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16 March 2009
An inbuilt kitchen, tables you can write on and an indoor garden are just a few of the features of a new interactive classroom space opened by Professor John Rosenberg, Deakin University’s Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic), at Deakin’s Melbourne Campus at Burwood on Friday 13 March 2009.
The Raymond Trotter Flexible Learning Space is designed to give student teachers more classroom teaching experience and challenge how teaching education is delivered.
Professor Rosenberg said the space highlighted Deakin’s commitment to excellence.
“I would like to congratulate everyone involved in the development of The Raymond Trotter Flexible Learning Space. It is a facility to be proud of and is further evidence of Deakin’s commitment to teaching excellence and student outcomes,” he said.
Believed to be a first for an Australian university, the space is named after Mr Raymond Trotter, Principal of Wooranna Park Primary School in Dandenong North, Victoria, and will be dedicated to courses which focus on Primary and Early Childhood Education.
Debra Bateman, lecturer at Deakin’s School of Education and driving force behind the project, explained the choice of name.
“The original idea for the space came about when staff and student teachers from Deakin were working with Raymond Trotter at Wooranna Park Primary and were impressed by the redesign of that school and particularly with how the staff and students were involved.
“Mr Trotter has been associated with Deakin’s School of Education for many years and naming the space in his honour is an ideal way to acknowledge his contribution.”
Other features not normally found in a traditional classroom include a fully integrated electronic whiteboard, a flat screen TV and modular furniture that can easily be moved around.
Four integrated video cameras can record teaching sessions for review and discussion.
Ms Bateman said it was hoped the space would host a variety of teaching activities.
“By giving our student teachers the chance to learn and experiment in this environment we hope we will ignite their passion for teaching and encourage them to create exciting learning spaces for their students.
“I think we will see more of this style of classroom in the future, so it’s a great opportunity for teachers and students to test its possibilities,” she said.