Friday, October 9, 2009
GPS October Theme: Ideal School Structure
What would your ideal school look like? Design the school of the future – but do it now!
Tania Sheko, a school librarian in Victoria, Australia, provides a marvellous post in answer to this question at Brave New World. She is host to the GPS (Green Pen Society) this month.
Her theme is applicable not only to impassioned teachers, concerned parents, and eager students, but to anyone who cares about vital learning. All of us have memories of our classroom experiences and the great and not so great teachers we had. Teachers aside, Tania asks us to focus on the physical building and think about ideal aspects for learning.
I have taught in a traditional high school building for over thirty years and toured several newer structures. Here are my ideal considerations:
- Aesthetics: The facade of the building and features throughout the school reflect some creativity of colour, design, and style.
- Light: The school should bring in natural light features into the foyer, cafeteria, library, classrooms... It can save energy and provide an antitode to flourescent light sterility.
- Space: Areas should be designed which provide freedom of movement and efficient use of space.
- Furniture: The desks, tables, chairs, counters are ergonomically comfortable and conducive to some flexibility for learning applications.
-Green: The building incorporates environmental and energy efficient technologies.
- Community Friendly: The school is a welcome place for incorporation of community activities in the evening and weekends. Dave Eggers, 826 Valencia TED talk
- Multiuse: Gymnasiums and cafeterias provide diversity of use for theatre, exhibits, activities.
- Web 2.0 Friendly: The libraries and classrooms provide welcome areas to utilize the full scale of Internet applications for learning.
Generally the ambiance of an ideal school reflects learning as vital, interactive, and empowering.
Now head on over to Brave New World and read Tania's post. It's insightful and enlightening!
Also you are most welcome to reflect on her topic and join the discussion. Leave a comment to express your interest.
Image: Drawing of Dr. David Suzuki School under construction