3 Types of Learning Spaces to Create in your Classroom
The environment is a big influence when it comes to education. As a teacher, you have the power to fine-tune your classroom in order to foster your students’ learning. While decorations are important, the various learning spaces you create in your classroom are arguably more so. Try incorporating these 3 different learning spaces into your classroom!
A Space for Sitting and Listening
Odds are, you already have this type of space in your classroom. This is the traditional lecture space, complete with evenly spread desks that are oriented towards the front of the classroom. Younger students may sit in groups at larger tables instead. With all eyes guided toward the whiteboard, it’s easy for teachers to demonstrate a new idea. For this reason, we call this space the “demonstration station.” When you just need your students to sit and pay attention, this is where you want them to be!
While it may not be flashy or newfangled, this type space is commonplace for a reason. But while lecturing spaces are great for breaking into new lessons, they can fall short when it comes time to get into a subject’s intricacies and gauge how well your students really understand it. For that, we like to make things a bit cozier.
A Space for Discussion and Discovery
This is meant to be a more intimate and engaging learning space, perfect for discussions and student demonstrations. As opposed to the traditional setup, this kind of space is works well with low, comfy chairs (hello bean bags!) and floor seating. Create a space where your students can sit in a circle or semicircle, so they’re encouraged to interact with one another as well as the teacher.
Try using a separate whiteboard for this area—extra points if it detaches from the stand so you can pass it around! Even more points if you can procure a small whiteboard for all of your students. Use a rug and perhaps another barrier (e.g. a low bookcase) to delineate this zone and make it feel separate from the lecture space. The end result is a cozy area that’s great for storytime, sentence diagrams, math exercises and more!
A Space for Interaction
We would call this area the “play station”, but there’s actually plenty of learning to be done in an interactive zone! Plus, Sony beat us to the patenting punch. Whatever you decide to dub it, it’s good classroom practice to have a space dedicated to learning through interaction. Whether it’s chock full of blocks, tinker toys, drawing stations or computers, this space gives students a place to put into practice what they’ve learned in the latest lesson. Plus, a big concept is all the more palatable when there’s playtime involved!
Interaction is a key part of the learning process. In tandem with the previous two learning spaces, it creates a holistic learning experience! Break down a big concept in the demonstration station, help individual students grasp the concept more firmly in the discussion zone, and then send them to the interactive space so they can put the lesson into practice. With this process, it’s much easier to ensure that no students are falling through the cracks in a particular lesson.
There you have them—3 spaces that can facilitate a complete learning process! Teachers, what unique spaces have you incorporated into your classroom? Let us know on Facebook or in the comments below! And don’t forget to follow ECR4Kids on Facebook, Pinterest, or our blog via email for more of these posts!