We provide all kinds of support to schools relating to ICT and interactive technologies. Often when we sit down and chat with a customer about what we can offer, they’re surprised to hear all kinds of things we suggest that they hadn’t thought of.
Something we provide that we generally don’t shout about is designs for ICT suites and other classroom containing computers. This might sound pretty basic, but there is actually more to the layout of a suite than you might think.
Non-ICT classrooms have only a few layouts that are really used, the most common of course being ‘lecture-style’ in which desks are in neat rows and columns all facing the front. Some classrooms might experiment with semi-circle, or a ‘cluster’ layout for group work, but the rank-and-file design is the one that’s generally accepted as best.
When computers are brought into the mix, it’s a little more complicated. Lecture-style doesn’t really work as well for two reasons: firstly, it’s important that the instructor can see every screen, partly to see whether people are following the material, and partly to monitor pupils for inappropriate computer use.
The other drawback is that not everybody will be close to an electrical socket, which of course will usually be attached to walls.
So the obvious option is to place the desks against the walls with all pupils facing out. Depending upon the size and shape of the room however, this may not fit nearly as many terminals into a room as there is space for – and there are disadvantages to having a majority of pupils facing away from the teacher.
Ultimately, there is no ‘one size fits all’ approach, and the trick is balancing the maximum possible workstations with the most effective work environment.
This is where we come in. We thoughtfully create space with regard to your specific needs and the specifications of the room. Our consultation is free, after which we put together precise designs in modelling software CAD.
Of course, we also supply and install the desks, and can provide furniture for non-ICT use as well. Optionally, we provide security features such as monitor stands and PC enclosures.
So while desks and designs may not be the most technically impressive thing we supply – our interactive whiteboards, digital signage and other devices are what generally provoke the reaction of ‘wow!’ – hopefully we’ve demonstrated that room plans are not just an afterthought or ‘just another service’ we provide, but an important and integral part of the learning environment. We don’t treat it casually.