This means that activity areas must separated by physical objects or partition areas or provide "visual cues" as to their demarcation lines through visual clues such as color, lighting or change in height for ceilings and partitions. Butin further writes that a typical preschool classroom should have at least four distinct activity zones, as follows (Butin, 2000, Key Spaces in Early Education Centers section par 3):
- Dramatic play zone. Providing "home-center" props, such as kitchen appliances, living room furniture, or a theater area, facilitates such play. While the dramatic play zone should be adjacent to the gross-motor skill zone to allow for easy movement between the two, a clear division between the spaces should be visible to promote a sense of semiprivate space.
- Arts and crafts zone. This is the "wet" area of the room where children can experiment with sand, water, paint, paste, and other messy materials. The arts and crafts zone should be next to a water source, such as a sink and gooseneck faucet, and should have a washable floor covering. Good task lighting is also important for doing art projects.
- Quiet zone. - Quiet zone. Young children need personal space that permits intimate interaction with an adult and provides a space for solitary play, looking at books, or simply resting. The quiet zone should have carpeting, comfortable chairs and pillows, a low bookshelf for books and stuffed toys, and a space (that may need to be out of reach of toddlers) for objects such as plants or an aquarium.
In addition according to Butin, "the classroom should also have a self-contained bathroom that is equipped for toilet training and diaper changing".
Modifications of classroom design for children with special needs:
1. For children who are mobile only through a wheelchair, the classroom space might be expanded from the recommended 50 feet per square, to enable both children with disability and those who are typical to enjoy the classroom setting.
2. Another accommodation for children in a wheelchair or who walk with the help of crutches is to provide more spaces for moving around in all areas of the classroom.
3. Ramps may also help children in wheelchairs to move to elevated portions of the classroom or childcare facility.
4. Children with ADHD or attention-deficit and hyperactivity disorder, might be given a separate area for work where they can be by themselves while still be able to work with other children.
5. To lessen distraction and for closer monitoring, children with ADHD might be better placed near the teacher or the facilitator during lessons or interaction.
6. Children with ADHD might benefit from being positioned in an area where there is less opportunity for distraction such as a window.
7. To accommodate children with autistic syndrome who are much more sensitive to stimuli, lighting may be modified to make it more neutral.
8. Another accommodation for autistic children is for the rooms to be painted white since autistic children need calming visual sights as much as possible.
9. Another modification for autistic