthens the atmosphere.
The ultimate goal of this project is to create a high-quality international standard teaching
environment and to diversify the students’ learning experience.