Where the most courageous of adventures begin...
We are thrilled to announce a new Masterplan, commencing in 2022, that will define a new era in Early Learning at Wilderness; where our dearest-held traditions will endure in high-quality, engaging and beautiful learning spaces for our smallest custodians.
The Masterplan will celebrate the natural beauty of Wilderness School and provide a distinctive and welcoming environment for girls in their formative years, where the most courageous of adventures begin.
Wilderness School has always been committed to developing learning facilities that empower each of our girls to be the best they can be.
We are pleased to be working with Adelaide architecture firm, Grieve Gillett Andersen, who are bringing the innovative new structures, as well as alterations and additions to existing beautiful buildings to life. The project will include the Early Learning Centre, Lower Junior School and Gymnasium.
We encourage you to discover more about the redevelopment and how we believe it embraces the new, through its future-focused and best practice learning design, while holding true to the foundations that have nurtured and empowered Wilderness girls since 1884.
Following the purchase of 16 Hawkers Road in 2019, the Masterplan will see the repurpose of this existing character building for the Early Learning Centre.
This beautiful c.1925 former residence will maintain its feeling of stature and distinction while capturing the essence of the Reggio Emilia philosophy that influences the rich learning of our 3 and 4-year-old girls where, along with educators and families, the environment is seen as the third teacher.
With specialist ateliers throughout, our girls will have the opportunity to engage in deep thinking and exploration as their educators provide rich and intentional provocations for their learning.
Our school is characterised by rambling paths, informal gardens and quirky places where the girls assemble, play and learn.
The Loggia, also referred to as an Italian ‘exterior gallery’, will be an architectural feature where the girls from the Early Learning Centre and Lower Junior School will gather to further explore their learning in an open outdoor environment.
Learning in nature has always been of great importance at Wilderness and the outdoor spaces planned for this space will provide the landscape for countless games in our whimsical cubbies and teepees, preparing concoctions in our custom ‘mud-laboratories’ and playing in the beautifully curated spaces in our domestic gardens. Growing food in our kitchen garden and caring for our chickens will also support the girls learning as they become sustainable and contributing citizens of their community.
The Coach House will offer our Receptions, Year 1 and 2 students a warm and inviting environment where high-quality learning experiences are activated in breakout and flexible learning spaces.
Inspired by the surrounding neighbouring context and reminiscent of Italian Hilltops, the scale of the spaces reflects the developmental stage of the girls and presents a playful yet charming “stepping stone” for students as they transition from Reception up to Year 2. Here our girls will have the opportunity to gain and consolidate a solid foundation for their learning as they are encouraged to be curious, to pose questions and express their thinking.
The expansion of the School Gymnasium will include a new frontage along Hawkers Road that will support the health and wellbeing of our students.
Offering a flexible movement and additional fitness space, the two level-annex will house the relocated staff amenities and become a fundamental sports facility used for both curricular and co-curricular activities.
This space will allow our girls to develop their individual potential and will enrich their physical and emotional wellbeing.
The legacy of our Founders, the Misses Brown, continues today and is a rich and integral part of our School culture.
Over the years we have been steadfast in cherishing and honouring our past, but importantly we have looked to the future and provided an education that prepares each girl for the world in which they will live.
Our School has always had a homely feel, and over the years, has grown to comprise a number of residences and adjoining gardens. As such, our outdoor spaces and historical buildings are highly valued and have been safeguarded throughout the Masterplan.
The redevelopment will see the existing Annie Brown House converted into an Administration Hub for the Lower Junior School staff and Early Learning educators, while the Margaret Brown House will be restored to its original footprint and will be used for Lower Junior School specialist lessons such as Music and Art.
When our visionary founders first saw The Wilderness at 41 Northcote Terrace, they saw more than buildings. They saw a thriving school offering an outstanding education, that would nurture and engage girls to reach their full potential. Today, generations of girls later, Wilderness has done all that and more. But we’re not finished.
The same progressive spirit that inspired our founders inspires us today. Working together, we want to prepare our girls to become creative, confident, and independent women, ready to improve and enrich the world. Our buildings are not about bricks and mortar. They are about what happens inside.
We invite you to imagine the possibilities and consider partnering with us in the development of this exciting new precinct, for both this generation and the next.