The Friendship School

Waterford, CT

40,000 SF (adaptive re-use)
44,000 SF (new)

520 students, PreK-K

$23.2 million


The Friendship School is a PreK-K building that features, layout, coloration and abundant daylighting cleverly designed support its mission of providing children with stimulating, comfortable and a developmentally appropriate environment. The School’s planning, architectural and interior design supports brain-based learning, promotes the four basic environmental needs of children for Movement, Comfort, Competence, and Control and enables educators to teach in the ways that best enhance child learning.

Curving corridors act as dynamic circulation spines, connecting to classrooms and other major program areas. Within each uniquely shaped classroom resides dedicated zones for gross motor skill development, dramatic play, arts and crafts and quiet. Each zone is finished, equipped and furnished to suit the needs, preferences and scale of the child user. The dynamic learning environment is complimented by a health center, administrative areas, an informal outdoor learning area with gardens and soft-surface playscape, as well as more formal learning areas such as the media center, cafeteria a and visual and performing arts room. The school is co-located with the Town of Waterford’s Community Center and shares facilities with this program.

The Real Estate Exchange, Blue Ribbon Award, Outstanding Achievement, 2006

The project has been presented at The Connecticut State Education Resource Center Annual Conference.