The talk of innovative learning spaces does push our thinking about innovative learning. Perhaps, however, it is time to move our conversation beyond innovation and refocus the discussion on being purposeful. This year I have moved to a reading intervention position. Though most often I go into classrooms to support readers, I do meet with some students in the reading room. I just moved into this intervention room at the beginning of this year. When you are in a new space, you have to continually think about what works and what does not. You have to continually rethink the way you need to use space.
For the first six weeks of school, I have found myself continually reworking this space to make it purposeful. The space needs to allow us to work in different ways. Our lessons are short so I have to be able to work efficiently in this space. Additionally, because we are working to make quick gains, I need to be able to provide alternate learning opportunities to students to help them to progress.
This week I made some big changes, and I'm loving them! I'm still discovering ways to make our space work for us. I'm sure there are more to come, but I wanted to share these with you.
Here is what the space looked like at the beginning of the year:
Phase 3: Here are some of the ways I've shifted the space so we can use it more effectively:
|Space for Small Group Work with Computer Accessibility: I had the desk removed to free up space for learners. (Honestly, I just stack things on desks anyway.) I was able to place the computer at the end of the table so I can make websites, student work, and other media visible to students. If we are working with iPads, student work can be displayed on the screen using AirServer. (Thanks, Tech Department, for the quick installation.) If we're discussing a book, student response can be sent to the computer using Flick to quickly share thinking. The chair pockets allow students to store book totes as we work and keep table space clear for learning. We can easily read and discuss books together here.|
Spaces for Small Group Writing: I cleared the space around this dry erase board so we could all sit together for interactive writing. The tools we need, shown above, are close by for extra practice.
Tactile Opportunities: I removed a chart from this book holder to discover a chalk surface perfect for adding a little texture to word work.