Multi-use rooms are a growing trend in all levels of education, from primary right up to tertiary. Also known as “flexible learning spaces”, these rooms are designed to be used for various purposes by various disciplines. They’re also designed to promote collaborative learning and seamlessly incorporate technology into the classroom.
As multi-use rooms represent a modern, future-proof and pedagogically-appropriate design choice for schools, universities and colleges, we decided to delve a little deeper into what a multi-use educational space “looks” like.
As the name suggests, a key aspect of multi-use educational spaces is their adaptability. These rooms are designed to be adapted to their users’ needs. In practice, this means the room should feature appropriate easily-moveable and easily-adaptable furniture, with any fixed furniture kept to a minimum.
Where possible, multiple projector screens, whiteboards and/or smartboards should be included so the room can also be oriented in different directions to suit users’ purposes.
Multi-use educational spaces can also promote collaborative learning between students and teachers, and between the students themselves.
This means plenty of space to encourage socialisation and to enable students to comfortably interact with one another. This will often be facilitated by easily-adaptable furniture which can be appropriately configured for each collaborative task.
Technology plays a vital role in day-to-day life, so it should also play a central room in any modern multi-use educational space. Multi-use rooms can also be designed for presentations. These will include not only traditional, teacher-delivered presentations, but also student-delivered presentations and perhaps even collaborative cross-campus presentations and communication.
Technology should be easily accessible to students, with Wi-Fi for computers and smart phones and charging ports that don’t interrupt the room’s flow.
Throughout all of this, it’s important to remember that your multi-use educational space should be comfortable for students and teachers. This doesn’t just mean taking care of comfortable furniture needs – it also means appropriate lighting and ventilation, with natural forms of both wherever possible.
Want to learn more about the multi-use room and flexible learning trend? Then you should check out this article on flipped classrooms.