7 World’s Most Surprising Classrooms

The classroom environment has a huge impact on the learning process and a student’s ability to excel in school work. A classroom must be comfortable, open, inspiring but not distracting, and must allow the inclusion and participation of all students. While many classrooms in the UK still aren’t set up in this way to allow effective learning, it can be updated relatively easily.

With innovative technology such as Soundfield systems, students are able to receive extra support and achieve higher results. Classroom time can be spent on engaging matters and asking questions. Students would likely be more interested and motivated to participate in class.

Besides the in-class factors, students’ attitudes towards school and learning are often greatly affected by the physical space in which learning takes place. We’ve taken a look at interesting classrooms around the world. Whilst, the top 5 are smartly designed and breaking the norms of what we currently consider to be the standard, adequate classroom, the last 2 have been created out of necessity rather than the architectural vision and aesthetic purpose.

1. The Australian Technical College

This futuristic looking building is the Australian Technical College, designed by Spowers. The college is built to compensate for the extremely hot Australian climate. The incredible feature of this building is that it doesn’t have air conditioning! Rather, it’s cooled by natural ventilation and an underground canal that funnels naturally cool air around the building. Apart from the school’s green design features, the open plan classrooms encourage creativity and collaboration among students.



The Australian Technical College


2. Druk White Lotus School

Commissioned by the Dalai Lama, the Druk White Lotus School was built high in the Himalayas, in Northern India.  The building was designed by Arup, and consists of a mashup of traditional and high-tech building materials. The building is made up of locally sourced stone, mud bricks, timber and grass. The outside walls are covered in “leaves” of granite that protect the building against wear and tear by the elements, and keep the building cool in direct sunlight.

Druk White Lotus School



3. Hazelwood School

The Hazelwood School in Britain was designed by Gordon Murray + Alan Dunlop Architects and specifically caters to children with visual, sensory, and motor impairments. The school’s main artery is lined with a “sensory wall” which helps students to orient themselves, while a “trailing board” guides the visually impaired students to their classrooms.

Hazelwood School




4. Hong Kong Community College

Number four on the list of the World’s Coolest Classrooms is Hong Kong Community College.

The interlocking build of the Hong Kong Community College was created by AD+RG and was inspired by the popular Jenga game. By imagining the floors as individual blocks and twisting them, the architects created sky gardens on every floor, which increase cross breezes that keep the building cool.

Hong Kong Community College

Hong Kong Community College

5. Jåttå Vocational School

The Jåttå Vocational School, was designed by Henning Larsen to fit new models for learning. The school consists of larger lecture halls, which are surrounded with much smaller rooms, for more personalized and in-depth lessons.

Jåttå Vocational School



6. METI School

The METI School in Bangladesh was created by Anna Heringer Architecture. In order to inspire students, the building was designed with the aim to make learning whimsical and fun. Some classrooms are connected by cave and other design features include bamboo shutters throughout the construction that allow breezes to waft across the building.

METI School

METI School

[Source: World Architecture News and Fastcompany]


Dongzhong Mid-Cave Primary School is located in a cave in the mountainous Miao village in Guizhou province, China. Guizhou is one of the poorest regiones of China affected by water and food shortages due to desertification. The poverty of the region turned people to become resourceful rather than looking for resources, which resulted in opening an elementary school in 1984. Recently, the school has beenwas closed by the Chinese authorities.

cave school in China

cave schools in China


8. Boat School in Bangladesh

Twice a year Bangladesh is flooded leaving millions of people in destitute of portable water, electricity and other necessities. For the same reason, thousands of schools are closed. This prompted Shidhulai Swanirvar Sangstha, a non-profit organisation, to look for non-conventional solutions when it comes to teaching. The organisation has set up a couple of dozen “floating-schools”.

Shidhulai Swanirvar Sangstha school on boat

Shidhulai Swanirvar Sangstha


For more information about how you can upgrade your classroom for better learning, contact us. Alternatively, you can have a read through our other resources:

Refresh Your Teaching Style – Get Inspired by the Top 5 Ted Talks on Education
What are Flipped or Blended Classrooms?
Simple Steps to Better In-Class Acoustics

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