What’s in a Technology Enabled Classroom?

Australian schools and universities are adopting Technology Enabled Active Learning (TEAL) across a range of disciplines and study spaces. TEAL is an educational innovation that emphasises active learning where teachers and students engage through practical work, collaboration and a degree of autonomy. Despite the name, technology is an educational aid on par with a pen and paper, and complements traditional learning tools with the most radical change occurring in the learning space itself.

TEAL moves learning spaces away from the front facing teacher and students in prearranged seats to an agile and flexible classroom. This allows TEAL to occur in practice without spatial limits. Study zones are more prominent where students are grouped and face each other. Teachers are centred in the room and must move to engage students.  Zones can be altered through the use of mobile folding tables and movable seating. Higher learning institutions also offer more power and data points for students bringing their own laptops and equipment.

Learning spaces outside the classroom are becoming more prominent to further complement and reinforce TEAL techniques through study pods, workstations with power and data, and collaborative areas and meeting rooms. This reflects agile work practices where the individual can pick and choose the optimal space for their given task and work style at any time.

The benefits of active learning include higher engagement, information retention, improved social skills and increased technical proficiency. Studies suggest that it is effective if the educator welcomes the practice and has the technological proficiency. Even if it has not been fully embraced by educators, educational institutions across the country adopt some level of technology enabled active learning techniques.

Fitout, Interior, Corporate.

New Product Release: FUNHOUSE OTTOMAN

Funhouse hails from the LuxStudio team. These ottomans are light weight and versatile. The simple shapes combined with carefully stitched lining bring out the best of chosen fabric textures and colours.

Get to know the new collection in our TestFit app which includes the ottomans in a variety of our house fabric colours.

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TestFit – Pocket Showroom App by Luxmy

Introducing our new pocket showroom app TestFit, made to visualise our designer furniture in any space, putting the Luxmy Furniture collection directly at your fingertips. It’s the first of it’s kind in the commercial furniture sector and we’re proud to be part of it!

Available for iPhone, iPad and Android devices completely free and will not feature any ads.

TestFit can be downloaded on the AppStore here or GooglePlay here.

We worked with the very best to bring you an augmented reality platform that brings our range to any space with zero set up required.

To get started, make sure your device’s operating system is up date then download the desired catalogues. When that’s done, press go and point the camera at an empty floor space then pick your favourite piece to have it appear in your space. Move it around, tap for more pieces to appear simultaneously on screen, and save your creation for later use.

We have a quick tutorial below to get you acquainted with all the functions to get the best out of the app:

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We also have an exaplainer up on YouTube:

Enjoy!

 

** Performance may vary on Android devices. Full support available for the following devices on OS 5+:

– Samsung Galaxy S6/S7

– Samsung Note 4/5

– HTC ONE M9/M10

Introducing the Talki Table

Talki is a table leg system designed to foster integration and collaboration.

The clean and simple design of the Talki system is available in three different variations: Talki is the interactive table for conversation, Walki is a high table to stand around and Wheeli is on castors. Talki comes in a multitude of shapes and sizes.

Legs are available in metal with powder coat finish or solid timber. Exclusive to Zenith.

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For more information, get in touch by email.

About the designers

Lux Studio is the design arm of esteemed Australian manufacturer Luxmy Furniture. The Lux Studio products are smart, flexible and collaborative. They are able to respond to the changes in technology, new ways of working, and new environments.

Lux Studio designs and manufacturing processes are agile, lean and adaptable. All products are fully customisable and can be made in a short lead time.

Introducing the King Dome

We recently introduced the King Dome light designed by Dowel Jones, with YellowTrace, Domus, Trendland, SohoMod and StudioHome featuring the lights.

King Dome is a series of simple spun metal and rod lights available in 3 variations. Versatile in it’s application, King Dome focuses on silhouette and intersecting line with the thin metal structure creating grid like formations within spaces.

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For more information, get in touch by email.

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About the Designers

Dowel Jones is a young design studio operating out of Melbourne, Australia. Started in 2013 by Dale Hardiman and Adam Lynch as an extension of LAB DE STU, an award-winning independent Melbourne based design collective founded in 2011.

Keep an eye on this space for an upcoming interview with Dowel Jones!

A Healthy Workplace is a Happy Workplace

 In today’s competitive business landscape, employees are logging more hours at the office than ever before. Since so much time is devoted to office work, office design should place a strong emphasis on what makes for a healthy workday. After all, design which takes health and wellness into account not only affects the personal wellbeing of the employees, but also the effectiveness of the business and consequently its productivity. Here are some design solutions you to keep in mind to optimize workplace health and safety:

Ergonomics and usability. The purpose of work place ergonomics is to increase the comfort, safety and efficiency of employees by fitting the environment to be compatible with their needs, abilities and limitations instead of the other way around.

Air quality. Indoor air quality may be one of the most important element in ensuring your office is a healthy and pleasant place to work. When considering design elements, bear in mind physical factors such as air temperature, humidity, and air circulation.

 Lighting.  Appropriate lighting can reduce eye fatigue and headaches, providing for greater comfort and increased productivity. A combination of natural light and well-planned task lighting can prevent eye strain.

Inclusive design. Every design decision has the potential to either include or exclude employees. Inclusive design emphasizes the value of diversity, covering a wide variation of capabilities, needs and aspirations. Organizations should integrate design structure that reduces the need for employees to ask for individual accommodation, and empowers them to feel and work their best in the workplace.

Regulations, legislation and code of practice. Designers and project managers alike, should align themselves with the Model Work Health and Safety (WHS) Act, supported by model WHS regulations, model Codes of Practice and a National Compliance and Enforcement Policy governed through Safe Work Australia.

 

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Small Details To Tie Your Office Design Together

It can be easy to forget about the little things in interior design like power outlet covers and door knobs. We rarely give it a second thought but that gives it all the more reason to catch our attention when it’s out of the ordinary. For some, even the furniture isn’t as planned out as it should be. It’s the details that make an office stand out from boring ones. Take the opportunity to display your great attention to detail and impress your clients by putting a little more emphasis on often overlooked furnishings.

So what things should be on your checklist so that you don’t forget them? Furniture is definitely at the top of the list. However, a lot of offices drop the ball in choosing furniture for the office. Everything, from the arms to the upholstery can bring all of the design elements together.

Wooden accents add a natural cozy look. You can bring a little bit of nature inside of the office in some fairly simple ways. Wooden bookshelves or chairs are great to add a bit of nature. Reclaimed wood paneling and furniture with wood accents are good ways to incorporate wood in the office.

Other details to consider are the small pieces that bring everything together. Matching power outlet covers and door hinges to light switch covers and door knobs can really bring everything together.  Show off your attention to detail by focusing on the little things that bring your office design together. Putting more emphasis on the finishing pieces can make a huge difference in the way your office looks. Impress more clients with the look that these little changes can make.

 

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Prefabricated Office Spaces Make Room for Growth

In today’s increasingly complex, diverse, mobile and environmentally conscious business landscape, organizations are facing increased pressure to curate office spaces designed to meet the diverse needs and values of their employees.

Prefabricated office spaces show great promise as they are easily customized to be any size, allow for multiple stories and often integrate modular device and furniture solutions that promote collaboration and increased productivity. Prefabricated office spaces also reduce waste and boost sustainability as they are often built using several recycled products and materials.

To keep your modular workplace ahead of the curve, you can also request the integration of Universal Design strategies to ensure all employees, regardless of age, size, cultural identity, ability or disability are exposed to inclusive spaces and products that promote accessibility, safety and convenience.

The process of introducing a prefabricated workspace is fast and simple. Once a prefabricated building is complete and shipped to your location, it is set into place and connected to the foundation. Utilities are connected and your choice of exterior finishes are then added. The resulting prefabricated workspace is environmentally friendly, with the all the same architectural aesthetics you would expect from a conventional building. To accommodate the needs of a thriving business, prefabricated modules can be expanded or minimized at minimal expense.

With a significantly reduced time to occupancy, your business can start driving growth and optimizing your bottom line sooner.

While prefabricated workspaces may not suit the needs of every business or organization, the cost-savings, sustainable practices and inclusivity they provide – make them a strong consideration for the future of your workplace.

 

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A Learning Lesson in Classroom Design

Improving educational outcome in the post-secondary world is a universal goal for educational institutions. How to go about doing so remains the focus of significant research and debate. An often overlooked factor, is the effect classroom design can play in optimizing student learning and engagement. In fact, several noteworthy studies have confirmed that thoughtfully and intentionally designed post-secondary spaces can affect retention, attention, motivation, learning and academic achievement. Here are three simple classroom design tips that promote and enhance active learning.

 

1. Integrate flexibility – modular furniture, technological devices and whiteboards will make room for collaborative project engagement and brainstorming sessions.

 

2. Abandon the ‘front of the room’ – utilize the middle part of the classroom as the primary “teaching corridor,” and leave the wings as study areas for students that can also be walled off with movable screens. This approach will encourage active involvement and shared communication.

 

3. Let the light in – Natural light in the classroom can improve performance. One study of 2,000 classrooms found those with more natural daylight performed higher on than those who had less. While installing new windows across campus could be a costly endeavor, swapping up spaces with windows that weren’t originally used for learning purposes (office spaces or lecture halls for example) could be a viable solution.

 

Generation Z will be the next wave of post-secondary students. In a constantly shifting technological and educational landscape, it’s crucial to design and integrate active learning spaces that inspire the innovators of tomorrow.

 

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The balance between ‘me’ and ‘we’ spaces

With open floor plans becoming so popular, it’s becoming increasingly more difficult to focus on individual work. We put so much more attention on collaboration, that we are less efficient at sitting down and completing our own tasks, especially when that deadline is approaching.

Working in groups to come up with new and creative solutions is necessary. But there needs to be an area that the team can go to and put those new ideas into action. And without distraction.

There are two primary ways that an office can create that balance of collaborative (we) spaces, and focused, individual work (me) spaces. A distributed model spreads out isolated areas within the open floor design. This can be accomplished by using somewhat closed off cubicles with higher walls. Not only is this a fairly low cost way to allow for focus, but also allows the team to move quickly between the two different types of work areas. Even just a culture of understanding to respect others privacy when working can be enough to allow one to concentrate.

Another model for accommodating both styles of work is to create a quiet zone away from collaborative work areas. This could be a completely separate floor, or just a portion of the office that is tucked away from the noise. This way each worker can decide what the best place to work is depending on the specific project that they are engaged in.

When it comes to balancing the “me and we” spaces, flexibility is everything. Giving the team options and the ability to decide what works best for them and their particular piece of work is the most important thing. The best and most successful offices offer a range of options for its team. Even promoting a culture in which there is a respect for those that have their head down and are concentrated can make a huge difference in improving the balance.

 

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