An esential part of child care training is to ensure you understand the priciples of creating a safe and stimulating environment for children to play and learn in. In this report we cover some of the concepts behind planning a preschool classroom layout.
Report On Preschool Classroom Layout
The layout of the preschool classroom is important as this environment should be conducive for the children’s learning and development through play.
For many children the preschool is their introduction to the classroom environment, and if set-up correctly they will develop positive feelings and associations towards school that they will retain for the remainder of their education.
Safety In The Classroom
Classroom layout must be safe for the children to play and learn in. This can be a challenge as preschoolers are very active and always on the move.
- There are strict legal safety obligations that all preschools must adhere to which include but are not limited to:
- Locked doors and gates so that children can not leave the building without adult supervision
- Fire drills – the children taking part in fire drills
- Smoke detectors, fire extinguishers and blankets should be installed.
- Exits should be clearly marked and indicated with exit signs
- There should be a first aid medical kit on the premises
Maria Montessori Method
Many preschools in Ireland use the well known Maria Montessori method for classroom design and learning techniques for preschoolers. Maria believed that the furnishing in the preschool room should be appropriately sized for the pupils. This includes book shelves, tables and chairs, sinks and toilet facilities. When accessing furnishings for a preschool it’s a good idea to try see things from a child’s perspective; this can easily be achieved by kneeling down when viewing the classroom.
Dividing Up The Classroom
It can be a good idea to divide the classroom space into sections. For example, include the drawing and reading area near the library book shelves in the room. Areas for activities such as music and play could also be grouped together.
Depending on the space available, divide noisy and quiet spaces with book shelves, coloured tape on the floor or mats. Remember that certain spaces, such as play areas, will require more room than others. Often the children will be assembled in the centre of the classroom for story time or quiet time, so this area should be clear of large toys and furniture.
Decorations and Labels
The classroom walls can be decorated with the children’s artwork which can include seasonal drawings, pictures of animals, trees and other elements from their everyday surroundings. Use images to label areas in the room, such as a picture of books above the library shelves, pictures of paint brushes and scissors above the craft area and so on. This will help the children to identify the activity assigned to the area.
The preschool classroom layout requires great attention to details so that the environment is both safe and fun for children to enjoy.
Other Notes: Creche classroom layout
Safety in the Classroom
- Lock Doors and gates
- Fire drill
- Smoke detectors
- Exits clearly marked
- Medical kit
Maria Montessori Method
- Appropriately sized furnishing
- Get a child’s perspective
Dividing up the classroom
- Divide into sections
- Certain spaces need more room
- Keep noisy and quiet areas apart
- Area where kids assemble should be clear of large toys
Decorations and labels
- Decorate walls with children’s artwork
- Use images to label areas of the room
Disclaimer: This document personal and is not a definitive report on child care classroom layout, nor does it claim to be the final word on classroom health and safety. The reader is responsible for researching what health and safety requirements are needed for their own district and circumstances.