One of the coolest non-tech features of our language learning center at Rhodes is the fact that you can write on the walls (and the sliding doors when they are closed).
It’s great for professors who need more space than the mobile whiteboard provides. Students can write their answers on the wall during class, and often the tutors or working groups use the walls to explain something or to brainstorm.
So how does it work? It’s pretty much just a layer of special paint. We used one called Ideapaint, but there are other solutions out there. It’s not cheap compared to regular paint, but if you’re designing or redesigning a learning space, it’s comparatively inexpensive. You can get the paint in different colors. And then there’s always good old blackboard paint, which you can find in hardware or paint stores.
A word of caution: your wall will look messy if you don’t clean them often. There is a cleaning solution, which makes your walls look like new.
When I did the needs assessment for the Rhodes College Language Learning Center a few years back, the most common answer from faculty member was: lots of writing surfaces! And since one of our design principles was flexibility, it became clear that we needed to use the walls very efficiently (there are lots of windows in the space…). The paint also adds a personal dimension since visitors leave comments on the wall. And it’s always fun to see new students’ faces when I casually write on the walls for the first time…