Vicky Loras

Thinking about classrooms – Vicky

Dreaming of an Ideal Classroom: Your Own!  – Vicky Loras

Vicky Loras

When we had our school in Greece, we had 11 classrooms – not to blow our own horn, but in each classroom the teachers had all the equipment they needed. Or at least we tried to offer whatever we could, in order for the lessons to proceed smoothly. The school also had a computer lab and a room with an interactive whiteboard. Therefore, the equipment could be moved easily if needed, or the teachers and their students could easily be moved to the room they wanted to use, easily. We did this out of respect to our teachers and students, to make everyone feel comfortable and content to teach and learn.

When I moved here in Switzerland, I started teaching at various places until I could get enough work – in schools, companies, banks – you name it. Some places had the works, as far as equipment was concerned, some were okay – however, in some I had to teach in my coat and gloves (yes, you read correctly), or I was not even allowed to turn on the lights before a specific time in the afternoon. Thankfully, only a couple of places match the last description. Even in these unfavourable environments, I tried to make the classroom as ideal as possible for the students and myself. I had my passion for teaching to keep me going and the motivation of the students.

Is it the tech?

An example of an excellent teaching environment is the public college I started teaching at here last year – the administration people, secretaries and teachers are amazing to work with and the classrooms…wow, the classrooms!

Whiteboards (three or four of them that you can shift on the walls)


Poster paper (huge rolls of them!)



….wait till you hear this…

3D projectors!!! I LOVE THEM!

A great place to teach – a place that respects its educators and students. Shouldn’t all schools be like this? Some aren’t, understandably due to their restricted budgets, some because the people who own them do not care.

Is it the people?

When we are in class, we are there for our students. The people who make our every day different and varied, super and interesting. The people who come into our classrooms with hopes, dreams, ambitions and all the super characteristics that make up these varied personalities – some come with their own issues and challenges, but they too later become part of our little communities. Most of the times it works.

So, What Makes a Classroom Ideal?

It would be great if all teachers in the world could have everything they desire in the classroom – as far as equipment is concerned. For various reasons, such as restricted or no budget at all, school policy and so on, it is not always feasible. A lot of educators are so creative and imaginative that they find other ways of doing things, in order to compensate for the lack of proper equipment.

For instance, I knew a teacher who did not have an audio player in her classroom, but did such a great job in reading out the transcripts for listening tasks to her students, and in many voices and intonations, that she did not need an audio player at all!

Was it the teacher in this case that made the classroom ideal, as her students adored her teaching and learned a great deal from her? Definitely. Is it the students, I add, who make the classroom an amazing hub of learning? Absolutely.  Is it the people that make a classroom a dream of a place to learn in? Yes!


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Vicky Loras

My name is Vicky Loras and I am an English Teacher, born in Toronto, Canada. For ten years, my sisters (Eugenia and Christine) and I owned an English School in Greece, The Loras English Academy, but I have now moved with my eldest sister to Switzerland, where I continue to work as an English teacher. I believe in teaching as an ongoing learning process, both for the benefit of the students and the teacher. For that reason I love attending workshops and conferences! Outside class you can usually find me at bookshops or libraries, I absolutely love books!

10 thoughts on “Thinking about classrooms – Vicky”

  1. Hi Vicky,
    Love your ideas about what makes your classroom an ideal place. I think that the physical space contributes to better learning, and very usually teachers manage to find ways to overcome any challenge. Once in a while I ask myself: Is there anything (however little) I can do to make our place a better place, and often I discover there’s is something I can do, regardless of my budget, like flowers or a new plant, or a poster on cardboard with some pictures we take in class, or just the names of my students, or the names of some projects we have worked on or are working on.
    In my classroom we have Internet access and most students are free to bring their own device or use an extra computer I have for them, however some of them don’t feel comfortable with tech. Ideal classroom element … “respect”. Eventually some of them will overcome this fear, maybe.
    But the real change, the real star in the ideal classroom is the learning celebration.
    Thanks Vicky, it’s always such a pleasure to read you.

    1. Hi Debbie!

      Thanks so much for reading – I am happy you found it useful – and for leaving such a lovely comment : )

      I absolutely love all the ways you mention to spruce up the classroom environment and I agree – we need to remember to do these things, to bring that change, no matter how small, to make the surroundings look new again, and our students happy to come into a place we are taking care of.

      I love how you say that “the real star in the ideal classroom is the learning celebration”! Awesome! Keep it up : )

      Warmest wishes,

  2. The quest for the ideal classroom is truly a tough journey, Vicky! Thanks for this thought-provoking post.

    This time last year I analysed this issue and looked in detail at a couple of the classrooms I was teaching in:

    This was a great reflective activity that really made me think about the physical environment of the class.

  3. Dear Vicky,
    We strengthen our motivation by your example of providing your teachers with the materials you had and trying to make the learning environment as ideal as possible, moreover the imagination and creativity are exemplified through the ” teacher who did not have an audio player in her classroom, but did such a great job in reading out the transcripts for listening tasks to her students, and in many voices and intonations, that she did not need an audio player at all! “.

  4. I have been at the same school for 6 and a half years and always dreamed of having my own classroom so that I could decorate it and do alot of fun activities with my students. Today, I started at a new school and I am so excited because I will have my own English classroom that I will be sharing with a co-teacher. This is a dream come true. I love the walls, floors, cabinets, desks, chairs. I feel like a brand new teacher although I have been teaching for 15 years. I can’t wait for Monday when I will meet my new students and start teaching. I think we all desire to have our ideal classroom but I think you have really touched on an important point – that is that our students are the ones that make an ideal classroom. If we establish good relationships with our students then we can have an ideal classroom. The most important thing are our students. You can have the most beautiful classroom with the latest technology but if you have no love for your students then it will not be the ideal classroom.

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