- In her edWebinar, “Through a Child’s Eyes: How Classroom Design Inspires Children’s Learning and Wonder,” Sandra Duncan, an early-childhood educator, discusses ways young children perceive how a classroom is organized differently than adults do, eSchool News reports.
- Schools need to create pre-K classrooms with a child’s physical and emotional well-being in mind so that they feel safe, curious, and engaged in learning.
- Duncan, who specializes in classroom design, advises educators to consider three key moments in the day as they create a classroom space: a moment of invitation that inspires a child’s curiosity about learning; a moment to pause in an area that is emotionally safe and calming, and a moment to connect at the beginning and end of the day that can be enhanced by placing sign-in books closer to the center of the room.
School and classroom design are important to consider because they affect so many aspects of the learning experience. The article focuses primarily on adapting classrooms to have the greatest impact on early-childhood education. This could be a good place to start if schools are trying to gradually redesign or retrofit classrooms because these early impressions of school set the stage for student attitudes for the rest of their school career.
However, school design can serve many functions from creating a better learning environment, to drawing student attention to STEAM fields, to engaging students through sensory stimulus, or encouraging collaboration. District leaders need to consider the aspects of education and school culture they want to demonstrate most clearly as they design future schools or remodel classrooms.
Another aspect of school design that has grown in importance since the Sandy Hook massacre is its role in preventing active shooter scenarios. The events of the past school year have drawn attention to that need. While school safety should be a primary consideration, there are also ways to downplay the security measures needed to ensure safety. However, in the end, students need to feel that they are safe at school or they will not be able to focus on learning effectively.