Translating Learning Theories into Physical Spaces for New Learners

Presented By: Mindy M. Walker

Keywords: Diversity, Flexible Learning, and Blended Learning

This is a highly visual and conceptually rich topic, designed to spark ideas that may not have previously been considered or connected. As the nature of this field is interdisciplinary, this Ignite! presentation should appeal to teachers at all levels, education technology designers, as well as space planners and designers. I propose that individuals learn best when they are given personal opportunities to explore, discover and create. This requires that those teaching in the classroom, making decisions about curriculum design or the creation of physical learning space be challenged to examine their own theory of learning. This presentation draws heavily from the work of Richard Elmore, who offers a framework for educators and leaders of learning at all levels to gauge how closely one’s own theory of learning aligns – or not – with personal theories of leadership, organization, and ultimately the physical manifestation of learning space and integration of educational technology. This presentation will be successful if attendees take away ideas for physical design elements that facilitate their own theories, regardless of myriad individual preferences or methods they or students may engage in to learn a new skill, process or body of knowledge. Further, the purpose of this Ignite! presentation is to encourage a “coming together” experience of co-creating and brainstorming with others physically present, as well as to continue the conversation with colleagues after the conference. This approach aligns with a key principle of my own theory that a majority of learners value and benefit from personal interaction throughout their own journey.

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