In my previous post on Transforming Classroom Spaces, I looked at what teachers and students were doing at Forest Hill Elementary School, Senior Campus in Saint-Lazare. Recently, I had the opportunity to sit down with one of the teachers from the school, Angela Davison, to talk about how this initiative started and how it has evolved. In the following video interview, Angela explains the rationale behind flexible learning spaces and makes the link with universal design for learning (UDL):
One of the most important elements in the design process at Forest Hill was trust. It required a leap of faith from the teachers, but the idea is that if students are provided with the flexibility to choose how and where they learn best, then they are more likely to be engaged and take ownership.
To put this in perspective: Do you work best in a quiet office or in a more social setting, such as a coffee house? Do you need to move around to be productive or stay focused by sitting? The idea behind UDL and flexible learning spaces is to offer the same type of choice for our students.
In part two of this series, we’ll dive into how UDL and flexible learning spaces can apply in adult education. We’ll also feature three teachers from the adult sector who have begun to transform their classroom spaces. This is not just for elementary schools!