Touring Inspiring Learning Environments
Classroom design has always been a passion of mine, from clearing and sorting a room in the Summer holidays to re-arranging the areas when I get a new idea. Often when visiting other schools as part of meetings I am always delighted when the teacher invities me to see their class setup. As part of my video making I have had the pleasure of visiting some amazing settings and hearing some inspiring and useful ideas for making the most effective use of your space. If you wish to watch the full tours of classrooms please visit my YouTube channel.
The Colour Debate.
As you can see from the photos below the difference a neutral background has on the overall look of the room. The room is less over stimulating with colour everywhere and the signs and children's work stand out more.
Before the redesign, a colourful classroom, coloured bunting and furniture.
After the redesign, neutral look, new wooden flooring, plain displays, new furniture.
I'm not saying that I dislike colourful classrooms but I do think it is food for thought when we reach for the colourful backing paper out of default when backing a board.
Case Study: The Curiosity Approach.
I had the pleasure of visiting The Nest Nursery in Birmingham which is part of the Curiosity Approach. It was a very unique outlook to Early Years Education with a large focus on natural objects and resources to promote curiosity and intrigue with the children.
Curiosity Approach - using drainpipes for bookshelves, framed books above.
Curiosity Approach - sandpit with natural logs & lighting.
Curiosity Approach - Outside garden, very natural.
Curiosity Approach - lots of natural and recycled resources.
Case Study: Berwick Hills Foundation Stage (Role-Play)
Visiting Berwick Hills School I had the pleasure of meeting Hayley Hughes who has a unique classroom made up full of different role-play areas. She used these with great effect to improve attainment of all GLD areas including the children's Communication, Speech and Language.
Hayley Hughes - Sand Area, lots of linked books to the seaside below the tray.
Hayley Hughes - using parasols to create simple zones in the classroom.
Hayley Hughes - Gazebo structure covered to make a book area.
Hayley Hughes - creating a role-play to support a theme on dental hygiene.
The use of role-plays allowed her to plan in a unique way that encouraged play-based learning, imagination and links to reading, writing and mathematics. A lot of the resources were reused and the structures consisted of parasols and gazeboes as the main structures upon which paper, signs and artwork are added.
Watch the full video tours here: