DesignShare - Designing for the Future of Learning JANUARY 2010 E-NEWSLETTER

Letter from the Editor

Dear DesignSharers,

It’s never been difficult to find kernels of information to share with our readers from the education and school architecture sectors, but this month seemed an oasis of school news gems. To open the new year at DesignShare, I bring to you by way of the University of Nottingham a set of lectures that will blow your socks off. Many have mp3 or video capabilities that you can share with your team of designers, students, colleagues... anyone with an interest in pushing the boundaries in innovative school design. Visit our blog for abstracts of each of the lectures, as well as links to the audio portions. Also out of the UK comes a virtual world of classrooms, where students pose as video game characters to test ideas, such as the furniture, fixtures and fittings to improve the usefulness of the finished design. Happy reading, viewing and listening in the coming year. May you all have a safe and joyful holiday season.

Clare Friedrich, Editor

> On Tap

National College of School Leadership in Nottingham Conference Videos
A small group of academics and architects are involved to discuss the transformational potential of school design this month at a conference in Nottingham, as well as three upcoming conferences between February and September, 2010. The seminars are based on a very successful series of interdisciplinary lectures: Transforming Our Schools. Links to all of the conference abstracts, and several of the videos of these lectures are available on DesignShare’s blog.

Best of Edutopia’s 2009 Technology Coverage: Year in Review: Ten great 21st-century-classroom resources.
by Edutopia Staff
Edutopia finds examples of how technology enhances learning and then spreads the news. Looking back at 2009, here are ten of the staff’s favorite features, including magazine articles, videos, polls, and blogs.

Case Study: Oslo International School, Bekkestua, Norway
Jarmund/Vigsnæs AS Architects MNAL
Jarmund/Vigsnæs Architects transforms a worn 1960s-era school building into a vibrant learning environment. Read Architectural Record’s full article here.

> Newsflash

Students can enter virtual world to test school design!
Students and teachers in Birmingham will be able to test plans for rebuilding schools using a computer-game style virtual world. Read the entire BBC News story here.

> DesignShare’s Bookshelf

Book cover
In Schools We Trust: Creating Communities of Learning in an Era of Testing and Standardization
by Deborah Meier
“A wise and beautiful book that elevates the level of debate on tests and school reform.” -Jonathan Kozol, author of Savage Inequalities

‘A passionate, jargon-free plea for a rerouting of educational reform, sure to energize committed parents, progressive educators and maybe even a politician or two.’
-Publishers Weekly

‘Listen carefully to Deborah Meier’s In Schools We Trust: She speaks to the heart of a school-and of democracy itself.’
-Theodore R. Sizer, author of Horace’s Compromise and founder of the Coalition of Essential Schools

> Event Calendar

Interdisciplinary Seminar Series: School Design Futures - Exploring the Limits (Nottingham, UK)
Designing low carbon and sustainable schools presents a significant interdisciplinary problem for architects and designers. In the series as a whole we look beyond concern only with technological solutions to low carbon school design and consider what we can learn from the field of educational history and philosophy in reducing energy consumption and encouraging pro-environmental behaviours. Four seminars are planned:
SEMINAR ONE: 22 January 2010, School Design Futures: The role of schools in building sustainable communities. National College for School Leadership, Nottingham.
SEMINAR TWO: February 2010, Is Well-Being Key to Sustainable Schools? Exploring the more radical histories of design for health and well-being. To be held at the Planned Environment Therapy Trust Conference Centre in Cheltenham in collaboration with the Institute for the History and Work of Therapeutic Environments.
SEMINAR THREE: May 2010, Education for Sustainability, new educational philosophies and designing sustainable schools – what can we learn? The Meeting Place, Oxford (tbc).
SEMINAR FOUR: September 2010, Exploring the limits of school transformation: Can schools foster notions of consuming less, aspiring differently and changing the social norms which present a barrier to lifestyle change? The Meeting Place, Oxford (tbc).

Safer Schools, Safer Communities: Ensuring Safe and Secure Learning Environments for Children and Young People (UK)
January 13-15, 2010
Co-organised by OECD/CELE, Department for Children, Schools and Families, the Home Office and the Building Research Establishment, it will bring together international experts in the fields of education, psychology, social work, law enforcement and judicial reform; students, teachers and the youth workforce; decision makers; and researchers.
Contact: or go to

2010 National Conference on Education (Phoenix, AZ)
February 11-13, 2010

Coalition for Adequate School Housing (C.A.S.H.) 31st Annual Conference (Sacramento, CA)
February 22-25, 2010
The C.A.S.H Annual Conference is the highlight of our organization. This unique gathering allows our attendees representing school districts, private business, and state agencies a great opportunity for professional growth and structured learning. Our organization is unique in its breadth, and our mission of building the finest school facilities for California’s future leaders is the strong focus of the Annual Conference. Our goal is to provide the setting, focus the content, coordinate the best presenters, and acknowledge the accomplishments of our best teams. For more information, please contact Lisa Church at

2010 School Building Expo (Navy Pier, Chicago, IL)
May 10-13, 2010
Deadline for Submission: November 18th, 2010
Click here to submit

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FNI logo
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School Building Expo
The School Building Expo is the industry event for people responsible for the construction and renovation of K-12 and Higher Education school facilities. More info:

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"Partners in Education" Media Kit
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