In this post, we’re featuring more visual examples of good design in church building projects. There are a number of factors to be mindful of when creating a space that children—and the staff who are caring for them—can really use. Here are some of those factors, focused specifically at the needs of preschool children and their church experience.
As the pictured floor plan illustrates, connecting adjacent children’s classrooms with a restroom is an efficient way to elevate your church design. It allows staff from two different classrooms to use the restroom without having to venture very far from the children they are tending.
Preschoolers often need supervision when visiting the restroom, so again, this design element is especially useful since staff won’t have to leave the vicinity of the classroom when addressing the needs of a child. Sometimes churches even install a laundry facility within the area, making it easy to not only launder crib sheets and towels, but to also clean toys that young children are using.
The floor plan also shows that the check-in area is just outside both doors (top right of the image), keeping the entire area connected and self-sufficient for the entire time that parents are in church. One-way windows are also part of this church design, allowing parents to look in and keep tabs on their children without the children being distracted by their presence.
Another element that could be useful in this area is a nursing mother’s room. This way a mother does not have to stray a long way from the nursery and can remain connected with her worship as she watches the service on a monitor.
Keeping Classrooms Neat, Clean, and Dry
Of course, with young children like this, arts and crafts form a major part of the church experience, and we’ve created specific church design elements to meet this need.
The accompanying picture shows one example. The area around the sink and counter is tiled, making it easier to clean up the inevitable spills that will take place. This prevents carpeting from getting wet, moldy, and stained. The new church design also features lots of cabinets—ideal for storing craft supplies.
To the left of the sink area is the door to the shared restroom that we spoke about. To the right is a door into the hallway and check-in area. Partway along the mural is a doorway leading to a supply closet for storage of anything else staff might need for children’s church.
Bright lighting is provided to help children focus on their table projects. Sometimes in classrooms for the youngest churchgoers, however, we’ll actually install indirect lighting, which points toward the ceiling and prevents babes in arms from having light shine directly into their eyes.
Creating Church Buildings That Put Children First
Over the years we’ve designed all sorts of children’s spaces for a variety of church buildings, and we’ve learned a number of useful things along the way. One of our recent webinars focused on our ideas, and in the future we’ll post more about them.
Meanwhile, if you want to know more about our design experiences, sign up today for our free i3 webinar series. Simply visit our website and choose whichever webinar topics you’re interested in.