27 May School Science Lab Furniture – Design Tips
School Science Lab Furniture –
Design Tips on Making the Most of Limited Space
When planning a lab refurbishment the provision of school science lab furniture needs to be carefully considered. In many schools, especially ones with older buildings, space is limited and some careful design decisions have to be made. Safe working distances need to be maintained and the furniture layout needs to be planned to make the most of the available space.
Design of Furniture for School Science Laboratories
When challenged with a small footprint for a school lab the provision of sinks is critical to the layout. If space is really limited and there is no room for perimeter benching the location of sinks becomes an issue. If they are placed on the workbenches, where the students sit for practical and theory lessons, they take up too much space. If this is case it may be necessary to install drip cups on the workbenches instead of full-size sinks. In some of the labs at Bacup and Rawtenstall Grammar School where there was no room for perimeter benching drip cups were a good option.
At Casterton College we came up with a clever furniture design to fit a sink and tray storage unit between each run of benching. This saves critical space on the workbench and means that each work station has the facilities needed for all 32 students to carry out practical experiments. There is a slimline cupboard for storage at the front of the room and the teacher’s bench is integrated into the front of a student’s workbench. These are also good space saving ideas for a small science lab.
Storage Provision in School Science Labs
Effective storage is essential to the smooth running of any school science laboratory. It is important to keep classrooms organised and the lab furniture layout is key to the efficient working of the lab.
If there is sufficient room, a storage wall positioned at the front of the science lab is a good use of underutilised space. It is essential to make the most of any dead space and bespoke furniture can be built into alcoves.
Tall storage units at Bacup & Rawtenstall
Shelving fitted into alcove
At Bacup & Rawtenstall tall storage units were built to fit either side of a chimney breast and shelving was fitted into an alcove. This makes the most of the features of the building and provides storage for frequently used items in the labs. There is no other storage in these labs and therefore the school makes the most of the prep room for storing other equipment which is wheeled into the labs using trolleys.
Vertical space can be overlooked but can be useful. Tall cupboards offer greater capacity and are used at Cadogan House School to store the majority of their equipment and resources as they only have a relatively small lab and do not have a prep room.
Casterton College Installation Feedback
“Javed was the only person who was completely confident we could fit 32 students into the space. The design he proposed met our brief exactly and he very clearly listened to all the issues/concerns/requirements, which showed Javed’s attention to detail. The Klick design came in on budget, it was also the best value for money of the 3 that were quoted. All the other competitors had missed one or 2 things out….
The job was finished 3 days earlier than timetabled, everything has gone really well and the lab fits in perfectly with the rest of the building.
We will definitely look to use your company again in the future if we have any other projects of this type.”
TINA GREEN, BUSINESS MANAGER – CASTERTON COLLEGE, RUTLAND
If you need any help with designing your labs we would be happy to offer advice.
Please call 0161 998 9726 to speak to one of our consultants or contact us by email.