Ultimate Learning Space

Today, I had the wonderful experience of meeting Paul Takala (Diretor of Digital Technology), from the Hamilton Public Library. It is he, that prompted this post and the pencast interview that follows.

The story starts last January when I walked into the Hamilton Public Library and wept. My two boys, were stunned. “Mom, don’t cry, they fixed it…”. But, I was so choked up because the new space was such a great example (in my opinion) of a rich, diverse, and connected learning space and with a variety of tools (a teachers dream come true). Standing in one spot, with the ceiling to floor window giving me natural light, I could see by boys playing on the touch screen computers in the child section, the fish tanks, the parents reading in the cozy corners with their children, the couches and round tables, the fireplace, the self checkouts, the GIANT window overlooking the Farmers Market (which is also amazing), the 50 computers, all being used, and I can’t forget the LONG table with power and internet plugs for people to bring their in own devices. My words do not give it justice, but these pictures do: Information and photos: http://www.loveitalot.com/2011/01/hpl.html

I stood there, stared, (and stopped weeping) and thought – if I was teaching in a class right now (at the moment I’m seconded to Brock), I would want to bring my students here weekly. Maybe we could curate an exhibit? Maybe we could be leaders and teach adults how to use some learning tools? Maybe we could use the research tools and work on a variety of inquiry based and problem based lessons and be surrounded by resources and people that would help us?

I’m glad to have met Paul and that he agreed to share a quick audio note with me about the Library:

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7 Replies to “Ultimate Learning Space”

  1. Inspiring post Zoe, congrats to Hamilton…we can build ultimate learning spaces in our schools too. Have you seen our new OSLA/Ministry document Together for Learning? The Learning Commons can be everything you are dreaming about for kids and learning!

  2. I’m just reading that document now – thanks to you Carol. Thanks for pointing me there. I love the learning commons. Thanks so much for the comment!

  3. Thanks for the comment Robin! I do hope other cities also adapt their libraries to meet needs of 21st century communities.

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