Wauwatosa School District

Underwood and Lincoln Elementary Schools

Wauwatosa works

The school district in Wauwatosa, WI, saw some major upgrades in 2020 with two newly built elementary schools. After partnering with Demco in 2019 on two school library updates, Purchasing Supervisor Cindy Kazmierski was excited to team up once again to achieve the same look, feel, and functionality at Lincoln Elementary School and Underwood Elementary School. This exciting growth included discovery labs, breakout spaces, an Instructional Material Center, and six new STEM classrooms. The STEM spaces are particularly exciting because they target a younger demographic (kindergarten through fifth grade), giving kids a head start on hands-on and project-based learning.   

Cohesive carry-through

Because the district previously worked with Demco, they had an opportunity to tie together all four libraries with similar and cohesive furnishings — while differentiating each space with its own color palette. This detail might be missed by users who work at just one location, but for administrators and library resource teachers who often work across locations, it provides consistency (without losing the personality of individual spaces). By choosing pieces that were consistent with previous school projects, students who move between schools also gain a sense of equity and familiarity.

Demco worked with the district to choose furnishings that not only functioned well in the new space, but also paired with existing media tables and shelving that the district chose not to replace. Available in a range of colors, the ColorScape® collection was chosen to provide flexible seating for engaged learning. By working with a designer, the district was able to blend new additions with older carry-through pieces without either looking out of place.  

STEM standouts

The standout spaces in these schools are the STEM classrooms and discovery labs. Demco helped the district design six STEM classrooms covering kindergarten through fifth grade, giving educators the chance to lean into project-based learning. These fun and engaging spaces also foster student collaboration between classrooms and breakout zones in the Underwood facility. The STEM classrooms are outfitted with Gear Guard™ Tables with a perimeter lip, which prevents small pieces from tumbling to the floor — a must with younger age groups. The tables also include under-mounted storage trays for small pieces. Added casters make it easy to rearrange spaces creatively and an array of seating styles provide flexibility, functionality, and student choice. Pieces like the TeacherGeek® Maker Cart 2.0, a kid-friendly moveable cart that includes over 17,000 maker components, helped these spaces hit the ground making. 

Location: Wauwatosa, WI
Client: Wauwatosa School District
Demco Consultants:Lynne Gruneberg, Learning Environment Consultant, Angela Loewecke, Interior Designer
Completion Date: 2021