At Beijing's Garden School, students can sit on outdoor stairs to hear lectures, gather for talks along an open-air corridor, and plant vegetables on the roof. “Confucius taught under a tree, and Louis Kahn taught his students on the lawn,” explains Huang Wenjing, partner at Beijing-based OPEN Architecture. But designing a Chinese high school to promote out-of-classroom teaching seems a radical idea. Strict building codes and a historically rigorous educational system typically produce standardized schools with a running track as the only outdoor space. But OPEN's competition-winning design, employed by an enlightened administration, offers opportunities beyond the chalkboard.