Middle School Learning spaces: then & now

By the end of October, students had been back on campus for nearly 2 months. We asked Mary Jeanne Farris, Assistant Head of Middle School, how the learning spaces in Middle School have been adapted keeping their collaborative features while making sure safety measures are respected.

The images below provide an insight into how the Middle School building has been adapted in recent years to accommodate approaches to learning that had several key principles in mind. It is somewhat ironic - though perhaps not entirely surprising - that these modifications are now serving us incredibly well during these most unusual pandemic days.

The renovation of the Middle School reflected the ISB Learning Principles, particularly as these related to the understanding that: learning can happen anywhere and that wide, open, transparent spaces are conducive to collaboration, movement, and wellbeing.

Middle School before renovations

Middle School after renovations

The fact is, while learning may look somewhat different during Covid-19, the values and principles that underpin good learning and practice remain the same. And while the spaces have a few less tables, and students are seated further apart, students still collaborate and move as needed. We are fortunate that the open glass doors provide light, ventilation and space needed for distancing.

Middle School band class in the cafeteria

ISB Theatre and socially distanced acting classes

We also have designated locations to accommodate our grade level groupings. As much as possible, students have their classes on one floor. Additionally, we have adapted other spaces. Band students are playing in the Cafeteria and the ICC and drama students are working on a socially distanced stage. Even with a range of new health & safety protocols, our students and teachers are maintaining ISB’s learning culture.