Today more and more schools are shifting away from teacher-centered learning and transitioning towards classrooms that combine self-directed and collaborative learning styles. Research shows that collaborative learning environments can help students develop important skills they need to succeed in the real world.
By fostering skills that involve higher-order thinking, communication, and leadership, collaborative learning environments help prepare students for succeeding in roles that they will take on later in life.
Creating a learning environment that’s truly collaborative, however, is no easy task, as any educator will tell you. It requires more than just adding in a couple of group projects here and there.
Schools must design their classrooms in a way that supports collaborative learning by intentionally creating spaces where students can become heavily engaged in hands-on projects, converse easily with one another, and stay focused. Below, we’ve provided some tips for creating a collaborative classroom.
Now, more than ever, educators realize that their students need to be kept engaged and involved in order to learn effectively. Having hands-on experiences helps students gain a better grasp of new concepts and retain information. That’s why so many teachers are strong advocates of having collaborative spaces in schools where students can work hands-on with one another to apply the concepts they’ve learned. And a considerable number are turning to makerspaces as a solution.
A Response to “Challenging Traditional Assumptions and Rethinking Learning Spaces” from the Book Learning Spaces
The idea that environments themselves significantly impact learning is a relatively new concept. Previously, discussions on how to improve classroom activity focused primarily on methods of teaching. The book Learning Spaces by Diana B. Oblinger challenges these old ideas and ways of thinking by shifting the focus away from simply what teachers and students are doing in the classroom and stepping back and examining the classroom as a whole. We are encouraged to consider how the design and composition of learning environments impact students, classroom culture, and the learning process.