A digital learning community: elementary school design

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Bird, Laura
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The current generations of children are being taught in schools which are not relevant to their daily lived experiences. “Schools and the curricula that exist today are more suited to the needs of the industrial age than those of the information age” (Yelland, 9). As a result, students are becoming disengaged from the learning process. The vast permeation of digital media into our surroundings and a shrinking global society demand a new typology in learning environments. This typology must address students' creativity, social needs, and the importance of community and sense of place. How can these needs be met through the incorporation of technology – often controversial and deemed isolative and disconnecting? Can technology be used as a social tool to create healthy and productive learning spaces? This proposal responds to these questions by presenting a conceptual re-design of an elementary school in Winnipeg. The supporting theoretical framework outlines literature which examines education, technology and society, and space and place. Workshops and interviews with students and teachers are analyzed, and design precedents, strategies and methods are discussed. Collectively, the theories, concept, and research presented provide insight into the creation of an interactive, flexible, and community-focused learning environment.
design, education, technology, elementary school, Winnipeg, John M. King School, community, digital media, interior design, interactive technology