The schools in Mdantsane, South Africa are poorly equipped and lack basic facilities such as chairs and desks which are required to run the schools. With over 7000 students and only 3 schools, the volume of desks to the space available is another key factor to consider. For this reason the design is a combination of both a desk and chair. Each desk is formed from recycled rubber.
Rubber is very durable which will withstand the day to day usage of the desks in the classroom environment. This makes it an ideal material for the design. Due to the material durability it will help to withstand damage from potential thief’s and the weight of the material will also help to prevent thief’s from removing the desk. The rubber surface can be easily maintained, preserving the desks for future generations.
The desks are a combination of 3 separate rubber layers which are glued together. The base layer is a hard compound, which protects the underside of the desk/chair and also offers a durable surface for the user to work on. The core layer is again a hard rubber compound, which enhances the rigidity of the desk and supports the weight of the user. The final layer is a soft rubber compound, which acts as a cushion.
The designs each have individual color along the contour of the design. The idea is to brighten the currently dull classrooms and make the surrounding environment more appealing to the users creating a much more positive atmosphere within the classroom.
Designer: Thomas Brown