4 Steps to Designing Modern Learning Environments
- 19th November 2021
- Anthony Bowie
Many schools face steep challenges on the road to creating collaborative, modern learning environments that students, teachers, and staff can enjoy and thrive in. One of the biggest barriers to developing these learning spaces is the state of aging school buildings, which often haven’t been updated and reworked for decades. However, when a school is rebuilding its old facilities, there is a unique opportunity to reconfigure and redesign the learning spaces.
The environment that students learn in is linked to their academic success and social-emotional wellbeing, so creating learning spaces to meet the needs of these modern learners is crucial. Before beginning your project, there are a few steps you can take to ensure you’re designing modern learning environments that support collaboration, flexibility, engagement, and success and meet the diverse needs of students, teachers, and staff.
Here are four steps to designing modern learning environments:
Identify the top features of an effective learning space and make a list of these needs. As you go through your list, prioritize your design choices based on the features of your building, your requirements for learning, and your aesthetic preferences and vision. Focusing on these priorities first will ensure that your modern learning environments can meet the needs of the students, teachers, and staff who will use them.
Especially when reworking learning environments that have been minimally renovated for decades, you may be starting with spaces that lack an inviting, collaborative feel. Because of this, it’s important to emphasize collaboration in your vision for your new learning space. Incorporating learning areas that can accommodate different group sizes and support collaborative technology tools is an important part in creating a functional and effective modern learning environment.
Having a consistent vision and developing an aesthetic or theme for your design is critical to creating a cohesive learning space. The theme of a space helps to establish how students feel in the space, while also meeting all necessary learning needs. Working with a furniture partner like MiEN Company can help bring your vision to life while ensuring that colors, textures, and furniture pieces fit well with your school’s overall mission.
Today’s learning spaces are hands-on and allow students to learn by doing, maintaining student engagement, and nurturing students’ unique learning styles. Students also benefit from learning spaces that are inviting and comfortable and support their social-emotional needs. When you create a space that welcomes students and encourages them to work collaboratively, the environment only helps to foster that.
Modern learning environments lean into a school’s culture and mission, providing a space where students can get what they need academically, socially, and emotionally. Creating a space that students and teachers are excited to come back to each day has invaluable impacts on learning and wellbeing. To learn more about creating modern learning environments, read 4 Tips for Building Modern, Collaborative Learning Spaces on Spaces4Learning.