Whitby Makerspace

How can learning spaces spur critical-thinking and problem-solving skills among students? We eagerly partnered with Whitby School to explore this question and harness their vision for an open, inspiring and hands-on learning environment for kids of all ages. 

Embedded in the school’s library, together we developed a free-flowing makerspace that would enrich the knowledge accrual process with action and encourage students to tinker, experiment, learn and explore.

Anchored by a prehistoric-looking rib structure, our design leverages this porous feature to create a dialog between workspace and book stacks, while providing storage for a variety of ideation tools, such as whiteboards, an iPad, books and—importantly—student work on display. Work surfaces and mobile tables at several different heights serve students across the age spectrum. Shared spaces as well as tucked-away nooks allow kids to learn and work within their own style and at their own pace. Throughout the space, we left construction methods clearly visible, to spark inquiry as well as to inspire students as they design and build within.

Since opening in December 2016, students have made the space their own. Embarking on self-directed and independent projects, the kids have already challenged their instructors to expand their knowledge. It has also become place for a hybrid of activities, like hanging out after school, eating lunch, socializing and project work. At the boundary of work and play, this project is not only encouraging critical and creative thinking, but also empowering students to observe, inspire, and learn from one another.


Whitby School


Greenwich, CT


5000 sq ft




Patrick Mandeville