CLASSROOM TEACHERS’ VIEWS ON THE PHYSICAL LEARNING ENVIRONMENTS OF PRIMARY SCHOOLS IN TURKEY

Mehmet GÜLTEKİN, Gözde ÖZENÇ İRA

Abstract


School buildings with inadequate infrastructure and old-fashioned architectural styles cause problems, especially in developing countries. This study aims to examine the views of primary school teachers on the physical learning environments of primary schools. A case study method was adopted in this study. The participants of the study consisted of 14 classroom teachers working in rural and urban areas. The synchronous online focus group interviews were conducted using Zoom, a commercial web conference service, as a data collection method. A content analysis method was used in the analysis of the data. The analyses of the semi-structured interviews with the classroom teachers produced four categories-i.e., planning-related shortcomings, infrastructure deficiency, child-friendly schools, and the advantages of these schools. Responses of classroom teachers working in urban areas mostly focused on the crowding of schools. On the other hand, the answers from the classroom teachers working in rural areas mostly focused on the physical infrastructure of primary schools. Furthermore, suggestions from all participants pointed out that primary schools must have a more child-friendly characteristic. The physical learning environments of primary schools require compliance with the needs of modern pedagogy. In light of the findings, some suggestions were have been made for primary schools in Turkey.

Keywords: The physical learning environment, primary school, school buildings.

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