IDEA Language Center
Too team worked to define a learning environment that teachers could adapt to their own working strategies, and where students could find flexible spots enabling peer to peer confrontation. Too designed an integrated environment involving classroom setting, school common spaces, visual identity and technologies layout.
The opportunity was a newly founded foreign language school in Ankara, Turkey. The founders and staffers of the school, which also provides post high-school orientation services, sought for a neat and effective treatment of the school place that could communicate their up-to-date approach as well as establish a precise image for their enterprise in the competing local market. All of it with a tight time frame. We focused on the vision of defining a flexible, effective and professional looking learning environment, and we set up a team for the various tasks. On their part, the clients agreed to stick to the timeline we proposed and provided in-time feedback that smoothed the collaboration.
We used Human Centered Design tools such as personas and user scenarios, to analyze and test our assumptions on users behaviours, and ultimately to validate spatial and integration strategy of the various elements. These tools also helped us motivate our choices and engage our clients in the process. By describing scenarios of the spaces usage we could uncover the attitude to more/less flexibility of some spaces against some others. This validated the choice to define one of the classes as a mixed learning/leisure-time space, and clarified potential conflicts between activities being held in adiacent spaces.
Classrooms layout involved quite a bit of our own learning about the teaching methods and needs of the school staff. Their practice involves some use of lecture-style instruction, a lot of students active involvement, frequent use of the whiteboards, group activities, films and other media run from teachers’ computers or mobile devices, heavy use of projectors and audio.
We agreed that the furniture setup should be flexible to allow for different space uses: teacher centered, group work, and learner centered. Also some informal learning spaces should be provided. We elaborated a number of working layouts, that proved that different class uses were possible and that oriented the furniture selection.
Technical elements are integral to the classes layout and to the school environment and include in-classroom audio/video devices, projectable whiteboards, a strategy for students’ access to the network and for the coherent use of their own devices, lighting and shading requirements. We translated the vision of a fully integrated classroom blending tech elements experience and space usage, into guidelines that detailed technical appliances and their spatial layout, to assist the clients in the products supply and installation.
Design team: Francesco Bagni, Ivan Pecorari, Jean Jacques Rossouw
Architectural design / User research: Francesco Bagni
Lighting consultant: Giovanni Giacomelli
Tech elements design: Ivan Pecorari
Visual Identity: Jean Jacques Rossouw
Project manager: Ivan Pecorari