The first steps of Green School Tulum

Green School - April 15, 2020

Two videos from our recent trip to Tulum – including a Green School Tulum community meeting and a site visit. Elora is part of the design team creating the Tulum campus.


”I was a woodman. I loved wood, then I fell in love with bamboo. Bamboo has been in use across tropical regions of the world for tens of thousands of years. So we started building with bamboo, big things. We raised up buildings by hand. And this is why we’re home here because we have a huge number of very, very clever hands. Our tiny school has become the epicenter for global green education. It starts at Pre K and goes to Grade 12. We have 550 students from 35 countries.”




About Green School Tulum

Green School Tulum will stand strong at the heart of Selvazamá; a holistic residential project within the lush jungle of Tulum, only a couple of miles away from the Caribbean blue beaches.

Our campus evolves from Tulum´s landscape, culture and style, while being utterly new and exciting. It is forward-dreaming on our choice of materials and the techniques will nod to the history and local heritage, drawing inspiration from it and spiral into a new forward-focused vision. Both local and international talent are thriving with the opportunity to give voice to the future of Tulum.

Built out of low impact materials, the Green School Tulum will incorporate bamboo and locally sourced woods and materials, as well as permaculture principles into its operation and design. The school will be an extraordinary milestone for the local community and inspiration for other schools in Mexico and abroad.



Elora Hardy talks about designing for children and education: 

Long before buildings, the elements of our natural habitats shaped us. All animals are attracted to the sort of settings they excel in for humans; this means that the surroundings provide the right balance of information and refuge, of legibility and mystery, coherence and complexity. We are now in the era of “neuro-architecture” because the environments we inhabit shape who we are, and who our children will become.

Recommended reading: Lily Bernheimer

A Green School campus ignites the natural curiosity of children. Imagine a place where innovation, creativity, and learning flourish—a community that has come together from all corners of the globe, awakened through spaces that provoke wonder, motivate action, and capture people’s hearts. Materials, landscaping, and learning structures are unique and align us with nature. Most importantly, they are designed to inspire brilliant thoughts.

The importance of place design goes far beyond aesthetics. There is a reason some buildings inspire awe, and others fear. Views, colors, facades, spaces, their relationships to each other, and how we move through them are of immense importance.

To create places that feel right, we integrate natural forms of the landscapes— colors and contours, contrasts and continuities, the branching patterns of trees, the habits of the sky. In our structures we introduce systems or radiating and branching fractal patterns. We look to ourselves as familiar forms: the human body is made up of curves and hollows, not straight lines. So our pathways are never straight, and our rooms are never boxes. Our pathways flow, they trace imagined patterns of the rivers underground.


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