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Thinking of refurbishing your science classrooms?

Leading science classroom manufacturer InterFocus looks at why it's important to have a modern design for your science classrooms

Posted by Hannah Oakman | April 06, 2016 | Facilities management

The importance of design

All classroom refurbishment projects are a significant financial investment for a school and it’s important to ensure that the design, as well as the furniture itself, will provide many years of service.

Design plays a significant role in the classroom’s ability to engage pupils and teachers a like. Providing a clean and modern science classroom can change the way pupils and teachers interact with each other. There are many design layouts available for the science classroom based around four principle design styles; Peninsular, Island, Pod and Wing. Each style has its own unique merits. The classroom size and access to services will often have an impact on which design works best.

An opportunity for change

A new classroom refurbishment project gives you the opportunity to completely rethink the use of space and the way you teach. Many classrooms have always followed the traditional approach of rows of pupils facing the front of the class. This still works well and in many cases the room size dictates the layout. However, your classroom shape and size may allow a far more engaging layout to be produced. Our experienced design team will be able to advise the solutions that work best for you and your classrooms.

Many schools adopt the approach of group learning. By utilising the POD or Island styles pupils are encouraged to work in smaller groups. This helps develop their communication and team building skills and gets the group more engaged in the lesson and subject. This more open style approach allows teaching staff to flow through and around the groups engaging with them on a more personal level, this proves invaluable in both theoretical and practical teaching.

 

Comprehensive storage and preparation areas

By designing and planning practical storage and, if space allows, dedicated preparation areas, teachers can save valuable teaching time in the classroom if the lesson requirements have been prepared in advance in a secure and safe environment. When faculty staff can access their equipment quickly and efficiently, more time is dedicated to the students. We cannot stress enough how important adequate storage is.

The importance of safety

Science classrooms are the probably the most hazardous teaching environments within the school. During the design process it is important that certain safety precautions are built into the new classroom layout by installing gas-guards and electric-guards during a classroom refurbishment. These safety devices allow these services to be shut down immediately should an incident occur. These devices can be manually operated or automatic, significantly reducing the risk of students putting themselves or others in harm’s way.

Building your science classroom

The materials we use to manufacture the science classroom furniture and work surfaces have changed significantly over the years. Many commercial laboratory materials are now used in the school science classrooms of today. The most popular work surfaces are Trespa TopLab Base, Velstone solid surface and Iroko hardwood. These modern-day surfaces offer huge improvements in chemical resistance and general wear and tear when compared with materials from days gone by. By using these modern work surfaces designed for laboratories coupled with the latest CNC technology, we are able to fabricate these tops to a wide variety of design styles.

As leading manufacturer of both commercial laboratories and school laboratories, InterFocus can provide you with a science classroom fit for the 21st century. Visit schoolfurniture.co.uk for more information.

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