During a recent design challenge I was facilitating, a team of teachers came up with a wonderful prototype to meet their users' needs. They heard that the students wanted to be able to follow their own curiosities at school and they decided to build a "Curiosity Studio" out of simple materials. The hope would be that this studio space could be rolled out (literally, unrolled from the ceiling) at different times in the day/week to provide a space where students could develop a routine around creative thinking, design work, and exploring their curiosities.
They took brown paper and cut out windows/walls and hung them from the ceilings and lights. Inside this space they put two tables with boxes full of basic materials and prompts, as well as journals. When students came in to test their prototype, it was amazing how separate this one area of the classroom felt even though it was only separated from the rest of the room by some simple, hanging paper.
Sometimes all it takes is some simple prototyping to discover that you can disrupt classroom norms and existing routines to create new spaces (and routines to go with them) right inside your existing environment.