College's new Solais Sandpit launched

12th December 2017
The new Solais Sandpit has been enthusiastically embraced by Domremy teachers and students

The new Solais Sandpit has been enthusiastically embraced by Domremy teachers and students since its opening at the beginning of this Term. Teachers and students have been busy working in  this flexible learning space which encourages collaborative, inter-disciplinary and student-centered learning. 

The Solais Sandpit includes a variety of work spaces: a large presentation space, small private rooms for group work and quiet discussion, a boardroom and large tutorial room. Almost every wall is a pinnable or writable surface and each screen allows for wireless projection from teachers’ or students’ laptops. 

This learning space encourages students to collaborate with their peers, make their thinking visible, be active in their learning and accountable for the work they produce. The space is also ‘decentralised’ which means teachers are no longer restricted to delivering and distributing information in front of the classroom but rather work alongside students, providing continuous and immediate feedback and support. 

Students from a variety of year groups and subject areas have had the opportunity to engage in learning in the Solais Sandpit. Students were explicitly asked to reflect on how this space impacted on their own learning through learning journals, surveys and class discussion. Students were able to clearly articulate that their learning was made visible, the space encouraged collaboration with and feedback from both their peers and teachers, and they were able to work in a way which suited their own learning style. They also mentioned that the space was welcoming, comfortable and homely.

The feedback from these learning experiences in the Solais Sandpit will be used to inform the College’s Masterplan going forward, including new Library facilities and Year 7 and 8 learning spaces.

This contemporary learning space reflects and emulates the modern working spaces students will encounter in the future and will assist in developing autonomous learners through a deep understanding of their own spatial awareness and learning style. 

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