The office for our institute, music room 106, began as a generic classroom before becoming SparkLab. It was long, narrow, windowless and boring.
But there is potential in everything, and the Spark team sought to transform this space into an environment that inspires collaboration, creativity, entrepreneurial ventures and big ideas.
SparkLab has several stations where teams work together on creative projects. One station has a couch, chairs and a coffee table with pull out cubes for storage and seating. Another has eight barstools around a square table, creating a sense of equity. The environment encourages creativity and teamwork.
We turned the lack of windows into an asset. No windows means more wall space, and we took full advantage of this creative opportunity.
- Color – we added color; walls of yellow and blue break up repetition and encourage you to see things in new ways.
- Flexible surfaces – we added a wide stripe of chalkboard paint on one wall, whiteboards and corkboards on others. You’re likely to see flip charts and post-it notes too.
- Wisdom Wall –a section of wall, painted as a chalkboard, is the Wisdom Wall where students write down life lessons learned.
- Project space – student teams working on entrepreneurial arts-based projects are given “real estate” to share aspects of their ventures.
- Mural – We’ll be looking to commission a mural of graffiti art for one section of wall.
Other resources of SparkLab include:
- Library – a collection of books on issues related to the arts, careers, business, entrepreneurship, money and education are available for community members to peruse.
- Piano – we are musicians first and foremost and are grateful for our seven-foot Baldwin.
- Cabinet – a cabinet features student creations related to the Spark pillars.
- Food and drinks – creative minds need fuel and a variety of hot and cold drinks are available for a dollar on the honor system.