A typical kindergarten in Russia often appears as a multicoloured box. The joint project designed by the Dutch-based LEVS architecten and Brusnika in the First Quarter estate in Vidnoye, just outside Moscow, debunks this stereotype, featuring a brick building with vibrant facades and sizeable windows.

Project team
Project Name-A new kindergarten in outer Moscow a new benchmark in preschool training
Studio Name- Brusnika
Master planning and architecture: LEVS architecten
Layouts:  Brusnika. Design
Interiors: Brusnika. Design, CM ART
Landscaping: S&P Architektura Krajobrazu
Design and architecture documentation: SP KUB
Photography: Daniil Annenkov

Volumetric data
Gross plot area: 10,25 ha
Gross floor area: 4,9 thousand m2
Storey number:  3
Enrolment capacity:  280 places
Number of groups: 12
Design: 2019–2022
Construction: 2022–2023

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©Daniil Annenkov

A three-storey kindergarten houses 280 children aged from 18 months to seven years. The building features a park with diversely landscaped areas and playgrounds for different ages. The architecture and interiors stand apart from similar functions, even in the choice of materials and colour schemes: devoid of superfluous decorations, the finishes reflect natural hues.


The shape of the building reflects a range of functions: areas to host 12 children’s groups, individual classrooms, a gym and a music hall, an open space staffroom, and a medical facility. The house extends into the park with multiple-sized windows up to 2,6 metres high on the facade. The variety of functions accounts for the difference in window apertures, resulting in the sunlit ballroom and nap rooms with less insolation.

The quieter frontage with utility and mechanical rooms faces the north. The house entrance on the same side entices visitors to come in with symmetrically extending volumes accenting the door.

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©Daniil Annenkov

The brick-laden facade is two-coloured: white on the ground floor, it turns to terracotta on the first and second floors. Embossed brickwork adjoining the entrance and windows adds a dynamic vibe to the brick facade, highlighting the apertures. With its floor on the same level as the ground, the building has no stairs or threshold, which makes it easily accessible with a pram or a pushchair.


The kindergarten interior features natural tones: milk white, ochre, and terracotta with brick and timber finishes. Minimalist colour accents offer plenty of scope for children’s imagination.

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©Daniil Annenkov

Enhanced glazing and light layering are the signature of the design. Sizeable windows maximise solar gain for all the rooms. Different scenarios of evening lighting are available, ranging from ambient to task and accent illumination.


A live tree welcoming the children inside the kindergarten lobby is a chance to observe how it grows through the seasons. Around it is a transformable upholstered suite. Another tree is in the hallway. Round cascading lights, reaching from the second floor, highlight the entrance. One of the lobby’s walls transforms into a macro chalkboard, with similar boards on each kindergarten floor.


A spacious atrium with a skylight, three floors or about 10 metres in height, forms the core of the building. A well-lit space, easily transformable to suit many objectives, the atrium comprises tiered seating and a flexible front spot, which can become a stage, a play area or a classroom due to mobile furniture.

Recreation rooms

A new kindergarten in outer Moscow a new benchmark in preschool training by Brusnika-Sheet8Each floor hosts recreation rooms with small-scale play facilities, spaces for drawing and individual activities, upholstered furniture and plants. The first and second floors house a media library with children’s books and audio materials, equipped with comfortable settees, benches and chairs.


All classrooms accommodate different age groups with nurseries or standard rooms for older kids. During their stay, children have meals, play or nap there. Mobile furniture adjusts the rooms to all scenarios. For instance, all the beds are stackable and take little time and effort to put away. Partitions between beds are also available – for enhanced privacy and undisturbed sleep.

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©Daniil Annenkov

All furniture is made of timber and canvas to meet ecological and health safety regulations as children spend a lot of time in kindergarten.

Music room

This spacious and flexibly designed room with programmable lighting hosts school plays, dance performances and matinées. Bright and airy, it can be shaded with solid blinds if desired. A wooden ‘curtain’ dividing the space into two parts can be folded or removed, in which case it becomes a ballroom with full-length mirrors, a ballet barre, and a digital piano. Sighted along the walls are recessed units and shelves, while the seating area is next to the windows.


The playroom is perfect for creative arts and crafts: children can draw, paint, model, make collages, learn numbers and the alphabet, train colour and shape recognition, and practise fine motor skills. The spacious and airy room is complete with children’s desks and chairs in the centre and the teacher’s workspace, multi-purpose ottomans with storage capacity and a magnet whiteboard on the perimeter. A recessed area is available to store materials and stationery: pencils, felt pens, chalks, paints and brushes, sketchbooks, coloured paper and natural craft supplies for diverse craft projects.

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©Daniil Annenkov


A roomy gym features basketball rings, exercise equipment for younger children, mini trampolines and a wall bar to keep the balls. Extra storage is available along the walls in recessed units and open shelf stands.

Psychologist and speech therapist room

The space accommodates one-to-one and mini-group (two to three children) formats. The convenience-based zoning comprises three areas. The first one features low, child-sized furniture – desks, chairs, and ottomans shaped like boulders. The atmosphere is conducive to informal interaction with kids, drawing and modelling. The second area, intended for speech therapy,  features a large mirror, a long table and chairs. The therapist shows how to articulate, and the child repeats and looks in the mirror. Conveniently designed for writing syllabuses, reports and recommendations, the third zone provides a workspace for psychologists and speech therapists.


An open-space staffroom comprises recreation and workspaces along the full-size windows, a kitchenette, complete with a coffee machine and kettle, recessed wardrobes and units for reference and workbook storage.


The kindergarten play area merges into the surrounding park. Children explore the world around them by interacting with natural textures and materials.

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©Daniil Annenkov

Compositionally, the landscape has four green rooms – outdoor classrooms and playgrounds with playhouses catering for the needs of younger children. Areas for toddlers and 3-4-year olds are sensory-oriented, with natural materials and textures, bringing out imagination and creativity. The playgrounds targeted at 4- to 5-year-olds tell the story of wildlife, where children can learn about insects, birds and other creatures that make their home in the forest. Kids aged 6 to 7 will enjoy adventure-based play and learning experiences and forest plant study zones. Another feature is a multi-use playground, easily adjustable for seasonal games.

All the tree species planted around the kindergarten are climate-specific for outer Moscow and provide enough shade in summer: lime trees, birches, maples, Nordmann firs, lilacs, bird cherries and oaks.

In operation

The kindergarten in the First Quarter is currently in operation and is now part of Vidnovskaya Secondary School as its preschool educational facility, promoting continuity of education. The kindergarten sets a new benchmark in school preparation by making it more exciting and fun, smoothing the transition from preschool training to school and building the right skills to ensure school readiness.


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