And the Extreme Classroom Makeover Winner Is...

A big congratulations to the winners of our Extreme Classroom Makeover Contest, Collingwood Collegiate Institute!

Donna Thomson's Business Studies class submitted the following entry to describe their need to fill an empty classroom with some furniture and accessories that would be used by the school as a collaborative learning environment.


Read the full entry here:

Walking through the halls of Collingwood Collegiate Institute, the dated technology and design cannot be ignored. Built in the late 1950s, CCI continues to adopt a traditional classroom design with desks and chairs in rows. Our classrooms have yet to adapt to the concept of next-generation learning, a concept explained in the “21st Century Competencies” document by the Ministry of Education. Recently, our principal, Ms. Scime, gave our Entrepreneurship class the opportunity to redesign what used to be an old and uninspiring weightlifting room into a brand new creative, collaborative and innovative space for our school. CCI is a high school with over 1300 students and 130 staff members. The population of our school continues to grow and this is our chance to effect change in this room which will benefit our entire school population.

We have pooled together our conceptualized ideas for the space that we think maximizes its potential. Unfortunately, we lack the resources and funding to execute our vision. “The Extreme Classroom Makeover” is exactly what we need to transform this uninspiring classroom into a collaborative workspace that inspires creativity for continuous learning!

We envision an innovative classroom with furniture and learning accessories that are adaptable to a variety of creative thinking strategies. This could include everything from bean bag chairs, tables and chairs on wheels, portable whiteboards, standup desks and lighting/colours that inspire thought and gives us a space to simulate what many companies are already using for their 21st century workspaces. In education, Georgetown University researchers found that by improving a school’s physical environment, test scores can improve by up to 11%! The researchers also identified the features of these improved spaces that effectively supported the teaching and learning of new generation students.

We have already started the process of designing the space and selecting the items on the Staples website that would make our vision a reality. We are excited to continue this process as part of the Extreme Classroom Makeover. If this write-up does not convince you yet, then maybe this YouTube video that we created will - click here!

Thank you for considering our application. This has been a valuable learning experience for us. We’ve embraced this learning challenge and hope to be a part of making our vision a reality.


We congratulate Donna Thompson and her students on their entry and look forward to seeing the end results of the makeover!


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