The idea for
Planning Learning Spaces
The idea for Planning Learning Spaces was initially born from a sense of mutual frustration and a feeling of regret over lost opportunities.
Too often, it seemed that little time had been devoted to drawing up a collaborative vision that married the intended approach to learning and teaching with the physical design. Frequently we found ourselves contacted by teachers struggling to teach in the way that they wanted in new buildings and classrooms that neither supported their educational aims, nor fulfilled their basic needs.
We have both always passionately believed that good school design can play a huge role in improving educational outcomes; it can support and promote innovative ways of teaching that prepare children for their future lives and work.
But equally we have both seen that this doesn’t happen unless those delivering the project – designers, architects and civic authorities – work closely with teachers, administrators and pupils at the outset of the project.
Just as we are keen to promote a more collaborative approach to school design, we wanted collaboration to be at the heart of how we compiled Planning Learning Spaces.
We have gathered contributions from architects, designers and educationalists around the world, all of whom clearly share our passion for inspiring good design that ‘fits’ with what educators are trying to achieve.
It has been both a pleasure and an education to hear from such a broad range of people with so much wisdom and real-world experience to offer.
We don’t promise to provide all the answers or a complete blueprint for designing a school, classroom or other learning space. Instead, we hope that this book will help everyone involved in a project to think about the things that really matter and come up with both practical and forward-thinking solutions.
Thanks for reading,