ARCHITECTURAL DESIGN AND A THIRD TEACHER CONCEPT IN A DIGITAL ERA. PLAY CULTURE, INFORMAL LEARNING AND PUBLIC SPACE SOLUTIONS FOR COMMUNITY BUILDING
Silesian University of Technology (POLAND)
About this paper:
Conference name: 9th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 3-5 July, 2017
Location: Barcelona, Spain
Abstract:New technologies transpose educational processes from physical space to virtual sphere. The arrangement and equipment of a contemporary classroom are more and more often subjected to the requirements of the didactic process using a wide spectrum of modern technologies. The environment of education constitutes a complete "set of contexts found in physical or virtual spaces that provide opportunities for learning" (learning ecologies) . However, in order to keep balance it is necessary to maintain proportion between things virtual and real. The process of evolution of a classroom into a centre of active learning causes the alterations of the meaning of public space functioning as a place of social contacts, informal education, play and recreation, both in the school building and beyond it. Educationalists intend to reinforce real solutions based on the cooperation of teachers, students, parents and local community as well as integration and information exchange. Their efforts are supported by architectural designers, who seek optimum spatial and functional solutions in newly designed schools as well as educational and cultural objects – the places of continuous education taking place outside the school in the physical world, which can play a role of the third teacher. Contemporary designing solutions of public spaces in educational and cultural buildings are distinctly of an informal and ludic character – a programme based on entertainment and spatial forms inspired by the world of play and games. The designing process [often drawing from ludic techniques in creative problem solving] results in the solutions constituting the synthesis of serious architecture (rigid structure) and play space (free movement) . The author classifies contemporary trends in designing informal educational spaces focusing on the activity of school groups and local communities as well as evaluates the impact of play culture on their formation. It is done on the basis of the comparison of Polish experience, where implementation of IT solutions in schools is not very advanced, and foreign experience, in particular the most innovative solutions. The research uses the results of statistical tests, the literature of the subject as well as the results of the participants' observations, including these made during the didactic classes run by the author at the faculty of architecture as a tutor and as a designer.
 B. Barron, “Interest and self-sustained learning as catalysts of development: A learning ecologies perspective”, Human Development, 2006, vol.49, pp. 193-224.
 K. Salen Tekinbaş, E. Zimmerman, Rules of Play: Game Design Fundamentals. Cambridge, MA: MIT press, 2004.
Keywords: Architecture, community, digital era, game, innovation, learning spaces, play, public space.