Stage 2 of the Future Schools Project Award kicked off with a workshop on Monday 26 August. Our five finalists, Broughton High, St Cuthbert’s Primary, Corstorphine Primary, Murrayburn Primary and St John Vianney’s Primary chose five learners to attend with a teacher. These groups are going to lead the project throughout stage 2 and had been selected for their hard work already on stage 1 of the competition.
The learners arrived with eager anticipation, ready to find out what they had to do for the next stage of the competition.
We spoke to the finalists about what we were looking for from them in stage 2. For the first part of the competition they told us:
How changing the design of a space in their school or nursery would improve teaching and learning, inclusivity and wellbeing for user(s) they had identified.
Making their solution into a design that works
At the workshop we had a 15 minute info-dash where the schools had 15 minutes each with a professional to get advice about their ideas and how they can make their solution fit the brief for stage 2.
Some of the finalists already had a design solution in mind at stage 1 but after speaking with the experts and understanding the brief for stage 2, they began to re-imagine what they had planned; prioritising certain elements and being creative with their design solutions.
Thank you to our six experts who gave up their time to come and talk through the designs with the finalists. We invited professionals from specific backgrounds to give the schools insight into the areas we are asking them to focus on for their entry.
Settings for Learning: Lesley Riddell Robertson and David Fletcher from Architecture & Design Scotland. Lesley and David gave advice on how to evaluate the spaces they have, test ideas and plan spaces for new approaches to learning and teaching.
Pedagogy, Learning and Teaching: Janice Watson from CEC Quality Improvement Team. Janice spoke about different ways teachers can teach and learners can learn. Janice gave advice on how they might consider how people will use the environment and how it can improve learning and teaching.
Interior Design: Lesley McMillan from CEC Interior Design Team. Lesley gave advice on considering how furniture and decoration can help to meet the needs of their project to help to solve the problem they identified. Also how you can use interior design to improve wellbeing and inclusivity.
Technology: Jenni Robertson from CEC Quality Improvement Team. Jenni gave advice on how they might consider the use of technology in their design, Jenni advised on the practicalities of their ideas and an understanding of what is possible in our schools.
Outdoor spaces: Andrew Bagnall from CEC Outdoor Learning Team. Andrew gave advice on how they can improve learning and teaching in the outdoors. He spoke about practical solutions for creating outdoor spaces that are inclusive and promote wellbeing
Communication & Presentation: Neil Maguire, After the News. Neil gave advice on how to present their submission, focusing on the story they want to tell, clear communication strategies, and considerations when producing their 2-minute film.
The learners brought their submissions from stage 1 to discuss with the experts and were wonderfully engaged and focused on the project and feedback they were getting.
It was a lot of information to take in over two hours and everyone did really well keeping focused and enthusiastic. It was then time for the schools to take a breather, absorb the information, gather their thoughts and discuss what they had learned in their groups. It was also a good opportunity to ask the professionals to join them in their discussions.
Now the schools plan to take what they learned in the workshop back to their peers and develop their plans further.
We wish them all the best, the submission deadline is 8th November and the learners will be displaying their submissions at the the Education Buildings Scotland Conference on the 27th November where the winner will be decided.
Keep up to date with the competition by following us on Twitter @futureschoolsed and #futureschoolsprojectaward