A successful classroom design ensures that every angle is covered and bringing these key aspects into harmony creates a fantastic learning environment.
We’ve compiled a classroom checklist of all the different aspects you need to consider before refurbishing your schools interior.
Vederi est Crederi “seeing is believing”, says the old Latin motto. Children have a love of natural light and you need to recognise that visual assimilation is one of the more important ways of learning. The need for shading of daylight is another classroom challenge. Either way, you need to plan your classroom space intelligently to make sure that you are making best use of light.
In most traditional style classrooms, the teacher should be the main focus in the classroom. This means positioning students so they can pay attention to their teacher without neck ache or eye strain, as well as the removal of any distracting objects. We were recently told by an ex-head of science at a leading Buckinghamshire grammar school that they were surprised at the extent of the psychological benefit of a tidy classroom on both teacher and pupils.
Use Your Space
Room to breathe, space to explore. Allowing for the regulatory circulation zones and creating a feeling of space is essential for a safe and calm classroom. Your classroom checklist needs to pay particular attention to the age of the pupils and the range of activities in question.
Some lessons are supported by paraphernalia that needs to be cleared away before the next period. Removal of these distractions is one benefit but tidy storage also gives teachers and pupils the ability to access resources in a quick and ordely way. Storage which efficiently accommodates equipment can also lengthen the lifespan of hardware investments and reduce vandalism and theft. Utilising the full height of a wall minimises the footprint of storage furniture to provide more space for students.
Depending upon the length of the lesson, student discomfort can become a big distraction and can even affect results –which is a key indicator of a successful school. In basic terms, an upholstered seat pad may cost a little more, but what price will you pay for the success of your school’s reputation.
Hearing is one of the most needed, but often undervalued, senses of a classroom. Ensure that your classroom design limits reverberations, and makes it easy for everyone to listen to each other.
Where class sizes, teaching methods and even syllabus content is subject to change, flexibility of classroom layout can off their ability to respond, without having to buy new furniture. Planning this to allow quick reconfiguration is a skill which Envoplan have honed over the years. An added dimension is often introduced where schools are letting areas to the public.
“Would it help if you were able to increase student numbers per classroom in the future if needed” “Yes!” is invariably the answer. Right now, many local authorities are conducting school expansion programmes; with larger classes and even bulge classes….a clever approach to planning your classroom will give you greater classroom capacity, and save you space.
Pupils come in all shapes and sizes and their long term health may depend on their posture the in the growing years. Concentration and task execution will be better if they are comfortable. Our challenge is to provide the optimum platform for their comfort, within your budget.
Primarily used in (but not confined to) younger children’s spaces, your classroom checklist should incorporate a simple theme. This becomes a storyline to draw young minds into the learning experience. The use of wall graphics can improve a school environment, and have a positive effect on the mindset of a difficult class, whilst providing depth to a blank wall.
Wear and tear is not the only sign of ageing furniture. Equipment and teaching methods are evolving fast and can leave your school lagging behind in up to date facilities which that all-important Open Day will display. It pays to think ahead when designing your classroom.
Connecting interior design with the psyche of an age group is a subtle art, but reaps great rewards educationally. Lack of student buy-in can literally determine whether a new learning space is even used. Students about to leave school can be prepared for the next step in life by providing more adult environments.
“To offer a science A-level we needed a fume cupboard, acid resistant sink drainage and ideally an area for group discussions”…just one example of a specialist classroom brief. We have created spaces for specialist subjects like Music by Mac, Media Studies, Floristry, Gaming, Food Technology, Drama and Language Labs, as well as accommodating special needs and disabled students.
We can help you present and communicate to stakeholders the benefits of a new project by preparing a definitive brief and easy to read designs and 3D visualisations, to impress your board meeting.
Providing for IT and Technology
Technology is being integrated into every stage of the learning journey. Students are encouraged to use laptops and tablets to enhance their knowledge. It is crucial to ensure that your classroom checklist supports and accommodates the use of devices.
The impact of an accent colour, or the organising influence of colour coding is amazing and always adds a finishing touch that is appreciated by students and teachers alike, usually for no extra cost! It’s like switching on power, free of charge.
Vandalism and Theft Prevention
We expect the unexpected. Whatevermyour school’s security issues are, we can protect your assets by taking a worst case vs. budget allowance view and advise you on potential product lifespan when designing any given environment