Winter finally arrived, which has made it more difficult to actually show how the new construction and renovations are progressing. Quite frankly, the weather and conditions don’t do justice to how good the new spaces will look when completed. So we requested new renderings from our facilities and construction crew to give everyone a peek at a couple of different areas.
In order to best understand what is being shown in these particular renderings, we sat down with Head of Middle School Karla Long, who helped to explain some of the thinking that went behind the reimagined designs.
Middle School Entrance
“We wanted to give the Middle School an actual entrance since we don’t have one right now. And we wanted to make it so the kids have some space to congregate and hang out that’s near the middle school office while they’re waiting for a ride or watching the bus circle. We wanted to make it colorful and fun with the accent pieces – furniture and pillows and things like that – so it’s comfortable to wait in as well as being warm and inviting for guests as they come into our school.”
“This (rendering below) shows the start of the sixth grade hallway as well as the staircase up to a new middle school library. Each of the grade levels will have classrooms and meeting spaces organized together as a pod, similar to what the upper level of Morris Hall previously provided for the eighth-graders. Seventh grade is going to be a little further down this hall from the sixth grade, and eighth grade will be upstairs on the same floor as the library. A makerspace for all grades will be upstairs as well (more to come on the makerspace later).”
“In addition, there will be a conference room where teachers can have parent meetings if their classrooms are being used by others. We’ll also have a team meeting space for all of the grades. That’s where all of the advisors will be, and they will each have their own workspace. The idea is that you’re not tied to a classroom because if you’re always in your classroom, it makes it harder for the teachers to collaborate. I’ve been asking the teachers to not think of it as your classroom – you’re teaching in it and yes, please decorate it – but when you’re not in there, I want you to be in the team room so that organic talking and planning happens. That’s where you actually get some really cool and innovative ideas.”