IJburg College in Amsterdam traded rigid rows of desks and walls for movable stools and screens.

Design firm Ateliers created the interior learning space, while the building’s flowing concept was designed by the architects at LIAG.

The classrooms were created to reflect the school’s philosophy of openness, acceptance and self-learning. A neutral palette of white, grey and black was used for a calming environment, enhanced by different materials like wood and plastic and decorative prints as inspiration. Classroom areas use a black colour scheme, while open areas are distinguishable by white design.

Furniture can be easily moved, allowing for flexible class sizes, presentations and lessons. Hallways are minimal to allow openness to take priority. Change and mobility was incorporated in the design, rather than a set, finished plan. The cafeteria area can be adapted into a theatre, by swapping the benches for a stage.

Small slatted-wood sheds act as offices at the entrance of all open spaces, giving teachers space for prep work and marking. Next to these are areas for students to work independently.