Monday, February 20, 2012

New Learning Spaces at Freemans Bay School

Last year we demolished a large 1970's open plan building because it was subsiding. This gave us an opportunity to innovate with the design of the our new classroom block. We wanted the design of our learning environment to support the design of our curriculum vision.

We wanted the new learning spaces to support flexible learning and teacher collaboration to support student learning. We wish the physical environment to support assessment for learning principles, e-learning and our thinking curriculum - habits of mind.

The new classroom block has a large atrium space being utilised in a variety of ways. Teachers are experimenting with the use of it. We purchased a range of furniture that is colourful, at different levels and can be moved around. This has supported the flexibility of these spaces.

We only moved into the building last April and the furniture for the Atrium space was purchased in November. Teachers report that this open learning space has strengthened collaboration in their teams and encouraged creativity in the way the environment is used. It has created opportunities that were not considered in the "single classroom setting". The new open learning environment has encouraged teacher collaboration around the way teaching is done as well as collaboration among the students. This is a new journey for us and teachers continue to explore different ways than can use these spaces.

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