Benefits of MLEs (according to CORE Education)

  • Flexibility: the ability to combine two classes into one and team-teach, split a class into small groups and spread them over a wider area or combine different classes studying complementary learning areas.
  • Openness: modern learning environments traditionally have fewer walls, more glass and often use the idea of a learning common (or hub) which is a central teaching and learning space which can be shared by several classes. The ability to observe and learn from the teaching of others, and be observed in return. Access to what other learning areas and level are learning so that teaching complements and builds on
  • Access to resources (including technology): typically a learning common is surrounded by breakout spaces allowing a range of different activities: for instance, some students reading, some engaging in project space or using wet areas, reflecting, presenting and displaying or learning in a group. There is often a mixture of wireless and wired technology which means students have access to technology as and when they need it, within the flow of their learning.

Teacher learning
So modern learning environments promote better student learning, but are there other advantages? Well the big one is teacher learning. More open and flexible spaces also create more collaborative communities of practice for teachers. Having access to the teaching practice of one’s colleagues; to model and to be modelled to, supports the development of effective teaching practice far more than teaching in an isolated, private space.

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