Wednesday, 31 December 2008

Empty trains... do people really like working alone?

Travelling upto London to work for three days this week, I have been struck by just how empty the trains have been (and the Underground for that matter). My train carriage contained only two people including me. A great work time with no disturbances and a good time in an office environment to catch up! Here, 'hotdesking' is the norm for me, which is a really efficient use of space. But most people (including me) really do work better with people around them to interact with - when they want to.

It was almost lonely working in a sparsely populated office and train! Aaaah! Having said that, the few occasions when I do work from home I tend to work far longer hours and get far more done. It's about having a variety of working styles and environments I guess.

But seriously, there are still so many classrooms where students are expected to work in silence all the time, even when it's not appropriate to and this potentially actively hinders collaborative learning - it's just not how people behave in real life.

That's why it is so important that, as we build new learning environments, we really do provide a variety of learning spaces with the agility to change to be the most appropriate for that particular learning activity. Even more importantly, staff must be confident in using them - another major challenge!

Never mind - relax - chill - I now have two days with the family and the weekend before I start my work travels again. Next week: Manchester, Derby, London and who knows where else! I personally think that 2009 is going to be a really exciting year for me with, I hope, lots of opportunities - keep reading the blog and website if you want to know more. But for now:

Happy New Year Everyone and have a fab 2009!

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