In the last post we answered these frequently asked questions about classroom setup:
- How important is the classroom itself to the teaching-learning process?
- How important is it to decorate the classroom to match the content being taught?
- Is any particular classroom seating arrangement better than others?
Those aren’t the only considerations in setting up the classsroom to best facilitate learning.
Other Questions You Might Have About the Bible Classroom Setup
How much space (square footage) should classrooms be?
As a general rule, the younger the age, the bigger the classrooms should be as children are more physically active. For more specifics go to: Lifeway’s Meeting Space Specifications Chart
What can be done if you have to share space with other classes?
You might meet in a school or other non-permanent setting or perhaps you have a daycare or school in your church building during the week that uses the same classrooms as your Church classes. The real problem comes when different ages use the room which will affect chair size, eye level of visuals, etc.
Ideally, if possible, meet with the teacher or leader of the other group and try to work together on how you can make at least some of the areas accommodating to both of you. Try to determine who can best adapt in other areas. Remember verses like Philippians 2:3-4 — “Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.”
Then brainstorm what you can do to set up portable, or movable seating, decorations, and the like. How can you most easily set up and take down what you need to function with your group in this shared setting? For example, rather than taping decorations or teaching visuals on the wall, are there filing cabinets or other metal objects you can hang them on with magnets, or a wash line you can hang and merely clip on posters. Instead of sitting on chairs, would it work for your group to sit on the floor? If so, perhaps you could bring in a blanket or carpet tiles to sit on. Yes, all of this can take time and effort but if you keep your eye on the eternal goal, not the temporary inconvenience, you can make it work.
How should the classroom be designed to make it inclusive of students with special needs?
Many of the elements important to consider with students with special needs can prove beneficial for all students. Minimize clutter. Eliminate possible sources of distraction. Use colors that are more calming than electrifying. Keep the volume of music, videos, and the like as low as possible for all to hear. Avoid bright, glaring lights. Think in terms of how you can avoid sensory overload. If you know the lesson will have the potential for getting too stimulating for students with special needs, set aside a quieter section of the room where they can retreat if needed. More: Including Students with Special Needs – Teacher Training Resources