Designed to enable!
A space for self-discovery! A room that reminds you of home, hence a homeroom! A mini microcosm that witnesses little evolutions each day over a specific period of time!Pick and select the one that you think is closest to defining a classroom.
Classrooms are the hub of all activities – internal or external. The room with the grade number labelled on it , complimented by a visual display of motivational quotes or analogies – e.g.-
- Entry to the room is like opening a treasure trove.
- You get to be original.
- You are in an addictive zone — get addicted to skills and values.
In a nutshell, a classroom is more than just an amalgamation of well aligned furniture and cheery windows, with a board thrown in. Around the walls are placed soft boards, to showcase the learning resources, charts, posters etc. A CCTV installation, stereo system (optional), occasional shelves – the basic infrastructure is ready.
A typical classroom can metamorphose into an experience zone, when the teacher becomes the designer. Choose a theme for your classroom. Fix a colour code for the charts –muted shades with contrast borders. A sense of uniformity prevails. Keep aside at least two soft boards for Home room. Instead of the usual birthday charts, one can always create a smart goal for the class and accordingly create the visuals. I remember that one year, in my homeroom, when I was faced with a laid back, but intelligent learners, I had used black and white graphics of cans. Each can had a name tag display, with spaces for the child to write. The heading was “I do what I can! I can what I can’t!”
Needless to say, the cans served as a constant reminder of the attainable for that particular IGCSE batch. The potentials are endless — I remember a time, when I had installed a marker chart that showed with the names the marks of the Class Tests & Units tests. A summative score was exponentially displayed using a bar graph. The percentages that required immediate attention were marked as Red Zone. The marks improved in the next fortnight.
During the hot summers, due to the blistering heat, had taken two extra desks and used it to host a “matka” (clay pitcher) of cool water, in the classroom. A few pots of herbs added the much needed eye candy and provided solace. The teacher’s desk had racks in the front. A makeshift class library evolved that had National Geographic magazines, a few classics, all carefully aligned on the double shelves. A few board games (by choice) would be placed. The class dynamics transformed.
Experiment with seating. It is easier to make half rectangles facing the board, instead of the normal aisle types. Children enjoy the variety in seating and classes become more engaging. Appoint a Cleanliness Monitor, organise cleaning sessions. True holistic education is practiced, when the students clean their own spaces.
The options are manifold — the opportunities are endless! It has often been quoted that education is the most powerful weapon that can help change the world; to it we can safely add that the classroom is the perfect catalyst for the same.