By Katie Albrecht
As a good steward of your facility, you need to prepare for a high level of adaptability. To adjust to the fast-paced atmosphere in the church, room dividers have become a staple for several decades.
Though no church membership uses them entirely the same, here’s how some congregations use portable room dividers in their space for maximum flexibility.
Extra classroom space
It’s no secret that church facilities could always use more classroom space to accommodate new growth. This space often comes from a repurposed basement or multipurpose room. However, challenges can occur if multiple groups need the area at one time. For this reason, one of the primary uses for portable room dividers in the church is breaking up these larger spaces into smaller classrooms.
Screenflex partitions, in particular, provide the most adaptability for any church space. Because these portable walls fold accordion-style, they can create a variety of shapes. The panels even create a 90-degree angle and form temporary new rooms within your current space.
Additionally, these dividers can absorb up to 60% of sound when two or more of them connect in a “U-shape.” These features help you maximize your facility for Sunday school sessions, children’s ministries, or other fellowship groups by limiting visual and auditory distractions.
Adapt to attendance fluctuations
Not only do you prepare your congregation for steady growth, but also for the regular fluctuations of Sunday service attendees. For instance, while attendance during Christmas and Easter generally spikes, it usually slows down in the summertime.
Other church leaders use room dividers to manage these ebbs and flows of people in their space. For instance, using a temporary wall in your facility can help create overflow space during those high-traffic times. In contrast, if your sanctuary or multipurpose rooms are too spacious for the slower times of the year, portable screens can make the room feel more appropriate for the smaller crowds.
Another scenario that creates fluctuations in attendance are community functions in the facility. There might be times when your congregation needs to flip these events quickly and efficiently to allow new ones to use the space afterwards. By using room dividers that are freestanding and portable, you can create temporary backdrops, make the space more intimate, or even create a place for banquet prep. The dividers easily close when the event is over.
Hide storage areas
As your church community expands, sometimes you have to think outside of the box to best use all of your space. For instance, Immanuel Lutheran Church converted an old storage room into a workspace when they were running out of room. However, they needed to then accommodate their children’s ministry crafts, toys, and lesson plans that previously occupied the storage area.
Their solution to creating more storage space included installing shelves near the back of a large classroom. Then, to keep the room looking neat and tidy, these leaders placed a Screenflex portable partition as a visual barrier in front of the storage. This movable divider keeps the stuff out of sight in an attractive fashion and also allows easy access to it when needed.
Block light and other elements
If your church has several clear windows or entryways, consider limiting the excess sunlight exposure. While bright, open windows can look appealing, they also can leave your congregation to the mercy of the weather outside.
Blanchard Baptist Church needed a barrier to partially block their glass entryways and windows. On hot and sunny days, their facility became sweltering with heat. On the contrary, icy drafts would also seep through the glass during the cooler seasons.
By placing a few Screenflex Dividers in front of the glass, Blanchard Baptist was able to help control the temperature while also sleekly and professionally framing the room.
The use of room dividers in the church is constantly evolving. While these examples worked for other churches in the past, use your experience and best judgment on what works best for your facility.
Practicing good stewardship of your space, after all, resides in the difference between simply using your tools and thriving with them.
Katie Albrecht is the Content Marketing Coordinator for Screenflex Portable Room Dividers, a leading manufacturer of freestanding, portable partitions.
For a little over a year, Albrecht has been creating and overseeing all of the content for the Screenflex website and social media profiles.
Outside of her time at Screenflex, Albrecht is an accomplished author and podcaster on topics of mental health.