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Few would argue that today’s schools are failing our children and need urgent and radical intervention. Attendance and attention are down, curriculums are overbearing and educators overstressed, and resources are stretched to the breaking point.
Tackling this problem head-on are three education and architecture futurists. Their new book Learning by Design: Live | Play | Engage | Create describes how the thoughtful design of learning environments can become the catalyst to redesign education itself, moving us toward a more fair and just society for all.
Authors Prakash Nair, Roni Zimmer Doctori, and Dr. Richard F. Elmore are bold thought leaders in education and architecture. Their passionate and curious research offers exciting new ideas about creating a more intuitive and engaging environment for students and educators that harnesses each student’s natural ability to learn and thrive.
Supported by research and experience throughout the book, the three foundational beliefs of Learning by Design are:
1. Schools are places for learning, not teaching.
2. Education should be about learning, not just knowing.
3. De-emphasizing the obsession in school with “preparing” for the future.
The designs, beautifully showcased in the book, are about expanding rather than containing learning, opening access rather than controlling access, and adapting to differences in learning modalities and preference rather than restricting them.
“Every school we visited, every educator we met with, and each student we talked to taught us something new. We had believed we would first need to tear down the education establishment so that a new one could be built in its place. Instead, we have chosen to show how schooling and education as we have known it are dead but that learning is alive and well. What role schools should play to remain relevant in the years ahead is the question this book seeks to answer,” explain Nair and Doctori.