As we have discussed in a previous blog here on “What is a Student-Centred Classroom”, a collaborative space where students are active participants in their education, the next question is, how do we make a space dedicated to students’ needs, learning styles, and engagement?
Every space, budget, and group is different. In this blog we will outline 3 key components to creating an engaging Student-Centred Classroom on any budget, in any size room, for any age group, to help you develop your space. A Student-Centred Classroom needs to be flexible so students can rearrange the classroom for a single student to work or collaborate in groups. Furniture that is easy to move is key; desks that group together to make tables are one of the best and easiest resources to create a flexible room.
Creating a quiet and comfortable reflection area where students can go to slow things down, engage in their studies, and learn as they need to helps build confidence in themselves and the space. It can also become a small group work area, or a reading area for undisrupted work when others are in groups.
The key principle and fundamental idea of a Student-Centred Classroom are to meet students where they are at and create an inclusive space for all learners. Using movement furniture supports this key fundamental. Wobble stools and rocking chairs give learners passive movement so they engage in learning and are less disruptive to their peers. It allows them to stay in their area and connect with the class, instead of getting up to walk around the room. Standing desks are another great tool to give students who like to move and shift weight instead of sitting in a static seat. Lower seating options give students security and meet their needs to allow them to connect and learn in the way that best supports them.
Any classroom can become a Student-Centred Classroom given the right tools and applications. Not every school has the capacity to convert entire classrooms, we hope with these fundamentals you can start to add in areas within a classroom to enhance your space for young learners to explore, expand their knowledge and thrive.