Investing in the future of children…
The academic success of any child can be influenced by many variables, from their socioeconomic status and the different teaching styles they experience, down to the interior design of the classroom. However, the latter is often overlooked, even though studies have shown that the physical surroundings can have a remarkable impact on children and the way they learn!
Those of us who grew up with of rows of boring desks, uncomfortable chairs, walls painted in drab colours and harsh lighting will know exactly what we’re talking about. Traditionally the teacher would stand at the front of the class, pupils always looking forward with only a limited number of text books and a blackboard for support; learning could become pretty boring.
With advances in technology, for most this is no longer the case; blackboards have been replaced by electronic smart boards and projector screens and the sharing of information on computers, laptops, tablets even smartphones, to some extent mean that students no longer need to be focused forward and teachers don’t need to be stationary at the front of the room.
Flexibility is now key, furniture arrangements need to be easily reconfigured to allow the teacher and students easy access to study and view the work being created or discussed wherever they may be in the room. It has to be able to accommodate a full quota teaching session, allow small group working areas which teachers can dip in and out of, plus it should have the ability for individual work, often with access to specific technologies.
Although, improving the design is not confined to the classroom… In this ‘mobile’ world learning can now extend beyond the classroom; research suggests that pupils want to have space to work and socialise, this includes: good catering facilities, areas for study and for group discussion and collaboration outside of class, which increasingly leads to the introduction of social spaces, group and individual study areas and state-of-the-art libraries, ICT Suites and comfortable dining amenities being included in the overall design of modern schools and colleges.
Not only does the interior design need to reflect modern learning, it has become one of the key opportunities for secondary schools and further education establishments to differentiate themselves in what is becoming a highly competitive market. Students today are much more demanding in terms of what they expect and for this reason the environment that is created is vital in attracting the best possible talent.
Whilst the majority of parents and pupils will look to go to a school or college that can best equip them for the future from an academic point of view, where all other things are equal, there is no doubt that the look and feel of the building is a significant factor in the decision.
An investment in your school/college is not only a physical resource; it’s a platform for student growth and development. So, what are you waiting for? There’s no better time to invest in the future of our children…
Take a look at some of the schools and college refurbishments we have completed in and around the North West here.