The Sense of Place collection builds upon the belief in the importance of young children’s environments. Beautifully designed to inspire children’s wonder and to nurture their growth and development, Sense of Place not only celebrates the spirit of place but rejoices in the magic of childhood. Woven throughout this collection are four essential beliefs that serve as a foundation for this inviting collection: a classroom should be nature-aligned, heart-centered, sensory-based, and authentically-inspired.
Hover over or tap on the items in the following images to see more information about each piece in the collection.
Nature is our greatest teacher.
When designing the Sense of Place furniture collection, we looked to nature for inspiration. Unlike straight edges which serve as boundaries, the furniture’s design includes many rounded elements which invite children into the classroom space for authentic connections and playful learning.
Natural forms, designs, and textures are infused into each element of the collection, bringing comfort and beauty to the classroom – the keystones of heart-centered environments. Calm and balanced, the collection provides children with a place to form meaningful connections and engage in profound communications with others.
Used throughout the collection, multi-layer textures and authentic materials invite children to touch, interact, and explore. A wealth of sensory-based opportunities await young learners through the collection’s natural elements and woven fabrics, providing both visual and kinesthetic textures for sensory experiences.
The classroom is powerful. Its space has the capacity to regulate children's behaviors either positively or negatively… The types of materials in the classroom, including the furniture, and the way they are arranged influence how children act, react, learn and grow.
All our knowledge begins with the senses, proceeds then to the understanding, and ends with reason.
Throughout the collection's design process, it was important for furnishings to be authentic. Examples of this intentional design can be seen in the details of the kitchen's farmhouse sink and contemporary metal faucet. Inspired by the home, solid wood accents, handcrafted furniture, and materials such as woven seagrass baskets invite children to experience natural authenticity through comfort and engaging connections.
Children experience, learn, and test ideas in spaces that reflect everyday encounters.
If you are looking for beautiful, statement classroom furniture to elevate your classroom place to an incredible and inviting space that engages, inspires, and promotes the growth and development of young children in an inviting and homelike environment, look no further than Sandra Duncan's Sense of Place collection with Kaplan. The design, the craftsmanship, the materials, the colors—all are thoughtfully selected to ensure that the children, the educators, the family, and community are engaged, learning, connecting, and growing together. From the stunning woven baskets to the incredible fireplace and farmhouse table, these pieces are designed to live in classrooms and are thoughtfully engineered to inspire young children.
I have to say WOW! What a breath of fresh air to see such a realistic, modern-day, and child-friendly kitchen play set made with today's children and families in mind. From the oven with the pull out metal rack, to the real metal faucet on the farm sink, to the kitchen island and stools, the collection is truly amazing and authentic.
[The Sense of Place collection] immediately feels like the classroom is an extension of the home, where everyone would feel comfortable and welcome. The seating options encourage children to gather so naturally—standing around the island, scooched together on a bench—kiddos can get close to one another, sharing space the way friends and loved ones do. Round corners, round stool seats, round baskets, round wall hangings: something about this feels organic and warm in a way that is extra-special.
With over 45 years of experience and a doctorate in education, Dr. Sandra Duncan has a wide and varied background in early care and education. She has extensive experience in working with young children and parents, teaching at the university level, designing professional development programs for practitioners, and authoring several teacher resource books. Now, Dr. Duncan is bringing her years of theory and best practices to the early childhood classroom in the form of the Sense of Place furniture collection - an exclusive to the Kaplan portfolio of furniture offerings. With its modern aesthetics, many authentic and true-to-real-life details, and considerations for what the youngest of children need to thrive best in their first learning environments, the Sense of Place collection provides ECE educators a beautiful backdrop to creating the most meaningful and lasting of learning experiences for years to come.