The Oracle

New furniture tested, adapted to teaching styles

A SPLASH OF COLOR: Working in recently redecorated classrooms, South students take classes in two of the four classrooms experimenting with furniture changes. The color and furniture change is being made to adapt old classroom settings to new teaching styles that involve more modern techniques, according to Casey Wright, associate principal of administrative services.

Photo courtesy of District 225

A SPLASH OF COLOR: Working in recently redecorated classrooms, South students take classes in two of the four classrooms experimenting with furniture changes. The color and furniture change is being made to adapt old classroom settings to new teaching styles that involve more modern techniques, according to Casey Wright, associate principal of administrative services.

Hang on for a minute...we're trying to find some more stories you might like.


Email This Story






Four pilot classrooms are testing new furniture and decor, which began on March 6, in the Special Education, English, World Language and Social Studies Departments, according to Principal Dr. Lauren Fagel. The changes will, according to Fagel, include new furniture, technology, supplies and accent colors on the walls, in addition to the removal of some lockers in the hallways.

According to Cameron Muir, associate principal of curriculum and instruction, the district’s discussion to improve the furniture has been ongoing. He says that the goal of the new classroom design is to promote a collaborative atmosphere to encourage student learning.

“The focus is really on the furniture and the way in which we can create a more collaborative environment…[and] an environment where we increase the communication between and among our students,” Muir said. “[We want to encourage] student learning conversations; to spark thought and thinking; and also to increase the exchange of ideas.”

Fagel believes that the newly designed classrooms will reflect and enhance the current advancements in teaching methods. She says that the current furniture reflects an older, unadaptable style of learning, and that the changes need to be made to accommodate new teaching strategies.

“The way people learn is so different now than it used to be,” Fagel said. “It was all paper [and] pencil; back in the day lecture, was the predominant method of delivery. [Now], it’s so much collaborative work, group work, independent work, digital work, but the spaces don’t really match that. The whole goal is to try to bring the physical pieces of the learning environment up to date to match the current technologies and the different ways that we learn.”

According to Casey Wright, associate principal of administrative services, the new furniture and classroom design will compliment modern learning methods through improved mobility and freedom to change the layout of a room.

“When we talk about learning in classrooms, students and teachers have had experience with technology, but the furniture also enhances the learning, in terms of if its flexibility, if it can be moved around, if students can take more initiative on how things are being designed and organized in the classroom,” Wright said. Ryan Bretag, director of instructional innovation, says the district is testing three different classroom prototypes, with four classrooms at GBS in addition to four classrooms at GBN. Bretag expressed his excitement about the new classroom designs, but acknowledged that student and teacher feedback will influence future decisions.

“These are [designs] we think are really good but like anything else, we want to put it out there and see what works and what doesn’t work, and we will be making adjustments in mid-stream,” Bretag said.

Wright says that students and teachers will be able to give their feedback in response to the new furniture, classroom designs and color palette — which is based on research and color theory — at many points throughout the testing phase, which lasts until the end of the school year. While the feedback from the pre-testing phase has been taken, the results from after the implementation of the new furniture will be available in May, according to Bretag.

Wright said, “We’re trying [give] the entire community an opportunity to provide feedback on some of the different designs that we’re thinking about, including the color palette. Teachers and students will get a chance to give feedback on furniture, colors on the walls, and carpeting.”

Muir says that if positive feedback from students and teachers is received, the district plans to expand the pilot designs to more classrooms in the school.

“If this goes well and we get some good feedback, and I expect it to go well, but the feedback is what we really want to determine and figure it out, we would love to be able to expand this, and present it in more rooms and eventually determine which rooms these different kinds of setups work best in,” Muir said.

Wright commends the collaboration between students, administrators, and several departments in planning and encouraging the implementation of new furniture and decor in several classrooms.

“I’m really excited by the contributions that all parts of the school are making to this endeavor; from students, to teachers, to administrators, to the maintenance and custodial crew,” Wright said. “We want it to be a safe learning environment for all students where they can continue to be in a community with one another.”

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Navigate Right
Navigate Left
  • New furniture tested, adapted to teaching styles

    News

    South student helps create youth computer science program

  • New furniture tested, adapted to teaching styles

    News

    Students meet exchange partners in Tiengen

  • New furniture tested, adapted to teaching styles

    News

    Film students stand out in state competition

  • New furniture tested, adapted to teaching styles

    News

    GBS students visit exchange partners in Lyon

  • News

    Welcome Wednesdays create positive, safe atmosphere at South

  • News

    Service trip to Latin America aids orphans, builds relationships

  • New furniture tested, adapted to teaching styles

    News

    Annual Great Green Gardening Gathering expands, prepares for planting season

  • New furniture tested, adapted to teaching styles

    News

    Local committee petitions new Amtrak freight line

  • New furniture tested, adapted to teaching styles

    News

    Students fundraise, coordinate 15th annual Burger Day

  • New furniture tested, adapted to teaching styles

    News

    Administration, students discuss prom date change

The news site of Glenbrook South High School.
New furniture tested, adapted to teaching styles