Helping schools take an innovative approach to Covid-safe learning

Posted on: September 9, 2020

As England’s schools reopen and educators grapple with how to encourage learning while keeping pupils safe, White Waltham C of E Academy, part of Ashley Hill Multi-Academy Trust, in Maidenhead, Berkshire is embracing an innovative approach.  It’s the first school in the country to install Studio, an outdoor classroom by Learniture Studio accommodates 15 students

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Still closer to the beginning than the end?

Posted on: July 13, 2020

It’s difficult to ask that question without sounding like a ‘the end of the world is nigh’ doom-monger. But it’s important to do so if we believe that any investment any of us make as a result of the coronavirus pandemic should achieve the best solution for the best value when weighed against the timeframe

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Learning Landscapes

Posted on: July 6, 2020

As we start to move towards a post-pandemic or at least coronavirus-aware world, we’re continuing to think about what changes in schools will be permanent and what are just transitory. Last week, I was lucky enough to be in a group with Joanne Caddy from OECD at an online A4LE event. She talked about stop/start

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Long term? Or short term?

Posted on: June 21, 2020

One of the big issues facing schools right now, whether they recognise it or not, is to what extent the measures they take to tackle the current coronavirus pandemic should be long term or short term. Is it a sticking plaster that’s required – just enough until we ‘get back to normal’ or do we

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The Great Outdoors – is it turning learning inside out?

Posted on: May 18, 2020

We’ve seen lots of talk about outdoor learning when pupils return to school. To be honest, unless they have an abundance of otherwise un-timetabled classrooms, we can’t see how schools will be able to accommodate a full cohort of students without use of their outdoor spaces. And whilst the current talk here in the UK

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The post-coronavirus classroom?

Posted on: April 27, 2020

With talk starting to turn to schools re-opening, many people have started to question how this is going to be implemented, but safely. For example, “classrooms may have to be redesigned to allow social distancing, so maybe not all children can go back to, and be at, school at the same time” Scotland’s First Minister,

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Whiteboard tables

“Whiteboard tables, James. Mark my words: whiteboard tables!”

Posted on: March 19, 2020

The prophecy of whiteboard tables in classrooms around the world. About ten years ago, Professor Stephen Heppell said to me: ‘Whiteboard tables, James – mark my words: whiteboard tables’.  At the time, some schools were still rolling out interactive whiteboards.  Professor Heppell was predicting that, as technology was liberated from fixed ICT suites, IT would

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Planning Learning Spaces

Posted on: October 23, 2019

We were delighted, about 18 months ago, when James, our Divisional Director, was asked to contribute the furniture section to the latest book to hit the shelves from publishers Laurence King, Planning Learning Spaces that was published on Monday. There’s little James doesn’t know about what’s happening in the world of educational furniture and the

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A cry for help

Posted on: June 30, 2019

Last Thursday, on the eve of the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Uprising, we tweeted one of the images from our recent photo shoot. In it, we’d shown a No Outsiders poster – a small but deliberate demonstration of our support of Andrew Moffat’s programme. We received just one negative tweet in reply – far

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A corner, a corridor, a disused space:  why you don’t need to sacrifice a whole classroom to create an agile learning space

Posted on: October 5, 2018

If you find the standard classroom layout more of a hindrance than a help when it comes to creative learning you’re not alone,  I have long pondered the effectiveness of the ‘normal’ classroom.  I know for a fact that offering movement and choice to students in their learning environment, and giving them a sense of

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