Future Schools Project Award stage 1 finalists

We received 14 fabulous entries for Stage 1 of our Future Schools Project Award competition. We have now chosen five finalists that we will work with to focus their ideas in Stage 2 of the competition after the summer holidays. 

A short summary of what we asked for

We asked all City of Edinburgh Council schools and nurseries to tell us a story about how changing the design of a space in your school or nursery would improve teaching and learning, inclusivity and wellbeing for the different people you want to help.

We asked for you to show us:

  • What? The problem you want to solve.
  • Who? The variety of people affected by the problem
  • How? Your solution to the problem through a change in the learning environment or how it’s used. How that solution impacts the people you identified.
  • Why? Your research and reasoning. Look at the judging criteria and the information on this page to see what you should include.

We were also looking for submissions that are creative, well researched, well presented and show collaborative working:

  • How are you going to tell us your story? Be Creative
  •  We want to see the thinking behind your ideas. Research
  • Your research can be part of your story or you can submit it separately. Consider Presentation
  • Only one entry per school or nursery. Work Together

The competition was high. The amount of research, collaboration and information gathering from the entries amazed us. The learners threw themselves into this project and came up with some great ideas. Presentation of the entries was very creative, it was great to see so many different ways of telling your stories and we were glad to see so many entries created by the learners.

There were videos, presentations, a story book, a rap, reports, models, moodboards and lots and lots of drawings!

We have included some images of each of the finalists’ work and will talk with the schools about whether we can share their video entries.

The finalists

Broughton High

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Learners at Broughton High went to incredible depth in their research for their idea of having an environmental outdoor classroom in their school grounds. The purpose is to provide a tranquil, welcoming space that improves well being.

Corstorphine Primary

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Corstorphine Primary are dreaming of an outdoor play space that brings nature into their playground. Their learners, staff and families have been involved in a lot of  well documented research with the aim to meet the needs of all their children with a natural solution to a lack of nature play in their school grounds.

St Cuthbert’s RC Primary

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St Cuthbert’s Primary are focusing on changing their library space which is a multipurpose area, they submitted a short film that showed the learners interviewing what seemed to be everyone in the school. The learners showed how much they had researched and explained to us their findings and ideas for improvements. They showed us how they would meet the needs of the people using the space in their plans.

St John Vianney Primary

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St John Vianney’s Primary chose a room in their school called the AV room which is multipurpose and has to meet many different user needs. They submitted lots of learner designs of the space and a movie created by the learners where they interviewed the different people who use the room to gather ideas for improving the space.

Murrayburn Primary

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Murrayburn Primary are re-imagining an unused space in their school into a practical STEAM room to meet their learners needs for exciting and active learning in Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Maths. They created an entertaining video where the learners told us all about their aspirations for STEAM and their research into studies about how active learning improves learning outcomes.

Congratulations to all five finalists!

Details of Stage 2 will be announced in June.

stage 1, tell us a story include empathy for people in your story, define the problem and what the people's needs are and then come up with ideas for how to help the people. Five finalists will go on to stage 2 where they will design a learning environment, one winner will get their design created in their school or nursery

lightbulbHats off to all our schools who took part!

Thank you so much to everyone who joined us in the competition, we loved seeing your entries and know how hard you all worked on this.

Unfortunately we can only take five entries to Stage 2 of the competition and it the quality of the submissions made it very difficult to choose only five. If you didn’t get chosen for Stage 2 don’t be discouraged. If you decide to pursue your ideas to make better environments into a reality we would love to share your progress with everyone here on the blog and our Twitter feed @FutureSchoolsEd.

We hope you enjoyed the challenge and learned a lot about your environment and how you can make changes that improve the experience for the people who use it.

Big thanks to Blackhall, Buckstone, Dalry, East Craigs, Flora Stevenson, Gracemount, James Gillespie’s, Sighthill and Stockbridge Primaries for all your hard work!

Here are some snippets of your submissions. 

images from the 9 schools who were not finalists in the competition, there are palettes, models, moodboards, research pages, plans for classrooms, photos and diagrams

Spotlight on Trinity Primary

the length of the classroom, on the left are groupings of triangular tables and on the right is a high standing workbench with high stools

The Pavilion 

The new pavilion building at Trinity Primary School is an agile learning space where three teachers have embraced a new way of working together as a collaborative team.

They teach 74 primary sevens as a year group rather than having them as three separate classes.

Check out what the teachers and pupils think on the Trinity Primary page.

We have much more independence and freedom than our last classroom, you can move anywhere.

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I have learned how important the learning environment is in relation to pupil engagement and enjoyment in learning within an upper primary setting.

Featured: St Margaret’s RC Primary School

The City of Edinburgh Council logo

the general purpose room has different seating areas, a few upturned barrels make work surfaces and are in keeping with the nautical theme, there are rock shaped dividers. The back wall is decorated with the three bridges of Queensferry

We have been working with Karen Ramsay and Lesley McMillan in our interior design team to trial our future classroom ideas at St Margaret’s RC Primary School in South Queensferry.

The staff and pupils at St Margaret’s have been really engaged in designing their own space and thinking about what would help them use their classrooms in the way they want. They have been using their experimental P6 classroom design to inform their research.

The design of the new classrooms has been led by the pupil’s suggestions.

For more information check out the St Margaret’s RC Primary School page.