The Children’s Scale in Finnish Kindergarten Interiors from 1920s to 1980s
Keywords:spatiality, Finnish kindergarten history, children’s scale, thirdspace, Edward Soja
The purpose of this article is to offer a perspective on spatial history in Finnish kindergartens’ surroundings, especially through design that emphasizes children’s scale. The timeline of the article is from the 1920s, when the vocative kindergarten teachers took responsibility for kindergarten design, till the 1980s, when professionals designed kindergartens. The article focuses on the vertical level, which defines the height of children’s activity and how the idea of children’s scale affected interior design during the timeline. One theoretical starting point is Edward Soja’s concept of Thirdspace, which is applied to combine experiential narratives related to childhood, contemporary materials about conversations that took place at the studied time, and spatial regulations and design related to ideological, political, and cultural structures. From the 1920s to the 1980s, children’s scale is highlighted and linked to homelike surroundings with miniaturization in scale to affordances concerning a human body scale, dimensions, and children’s agency. In 1970s, due to the emerge of the Day Care Act, children’s scale extended more broadly to the environment and children’s dimensions than in the kindergarten era.
Copyright (c) 2023 Taina Sillanpää
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
This is an open access journal, which means that all content is freely available without charge to the user or his/her institution. Users are allowed to read, download, copy, distribute, print, search, or link to the full texts of the articles featured in the journal without asking prior permission from the publisher or the author. This is in accordance with definition of open access as formulated by the Budapest Open Access Initiative (BOAI). All authors who publish in this journal agree to the following terms:
- Authors retain copyright and grant the NJEdH the right of first publication. The work is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution License (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which allows others to share and distribute the work as long as it is attributed to the author and its initial publication in the NJEdH is acknowledged.
- Authors are encouraged to distribute the work themselves with information on its initial publication in the NJEdH, e.g. upload it to open repositories linked to their personal website or institutional affiliation, or publish it in a book.
The NJEdH is permitted non-exclusive distribution of the work, with attribution to the author, e.g. in a print book themed anthology.