Tetsuo Kobori



Showa Gakuen High School

Showa Gakuen High School
  • Location : Oita, Japan
  • Year : 2015
  • Category : School
  • Structure : RC + Steel
  • Construction : Umebayashi Corporation
  • Photographer : Takahiro Arai
  • Architect : Tetsuo Kobori Architects + Kume Sekkei






I believe that the way students learn is beginning to change. A shift away from passive learning, where students are simply taught information, to a more diversified style, in which students form their own questions and use the necessary sources of information to find the answers themselves, is taking place. This new building, dubbed SG Hall, is a place for this new style of learning, created to nurture students’ independence in their studies, and is symbolically located in the center of the campus.

SG Hall boasts a design with a three-tiered central atrium. It is located along the main student traffic flow line and serves as a library and a study space, facilities which are typically found in isolated corners of most campuses. Furthermore, each floor features specialized classrooms for specific uses (information processing, cooking practice, nursing and welfare training, etc.), all facing the central hall. Such a design encourages free movement, which enhances communication and develops further autonomy in learning. In the past few months since this building opened, both students and teachers have found creative ways to use it. You can see students gazing up at the ceiling, teachers standing in a group having a discussion, as well as students engaging in self-study, reading books, and having conversations between different floors. It is a space bathed in light and with an open, airy feel where everyone was spending their time freely and in comfort. The library space has book displays with regularly changing themes decided by teachers. When I visited the building, the theme was “Books about High School Club Activities.”I feel that the foundation of autonomous learning is created by learners, and I believe that SG Hall will continue to be a place with a close connection to that foundation, where students can grow and flourish academically.