Keywordsschool, classroom, furniture
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AbstractPOE survey for new school in Japan: Japanese new schools tend to be very characteristic in design, planning and education because of the educational revolution toward individualization and diversification in 21 century. Gunma International Academy that we planned was opened in April 2005, it is one of very unique schools in Japan introducing new educational system. The school building is also very uniquely designed for children with ecological and sustainable concern. The aim of this research is to conduct POE survey to show how new educational system and building work, and to propose new ideas for solving current problems in Gunma International Academy. The system of Gunma International Academy: This is the first research on Gunma International Academy providing new unique educational program called "immersion education". In this program lessons except Japanese language are taught in English by Japanese and foreign teacher. The school building is specially designed for this unique educational system as follows. Every three grades are grouped in "Neighborhood". Every "Neighborhood" has three units called "House" with same grade. Each "House" has a closed classroom, an opened classroom, an art & science corner, three class bases, a quiet room and a teacher station. Observation of activities and behavior: We observed activities and behaviors of children and teacher. We plotted the position of children and teacher to create plotting maps for evaluating the space. We also interviewed teacher and director to understand the current problems for using space and facilities. Relationship between activities and spaces: The parts of findings were follows. 1. Teachers and children could use various spaces according to the activities they do. 2. "Home base" was used well for various learning and living activities such as communication and relaxing. It was also used by connecting to adjacent common space. However some problems happened among children due to the separation of their home and learning space, for example children were often interrupted by other children to get there belongings. 3. There were various kinds of furniture for flexible use in different learning activities. However we found these furniture was always in the same position. It means that teacher didn't use furniture effectively. In spite of advanced ideas and challenges in this school for new educational system, a part of space was not used effectively. We would like to let staff know the possibility of space and propose new ways of space using. It might improve educational system, too.