Science Lab is one place where students get to embrace their inner scientists. A place where students could understand theoretical concepts through experiments and be able to score well in their academics, all while enjoying the subject. If you're in the process of setting up a science lab in your school, here are 7 steps to make sure it runs efficiently!
Why does an Efficient Science Lab matter for students?
Science labs are one of the few teaching disciplines that enable students to actually learn by doing. To ensure that the lab is worthwhile, school owners should make sure their labs are efficient enough to achieve desired results.
Here are 7 steps to consider for an efficient science laboratory-
1. Calculation and Planning
A lab is a crucial part of your school's science curriculum. The future of education is moving away from traditional classrooms, so you should consider the following points before deciding where to start a lab.
Calculate how many science labs are needed for your school, and what type?
Determine how many students will be in each lab period.
How much space do we have?
Which floor will be the best?
Making a lab requires a lot of planning and consideration to make sure it is suited to the needs of your students. It's way more than just filling an empty room with furniture and equipment.
2. Get help from the Experts
It may seem like a good idea to try and do all the design work for your laboratory space on your own. However, this rarely leads to good results. Instead, it's much better to get help from a lab design expert. They will measure out the space, note down room features like doors and windows, and come up with a floor plan that is perfectly suitable for your lab room.
When you've got these plans, you'll be able to see what goes where and understand complicated matters such as foot traffic control and ventilation and utility linings.
Once the required number of laboratories has been determined, you can move on to the design process. An efficient lab must have a layout that aids both theoretical and practical learning. Most importantly, the layout of a science lab must be flexible and colorful with lab decors as it will help students study with interest. Some of the considerations to keep in mind-
Dry working area
Sufficient circulation space
Demonstration space for teachers
Learning space for students
To create an effective layout, you can also install furniture and workstations. You have to ensure that the layout allows for the practical activities to take place smoothly.
4. Storage System
Storage is an important aspect to consider when designing a school lab. Imagine having to search for a chemical or flask while teaching your students an important experiment - it would be quite an inconvenience. This is why it is essential to have a well-thought-out storage system in place so that you can have everything you need at your fingertips and avoid any disruptions in your lesson.
In the case of storing chemicals, the shelves should be clearly labeled or color coded. That way, everyone who needs to use the chemical store will be able to easily find what they're looking for. It's easier to learn when there is a place for everything and everything has a place.
Storage space should include wall cabinets, drawer units, tall storage units, and glass front wall cabinets. Appropriate lighting can reduce the chance of accidents or errors in a safe operating environment.
5. Technology Integration
Technology is an integral part of any school laboratory and a key requirement for ensuring smooth and efficient practical activities. Interactive whiteboards are common in labs. Positioning them is essential to support the whole-class technology, and computers can be valuable for research, data logging, and simulating experiments—so a good signal reception and a reliable WiFi connection are crucial. Also, it is essential to have certified high-tech equipment from a reliable manufacturer. Not only will you get better service, warranties, and after-sales support, but you can also be assured that their products are of the highest quality and meet ISO standards.
Look for any many certifications as possible like NABL, BIS, OSHA, BSCIC, etc. The more certificates a product has, the more trustworthy it is.
Clear pathways in a school lab have always been a starter for teachers to control the students who are moving inside the laboratory. The advantage of adding some mobile furniture to the school science laboratory is that it gives you the flexibility to rearrange the room to support different teaching styles or encourage student collaboration. Teachers should also be able to see all students, who tend to be seated in the back of the classroom, rather than the traditional classroom structure where only a few students are visible to teachers. This freedom of movement can help improve communication and create a safer and more accessible lab environment.
Thus, while you are designing a science lab, ensure that the accessibility factor improves and that with it, all the required needs are satisfied.
7. Safety aspects
The safety of both students and faculty is an imperative concern during the design process of a science lab - as a poorly designed one has a greater risk of accidents. By selecting the appropriate materials, you can help to ensure the safety of the space and reduce maintenance costs in the long run.
A well-ventilated space is a must when using different gases and chemicals to avoid suffocation. What's outside the walls is also important, so make sure the ventilation is designed in such a way that it will not recirculate into non-science areas.
Other important safety considerations include a fume hood that vents to the outside, and a combination of emergency shower and eyewash placed within 10 seconds of accessibility.
The science classroom is full of necessities, rules, and procedures. The teacher and the students work together to make sure everything works well, and the students get the most out of their learning. Hopefully, this blog has helped shed some light on the process of creating the best science lab for your students.