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Educational Dimensions of School Buildings

Edited By Jan Bengtsson

In all modern societies almost everyone of their citizens have spent many years in school buildings, and the largest professional group in modern societies, teachers, is working every day during the working year in school buildings. In spite of this, we know surprisingly little about the influence of school buildings on the people who use them and their activities. What do school buildings do with their users and what do users do with the buildings? In this book seven scholars from the Scandinavian countries discuss and use different theoretical perspectives to illuminate the relationship between school buildings and their users.

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Introduction ........................................................................................................... 7 Educational significations in school buildings .................................................... 11 Jan Bengtsson The space of the school as a changing educational tool ..................................... 35 Patrick Bjurström Architecture, pedagogy and children The intersection between different action programs in school ........................... 49 Thomas Gitz-Johansen, Jan Kampmann and Inge Mette Kirkeby Interspaces for learning? A study of corridors in some Swedish schools in a historical perspective ......... 75 Maj-Lis Hörnqvist The school building as experience ...................................................................... 99 Hansjorg Hohr About the authors .............................................................................................. 117 Introduction Jan Bengtsson One way of defining a modern society is by way of compulsory schooling. Understood in this way, every modern society offers elementary schooling to all its citizens. The purpose of schooling is that all citizens acquire basic skills in reading, writing, mathematics, etc. in order to be able to participate in and influence society. Such a society is in principle a democratic society. Thus, in modern societies almost all adults have passed through the school buildings and spent many years in them. As a consequence of compulsory schooling, schoolteachers are the largest professional group in modern societies. School buildings are the workplace of all these teachers. It is thus hard to find any kind of building that is more used than school buildings. In spite of this, we know surprisingly little about the influence of these buildings on the work of the teachers and the learning of the pupils – both in the narrow sense of learning the subject matters of the school and in the wider sense of the disciplining effects...

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