Our design approach to Educational spaces is centered on creating flexible, adaptive learning environments. These spaces effectively cater for multiple group sizes concurrently, and actively support non hierarchical content delivery and tuition. Rooms are designed to accommodate multiple modes of tuition and learning.
School Identity is fostered by culture and ethos, but is directly expressed in a tangible manner through the built form. At 3iD, we believe that a school should promote an identity as expressed through its Architecture, in turn breaking down the notion of the “institution”. Modern educational Architecture should be dynamic, responsive, flexible and adaptive.
While it is critical to consider pragmatics, function and budget, it is only when these are coupled with the active and effective expression of the school’s identity that these translate into a genuinely successful fulfilment of the brief.
Its is now acknowledged that every individual learns differently and responds to different modes of learning. The challenge for the modern educational Architect is to design spaces to accommodate these differences.
3iD Architecture has extensive experience in converting, refurbishing and re-purposing Educational buildings to suit modern Educational pedagogies.
Our design process ensures careful consideration in integrating internal and external environments. Successful educational Architecture needs to actively respond to and encourage active lifestyles, play and socialisation.
Educational Architecture should embody and express the School’s core philosophy and culture, whist being flexible, dynamic and bold.
Effective Architecture to assist with Developmental delay
The core concepts that have a strong influence on behavioural outcomes as promoted through Educational Architecture include:
Transition Zones and Sensory Zoning
Reducing noise and echo in educational spaces can help increase attention spans and behavioural temperament. Environmental acoustics need to be varied depending on the amount of concentration required for the task/activity. Low reverberation, high absorptive materials and non planar walls/ ceilings not only provide colour and texture, but provide better environments for learning.
Providing routine and predictability by logically sequencing spaces gives students a sense of security. Spaces are planned to provide logical transitions between activities and to promote a sense of routine a predictability. A key example of this is controlling entry and exit points to a space, managed through the use of transition spaces.
The benefit of Withdrawal Space has been acknowledged as part of Educational Architecture for over 25 years. Providing a space to escape from the over-stimulation of the surrounding environment is a central concept to enable children to balance themselves and undertake activities requiring reflection, focus or attention, and to self-moderate behavioural anxieties.
Organising spaces/buildings into compartments with a defined function and sensory quality gives children the means to distinguish between and chose environments best suited to the mode of inquiry being undertaken. This can be achieved through colour, form, lighting, volume and furniture selection.
Transition Zones and Sensory Zoning
Indicating a change in environment to help students transition from different levels of stimulation assists in altering behavioural outcomes. A typical example of this is the use of an airlock, intermediate space between external high sensory stimulated spaces and internal low stimulus spaces. This approach reduces interruption and distraction with the modern format classroom learning spaces. Many Educational researchers believe that zoning spaces according to their level of activity/stimulus is a better model for spatial planning, as opposed to pure function, with transitional spaces required to link these effectively.
Accessibility, visibility and a engendering a sense of “inclusiveness” are the keys to successful Educational development.