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Hi

 

Our school is "expanding" and we are having a new school built on a new site (hopefully for Sept. 2010). We are going from one-form entry to two form entry (Nursery - KS3/4). Actually nursery will be three classrooms! Dimensions for each of the classrooms are 90m2. My question to you is, what would you want if your classrooms/outdoor areas were being built from scratch. What resources are the ones you would be without? Money, no object (theoretically, at least).

 

For starters I will suggest wooden furniture and moveable furniture (not fixed to walls) - community playthings. Mostly tiled flooring and a smaller carpeted area. I want low level display boards/chalk boards/whiteboards. Low level windows or not? Does it depend which way windows face (NSEW)?

 

Interactive whiteboards - anyone suggest which are better promethan or smartboard?

 

On preliminary plans, looks like we will have a central foundation stage store room for all 5 classes.

 

Also plans show a designated foundation stage playground - but each class has access to outdoor space directly outside classrooms as well. We are in North Africa, rains occasionally from Nov - March. Rest of year, really hot. So shading is a priority for outdoor play - also want an overgrown wildlife area, digging area, role play area, track for cars/trikes, sand/water. What do you have that has worked well?

 

Looking forward to suggestions from those who have been through this and those who, like me, like making wish lists! :o

 

Thank you,

Louise.

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Wow lucky you! I have been lucky to have managed 2 purpose built nurseries (however had no input into the design unfortunately!). Storage is always a problem so asking for pleny of that is a must. One nursery had vey narrow corridors so coats had to be hung inside the room which was not alway ideal!. A purpose built kitchen (the one I'm in now didnt have one, it does now at my insistence and it "does" but isnt brilliant), access to outdoors from all rooms is a must and of course a wonderful outdoor area, but that could be a whole new topic!. Windows in all rooms (my baby rooms unfortunately don't have windows), child sized toilets and low sinks are also a must.

 

There must be more but my brain has dried up for now will post more later

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We are in a purpose built new build and its FAR from ideal. Your low windows becareful of how they open! Ours open out at child eye height onto the outdooor play area so we can't open them! They have a low window sill just a child step up height and the sill has a curved end and is gloss painted and therefore slippy.Storage storage storage-inside and outside easily assessable with varying depths of shelving and floor area.Child height sinks and adult height in your main rooms. Large bowl on the adult height sink for paint pot washing with double drainning board if possible.Enough electrical sockets for your ITC requirements including CD player in book area. Furniture ALL on wheels to allow layouts to be adjusted easily to suit childrens interests.

 

Any jobs going?

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I agree - I am jealous.

Outdoor access is a must from all rooms.

 

Some kind of wet area - built in drain so that you can stop worrying about spills and mopping and emptying water trays - large belfast sinks for water play rather that water trays with taps and plugholes - makes life much easier. You can use it for all your messy activities then too.

 

An early excellence centre I went to had a large purpose built paddling pool indoors - children could put on swimmimg costumes and get in it for complete water play!! It was fab- like a small swimming pool but a shallow one - tiled at the bottom but with taps (hot and cold) and drainage holes. The children sat in it and played with tubes, pipes etc and no worries about getting clothes wet and aprons. It could be used when it was empty for large scale construction or anything else you wanted.

 

 

A quiet area - somewhere that can be closed off for small group work or used for a reading corner or cosy corner. it's great having open plan rooms but sometimes you need to be able to get away from everyone!

 

A loft type construction like the community playthings ones

 

take a look here

 

In fact it's worth going on the community playthings website for their classroom design section.

 

Definately agree with biccy - somewhere for adults to work and draining boards at the sinks.

Also the low sinks for children so they can help washing things - get their own water for painting etc.

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The very wonderful Early Excellence Centre, based in Huddersfield, offers a tailor made service to accommodate your requirements. They charge for the advice unless you buy their (fab) furniture. Worth a 'google' befoe you make potentially expensive errors?

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oops, forgot to add to last post - interactive w/b - make sure you get the model where the board is on a metal stand - which can then be moved up and down to suit the height of the user, brilliant! The projector is attached to the metal stand too!

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