"Education is the most powerful weapon you can use to change the world", those were the inspirational words Nelson Mandela imparted to the world.
And here in Interesting Engineering, we highly encourage continuous learning and education in general so when we found these awesome school design concepts, we thought it'd be a great idea to share them with you. They're that great you'd wish you had them when you were still studying.
Or if you're still in university or in school, you would wonder why your institution hasn't thought of incorporating them in your campus. In any case, we think these school design ideas are fantastic and we hope you'd enjoy them as much as we did.
Getting to school
When you're a broke student (we've all been there), it's sometimes difficult to even opt for public transport so you just have to make do with whatever mode of transportation that is freely available. A lot of schools and most universities are equipped with bicycle rail stands where students can securely park their bikes. But some institutions are just on another level of considerate by having the following amenities on their grounds.
Teenagers in a high school in California have the option of keeping their skateboards in a skateboard locker on the grounds of their school.
How simple is this space-saving skateboard rail on the grounds of the University of Central Florida? Simple yet effective.
Bicycle work station
And what about this mini public work stand for bicycles? For when your bicycle decides to give up on you.
Creating space for learning
When it comes to serious learning, a lot of people find it more comfortable when there is ample space to study. Being free from all the bustling noise of school and all the visual distractions helps a student really focus on what they're doing. These work spaces are definitely the ones I wish I had when I was studying.
Glasgow School of Art
There's nothing more ideal than a peaceful room to study in and this work space at the Glasgow School of Art is just perfect for when you need to finish those assignments you decided to do last minute.
If you're one of those people, like me, who cannot study when there's plenty of visual and audio noise around you then you'll definitely appreciate this minimalistic classroom in Laussane, Switzerland. It's important to hear yourself think and this classroom really helps you to do that.
Procrastinating in school
It's fun to study, but sometimes your brain needs a little room to breathe. Whether you need a quick power nap or want to blow off some steam, these procrastinating school features are the ones you definitely wish you have/had in your school.
Napping is such a luxury when you're in engineering school. Three hours of maths, two hours of solid applied engineering science lectures, and multiple assignments in just a period of one day makes you think that even 48 hours isn't enough for a full day cycle. However, should any engineering student find that rare occasion when they can afford a 30-minute nap then a room dedicated for sleeping would be the perfect school design any hard-working student could ever wish for. Just like this nap room at the University of Waterloo. Ultimate procrastination escape.
Giant parabolic slide
So, say you have four big coursework due and six exams in two weeks time, how would you start dealing with such stress? Students at the Technical University of Munich has a perfect excuse to procrastinate amidst their busy school term schedule. A giant, 13-meter long parabolic twin slides have been installed for the Mathematics department of the University. The slides require sliding pads which are given to students and visitors just before they take the plunge.
Time Share Kindergarten
This humble kindergarten school in Japan is designed to succumb to the natural impulses of children, which is basically to play. The school is built with no walls and the rooftop of the whole building is a continuous circle where the kids can run around endlessly. Talk about procrastination!
Playing with rain water in school
The Dai-ichi Yochien nursery and kindergarten school in Kumamoto City, Japan allows children to play with a pool of water when the rain pours inside the courtyard. The perfect procrastination school design for adults!
Convenient access to school supplies
When you were a student, you probably spent a portion of your weekly or monthly pocket money to replenish your school supplies, correct? But that's not really the issue here. What we found interesting is that some schools and institutions are equipped with vending machines where students can conveniently pick up stationeries and even other peculiar things.
This vending machine in some college somewhere in the world dispense violin strings. You know, because drinks and snacks won't give you an A+ in your advanced solo violin recital.
School supply machine
Ok, this doesn't seem surreal in a school setting but not all institutions have them. And it's quite refreshing to see vending machines that spew out stationeries instead of unhealthy snacks.
Taking the stairs should never be boring
There's nothing worse than walking behind slow kids when you're running in between classes. At the same time, there's also nothing worse than being pushed aside by people who are in a rush to get to their next classroom. And this school, wherever this is, has taken those scenarios into consideration and divided up this staircase into three lanes giving students the freedom to do what they want as they walk up these stairs.
Making your steps count
Taking the stairs make you feel tired, undoubtedly. Especially if you've had such a long day or if it's too early in the morning. But would you be more inclined to take the stairs if you know how much calories you're burning as you ascend? This labeled staircase may persuade you to take those grueling steps the next time you have to decide if you should take the elevator or the stairs. An effective school design to encourage students to be more active.
Our favorite subject in school is Maths
Since many of us here are engineers, it can be assumed that Maths is one of the subjects we enjoyed when we were still at school. If you didn't enjoy Maths in engineering then what is the point of, well, pretty much everything! For most people, and for engineers too at some instances, Maths is a perplexing subject but that didn't stop these institutions to incorporate it in their school design.
It's time to "Maths"
Everyone knows this, the wall clock in a classroom is the most viewed object in the room. Waiting for that precise second when the bell would ring. But those who are not enthusiastic about Maths may find these wall clocks irritating. For engineers, we enjoy working out the times in our head. Just saying.
This door mat is a great idea but the question is, who has the more fun out of it? The teacher or the student?
This improvised floor protractor garnered a lot of comments from its original thread where people were asking to which degree does an average person opens a door to. What do you think?
When you don't have any 'Chemistry' with Maths
Ok, we get that Maths is not for everyone. And many others prefer Chemistry more than every other school subjects. Why that is, I would never know.
George Mason University in Virginia in the US has these element tables scattered around a working area on their campus. When dorky students get bored, there's only one logical thing to do with these tables. Arrange them to make the periodic table.
This school thought it's a great idea to have all the elements gathered in a glass cabinet. After all, there's no better way to learn than seeing things as they actually are.
As we said, we're strong advocates of continuous learning and education in general. So, if you're currently studying or attended an institution with a unique school design that helps students learn, relax or anything else in between then let us know.