Students Need More Agile Learning Environments. Are You Ready?

Dennis Pierce | April 25, 2017 | Classroom, SPACE DESIGN
A decade of research from the national nonprofit group Project Tomorrow tells us that students want access to anytime, anywhere learning opportunities through the use of mobile digital devices. And K-12 leaders have responded in kind, with a growing number of schools creating mobile and digital learning environments. But this shift has important implications for how we design learning spaces to support more agile learning.
Three-fourths of students believe that every student should have access to a mobile device during the school day to support their learning, according to Project Tomorrow’s latest SpeakUp survey results. Many already have such access: 50 percent of students say they frequently use a mobile device to look up information in class.
Meanwhile, teachers are using more digital content in their classrooms than ever before, the survey reveals. Sixty-eight percent of teachers say they use videos in their instruction, 48 percent say they use digital games, 36 percent use online curriculum, and 27 percent use animations. All of those figures show increases over the prior year.
In short, learning is becoming more mobile, multimodal, and technology-rich. It’s also becoming more social, as teachers assign collaborative group projects to help their students develop important 21st-century skills—and K-12 leaders must redesign their learning spaces to reflect these powerful shifts.
Students need more agile learning environments that support communication, collaboration, and multiple forms of learning, such as furniture on wheels that easily can be moved around and reconfigured to support various classroom activities. They also need readily accessible power sources to recharge their laptops, tablets, Chromebooks,and other digital devices.
Paragon’s classroom furniture is designed to be reconfigured easily to support many different teaching and learning styles, and many of these products are manufactured with power supplies seamlessly integrated into their design—allowing for the creation of highly agile learning environments.