Year 1 and 2 Fernridge School pupils enjoying their new, modern learning environments. PHOTOS/ELISA VORSTER

ELISA VORSTER
elisa.vorster@age.co.nz

Turning up to school in sub-zero temperatures and having to stoke a fire in an old, dark, dreary classroom is a thing of the past for Fernridge School.

The old classrooms at Fernridge School being demolished.

Demolition has begun on three outdated classrooms at the school after the completion of its long-awaited new modern learning environments.

Seventy-five Year 1 and 2 children can fit comfortably within the space which boasts separate soundproof break-out areas for the children to work in smaller groups.

The new building is also home to the office area, a sick bay and the staffroom.

The room features under floor heating for winter, large ceiling fans for summer, and a carbon dioxide meter which alert the teachers to the room getting too stuffy.

The school was also given provision for a special-needs bathroom area.

There is also a new maker space – an area where pupils can do everything from create, invent, prototype, design, code, build, and craft.

Principal Janine Devenport said the new building was in stark contrast to the old classrooms which she described as dark, dreary, cold and full of mice.

“They were pretty sub-par,” she said.

“How on earth did we cope?”

She said both the teachers and the pupils loved the new building and took pride in it.

“It’s a more collaborative environment and is more focused on learning.

“In an ideal world, all kids should have the opportunity to learn in a place like this.”

But her favourite part is no longer having any classrooms with old fireplaces in them.

“It’s such a nice place to come in the morning and I’m looking forward to winter and not being in sub-zero degrees.”