A better school

A marvelous piece of architecture is not what comes to mind when looking inside the STEM building. Its hallways stretch out as if they were never ending roads; leaving you on a dreary walk. Useless decoration mocks you from the ceiling. The spillover from the lunch line into the hallway makes you want to cringe; the lunch room is as big as a closet. But, the designers of STEM did some things correctly such as the outside aesthetics, the airiness of the school, and the parking lot.

They worked hard on the school, but there are changes I would like to make. First of all, the designers envisioned a lot of excellent structure here at the STEM school. Most notably, the way it looks outside. With long wooden poles streaming down from the ceiling, and a polished wooden panel under the hood, STEM looks as majestic as a mountain from outside. Next, the numerous windows provide an airy feel to STEM. When snow floats from the sky, you get a full, unobstructed view.

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Especially during class. Also, the parking lot is ingenious; long drop-off lines are a part of history now. Back in my old school, the drop-off was a discombobulating compound of chaos. The line to simply enter the school stretched half a mile back. Busses were interspersed with cars; they didn’t have their own lane.

To make matters even worse, the parking lot was part of the drop-off line! It was a carnival compared to STEM’s parking lot. In STEM, busses have their own lot. The round-about circles the whole parking lot which leads to a miniscule line. It is fully adaptable to the incoming students of the future. In summation, the designers of STEM made excellent plans for the outside. Even though STEM is a great school, there are changes I would like to make.

The first change I would like to make is putting a large room/area in the school. This place could have multiple identities: a large cafeteria and eating place, a gym, and an assembly room. My teeth are set on edge whenever I think about the lack of a large space. Why would you have a school, and not have an assembly room! The biggest room can only hold around 150 kids. There is value to be gained by having a place where the whole school can meet.

Not to mention the cafeteria we currently have will be outdated in a year. It won’t be big enough. Another problem I have with this school is the waste of materials. Namely, the power cords dangling from the ceiling above the student lounge. There is absolutely no reason to have them. They are a waste of resources; pricey and useless.

Everything they can do, a floor outlet can do better. Floor power outlets don’t make that awful ratcheting sound whenever you tug them. They are discreet and easy to use. A power bar can be attached to a floor outlet to accommodate more computers. Two—one on each end of the classroom—would be enough. Also, STEM has useless decoration at the front of each classroom.

The front of the classroom is mostly made up of “wood”. This wastes space for whiteboards. Assuming wood is more expensive than whiteboard: it also wastes money. Instead of having wood in the front, simply replace it with whiteboard. Finally, some hallways have useless black hanging things from the ceiling. The purpose of these things is not yet known; it doesn’t need be known.

It wastes resources. Lastly, this school has a bland design. And by bland design, I mean a chimpanzee could have come up with it. Two long hallways; stacked together with classrooms sticking out of them like the bones of a long dead dinosaur. The same color too! As soon as you step in the door, your eyes are assaulted by all the brown and white.

By the end of the day, you long to see one iota of color. Stepping outside and seeing the pine trees are a welcome relief. Maybe the designers of this school made it like this because they wanted it to be simple, or because of size restrictions. Either way having the school like this makes it more complicated than simple. Every single classroom is identical, every single hallway is identical: there are no landmarks! To know where you classes are you have to literally memorize the number of steps to each class.

The size restrictions could easily be navigated around by having the school dip into the parking lot a little and having the parking lot dip into the school. You would still be using the same amount of space yet have a more interesting design. However, with the contour we have, I would have grouped similar classrooms together. Have all the science classrooms in one end of the school, have all the language classrooms in another. This way, finding your classroom would be a cinch. In conclusion, STEM has a few glaring weaknesses that have not been addressed.

From wasting resources, to a bland design, the inside of STEM needs to be improved. However, the designers of STEM did a magnificent job on the outside. All in all, STEM is a well-designed school from the outside, yet needs some work on the inside.