STEAM Centre for Digital Creators
Hristo Botev Primary School
In 2020 Hristo Botev Primary School in Aheloy, Bulgaria, won a 50 000 BGN state funding for redesigning a classroom into a STEAM CLASSROOM for Digital Creators. Although the number of the students is less than 300 and the school was not eligible to apply for 300,000 BGN funding in the „large projects“ category, the ambitious school management and its headmaster – Mrs. Juliana Atanasova, decided that the project brief and scope should expand into a STEAM CENTER for digital creators.
The STEAM CENTRE for Digital Creators is designed according to the Ministry of Education and Science recommendations which differentiate areas for one-way communication, individual work, group work, learning by doing, socialization and physical activity. Conceptually, the project framework goes beyond the STEAM functionality in order to redesign the space into an interdisciplinary centre for digital creativity, visual culture, and improvement of students presentation and English language skills. This new framework is predetermined by the incredible creative school potential as evident by the hallway exhibitions of icons, wool paintings, stained glass and murals. Logically, the next step for the school artistic training programme is the mastery of digital creative skills, introducing specialized software for digital drawing, computer animation, photography and video content.
The project scope includes three functional zones – the classroom for digital creativity; the school foyer for recreation, socialization and video presentation of digital dynamic products to the public; the adjacent hallway with exhibition areas for static digital products, mind and physical games for developing creative thinking and visual culture. The classroom unites three rooms, creating a flexible area for training and presentations, an area for group or individual work, a technical area for creating dynamic digital products such as videos, animations, digital books. The STEAM classroom is equipped with an interactive multi-touch display, chromebook mobile learning devices, post-production workstations, photography and video equipment, studio lighting, a green screen. The foyer serves as a welcoming and socializing area, as well as a presentation spot, thanks to the amphitheatre seating and the interactive multi-touch display. The long narrow hallway adjacent to the classroom becomes a continuation of the foyer. The hallway stimulates students visual and physical skills through graphic means such as word games with artistic themes, the „impossible figures“ corner, the floor labyrinth, “mirror me”, and “balance” games.