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1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 21st Century Education
What a beautiful book, capturing the true benefits of designs collaboration with what has become a stagnant and uninspiring environment of schools. A fantastic insight into the 'JoinedUpDesignForSchools' project with wonderful designers and creatives on board to exemplify how design thinking can truely take education into the 21st Century. Recommended for all involved...
Published on 10 Feb. 2007 by K. C. Andrews

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars All mouth and no trousers.
The book was ordered through Amazon Prime and arrived 10 days later - an Omen.

I cannot impart how much I was looking forward to reading this book. Alas, I feel that reviews of the book's content let me down. Perhaps I should have known better having read that the contributors to this book comprised designers ranging from Kevin McCloud to Lord Rogers. How the...
Published on 1 Jan. 2011 by Leo Fender was a genius says -


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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars All mouth and no trousers., 1 Jan. 2011
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This review is from: Joined Up Design for Schools (Design New Titles) (Hardcover)
The book was ordered through Amazon Prime and arrived 10 days later - an Omen.

I cannot impart how much I was looking forward to reading this book. Alas, I feel that reviews of the book's content let me down. Perhaps I should have known better having read that the contributors to this book comprised designers ranging from Kevin McCloud to Lord Rogers. How the authors can bring together celebs and Gurus holding such differing ethos towards Architecture should have steered me away from the book.

Whilst reading the book my mind wandered and became increasingly annoyed. I kept thinking of the Peter Cook and Dudley Moore sketch (One Leg Too Few) where Pete - playing the part of a theatrical booking agent auditioning actors for the role of Tarzan - informs Dud (Mr Spiggott) that he has nothing against his only leg. Unfortunately, Dud had nothing against it either. The book felt like an erroneous encoding whereby the purpose was to impress the reader with the whacky graphic style over content and not consider the job description.

This is the first book I have ever returned to Amazon - I love books and am an avid reader. I purchased this book to assist me with improving my understanding of school design. I am an architect and having designed schools before thought to expand my social research through some specialist reading.

Having read several of the excellent school design manuals by Mark Dudek (check out - `Architecture of Schools: The New Learning Environments'. Also, `Schools and Kindergartens', by Mark Dudek - sold on Amazon) - - `Joined Up Design for Schools', for me, was a thoroughly disappointing read.

To those who attended the Architectural Association (a School of Architecture) this book smacks of the dated stuff those tutor-sucker-uppers produced during the period of the 1970's. In my opinion the context of the book is obsolete purporting to be learned through the adoption of cliché means in presentation reminiscent of third-rate `pop-art'. Poorly worked examples and ideology. In other words - All mouth and no trousers.

There are few illustrations in the book of actual schools built or explanation relating the difficulties involved in generating intelligent spaces for teaching and mixing or the means to service them. Furthermore, none of the fanciful projects provide any examples of the buildings being finished. There are no examples of `as built' schools, other than amateurish computer aided renders and childish paper models that indicate little realisation that schools serve a wide spectrum of young people ranging from happy families to those who feel disenfranchised. I felt that both the authors and contributors should go out and listen to Marshall Bruce Mathers III and other street rappers who recount just how difficult it is to learn with peer pressure bearing upon their being and survival. I found nothing in the book that showed the slightest recognition that the participants understood where the uniform of youth stands or what they aspire towards. Instead, the book treats the reader to silly coloured pictures and paper cut-outs glued together to create pretty montages of what a place of learning could look like. I felt that through the eyes of the contributors their design skills appeared only to understand how to create desperate spaces. Spaces devoid of any human scale or intrigue that encourages the mind to go further. There are no philosophies figured through design indicating form or means of movement through spaces, vistas, surprise or suggestion of enticement to improve ones-self.

If a designer asks a bunch of kids what they like they will tell you exactly what they would like. However, if a designer presents examples of environments of learning, reflective of the world in which we live, and, in point of fact, better than the places where the students will eventually work, through my experience students will mature rapidly and evolve as young Human Beings capable of seizing civilisation and marking the epoch. Afterall, the buildings are their home during their formative years.

We live in a crisis time where the environment demands from Architects, Designers and Engineers technical guile and wit to produce buildings that are inspirational whilst requiring low energy demand. Schools should be examples of how to move forward and embrace knowledge of where Civilisation has landed in this time and space, a celebration of learning thus reflecting the designer's ability to learn and respect those who occupy the teaching spaces they create. Schools form so much of a young person's vision on life contributing to memories as souvenirs from their youth.

Young people are pretty sharp and comprehend what is going on around them and how events affect them and their prospects. Schools are one of the lifelines that provide vision and encourage students that learning is very much a viable proposition for them and that knowledge holds an important role in underpinning their futures. They can easily sniff-out fraud and respond appropriately. In my opinion, young people possess a better appreciation of this planet's condition than most adults, and they comprehend how the role of technology needs to be woven into their immediate environment and the necessity to develop low energy built forms towards zero carbon construction. Yet books such as 'Joined-up Design' ignore such in favour of a blast from the past through montage presentations of snippets of what a school could look like and how the shapes and spaces could be - all without responsibility of what it would actually be like to move, learn and habitat such depressing buildings.

This book is really a collection of cronies engaged in `self-gratification in the dark' interested only in spudling half-baked concepts of how to create whacky themes in schools. In my opinion, the book is utter rubbish and shameful that money should be wasted on such.

I found this book very depressing and far from where the mainstream of school design is at. It is a reflection that there is still in existence an old guard of designers being funded by moribund bodies who have not the foggiest idea of what is happening around them. I suggest that they should start listening to Eminem and read the building regulations outlined for 2016 (zero-carbon day) or become pensioned off.

A dreadful book.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Joined up Design for Schools, 24 Nov. 2009
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This review is from: Joined Up Design for Schools (Design New Titles) (Hardcover)
I think this book is quite average. A little disapointed with the overal presentation of the information. Some good information, but could've been better.
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1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 21st Century Education, 10 Feb. 2007
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K. C. Andrews (UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Joined Up Design for Schools (Design New Titles) (Hardcover)
What a beautiful book, capturing the true benefits of designs collaboration with what has become a stagnant and uninspiring environment of schools. A fantastic insight into the 'JoinedUpDesignForSchools' project with wonderful designers and creatives on board to exemplify how design thinking can truely take education into the 21st Century. Recommended for all involved within in design and educational reform.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars School design, 31 May 2010
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This review is from: Joined Up Design for Schools (Design New Titles) (Hardcover)
Hi everyone
this book is about school designing by students ideas.

I recommend it for school designer and all designer as well
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