lunes, 30 de agosto de 2010

Designing learning spaces for children on the autism spectrum

Pues es un  artículo muy interesante. En primer lugar porque repasa parte de la literatura sobre arquitectura para personas con autismo. Casi todo ya lo había consultado antes, pero está bien tener una revisión por otra persona. También hace referencia a la normativa inglesa sobre edificios educativos para personas con NEE.

De la normativa inglesa entresaca algunos puntos como específicos para niños con autismo:
1 The building should have a simple layout which reflects order, calm, clarity and has good signage and way-finding.
2 Pupils may show different sensitivities to spaces: some will be frightened by large, open spaces and wish to withdraw to smaller spaces, whilst others will not like enclosed spaces. Providing a -mix of larger spaces with smaller ones to withdraw to when anxious can help.
3 Designing low sensory-stimulus environments reduces sensory overload, stress and anxiety.
4 The provision of pleasant, well-proportioned space, with plain, bare walls decorated in muted soft colours will allow teachers to introduce stimulus, (such as wall displays of work or information), gradually to suit pupils needs.
5 Classrooms can be arranged so that teachers may employ different teaching methods, with spaces for individual work or screened personal work-spaces.
6 Use of indirect lighting and the avoidance of noise or other distractions, (blind cords, exposed pipes or dominant views out), need to be considered.
7 Containment in the class base for reasons of supervision, safety or security by the use of two door handles, at high and low-level, must neither compromise escape procedures, nor violate human rights, (in that children must not be locked up unless they are secured or detained legally in secure provision).
8 Robust materials should be used where there are pupils with severe disabilities and safety precautions for doors, windows, glass, plaster and piped or wired services will be required.
9 There is a need to balance security and independence and to find the right mix between tough materials and special equipment on the one hand and ordinary, everyday items on the other, in order to avoid an institutional appearance, whilst at the same time eliminating risks.
10 Simple or reduced detailing and changes of plane may reduce the opportunity for obsessiveness.’

De Simon Humphreys, los siguientes (como añadidos a los anteriores)
  • Good levels of natural light and ventilation.
  • Proxemics: ‘Proxemics deals with the amount of space people feel it necessary to set between them-selves. Proximity is the condition of being near or close. Proxemics can also be termed as personal space around the body. A person with ASD can be more guarded about this space and any infringement is seen as a personal threat. They need more space.’
  • Good observation, relating to BB 77, 9 given above. ‘It is useful to be able to observe the movements of people with ASD, without them feeling constantly under surveillance ... Good observation will put the carer at rest, which will help their well-being and can only benefit the person with ASD.’

Scott propone los siguientes aspectos como esenciales para el diseño de edificios educativos para personas con TEA:
Summary of design criteria
A The requirement to provide an ordered and comprehensible, spatial structure
B The requirement to provide a mix of large and small spaces
C The requirement to provide increased control of the environmental conditions to the user
D The requirement to provide for different, autism-specific teaching methods
E The need to balance security and independence
F The need to provide simple and reduced detailing
G The requirement for the end user to be actively involved in the brief-building and design process
H Appropriate use of technology to aid the learning experience
I Appropriate technical specification

Y después analiza cuatro edificios en función de los criterios elegidos:
  1. New Struan, Alloa, Scotland
  2. Netley Primary School ASD Unit, Camden LA, London
  3. Whitton School ASD Unit, Twickenham, Richmond LA
  4. Mossbrook Special Primary School, Norton, Sheffield

Scott, I. (2009). Designing learning spaces for children on the autism spectrum. Good Autism Practice, 10(1), 36-51. 

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