My main learning experience beyond school is learning a martial art, Aikido.
The learning space is very typical of many other martial art: the dojo.
The dojo is basically an oriented empty space, in the shape of a rectangle.
The orientation is given usually by a picture and/or a flower composition on
the center of a wall; this wall is the only one that cannot have entrances and it is called “front wall”.
The lesson has two separate moment that are continuously interleaved:
- instructor teaches, student listen,
- students practice, instructor move around students
The point 1 can may last from a few seconds to a few minutes, and point 2 usually last for several minutes.
The instructor teaches with her shoulders to the front wall, students looking at him.
In this way, instructor and students can move freely on the learning space, but they
keep a reference both physically and for learning.
Courses have student of all ages and degree together; a clue of the skill of other people is given by the color of the belt. Sometimes there are special lessons for higher degree with more advanced topics.
On the walls, are usually placed pictures of some technique, or with natural subjects, or photos of the history of the dojo; are also sometime placed object used during the lessons, as weapons, mats, and similar.
Some dojo has also outside garden, where are placed other tools for practice, see pictures.
Often, if possible, the dojo is open also outside the lesson hours, to allow students (but also instructors) to practice individually or in small groups, more informally.
What I would change? I do not know, honestly. But writing this post has been a great opportunity to formalize my ideas!