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Making Classrooms Work for Children and Adults - What Role Does Room Arrangement Play in Curriculum Design?

by Diane Trister Dodge
January/February 1992
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Article Link: https://www.childcareexchange.com/article/making-cla/5008321/

The importance of room arrangement in an early childhood classroom has been an underlying principle of my work on curriculum design. Although I did not set out to write a curriculum for early childhood education, the Creative Curriculum for Early Childhood grew quite naturally out of my initial interest in helping teachers look at their classroom arrangement and how it was working for or against them. I found that in many classrooms the arrangement of the physical environment was contributing to behavior problems that made teaching more difficult. I began to ask myself these questions: How was the room arrangement inviting children to run in the classroom? How was the environment making it difficult for children to make choices and stay involved? Why were children fighting over materials, misusing them, and resisting clean up?

Often, I discovered these problems could be addressed simply by reorganizing the room. A more refined and positive approach to room arrangement emerged as I began focusing more on the broader issue of curriculum in early childhood.

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