Architecture for Humanity has announced the finalists for their 2009 Open Architecture Challenge, which invited entrants to design schools for underserved areas around the globe.
Shown up top is Feilden Clegg Bradley Studios & AfH UK's "Adaptable Hillside Classroom: A multi-functional classroom in rural Uganda," a design that uses the angles of the local topography to create an amphitheater effect while reducing the need for earthmoving equipment in its construction. In addition:
[The community] wants an assembly, dining and gathering space that can be used for community events and rented out during holidays to provide income. To economise on space and resources, it is proposed that a block of 3 classrooms can open up and combine into a larger, multi-use space. The classrooms are angled round in plan and the outer walls open onto a covered external space that they all face in towards, creating a natural gathering space. Acoustic problems with opening walls between classrooms are also avoided. The site for the new building is towards the bottom of the school, near the road, which gives the school a presence on the main road and provides easy public access when necessary.
Check out the rest of the finalists here.