Thursday, July 7, 2016

July 7 Construction Update - Walls are going up !!!

Wow - what a difference a few days can make.  Last week it seemed like we had created these huge cavernous spaces and suddenly today you can start to see them morph into what, in just a few short weeks, are going to be beautiful new classrooms ready for some of your sons and daughters.   My first video this week is a chance for everyone to meet our Project Manager - Tom Barden.  He is truly the school's go-to guy on the project, often here at 6 AM to open the door for the contractors and constantly being our eyes and ears making sure things get done correctly and that the outcome meets our high expectations.   Here is his take on what we have going on this week:

Here is a first hand look at what we have happening with creating those two new classrooms in the back of the library, as well as updating three student support spaces:

Click here if you can't see July 7 Library Update

An here is a look down the C Wing Hallway where we are making five new kindergarten classrooms and two new bathrooms:

Click here if you can't see July 7 C Wing update

The work underway certainly feels like alot, which makes it hard to believe that this is really just the "preamble" to the meat of the work which is the complete renovation of the D and the E wings that extend east and west from the library.   That work will begin just as soon as we complete these new classrooms and are able to move teachers from the D wing into their temporary locations in early August.   If you haven't see the latest drawings of the plans for these wings - here is a look at the "before" schematic - the green shaded area is where Phase 2 work will be located.   The diagram also shows the layout of the seven new classrooms, 2 in the library (labeled MS Team) and five (labeled MS Team and K) that are located in the C Wing - these are the spaces currently under construction:

and here is the layout that will be created to replace the shaded green "open classrooms"  - just to be clear "learning space" is how we are referring to classrooms, each of which will be a fully enclosed classroom with doors, opening onto a central "learning commons" that is also separated from the single side corridor by doors.  The wing also has a centrally located "project space" available to both teams, specifically designed to support hands-on learning for both groups and individuals.  The vision for the "project space" is a flexible classroom for potentially messy work that might include everything from science experiments requiring lab type space, creative / artistic work, mechanical work requiring hand tools, or even food prep utilizing elements of small kitchen including sinks and a stove.   The wing also includes smaller breakout rooms for individual and small group support, conferences with students and families, as well as additional single stall gender neutral bathrooms accessible both in the hallway as well as in the learning commons.

Here is a rough artistic rendering of what a learning commons space might look like when it is complete, with those doors opening into individual classroom and a skylight included to assure these interior spaces still have some natural lighting.  These central learning commons will be furnished in a way that they can be easily reconfigured from spaces for group / independent learning to full group instruction that might involve an entire team of 80 students:

Lastly here are two renderings of what the eight individual classrooms in each wing might look like, with new high efficiency exterior windows looking outside as well as doors and a window looking out on the learning commons - designed to permit a natural flow of students to / from this "learning space" where they can receive both direct instruction from their teachers while also creating the easy opportunity to access more break-out style independent or group work in the learning commons depending on student needs.

Hope this taste has you even more excited about what is coming!  It does truly feel like we are "Building our Future"   Stay tuned and if you have friends / neighbors that you don't think are accessing our blog and might enjoy - please forward our link to them and encourage them to subscribe as well.    More to come next week - Allan

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