Sunday, 14 April 2013

Old and New Learning Spaces



I recently spent a day in meetings in two different locations close by each other. The venues with identical functions could not have been more different.

The first venue where we were doing a presentation, was regularly used for meetings with people from all over the world.  But it just appeared so gloomy and old fashioned.... photographs of random people in frames that were too large, a wonky flip chart, clunky furniture and an interactive white board that had so much sun shining on it so the audience could not read it.

The second venue was newer, but actually the age of the space was irrelevant.  With modern, comfortable furniture, white walls and digital technology the room, which was the same size as the first room, had a totally different feel and atmosphere. It was business like and professional  - an ideal learning space.

We all now that when you have 'lived in a space' for a long time - it is easy to not see what it really looks like.  The problem is visitors do see it for how it is as soon as they enter the space.  That is the first impression and often the lasting impression.

The same applies to classrooms - we should always be looking at them with fresh eyes - despite what some people may say, the quality of learning spaces for students is important and does make a difference! All too often we walk into classrooms with piles of 'stuff' piled everywhere - they look terrible but how many people actually see it?

1 comment:

Andrew Franklin said...

To be honest, I don't often think about the physical space and setup of the classroom. I am always in 2 or 3 different classrooms, and I do not reflect enough on how they should be set up. I like your point about the two contrasting meeting places.