When you reflect upon your experience as a learner in your schooling experience, what memories do you have of the computer lab? Was your computer lab an antiseptic environment with rows of computers that more resembled an assembly line than an actual work environment? Unfortunately, our computer labs of yesteryear no longer reflect our changing world and the demands of our work environments. For this reason we have sought to revamp our computer lab into our “Learning Lab.”
To easily surmise the changes between the reimagining of the workspace, we took our lab from a production line and turned it into a coffee shop style environment. In this environment, we are enacting varied technologies to best prepare our students for the future. Gone are the PC towers and their replacements are now touchscreen Chromebooks for each child. While our school has not gone 1 to 1 computing for all classes, embedding the devices that will be used in the future will start the transition to this practice. Students need to be able to login to their devices and software services, do digital work, and act as a responsible digital citizen. Our learning lab special explicitly works on these factors.
What once were rows are now islands. Students sit in collaborative teams to facilitate their communication and cooperate on their shared digital responsibilities. One will also note the varied types of seating that students may choose from. This helps for students to achieve needed stimulation and make the room’s seating an enjoyable setting. The environment is further accented by welcoming, low lighting that yield an ambiance of tranquility.
As is with most modern jobs, in this learning lab students are distributed work by digital means. Students must login to check their assignments and directions for the day. This is much like an adult needing to check their email to note what needs to be addressed for the day. Such positive carryover will help to prepare our students for the careers that lay before them.
We welcome you to come in to explore our learning lab and all that it affords for our children.
Johnathan R. Hirschey