EXPERIENTIAL LANDSCAPE DESIGN FOR EDUCATION: OXON RUN PARK AS A REGIONAL EDUCATION RESOURCE
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This design-research thesis explores the educational benefits of outdoor experiential learning for children, particularly in urban areas, and proposes a redesign of a 100-acre urban park to serve as an educational resource. This thesis first develops a theoretical framework based on research that nature can have restorative effects on attention that improve learning and behavior (Berman, Jonides, & Kaplan, 2008; Kaplan, 1995; Matsuoka, 2010). The focus of this thesis is Oxon Run Park located in Southeast Washington, DC. The proposed redesign includes educational spaces that can be visited and experienced by the local community or school classes, while focus areas at targeted locations concentrate educational resources that can enhance classroom learning. The research and redesign of Oxon Run Park addresses the question of how public spaces can be designed to serve as educational resources.