Primary example of green design

Shotover Primary School is the Ministry of Education's latest example of a ''Modern Learning Environment''.

Revolution for education

Head of education infrastructure service Kim Shannon said the school had been designed to ''acknowledge the natural surroundings'' and had achieved a 5-Green-Star design rating.

Features of that included underfloor heating, natural ventilation and sunlight, CO2 monitoring at ceiling level and monitoring of energy levels and water consumption, so children could see it happening.

The design followed practices to create minimal waste, the exterior was ''green designed'' and naturally ventilated, with south-facing windows to allow cross airflows and natural light.

Ms Shannon said inside, the learning spaces contained state-of-the-art acoustics, lighting, technology and air quality.

''When we upgrade or build new learning environments, we take the opportunity to invest in introducing modern standards that support today's teaching styles and provide flexible, comfortable environments for students to learn.

''Today's teaching and learning environments are very different from traditional classrooms, where a teacher stood at the front of a room and children sat behind individual desks, all referring to the same text book.''

The teaching spaces were not dedicated to one activity, but could be changed to suit teaching programmes, enabling several teaching or support staff in the room working with children - either in groups or individually.

Other examples of the Modern Learning Environment with collaborative spaces were Remarkables Primary School, in Queenstown, and Wanaka Primary School, Ms Shannon said.

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