Public school library design proposal highlights brand-new approach to learning

“Tagpi,” a proposal for public school libraries to foster imagination and social responsibility among children, is being pioneered by young visionary Mark Jayvee Begaso.

Named after the Filipino word for “patchwork,” it aims to stitch different elements within a 36-square-meter room to create a learning environment that will “cover gaps of questions through discoveries and creativity.”

“My main goal is to let the users know that knowledge cannot only be found in books, but with live interaction with their community and with nature,” Begaso shared.

“Children are born inquisitive,” he added. “This quality drives every child to explore about the world through experimenting, interacting with other kids and even reading.”

For his vision, Begaso, an Interior Design student from the De La Salle-College of Saint Benilde School of Environment and Design, was motivated by the Four Space Theory developed by Danish scientists Dorte Skot-Hansen, Henrik Jochumsen and Casper Hvenegaard Hansen.

“This framework allows us to step out from the traditional library by integrating spaces for meeting, inspiration, learning, and performance,” Begaso expounded.

Begaso highlighted the importance of incorporating flexible design solutions anchored within the idea of educating young minds to be socially responsible members of the society. “Designing a children’s library is as crucial as designing any other spaces,” Begaso stated. “You are creating an institution that affects the child’s developing mind.”

Inspired by the legend of Maria Makiling as well as the endangered native flora and fauna of Luzon, “Tagpi” is finished with fixtures and color schemes that capture the essence of nature to improve the users’ interest, self-discipline, level of stress, attention and enjoyment.  It is equipped with innovative shelving systems, as well as safe and ergonomic furniture pieces. Among the custom features are the modular central bookcases with swing mechanisms.

Deconstructed tree shelves and built-in benches equipped with vibrant leaf-shaped pillows can be pulled out and used as floor cushions. The adaptable leaf-inspired work table can likewise be converted into a reading desk to accommodate the custom needs of elementary, junior and senior high students.

“This plays on the idea of how humans should treat nature, that when we take something from nature we must return or restore it — promoting a symbiotic relationship,” Begaso explained.

The room is also accentuated with a mural to spark the imagination of the children.

“It adds life and a narrative,” he added. “Anyone can interpret it however they want, letting their curiosities wander and encouraging them to raise questions to gain new knowledge.”